Pedantic Semantics

Not at all pretentious

I Gotta Believe

Posted by Paul on August 3, 2011

I just don’t know my Seahawks anymore. That might be a tad disingenuous, but I don’t say it without reason.  Even this time last year, with all the crazy trading, we still had stalwarts like Hasselbeck, Tatupu, and Locklear.

Okay, so we still have Sean Locklear, but this team is mostly a stranger to many of us. I’ll admit, I’ve only been following sports since 2006, so changes like this are new to me. In some ways, that only makes it worse. Matt Hasselbeck is the only Seahawks quarterback I’ve ever known. I suppose you could throw in the second and third stringers, but while I was behind Seneca Wallace beyond where it made sense, none of them were Matt. Not Seneca, nor either Charlie.

Don’t even get me started on Lofa. The man was the brightest defensive player this side of Brian Urlacher, even if his ridiculous penchant for muscle building in later years meant he couldn’t wrap up, which is what helped make him great in the first place.

Now we have Tarvaris Jackson. That’s not a name that inspires a lot of confidence, considering Minnesota chose a failing Brett Favre over him. I suppose we’ll have to give him a chance, but if we have to adjust to a new QB, it would have helped to have a hopeful young star, or even a decent Carson Palmer. What we got is… no, must give him a chance.

It’s also likely that John Carlson is falling by the wayside, what with picking up this guy from the Raiders. Why would we do that if we didn’t plan to use him? Carlson was the shining light of 2008, and now, too soon for a tight end, his star is likely dimming. I could go on and on about how my team is changing. As I said, it’s a new experience. Well, not entirely new. I’ve watched the Mariners roster shift like the sands of the Sahara over the last three years. But it’s new for the Seahawks, watching those I’ve grown to love leave this city. Those people are also the heart of this team, the people with the necessary experience to calm the young bucks when things get out of hand.

Somehow, I can easily get over all of this. Matt didn’t always have a cool head under pressure anyway. And despite that he may be certifiably insane, I trust Pete Carroll with my team. He’s going young, and hell, going young got the Tampa Bay Rays all the way to the world series. Granted, we’re likely a few years from the NFC Championship, let alone a Superbowl, but not for lack of trying. Can-do spirit is important in football above all other sports, considering the confidence it takes to pull off any given play. You take Kobe Bryant, Evan Longoria, Christiano Ronaldo. They all need confidence, sure, but they seem to all be able to score with only half the confidence in their ability that Peyton Manning and Reggie Wayne require just to get a first down. Things have to move like clockwork, and you can’t do that if you’re overthinking it. Football occurs so much in the mind, that having a coach that’s going to give young, impressionable players a boost like Carroll’s going to give his little JV crew can make all the difference. Tom Brady wasn’t doing shit without Bill Belichick telling him he could. Carroll’s smart, too. You hear him talk in interviews, the guy knows what he’s doing.

Okay, so we’ve got a young, capable group of guys doing what their freaking crazy (but smart!) coach tells them to do. Looking at the NFL, it’s still going to take more than that. No one’s going to come out and say we can easily take the Pittsburgh Steelers, destroyers of dreams, on their home turf this September. So what? Being a sports fan means being irrational, and unlike being a religious zealot, that irrationality is unlikely to maim and kill people (unless you’re a Dodger’s fan on Giants night). I believe in Pete Carroll. I believe in these young guys. Especially Earl Thomas, because he is freaking badass.

Please Earl Thomas, don’t ever leave us. Ever.

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