Seahawks WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh (Getty)
He played seven seasons for the Cincinnati Bengals and put up huge numbers while in the Queen City, but playing for a notoriously cheap franchise can have its drawbacks as well. However, Seattle Seahawks WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh says in his new digs he has nothing to complain about and he's ready to have another big season...
"Seattle gives you no excuses" Houshmandzadeh told KIRO 710 AM's Mike Salk and Brock Huard on Tuesday. "They don’t give you reasons to complain about this, they’re not giving you reasons to complain about that.
"It’s not ‘I wish we had this or that’, none of that because what you need and what you want are there. The only excuse we can have is ‘the team beat us’ so the onus is on the players and the coaches to get this thing done because they give you every resource to get it done."
Get it done was exactly what Houshmandzadeh did in Cincinnati the past seven seasons, hauling in 507 receptions for 5,782 yards and 37 touchdowns while taking a backseat to the likes of Chad Ochocinco, one of the league's more flamboyant receivers.
Even though fans and sports scribes tend to be put off by some of the talking that goes on by today's crop of wide receivers, Houshmandzadeh says there's a method to the madness.
"If you’re playing without confidence, your game will suffer and the more confident you are, for some reason, the more you talk," Houshmandzadeh admitted. "I’ve always been a big talker, some say too much, but the more confidence you have the better you play and I don’t know why that is, but when you have that confidence you begin to play better.
"When I’m on the field, I don’t feel like there’s anybody that can cover me, that’s just how I feel and when receivers start to develop that attitude you almost feel unstoppable and when you develop that attitude it’s unbelievable. Some guys just talk because they’re scared, but some other guys talk to scare their opponent and if he’s weak-minded, he will be scared and that’s also why some guys talk a lot."
To go along with that theme, Houshmandzadeh didn't retract what he told the Sporting News recently regarding the type of season he expects to have, stating he and QB Matt Hasselbeck will have Pro Bowl seasons in 2009.
"I believe it," Houshmandzadeh said un-appologetically. "If me and Matt and the offensive line, that’s the key to our entire season, if our offensive line can stay healthy, that’s what is going to happen. They’re the key.
"We’ll get the glory, but I know and everybody within our organization knows that the offensive line will carry us and if that happens, for me and Matt, the sky’s the limit."
While on the field with Ochocinco, Houshmandzadeh played primarily in the slot for the Bengals and he said that dictated how he worked out in the offseason.
"When I work out, I work out on my entire game as a receiver, but the last two or three years in Cincinnati, I got into a pattern of not doing very much running, not doing a lot of speed, power running because all my routes were 15 yards and under," Houshmandzadeh said. "Now with me being in Seattle and seeing the types of things I’m going to be doing in the offense, I’m running hills, I’m running the sand dunes, I’m doing the things that I did early in my career because I didn’t know what to expect.
"I love getting on the inside because you get more opportunities to get the ball, but you have to be smart and be able to read the coverage and see what the quarterback is seeing, but there’s times where they can take you away inside and that’s when you move outside. Wherever I can help the team and make plays, whether it be on the outside or whether it’s in the slot, that’s what I want to do."
And that's what the Seahawks and their fans want and they won't accept any excuses.