As the franchise enjoys the first 4-0 start of it's young existence, fans of this historically hard-luck team should have plenty to be excited about. Hell, I know I'm ecstatic myself! For the first time anyone can remember, the Seahawks were among the handful of teams touted by the media as legitimate Super Bowl contenders through the preseason.
When the season began, there were questions if Seattle had what it takes to win on the east coast in an early game-- they answered that with a victory. In the second week, the question was whether or not Seattle could contain the NFC Champion 49ers in a tough division rivalry game-- they answered that question handily. Everyone expected Seattle to roll the Jacksonville, but there was concerns that the Seahawks might overlook the lowly Jaguars-- they covered the spread even with the backups playing the bulk of the second half. Finally, Seattle had it's truest test with a potential playoff team in Houston facing that 10:00 AM east coast time slot-- it wasn't pretty, but the Seahawks answered.
Now we're officially one quarter into the regular season and so far Seattle have overcome every challenge put in their path. If you look deep enough, you'll find concerns, but all in all, this team has answered every call.
Today, I began to look at the next quarter of the season. Seattle goes on the road to Indianapolis, back home to take on the Titans and then two divisional road games against the Rams and Cardinals. Now, the Colts were a playoff team last year and they beat the 49ers in their own backyard. Under absolutely no circumstances should the players or coaches be looking past this game. However, as a fan-- don't you feel good about how these teams match up?
The Colts have become somewhat of a smash-mouth football team this season. They'll look to pound the ball at us while making efficient passes with Andrew Luck. I'm thoroughly confident our defense will handle the Colts offense. The Colts defense doesn't scare me at all. I think a steady dose of Marshawn Lynch will open things up for Russell Wilson to go off. Even Vegas is favoring us to win this one on the road.
After that, it only gets easier. It looks like we'll see a Jake Locker-less Titans team at home and a pair of division rivals who have so far fallen well short of the expectations that were put on them to be much improved. Barring catastrophic injuries to key players, you have to feel good about the Seahawks going 4-0 in the next stretch of games.
That being said, I peeked ahead to the 3rd quarter of the season-- Tampa Bay is imploding, we get them at home, Falcons have yet to get it together this year, and you gotta think Seahawks are out for their blood, Vikings are still a one trick pony with Adrian Peterson and then we hit our bye week.
As a fan, I don't see a real threat on the schedule until Monday Night against the Saints and then the short week leading to the road match up with the 49ers.
Cocky? Yes. Improbable? Absolutely not.
Being a fan, short for Fanatic, I posted comments on my personal Facebook page as well as the SeahawksFTW.com Facebook page declaring that I don't see a real challenge for this team until December.
I was completely shocked by the responses I received.
Everyone, almost unanimously, responded with the same 'don't look past any opponent' saying to one degree or the other. I continuously reminded them that coach Carroll would certainly prepare the team as such-- but since we're not active participants in the outcome of the game, and instead fanatics of the Seahawks, it's well within our jurisdiction to get excited, speculate and overreact.
No one was buying it.
Am I being crazy? I thought about it-- absolutely not! This team is damn good! Historically good!
49ers fans for the better part of a decade have been obnoxiously loud about how great their team is in the preseason, only to be disproved 8 out of 10 times. My friends who follow the Packers think they're going all the way every year just because they have Aaron Rodgers. Same goes for my friends who claim Tom Brady or Peyton Manning as their guy.
Upon deeper reflection, I wasn't the one acting unusually. It's the rest of you!
Are we Seahawks fans afraid to jinx our team? Would the shame of falling short of winning it all be too much for this fan base to bear? Perhaps it's a little bit of both. I can assure you, if Seattle doesn't live up to those lofty preseason expectations, no one will be more disappointed than me.
However, I'm not going to let the fear of failure as we embark into this previously uncharted territory of being the favorite hold me back from enjoying the hell out of this season. There's a chance we won't win it all-- there's a chance we'll never be this good again.
All I know is, right now, we're really, really good. We've overcome every challenge put in front of us so far and there's no sign of that changing anytime soon. So, puff your chest out, ride this wave of excellence as far as it will take us and above all else-- really enjoy this season.