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Tuesday, November 12, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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A Grip on Sports: The process may have been ugly, but for the Seahawks, Sunday’s finished product was handsome

Seattle Seahawks free safety Tedric Thompson (33) intercepts pass for Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry (80) in the end zone during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Cleveland. (Ron Schwane / Associated Press)
Seattle Seahawks free safety Tedric Thompson (33) intercepts pass for Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry (80) in the end zone during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Cleveland. (Ron Schwane / Associated Press)

A GRIP ON SPORTS • Does your head still hurt? No, not from what you may have imbibed during the Seahawks game but the game itself. The replays, the missed tackles, blocks, calls, the injuries, the overall sloppiness of the game, they all combined to give us a headache. And yet the final result was exactly what any Hawk fan could have wished for.

•••••••

• Every one knows there are a few medical procedures that are necessary. The visit to the dentist twice a year. The every-five-year colonoscopy. The annual physical and all its attendant poking and prodding. Such things are annoying, painful and just not fun.

But they are important, crucial in fact, if your ultimate goal is to be reached.

Sort of like the Hawks’ Sunday visit to Cleveland.

It was a chore to watch from beginning to end. And probably felt the same way on the field. The Seahawks were not very good defensively to start, and got better. They were really good offensively, then got worse and better again. The officiating? Well, it was a disaster from beginning to end. Bad spots, bad calls, bad replays, just plain bad.

Everything was bad except Russell Wilson.

And, folks, is what you need to win in the NFL, circa 2019. A great quarterback – make no mistake about it, Russell Wilson is a great quarterback, one of the best in the league – will make up for quite a few failings.

So will forcing turnovers, of which the Hawk defense had four. And yet, all those extra possessions still only added up to four more points.

Part of it was the more-than-occasional blown call, some of which were just plain mystifying. Really, Jarvis Landry can’t block a guy like that? The ball wasn’t in the end zone on fourth down? Odell Beckham’s head didn’t hit out of bounds before anything else? C’mon.

Of course, the time it took to review most of said calls using “instant” replay allowed for some much needed exercise pacing the room. And ensured the game didn’t end until well into the 4 p.m. hour.

When it finally was over, there was just enough time to shave, shower and sit down for the Astros’ 3-2 11-inning win over the Yankees. It was a way to cleanse the bad taste of the football game from the palate.

Somewhere around the fifth inning I realized something. The Hawks play pretty darn ugly games. And yet they are 5-1, one of their best starts ever. There has been nothing pretty about any of it, but they are getting the job done.

•••

WSU: The opposite has been true for the Cougars recently. They have been involved in some ugly games – with ugly outcomes. Theo Lawson took a look yesterday at the latest ugly defeat in this game rewind. … The volleyball and soccer teams played yesterday. No one lost. … Up this week for the football team: Colorado. The Buffs are dealing with their problems as well. … Elsewhere in the Pac-12, the most recent polls feature Oregon, Utah, Arizona State and, yes, Washington, after the Huskies’ 51-27 win at Arizona. … The Ducks are ready for their “rivalry game” with UW. Is it one? … The other Pac-12 game this weekend matching two ranked teams features Utah hosting Arizona State. … Oregon State has to bounce back again. … So will USC, which is dealing with another injury. … UCLA and Stanford meet as both teams try to right their season. … In basketball news, Oregon State has an assistant who is one of the really nice people in college hoops.  

Gonzaga: The Charlotte Hornets waived Josh Perkins on Sunday. Jim Meehan has more in this story.

Seahawks: The Hawks still aren’t getting much in the way of a pass rush, though they tried different rotations yesterday. Jarran Reed will be back Sunday against Baltimore. That should help. … Russell Wilson’s helmet headset went out in the first half. The Seahawks scored on the possession. … The running game was on point despite three starting offensive linemen missing the contest. And Will Dissly went out early. … The wins haven't come easy, but they are wins. … The Browns weren't gracious in defeat. Not one bit. Nothing wrong with that.

•••       

• Ever have a Polish Boy sandwich? It was our taste of Cleveland meal during the Seahawks game Sunday. Kielbasa, French fries, barbecue sauce and cole slaw on a hard roll. Like the game itself, the end result was positive, even if it was a little hard to understand while it was being put together. And some in the room added pulled pork, which seemed a little over the top to me. Next up: Baltimore. I'm thinking crab cakes. Until later …

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