A major myth has been propagated across the Pacific Northwest and the NFL in recent months. You know, the one that says the Seahawks need Marshawn Lynch in order to win a Super Bowl.
(This is completely separate from the idea that the Seahawks would have won Super Bowl XLIX if they had run Lynch one last time.)
The Hawks have been partly guilty themselves of spreading the nasty rumor, with Pete Carroll and John Schneider talking him up as a core player. They consider him such a key piece that they have offered the soon-to-be 29-year-old a pay raise and extension.
There is nothing wrong with that — they can fit it under the cap nicely and not lose much even if he does walk away after 2015 — but the fact is the Hawks don’t really need Lynch.
The Seahawks have not used the franchise tag since 2010 — the first year of the Carroll/Schneider regime — and they almost positively won’t use it this year either.
The window opened today and goes through March 2.
John Schneider has been great about re-signing key free agents before their contracts expire, and the guys they have lost in free agency have been role players or lesser starters they were prepared to lose.
This year they have only two starters scheduled to hit free agency, and they are not going to pay cornerback Byron Maxwell or guard James Carpenter $13 million in 2015.
Schneider has said the team will try to retain Maxwell, but he also admits it will be hard. Maxwell is expected to get an offer worth at least $7 million a year — the Hawks probably would go only as high as $6 million.
Pete Carroll loves to do things differently, and if he still wants to build a dynasty — even if he won’t say it in those terms — he certainly will get his chance to do it in a way it has never been done.
The Seahawks are the second team to ever follow up a Super Bowl win with a Super Bowl loss the next year, and if they are going to become a historically dominant team, they will have to get back a lot sooner than Washington did.
In a look ahead to the offseason with 710 ESPN on Tuesday, general manager John Schneider gave some hints about the Seahawks’ possible approach to an extension for quarterback Russell Wilson.
Schneider basically indicated that Wilson is on board with helping the team structure the deal in a way that it does not inhibit the Seahawks’ ability to remain a contender. The GM also hinted the deal will be put together in creative fashion and might not resemble many of the quarterback deals done over the last two years.
Pete Carroll does not talk about the “D word” — as he called it at one point last offseason. But “dynasty” certainly is on his mind — even if it is buried way in the back, behind Cover-3 schemes and ways to dominate turnover margin.
What do you think his motto, Win Forever, means? Principle No. 1 of that mantra: To do things better than they have ever been done before.
The Seahawks are still working toward that goal — obviously much closer to achieving it on defense than on offense — and beating the Patriots on Sunday would be a huge step in that direction, making the Hawks the ninth repeat champ.
No team has ever won three straight Super Bowls, but the Hawks are in good position to make a run at it. Carroll knows it.
John Schneider and his staff apparently messed up in free agency last year, thanks to the Super Bowl, and they aren’t letting it happen again.
That was the most significant message imparted Friday by the general manager, who shed no new light on the team’s position with Marshawn Lynch or Russell Wilson but indicated the team was not prepared enough for free agency in 2014.
Schneider seemed to indicate his staff underestimated the value of some of their free agents last offseason — Golden Tate and Clinton McDonald come to mind (although the Hawks will get compensatory draft picks for those two).
To avoid getting caught with their pants down this year, Schneider has already met with his pro personnel guys — Trent Kirchner and Dan Morgan — and they have a better bead on the market for their 15 unrestricted free agents.
For a guy as quiet as he is, Marshawn Lynch sure does make a lot of noise.
And he made a lot of it over the weekend.
It all started with a report Friday that he was going to wear $1,100 gold-plated cleats against the Packers, followed by a report Sunday morning that the NFL would not let him play if he did so.
As it turned out, he played in shoes that had blue and green tops and gold soles. And he made a lot of noise with them, running for a team playoff-record 157 yards and a touchdown in the 28-22 comeback win that vaulted Seattle into the Super Bowl for the second straight year.
It remains to be seen whether the No Fun League fines Lynch for the gold shoe bottoms — or for another crotch grab while scoring. Not sure why he insists on doing that — it’s such a teenage maneuver. But, hey, if Lynch wants to be a dick, that’s his choice.
Newer Seahawks fans — and there are plenty of them — might think the Packers-Seahawks series consists of two games: the Hawks’ infamous Fail Mary victory on a Monday night in 2012 and Seattle’s 20-point win in the opening game of this NFL season.
But this series was full of great matchups back when Mike Holmgren and quarterback Matt Hasselbeck were leading the Hawks against their old team — led by Brett Favre — and this will be the 11th meeting, the third in the playoffs, since 1999.
The Seahawks’ deals for Cliff Avril and K.J. Wright had been in the works pretty much all year, so it was no surprise they got them done before the end of the season.
It takes away the top two players from Seattle’s sizable 2015 free-agent list and means Seattle now has all but one starter from the league’s No. 1 defense under contract next year (two if you add Kevin Williams to Byron Maxwell).
Wright and Avril join Legion of Boom stalwarts Kam Chancellor, Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman, plus defensive lineman Michael Bennett, as the keys to a defense that could reign over the NFL through 2017.