Given the ongoing non sequitur that is sports in Seattle, the logic shouldn't escape anybody that, apparently because the Mariners hired a fine general manager, the Seahawks won a football game. The G.M.'s name seems to be Jack *@#$%!, coincidental because that last name is what Hawks fans had been saying about the football team as it stumbled to 1-5. Now that the Hawks – on the road, yet – have notched another "W" (34-13 Sunday, Oct. 26), albeit against a San Francisco 49ers outfit that actually may be worse than the Seattle club, a 2-5 mark inspires thoughts of eventually pulling to 5-5 and maybe even edging into the playoffs for a sixth straight season.
Such are the possibilities when you exist in a division consisting of eenie, meenie, miney, and Moe (the latter as opposed to Larry and Curly). Just now the Arizona Cardinals are the fool's-gold standard of the National Football Conference West Division. The Cards are 4-3, with remaining games against Seattle. One scenario for the Hawks is to triumph twice over 'Zona, beat the Rams in St. Louis, and somehow find two or three wins elsewhere amid a daunting remaining schedule. It's the sports equivalent of a political scheme in which McCain/Palin prevails in Pennsylvania, Virginia, Colorado, Wisconsin, etc., when, in fact, the Republicans are behind by a touchdown or two in each state.
The Hawks beat SanFran largely by harking back to a familiar entertainment, namely Leave It to Weaver. Whistle the theme song with us as we recall with fond nostalgia the picture of a Seahawks blocking back, Leonard Weaver, making like a latter-day John L. Williams, catching a pair of short passes and scampering 43 and 62 yards for second-half touchdowns. The other obvious plus factor for the Hawks was that second-stringer Seneca Wallace had a superb day at quarterback, completing 15 of 25 passes for 222 yards and no interceptions. The offense was so effective that the Hawks won going away, even though the Niners controlled the ball eight more minutes than the winners.
Yes, the Hawks' 39 rushing yards on 28 carries represents about 50 inches per attempt, thought to be the lowest ratio since the game was played with hog bladders. Granted, the 49ers actually outgained the Hawk offense by 124 yards. But the victory comes at a time when the Seattles at least have a reasonable shot of reaching .500. It would mean beating three consecutive teams (Philadelphia, Miami, Arizona) with middlin' records. If it were to happen, the Hawks could emerge at home and with mended, competitive personnel against Washington on Nov. 23.
Coach Mike Holmgren wasn't talking with undo optimism in the aftermath of the San Francisco game. Nor would he abide any distraction brought on by word that he might resume his coaching career with the 49ers after "retiring" at the end of this season.
For now, it seems to suffice to appreciate the fact that a 1-15 finish isn't going to happen, though 2-14 remains possible. One isn't sure just how much credit for the Seahawks win belongs to the new Mariners G.M., whose name actually is Jack Zduriencik (mellifluously and mercifully pronounced zur-REN-sick). It's worth noting, though, that the latest savior of the baseball franchise didn't figure in any miracles for the other Seattle football organization, with the Washington Huskies losing Saturday, Oct. 25, 33-7 to Notre Dame.