Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Pay No Attention To Reality

There's an AP story today about Shaun Alexander getting booed in Seattle, and expressing frustration in their blowout win over the abysmal Rams.

The story is, of course, nothing you didn't know if you had been paying attention to the Seahawks-Saints SNF game two weeks ago -- unlike, say, Al Michaels, John Madden, Cris Collingsworth, Bob Costas, Peter King, Sterling Sharpe, Tiki Barber, Keith Olbermann, Kate Hudson, Eddie Albert, Charles Nelson Reilly, Marv Albert, Adam West, and the Dancing Sideline Reporter Furries in the NBC broadcasting blimp... but here's the really fun part about it.

Watching Mike Holmgren stand up on his walrus flippers and defend the player that, um, he replaced with a back-up in the short yardage carries.

Shaun Alexander seems to be the lightning rod and I am here to tell that there are times that there is nothing there. ... He has been a little unfairly criticized in my opinion.
Nothing, as in nothing left to the burst of this 30 year old RB? Nothing, as in nothing to recommend him getting the ball instead of Maurice Morris (3.9 ypc) or Leonard Weaver (5.7 ypc), both of whom beat out Alexander's robust 3.4 yards per carry average?

Hang on, the lying gets better. Someone in the press gaggle must have thrown him a mackerel.
We are not blocking very well at this particular point. That must improve. We've been forced to analyze it because of people -- you guys, our families, everybody -- what they say is 'What's going on with Shaun?' because Shaun is the MVP, Shaun's a great running back. I'm here to say for Shaun, there is not a lot (of room) there. And we have to be better at that. We have to fix that.
Um, your MVP, if a .500 team can be said to have an MVP, much in the same way that a terrible division still has to has a champion, is Matt Hasselbeck. The AP piece also mentions, but does not quote, Hasselbeck saying that the running game is stalled even in practice, when no one is tackling. Think about that for a little while. It's the football equivalent of a Zen koan.

Now, the Seahawks have a bye week, and after that, they've got the fairly generous Browns at home, who won't have a bye. If you own Alexander in your roto league, you're probably going to want to ride out the bye and probably cash in on the Browns not being able to tackle a half-speed broken down old runner. Hell, they did sign Jamal Lewis in the off-season.

But if The MVP comes up small again, it might be time to invest in Morris or Weaver, though with Mack Strong being done, maybe this team just doesn't run the ball worth a damn at any point. Or, if you don't like being told that what you are seeing and hearing in the games is real, ear plugs and salt water for any Holmgren press conference...


Steven said...

I was on the Shawn's finished bandwagon too... but notice in the pic that he is holding the ball in his left hand, his favored hand...

... the hand that's also broken and still in a cast, and has been in a cast all season.

Announcers during the Seahawks-Rams game pointed the following out: Shawn likes to run to the left side, meaning he would need to cradle the ball in his left hand to keep it away from the defense. But because that hand's broken, he can't use it. Instead, he cradles with his right, and basically has to run with his arms practically folded to protect the ball. Thus he can't stiffarm anyone or run with any flexibility... making him the easiest target in any backfield. And even when he runs to the right, he can't stiffarm or do much of anything with the casted-up left arm, making him an easy target yet again.

That doesn't even factor in any apprehension he may have in being on a violent football field with an injury in the first place.

He shouldn't even be on the field. He needs to take all the time off he needs to let the hand heal all the way, and let Maurice Morris do whatever he can, which probably isn't bad.

I can't believe it took 7 weeks for ANY announce crew to point this out.

Steven said...

Also, the Seattle press is notorious for protecting the good names of established sports stars of their respective teams. They played cover-up with the fact that Edgar Martinez was washed up, they brag about the improvement of Robert Swift even though he still plays like Shaun Bradley high on ecstasy at a rave, they overlook the terrible play of Richie Sexson and Raul IbaƱez... so it doesn't surprise me that they apologize and defer to Shawn's star status. it's like they're deathly afraid that saying the slightest cross thing will get their press passes revoked.

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