RENTON, Wash. – As the clouds darken over Seattle’s season, Russell Wilson is keeping his sunny side up.
So what that his Seahawks are battered, unsettled, middling at .500 and riding their first two-game losing streak in 24 months.
“I think adversity is opportunity,” Wilson said in St. Louis on Sunday moments after he was wondrous and record-setting yet couldn’t prevent Seattle from falling behind 21-3 and then losing to the Rams 28-26.
“So we have a great opportunity ahead of us. And that’s going to Carolina (3-3-1 this) week.
“We have a team that’s full of fighters. There’s nothing better than a guy that will go 16 rounds, 15 rounds, however many rounds there is in boxing – I don’t know, I don’t watch boxing enough to really know how many rounds.”
Yes, this is standard, Wilsonian language. And, yes, his knowledge of the “sweet science” needs a standing-eight count.
But Wilson has a point. And the Seahawks still have an opportunity. At least 10 more of them, in fact.
Elias Sports Bureau and espn.com pointed out on Tuesday how league history shows the Seahawks being at .500 after six games gives them a 38-percent chance of qualifying for the postseason.
But how many division leaders at this point in a previous NFL season had a starting quarterback with a throwing shoulder that only sometimes works and was missing half its defense because of injury? That’s where Arizona (5-1) is right now. Carson Palmer has a nerve condition in his shoulder that sometimes keeps him out of games, sometimes doesn’t – and often prevents him from attempting a pass down the field. The Cardinals play Philadelphia (5-1) and at Dallas (6-1) the next two weeks. After a game with the Rams (2-4), they play the hot Lions (5-2) and then are at Seattle. The Seahawks have five division games remaining, including two each with Arizona and San Francisco.
Such is the glass-half-full version of Seattle’s current state.
That’s the glass from which Pete Carroll drinks. He thinks the offense will continue to settle itself, which it well may now that coordinator and play caller Darrell Bevell isn’t feeding the ball to the traded Percy Harvin. Carroll sees Wilson becoming the first NFL player to pass for 300 yards and run for 100 in a game last weekend against the Rams, the reconnection with Marshawn Lynch’s running, the trade of Harvin resulting in Doug Baldwin returning inside as a slot receiver where he’s thrived before all as reasons to believe rather than panic.
Yes, the offensive line remains porous. Yes, Wilson keeps having to scramble away from getting nailed almost each time he drops to throw. Yes, at least four starters – tight end Zach Miller, center Max Unger, middle linebacker Bobby Wagner and cornerback Byron Maxwell – are out or iffy for Sunday’s game against the Panthers.
But Carroll accentuates Seattle being one, final failed offensive possession late at San Diego and against Dallas from winning those game, then a fake punt it allowed away from beating the Rams after rallying from an early, 18-point ditch.
“The margin of where we are versus what we could be is so slight that the hope is very strong,” Carroll said Monday. “We weren’t as successful as we wanted to be, we got back to it. … It is a lot of positive and it’s completely different from the (Dallas) game. (That game) I thought we didn’t have any growth. This game, you could feel the growth within our offense. Excited about that going forward.”
So count him in Seattle’s glass-half-full crowd, too, even at 3-3.
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