Bye Bye...

Seahawks.NET
Posted Oct 3, 2004


.NET's Steve Utz wonder about the Seahawks' post-bye record, and gets ready for a little "Bob Vila" action of his own.

The bye week. In past seasons, Seahawks fans could take solace in the idea that at least the team couldn’t lose this week. Now, however, things are a bit different.

Seahawks fans – and players – are becoming accustomed to winning games. The bye week has now become a lost opportunity, in a way, to win a game. Yes, the mindset has changed.

Player interviews this week are a bit guarded. Most players are saying something to the effect that they wish they could keep playing, and winning, while the team is on a roll. They give passing acknowledgement that there are players who need some rest this week. But the truth – their truth – is that only Chad Brown has an injury that would definitely keep him out of a game this week.

Mack Strong and Isaiah Kacyvenski would most likely be listed as questionable or even doubtful for a hypothetical game this Sunday, but overall, team health is good. Many other teams around the league have far worse injury problems than the Seahawks. By the way, that pounding you hear in the background is me knocking on wood.

So Seattle, one of the healthier teams around, gets a week to let the little aches and boo-boos heal.

Meanwhile, the players get some days off. Many will fly out to see family or take a mini-vacation. Many will stay in the area. All have been urged by Holmgren, the coaching staff, and the senior players and team captains to remember their workout routines over the time off. There is a strange feeling around this group of guys that tell me they will listen and, for the most part, heed that suggestion.

Everyone from Holmgren on down has been lauding the dedication that has been shown by most players this past off season. The addition of high motor, dedicated veterans like Grant Wistrom and Bobby Taylor has helped that dedication grow in the minds and hearts of players all over the team.

It still leaves the fans high and dry.

In my personal life, it worked out well. The California branch of the family was planning a cookout for me, celebrating my plans to move back to Washington in the near future. Originally planned for last Saturday, and postponed to today because a key participant tends to work Saturday, it will not now cause me to miss a game. Meanwhile, it gives me more time to continue painting and fixing up the condo. Yeah, that’s a lot of fun.

It’s painful, this little bit of off season patched into the middle of the real season.

The ominous fact looms over us, that we haven’t done well after a bye. The team as a whole, and especially under Holmgren, have not responded well to time off. The Seahawks have yet to close a bye week with a win under Mike. Very curious. Most times, one would expect that some rest and some extra preparation would be a good thing. Apparently not. At least not historically.

Playing at home and against a division rival should take care of any emotional let-down. They couldn’t possibly be flat next week, could they? One would think not.

Could they be looking ahead to the impending match-up against New England? Hopefully not.

Can they thump the Rams as badly as they should? The upcoming game should be a 7-point spread, at least. And the Seahawks should cover it handily. This will be the Rams’ second consecutive road game, and 3rd in 4 weeks. Anything less than a fairly easy victory next week should be considered a bit of a disappointment, bye week or not.

The team gets a bye week, but we columnists don’t. Before you get all weepy for me, though – not to say that you actually will – don’t worry, I’ll compensate by cutting this column a bit shorter than normal. I still have plenty to paint, a toilet to install, some flooring to lay, some things to throw away/donate.

I’ll be busy enough this week, just not on football.

Steve Utz writes a column for Seahawks.NET every Sunday. Send your feedback to Steve at wisecoyote1@cox.net.


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