Saturday morning is a time for pouring an entire box of Captain Crunch into a large tupperware with milk and watching some cartoons. I wanted to talk to you all a little about what 2-2 really means though, so I'm going to risk spilling some milk on my keyboard and do both at the same time. Here goes!!
This past week there's been a bit of a doomsday feel about the Seahawks. It's not completely dominated the mood but it's been prevalent at my workplace, on the radio, and even my Facebook news feed. It got me to thinking, "Is 2-2 the dead sentence some people feel like it is?"
It's not. Believe me.
While not a particularly enticing spot, 2-2 is only one game off the lead in most divisions and with a win in Carolina the Seahawks will be one game back of the Cardinals (49ers as well if they win) with plenty of time to make up that ground.
The National Football League has a shorter season than anyone but the NCAA at 16 games, which leads to a great sense of urgency from fans. Early season struggles often lead to doom and gloom outlooks. But they're usually not as prophetic as they feel, look at these quotes, written just one year ago this week about a 2-2 Steelers team.
"A minus-10 turnover ratio might be the most telling statistic about the Steelers. This is a team in danger of falling apart. The beleaguered offensive line might get Ben Roethlisberger killed by season’s end. Big Ben has been sacked 15 times this year and has taken at least a dozen brutal hits from opposing defenses. Ben’s a warrior, but his toughness might not be enough to get him through the year. On the other hand, the Pittsburgh run defense has been surprisingly awful." -via WEEI 93.7FM
"Pittsburgh plays every team tough, but that offensive line coupled with Big Ben's need to try to make the "big play" are going to get Roethlisberger absolutely killed. Throw the ball away, Ben." -via Yahoo Sports
That team in Pittsburgh ended up winning 12 games, losing only 2 from that point on. The turnover ratio improved and the defense got back to doing what it was originally expected to do, something these writers didn't think would happen. What about the 2-2 Falcons?
"The Falcons strugged to put away the Seahawks... That's not a good sign for this team. Not at all." -via Bleacher Report
"Got back to .500 after dispatching the Seahawks, but this week they face the big boys in the Green Bay Packers. Atlanta doesn't need a win here to keep its dream alive for the playoffs, but it would help." -via AZCentral
He was right, Atlanta didn't need the win against Green Bay. They lost and still went on to win 10 games and secure a playoff spot. Are you sensing a trend here?
Lets look at my favorite of all, the Cincinnati Bengals. Not many thought the team would do very much coming off a terrible season, but rookie sensation Andy Dalton proved them all wrong. I liked this line best:
"The Bengals are 2-2? Who would have thought that would happen? Not me, that's for sure. They're not a good team, but they have taken themselves out of Andrew Luck contention with their last few wins." -via Bleacher Report
Andrew Luck? The Bengals were the top defense in the league through the first four games, and that defense carried them all the way to an improbable 9 win season and a playoff berth.
It is the nature of fans and writers to predict the future, with 6 days between games there's plenty of time for overreactions and speculation. In the end though it's really just that. The Seahawks could very well go on to lose 8 of their last twelve and finish 6-10, outside of the playoff picture. They could win 9 of their last 12 and breeze into the playoffs at 11 wins.
Whatever happens, it will depend on what they do, not what they have done.
Will they shore up their pass protection like those Steelers everyone was ragging on? Do they need a win in Carolina as bad as Atlanta seemed to against the Packers last year? Will their overly assertive defense carry them through the year like Cincy's did? Or will they fail to turn the corner like some of the 2-2 teams I failed to mention due to their lack of success.
The Seahawks have played four games, they have lost two and won two. Both of those losses went down to the last offensive possession of the game. As frustrating as last weeks loss was, and as awful as it may be to see another loss in Carolina, even that will not doom this season
As they like to say, "it's not over until the fat lady sings." And in the NFL, the fat lady never sings this early in the action.
My name is Luke. Follow me on twitter @MyHawkSoFly, satisfaction is guaranteed.