How ’bout those Seahawks!?!
The season began with plenty of doubt.
We had just traded away our beloved quarterback. The man who brought us to two Super Bowls.
Now Russell Wilson was playing for the other guys. We were told that the trade immediately made the Denver Broncos championship contenders.
The 12s were already grumbling. Who is this Geno Smith guy?
I remember hearing people already calling for a change after the preseason.
Now we were opening against Wilson and the Broncos in a Monday Night Football game.
I have had season tickets for the past 25 years. This year I had made it to the sidelines and a whole new crew.
My wife Cecilia was excited because these people were nicer and we were under the roof.
Still, there was a bit of a cloud hanging over the crowd. We had been told by the prognosticators not to expect much this season. At best, we would win four games and be the cellar-dwellers in the division.
Ah, but this was the opening night, where hope springs eternal.
Everyone was saying the key to this game was not to get behind early.
The other question was how the crowd would greet Russell. When he came out, the reaction was mixed, but I heard mostly cheers. After all, we had backed him for more than a decade.
As soon as the opening kick, the crowd returned to normal. Quiet when the Seahawks were on offense. As loud as any crowd in any NFL stadium when Denver had the ball.
As the Associated Press reported:
Geno Smith threw two first-half touchdown passes as the Seahawks’ offense started brilliantly in the post-Wilson era. Denver had plenty of chances after halftime but fumbled twice at the 1-yard line.”
Twice on the 1-yard line? Sound familiar?
In the end, Wilson wasn’t given the chance for a game-winning drive as his new coach decided to attempt a 64-yard field goal to win the game.
The kick missed left. The Seahawks held on to win 17-16 with the crowd chanting, “Geno!, Geno!”
How quickly things change. There was now more than false optimism. Maybe, just maybe, we were going to be ok.
16 games later and after plenty of ups-and-downs we were 9-8 and with a season-ending Detroit Lions win, we were in the playoffs.
Playoffs? Playoffs! We were just trying to win a game!
It was a fun season. There wasn’t much rain at home during the regular season.
Hawks fans had gotten spoiled by years of success under Coach Pete.
It looks like we didn’t have to give up hope after all.
Bill Kaczaraba is a Digital Content Editor for MyNorthwest.com and a 25 year Seahawks season ticket holder.