For the second year in a row, week 17 of the NFL season is a goodbye rather than a see-ya-soon. The Hawks are nowhere near the playoffs and are rather pretty close to the top of the draft again. (In case you're unaware, our current slotted pick is #7, which could move up to #5 or 6 with wins by Washington and/or Cleveland.) A couple thoughts this morning, none of which relating to Houshmandzadeh:
- With the Broncos sitting Brandon Marshall and almost certainly Eddie Royal and Tony Scheffler, they stand a better chance of losing to the very bad Kansas City Chiefs. A loss almost automatically drops them out of contention for the playoffs, which is huge. If they get into the playoffs, that pick could be anywhere from #21 to #32. If they don't, it's in the 17-20 range most likely. If all the cards aligned just right (wins by SF, Jax, Tennessee, Carolina, Miami, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Houston and a Denver loss) they could slip as low as 11-14.
- A win today would only alter the draft pick slightly for the Seahawks -- a drop from 7th to 10th at most. If you're rooting against the Seahawks hoping for a better draft pick, you're silly. The 4th Pick in the 2009 draft was supposed to be the best linebacker in 10 years (and may end up being so), but the LB taken #15 is going to be the Defensive Rookie of the Year (Cushing). Where your picking determines how much hype the guy you're picking has, not necessarily if he's the best player ever. Percy Harvin > DHB is another example.
- Tomorrow is Black Monday. Will we hear that Jim Mora has been fired? Will we hear that his coaching staff has been fired, but he is being retained? Will we get to see Greg Knapp weep? These and many more are just about 30 hours away from resolution. I honestly wouldn't expect much to happen tomorrow, since there is no GM in place, but I suppose it's possible to say "Look, we get it, and we need to go another direction." We'll see.
- NFL Redzone is just phenomenal, especially when your team stinks. Channel 410 or HD is 637 on Comcast. It's a real treat, and I'll miss it over the next 35 weeks.
- The Seahawks have made it explicitly clear that their goal this week is to stop Chris Johnson. I think they can do it. I expect him to break the Yards-from-Scrimmage record, and probably hit 2,000. I don't expect him to run hog wild and break the all-time rushing record though. Imagine if the team could re-do those first six weeks though...
- I think there is actually a very good chance that the Seahawks win today. These guys are all auditioning for their next job at this point, Matt Hasselbeck can't possibly has a third straight awful outing, the run game has been getting started well lately, and all it really takes is a couple of scores to beat the Titans usually. I'm not betting money on it, but I think there is more in our favor than not. However, a loss shows precisely how embarrassing this team is after a week of hype and promises to play for the 12th Man and such.
- The 12th Man Flag will be raised by Ken Griffey, Jr. today. That's flippin awesome.