Category Archives: Seattle Seahawks

Marshawn link; Mariners lineup; Kitsap’s Umpqua connection rolling

A Marshawn Kind of Way: This is an intriguing profile of Beast Mode. Lynch didn’t agree to an interview following the Seattle Seahawks win over the Eagles on Sunday, but MMQB writer Robert Klemko does a pretty good job of telling Marshawn’s story from people who know him and understand him. .

“He’s an introvert, but he doesn’t want to conform,” says former Seattle quarterback Matt Hasselbeck. “What made Seattle perfect, and allowed him to flourish, was the fact that Pete Carroll never made him conform. Pete never gave him a dress code. Him talking to the media was not treated like part of the main thing. It’s a set of rules somebody at Park Avenue came up with, and they mean nothing to him.”

“The best teammate I’ve ever had,” said Seattle linebacker Malcomb Smith.

“There are days when I don’t feel like dealing with media,” says Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith, a friend of Lynch’s. “People think he’s hiding something because he doesn’t want to talk. He does his job and does it well, and he’s not interested in other things. There are people who use the media to give false perceptions of who they are. He’s not interested in any of that. He just wants to ball.”

Mariners Lineup

Would you be happy if the Seattle Mariners 2015 Opening Day lineup looked something like this?

1. Austin Jackson, CF

2. Melky Cabrera or Alex Rios, RF

3. Robinson Cano, 2B

4. Nelson Cruz, DH

5. Kyle Seager, 3B

6. Logan Morrison, 1B

7. Dustin Ackley, LF

8. Mike Zunino, C

9. Chris Taylor or Brad Miller, SS

Felix Hernandez, P

Everything’s in place except for the No. 2 spot in the batting order. The Mariners are believed to be the front-runners to sign Cabrera, who is coming off a year in which he hit .301 with 16 home runs and an .808 OPS for Toronto. The switch-hitter seems like an ideal  fit. The M’s are also believed to have targeted Alex Rios, who hit .280 with a .709 OPS for Texas last year. Either would be a significant upgrade, although I’m still intrigued about the upside of James Jones. He stole 27 bases in 108 games a year ago and we saw the excitement he brings to the game when he’s putting the ball in play.

Maybe the M’s will pull the trigger on a blockbuster trade and wind up with Matt Kemp or Justin Upton? Lookout Landing takes a look at which player would provide you with the best value going forward.

Lighting it up for Umpqua

Umpqua Community College’s Ashli Payne (so., Olympic High) had 35 points and 10 rebounds, and Sawyer Kluge (fr., Bremerton) added 16 points and seven rebounds in a 69-63 win over Lane in the championship game of the Bellevue College Bulldog Classic this weekend. Kluge had 31 points and eight rebounds against Big Bend; Payne went for 22 points, nine rebounds and six assists in that game. Umpqua, second at the NWAC Championships a year ago, is off to a 6-0 start. Payne’s averaging 19.2 points and 8.3 rebounds; Kluge 16.3 and 5.3.

Sherman, Baldwin mock the NFL

Richard Sherman and Doug Baldwin mocked the NFL’s player policies and took the league to task for making players play two games in five days during a skit on Tuesday.

The Stanford guys came to the defense of Seattle Seahawks’ teammate Marshawn Lynch, who was fined $100,000 for not talking to the media.

The two didn’t take any questions after their performance.

Well, done gentlemen. That was pretty creative.

It’ll be interesting to see what kind of play this story gets in the national media. Will the No Fun League fine the two Seahawks?

 

 

Get ready for a Thanksgiving treat: Hawks vs. Niners

Thanksgiving might be my favorite day of the year, and the NFL made it even better this year.

They added a third NFL game to the schedule this season and it turned out to be the Seahawks vs. the 49ers. The Thursday game starts at 5:30 p.m. and will be televised by NBC.

There’s a lot on the line as both teams — the NFC West preseason favorites — are 7-4 and two games back of the Cardinals.

The Seahawks’ defense dominated the Cardinals, 19-3, on Sunday, and San Francisco is coming off a hard-earned 17-13 win over the Redskins.

Neither team has been scary on offense, but the defenses are as good as ever. Seattle’s coming off its best defensive effort of the season at just the right time. San Francisco got to RGIII for five sacks on Sunday, and Russell Wilson was sacked seven times by the Cardinals.

We all remember what happened the last time the Niners and Hawks met. It was the NFC West championship game a year ago at Century Link and it was an emotional game with the momentum swinging back and forth.

I might have to dial it up and watch it again to get ready for Sunday’s Thanksgiving Day matchup.

The game came down to the final possession. San Francisco was driving and looking for the go-ahead touchdown. Richard Sherman came up with the game-saving play, tipping away a pass in the end zone that was intended for Michael Crabtree, and Malcolm Smith came up with the interception. Victory Seahawks, 23-17.

Sherman gave Crabtree a little slap, then tossed in the choke sign for good measure before he went off on Erin Andrews in the that memorable post-game interview.

Here’s Thursday’s schedule, which also includes a couple of college games:

Chicago at Detroit, 9:30 a.m., CBS

Philadelphia at Dallas, 1:30 p.m., FOX

No. 5 TCU at Texas, 4:30 p.m., FOX

LSU at Texas A&M, 4:30 p.m., ESPN

Seattle at San Francisco, 5:30 p.m., NBC

 

Bill Simmons: Seahawks’ 12th Man MIA; Cardinals now have best home crowd

Bill Simmons of grantland.com isn’t sold on quarterback Russell Wilson, and he pretty much dissed the Seattle Seahawks crowd in this column. He might be right. What do you think?

Here’s his take on the 12th Man:

That’s right, Seattle. You know I love your city and you know I hate how OKC stole the Sonics from you. But save for opening night, your crowds have sucked this season. Peyton Manning went 80 yards in like three seconds to force OT on you. You lost to Dallas at home. You couldn’t blow out the lowly Raiders last week, for God’s sake. Are you suffering from Pink Hat Syndrome (a.k.a. too many bandwagon fans)? Are you taking this stuff for granted now? What’s up? You’re like the husband who marries his dream girl and immediately stops working out and puts on 25 pounds. Get back on the treadmill. “The 12th Man” used to mean something.

Oh, and by the way, Arizona took your “Best Crowd in the League” corner. The Cardinals fans just swooped right in and stole it from you. You’re Avon, they’re Marlo. That’s a fact. Do you care? Do you care at all? NOW GO OUT THERE ON SUNDAY AND BE THE CROWD I KNOW YOU CAN BE!

The column started with his take on quarterbacks who have won a Super Bowl in this century. This is what he had to say about Wilson:

It’s too early to have an opinion on Russell Wilson’s Super Bowl, but the “Luck or Wilson?” debate finished filming in October. (Spoiler alert: Luck won.) Is Wilson an infinitely more athletic Brad Johnson? Is his 2014 performance suffering because his offensive line collapsed and he doesn’t have enough weapons (and not because we overrated him)? Or, could you say he’s where Brady was in 2002 — one year away from jumping a level, and three years away from jumping two levels, and five years away from finishing the video game? To be continued.

Tough road ahead for Hawks, Dawgs & links

OK, maybe we let our heart get in the way our our brains last week.

I didn’t pick the Washington Huskies to beat Oregon, but I thought the Dawgs were ready to give the Ducks a game. Surely, they’d cover the spread (20.5 points).

Wrong.

I thought the Seattle Seahawks would regroup and handle the Rams in St. Louis.

Wrong.

They did regroup, but it was too late. The Rams rode some special teams tricky to a 28-26 victory and the Seahawks are suddenly 3-3.

Seattle’s defense isn’t nearly as dominating as it was a year ago, but the biggest problem remains the Hawks’ offensive line. They allowed three sacks and had three holding penalties and QB Russell Wilson was running for his life, especially in the first half when the Seahawks fell behind 21-3 at one point.

At the start of the season, I thought these Seahawks might be even better than last year’s Seahawks.

Wrong.

Even after last week’s loss to Dallas, I thought the Hawks were still the team to beat in the NFC.

Wrong.

Arizona (5-1) might be the best team, even better than Dallas (5-1) and Philadelphia (6-1) and don’t forget about the Packers (4-2) or 49ers (3-3). The Seahawks are still in the mix, but they’ve put themselves in a precarious position. At 3-3, they don’t have a lot of room for error and the schedule is far tougher than it was a year ago with road games left against Carolina (Oct. 26), Kansas City (Nov. 16) and Philadelphia (Dec. 7) and home-and-home games still to play with the Cardinals and 49ers.

We were reminded that the previous eight Super Bowl champions didn’t win a playoff game the following year. So the Seahawks didn’t have history on their side when the season started, but to suggest they might not make the playoffs seemed pretty far-fetched.

Now? Well, maybe not so much.

Pete Carroll, interviewed on 710 ESPN radio Monday morning, said, “The story is not written right now.”

What about those Huskies?

The Oregon-Washington game was a total mismatch. Oregon’s 45-20 victory, their 11th straight over the Huskies, was far more convincing than I figured it would be. Washington’s defense, so impressive the week before while holding Cal to seven points, couldn’t stop the run or the pass. And Washington’s offense didn’t look so hot either against an Oregon defense that has struggled at times.

Quarterback Marcus Mariota played like a Heisman Trophy winner and the Ducks didn’t look anything like the team that barely beat Washington State 38-31 and lost to Arizona 31-24.

If Oregon runs the table against Cal, Stanford, Utah, Colorado and Oregon State, they should wind up in college football’s four-team national playoff. But in college football’s most unpredictable season, who can say for sure what’s going to happen from week to week?

As for Washington, it’s back to the drawing board, as a disappointed coach Chris Petersen pointed out after the loss.  The Huskies were also beat up physically in Eugene. QB Cyler Miles left with a possible concussion, and if he’s not available, it appears redshirt  freshman Troy Williams will be the starter. He won the backup job over Jeff Lindquist and played most of the fourth quarter after Miles was injured.

The UW has six games left, including a tough home game against Arizona State on Oct. 26 (7:45 p.m., ESPN), and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Huskies went 4-2 or 1-5. At the start of the season, I predicted Washington would finish 10-3, tied for second in the Pac-12 North. Now my brain tells me they’re looking more like an 8-5 team that will find itself playing in the Cactus Bowl (Jan. 2 at Tempe, Ariz.) or Las Vegas Bowl (Dec. 20).

Some links

The St. Louis Surprise. Mike Silver of NFL.com writes about Jeff Fisher’s call for a fake punt on fourth down, the play that sealed the Rams’ upset of the Seahawks on Sunday.

Mike Sando of ESPN.com writes about how the Percy Harvin trade hurts Seattle’s chances to repeat.

At 3-3, Seattle is not in desperation mode, but the Seahawks’ flaws are showing, writes Don Banks of SI.com.

Percy Harvin trade makes sense for Jets.

Art Thiel of Sportspressnw.com puts the latest Seahawks loss on coach Pete Carroll and GM John Schneider.

Remember Steve “Bye Bye” Balboni? Well, if you’re old as dirt, like me, you do. He was the slugging first baseman for the Kansas City Royals’ 1985 World Series champions. Now? He’s an advance scout for the San Francisco Giants. It’ll be a strange, trip for Balboni when he returns to KC this week for the start of the World Series.

Hard to believe but Tim Lincecum, only 30, is now a bit player with the Giants, the backup long relief pitcher as San Francisco heads to the World Series.

Harvin, Ducks, Dawgs, Villopoto & more

Links, notes, thoughts:

There were warning signs: Don’t know for sure, but it sure seems like Doug Baldwin’s post-game rant after the Seattle Seahawks’ loss against Dallas might have been aimed at Percy Harvin. You might have read or heard about the trade that sent Harvin to the Jets on Friday. Sounds like Harvin was a pain in the you-know-what. Remember the stories when the Seahawks gave him a guaranteed $25.5 million after acquiring him from the Vikings? Harvin, according to some in the media, was described as a head case, a time bomb, and a diva. One report coming out Friday had Harvin punching former teammate Golden Tate, now a Detroit Lion, in the week leading up to the Super Bowl. He also, reportedly, had an altercations with Baldwin in the preseason and refused to re-enter the Dallas game late in the fourth quarter, according to a Seattle Times report.

More Harvin: Despite modest statistics (he caught just 27 passes in eight games during his Seahawks’ career), everyone was singing Harvin’s praises after the Monday night game at Washington less than three weeks ago. Harvin had three TDs called back in that one. That was a strange game, but Friday’s trade trumped that for strangeness.

What’s a conditional mid-round draft pick? it depends on how Harvin plays with the Jets. If he plays a certain number of games, the mid-round pick (fourth, fifth) could turn into a second rounder, according to an NFL.com report.

The Ducks, the Ducks, the Ducks: Washington has lost 10 straight to Oregon, and the Huskies are 20.5-point underdogs on Saturday. I was in the stands at Berkeley last week, and the UW defense was impressive against a pretty good Cal offensive, good enough to give Husky fans hope that maybe, just maybe, this could be the year Washington upsets the Ducks. Danny Shelton and Shaq Thompson are part of a front seven that could be really nasty by the end of the season. The secondary has come a long way in a short amount of time. Prediction: Marcus Mariota is the difference and the losing streak reaches 11, but it won’t be a double-digit victory, and that’s an upset in itself since Washington has never kept it close in the last 10 years. The closest margin of defeat has been 17 points.

Did you know? Mariota and Washington QB Cyler Miles have not thrown an interception.

Did you know II? Chris Petersen, coach of the Huskies, was 2-0 against Oregon when he was at Boise State.

Saturday night plans: Dylan. Bob Dylan. Never seen the man live. I’ve been told not to hear or expect the Dylan I think I’m going to hear at the Paramount. Doesn’t matter. I can’t wait.

Marvin update: Bremerton’s Marvin Williams is five games into the preseason with the Charlotte Hornets. Here’s the average line for the starting power forward: 5.0 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 1.6 steals while playing an average of 26 minutes. Charlotte likes his ability to hit threes, although he’s made just 6 of 19 attempts thus far.

Historic decision for RV2: Poulsbo’s Ryan Villopoto talks with Transworld Motocross about his decision to race in Europe for a world championship instead of going for a fifth straight Supercross championship. For Villopoto, 26, this will be his last year as a competitive racer.

Wild Series: It’s the Giants and Royals in the World Series. Two exciting wild-card teams. The Royals are 8-0 in the postseason and the darlings of baseball. The Giants are the Giants. A different players seems to step up every game. Travis Ishikawa of Federal Way is the latest hero after hitting a walk-off home run to clinch the NLCS against St. Louis. They’ve been here before, winning it all in 2010 and 2012. If they can do it again, manager Bruce Bochy should be a first-ballot Hall of Famer.

Speaking of Giants: If San Francisco prevails, does Todd Linden get a World Series ring? The Central Kitsap grad, a one-time Giants’ prospect, was the hitting coach for San Francisco’s Class A team in the South Atlantic League — the Augusta GreenJackets.

Elton Goodwin Foundation: The foundation is holding a spaghetti dinner fundraiser for the late South Kitsap coach on Friday, No. 7, at the Port Orchard Eagles. Tickets are ($20 single/$35 couple) are available at Cruise-N Car Wash and Espresso through Oct. 31. Tickets at the door will be $25 single/$40 couple. All Profits will benefit the foundation for scholarships and/or facilities at South Kitsap High School.

Rangers back in the hunt: Olympic College’s volleyball team is 18-5 and ranked No. 2 in the NWAC Coaches’ Poll behind Blue Mountain (34-1). Blue Mountain, from Pendleton, Oregon, beat OC in the NWAC championship match a year ago. OC handed the Timberwolves their only loss, but the defending champs hold a 2-1 advantage over the Rangers this season.

 

MNF Links: Seahawks vs. Redskins

From the Washington Post:

Since the Seattle Seahawks and Washington Redskins met in a 2012 playoff game, the franchises have gone in different directions.

Richard Sherman and DeSean Jackson are former Little League teammates. Tonight, they’ll play against each other.

Sherman, by the way, is still looking for his first interception. A couple of Post writers provide answers to the question: Can the Redskins have success throwing to Sherman’s side of the field?

QB Kirk Cousins is coming off a game in which he threw four interceptions against the Giants, and now he has to face the Legion of Boom.

Columnist Jason Reid writes that Washington coach Jay Gruden is the right man for the job, but his roster is lacking.

There’s no timetable for RGIII”s return.

From the Washington Times:

Look for Washington to try and take a page out of San Diego’s playbook and attack Seattle’s defense with its tight ends.

Washington QB Kirk Cousins played against Russell Wilson twice in college. “You make me nervous,” Cousins told Wilson when the met following their rookie NFL seasons. “When I’m standing on the sidelines and the ball’s in your hand, I’m always nervous, because you never know what the next play’s going to be.”

From CBSSports.com:

Fifteen things to know about Monday’s game. Here’s an example:

Amazingly, since the start of the 2012 season, Seattle is 17-1 at home with an average margin of victory of 16.5. But during that same span on the road, they’ve gone just 9-8. That’s why, despite so many obvious discrepancies between these two teams, Monday’s game could be closer than many expect.

From ESPN.com:

Another profile on Richard Sherman. This one covers Sherman’s relationship with Stanford and his mentor, coach David Shaw.

From NFL.com:

Washington tackle Trent Williams on Seahawks: “They’re not robots.”

Here’s a video preview of the Monday Night game. One of the top match ups is Washington’s defense against Seattle’s running game. The Redskins only allows 3.3 yards per carry to opposing offenses, and Seattle has the third-best running attack in the game.

From The Seattle Times:

The Seahawks have won eight straight Monday Night Football games and are 10-1 under Peter Carroll in primetime games.  Columnist Larry Stones writes about how the Hawks have thrived in those big games.

Beat writer Bob Condotta previews the game.

From Seahawks.com:

Safety Kam Chancellor grew up a Redskins fan and patterned his game after the late Sean Taylor.

Marshawn Lynch has surpassed what the Seahawks thought he’d bring to the team when they acquired him in a trade from Buffalo on Oct. 5, 2010.

From the News Tribune: 

Stopping the Redskins on third down will be a key for Seattle.

John McGrath writes about the QB showdown between Wilson and Cousins.

 

 

Links and quick hits: Villopoto to forego Supercross series to race in Europe

Links

Nobody has ever won five straight AMA Supercross Championships and Poulsbo’s Ryan Villopoto has a chance to do it, but he has decided to compete in the FIM 450 World Championships in Europe in 2015. Villopoto has reportedly signed a multi-million dealt to race in Europe. Here’s the link to the story on his own website rv2.com. A couple side notes: Villopoto, 28, was nominated for his third ESPY this year, and he also threw out the first pitch at a Padres game in late August.

Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson says he used to be a bully when he was a young kid.

“Truthfully, I used to beat people up a lot,” Wilson wrote for ThePlayersTribune.com, a new website started by Derek Jeter. “Many of you readers probably think I have been Mr. Goody Two-Shoes my whole life, but honestly, I was a bully growing up. In elementary and middle school, I threw kids against the wall. I rubbed their heads in the dirt at recess. I bit them. I even knocked teeth out.”

Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated digs into the suspension of ESPN’s Bill Simmons. Interesting stuff, indeed. Simmons was suspended for three weeks after calling NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a liar on his podcast.

Here’s a couple different takes on the Hope Solo story. Kate Fagan of ESPNw.com equates Solo’s alleged assault of her 17-year-old sister and nephew to what Ray Rice did and thinks USA Soccer should suspend her immediately. Ta-Nehisi Coates of The Atlantic has a different take on the issue. Coates writes that there is a reason why we have a “Violence Against Women Act,” not a “Brawling With Families Act.”

Nobody wants to host the Olympics, writes Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports. 

“Essentially the entire world has told the IOC it’s a corrupt joke,” he writes.

Quick hits

I’M STILL THINKING about Kansas City stealing seven (count ‘em, SEVEN) bases in its wild-card victory over Oakland. And I’m think the Seattle Mariners need to find a way to keep James Jones in the lineup. Of course, a lot of that will depend on the development of Jones. He hit .250 with 27 stolen bases in 108 games (312 at bats). He hit .292 in June and looked like he could be the Mariners’ everyday center fielder. Then he crashed. He hit .287 before the All-Star break and .114 after. The M’s traded for Austin Jackson and Jones went back to Triple-A Tacoma before being recalled in September. It’ll be interesting to see what becomes of Mr. Jones. He could become a valuable piece of Seattle’s puzzle. Speed kills. If it’s not Jones, then they need someone like him.

I’VE ALREADY GOT a lot of positive feedback about my column on the late John Jarstad and his thoughts about the late Roosevelt Field in downtown Bremerton. Roosevelt was located just off the Warren Avenue Bridge, next to Olympic College. It’s now a … parking lot. It pains me to write that. Anyway, here’s the column in case you missed it.

OLYMPIC COLLEGE VOLLEYBALL coach Beth Donnelly has put together another strong team. The Rangers were second in the NWAC (Northwest Athletic Conference) and already own a victory over North Division rival Bellevue. They play an excellent brand of volleyball. Go see it for yourself. Next home games are Oct. 10 (Shoreline) and Oct. 15 (Edmonds).

LARRY DIXON KEEPS moving up Army’s career rushing list. The senior fullback from Olympic High is currently seventh in Army history with 2,424 yards on 400 carries. He has carried 62 times for 338 yards (5.5. per carry) and four touchdowns this season for the Black Knights (1-3), who host Ball State (1-3) on Saturday at 9 a.m. PST (CBS Sports Network).

“AMERICA’S ST. ANDREWS” a book about Chambers Bay written by Blaine Newnham, is available at Chambers Bay and can be ordered online at chambersbaygolf.com. The book chronicles the story of how Chambers Bay, which opened in 2008, was selected to host the 2015 U.S. Open.Robert Trent Jones Jr., the chairman and master architect of RTJ II, has written the book’s foreword.

 

 

Morning reading after a pretty impressive Week 1 Seahawks’ victory

Earl Thomas needs to call some fair catches.

If that’s the biggest criticism of the Seattle Seahawks following Thursday night’s 36-16 victory over Green Bay — and Peter King of mmqb.si.com writes that it is — then it’s safe to say that this is going to be another fun season for the 12s. He also writes about that read-option pass play where Russell Wilson pulled the ball out of Marshawn Lynch’s belly and instead of running it, he threw a quick pass to Ricardo Lockette for a 33-yard touchdown. The story details how the Seahawks came by the play, which was used by Auburn and other college programs. Look for it at the high-school level, too. When I talked to Bremerton coach Nate Gillam about his team a couple weeks ago, he said they were installing the same play. The Knights got it from UCLA.

Before I get to the links, Zach Miller gets my vote for most underrated Seahawk. He’s the perfect fit for their offense. Here’s another look at that catch he made against the Packers.

And here’s what Vic Ketchman, editor of Packer.com had to say about the Seahawks in a Q&A column with Green Bay fans:

” You can run any scheme you want if you have the talent to run it well. That’s a college offense: Bootlegs, spread-option fakes, jet sweeps. They made it work, though, didn’t they? On defense, the Seahawks were pure vanilla. The Seahawks are a breath of fresh air. That’s not a Madden team, that’s an old-fashioned, line up and knock your block off team.”

OK, here we go. Here’s what some others are saying about the Hawks:

Mike Silver of NFL.com wrote this about Marshawn Lynch:

The question I asked was this: After all the talk coming out of Seattle over the offseason, and particularly during his short-lived training camp holdout, that the Seahawks were preparing for life without the eighth-year runner, that he’d be splitting carries with young understudies Christine Michael and Robert Turbin, that he plays a position that simply isn’t that valuable, was Thursday night’s performance a de facto rebuttal?

“Well, you know … people say stuff,” Lynch said, shaking his head before offering up an abiding smile. “(Screw) ‘em.”

You’ve got to admit, the Beast looked really good. Maybe better than ever. He was hitting the hole fast, reading his blocks, cutting when he needed to and dragging people all over the field.

Speaking of offensive weapons, how about Percy Harvin? That “jet sweep” was pretty effective, huh? Here’s what Terry Blount of ESPN.com wrote about Harvin.

Art Thiel of Sportspress.nw.com writes: ” … No Golden Tate, No Breno Giacomini, no Red Bryant . . . nobody noticed.” No hangover for the Seahawks was the theme of his column.

The Packers didn’t test Richard Sherman. No once. They never threw at him. Kevin Petra of NFL.com addresses that angle.

Here’s another story that I came across later in the day. Andrew Sharp of Grantland.com writes about Marshawn and Percy and how they’re proving some skeptics wrong.

 

Hawks’ Wilson still proving doubters wrong; Is there a ’95 run in these M’s?

Back from Cabo and my mind’s still a little mushy, but these thoughts have been rattling around my brain:

Russell Wilson: The Seattle Seahawks’ QB hasn’t won everybody over. Ron Jaworski at ESPN ranks Wilson the ninth-best QB in the NFL. This Buck Stanton guy at cover32.com., wrote last month that Wilson is the most overrated player in the NFL. Here’s what he had to say:

Yep, he’s 24-8 during his first two NFL seasons. And there’s no taking away his Super Bowl ring. All of that makes Wilson’s résumé look great. But in reality, there are a ton of quarterbacks – many of whom are much-maligned – who could have won a title with the Seahawks last year. For now, he’s a modern-day Brad Johnson and Trent Dilfer. He can’t carry a team.

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless of ESPN’s First Take aren’t sold on Wilson either. Here’s what they had to say the day after Seattle’s Super Bowl victory.

Me? I’m sold. He’s not the prototypical QB like Andrew Luck, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t an elite quarterback. He’s got a ring and his numbers do not lie. As Warren Moon put it, maybe the game is evolving in a new direction? Maybe Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger — traditional pocket passers — will fade away. Maybe mobile, athletic guys like Wilson, Colin Kaepernick, Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III will become the prototypical quarterbacks of the future.

Refuse to lose: I’ve been thinking a lot about the Seattle Mariners’ run in 1995 when they came from waaaaay back to win the AL West. They were 11.5 games behind the Angels on Aug. 23. When I looked Saturday, they were seven back. The Angels just lost their best starting pitcher, Garrett Anderson, for the season, and the Oakland A’s are scuffling. Seattle entered Sunday with a 1-game lead over Detroit in the race of race for the AL’s No. 2 wild-card spot. Yeah, I was the guy who picked the M’s to win the AL West at the start of the season. People thought I was crazy. Well, I still think they have a chance. They’re playing with a lot of confidence, and that’s huge. Here’s what a few of those players on the 1995 Mariners said about their magical late-season surge:

LEE ELIA, BATTING COACH: “We get hot, they (Angels) get cold, and all of a sudden, we cut the gap pretty good. I can remember walking out when the other team was taking BP, and I came back into the coaches’ room and said, ‘Is this a special night, bat night or something?’ They said, ‘Why.’ I said, ‘There’s 35,000 people out there.’ The juice the people brought to the park, that kicked us. That got us going.”

MIKE BLOWERS: “Junior missed a ton of time, and when he came back, we were playing real good baseball. One of his first games back, he ended up hitting a home run off John Wetteland, upper deck, to win a game. We all looked around. If this guy is healthy and ready to go, we had a chance to do something special. His injury had been so serious, we didn’t know what we’d get. He comes right back and turns a 96-mph fastball right around. We all smiled and said, ‘Here we go.’ ”

JAY BUHNER, RIGHT FIELDER: “I think that’s when everyone kind of said, ‘Hey, something really special is happening.’ We got on a roll, and we had an unbelievable amount of confidence. We had the mentality we could beat anyone. Anyone could be the hero. People were contributing in every way, from top to bottom. The few games we did lose, we thought we just ran out of outs.”

Yankee numbers: I was a big-time Yankee fan growing up, then went through a period where I fell off the bandwagon. Then, I jumped back on, mostly because of Joe Torre. Liked him as a player, and he always struck me as a classy guy when he became the manager of the Yanks. And then I had the opportunity to cover the 2000 Subway World Series when I was working for CBS Sportsline, and I learned to respect Torre even more. The Yankees were an easy team to pull for. Bernie Williams, Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Paul O’Neill, Don Zimmer, Torre.

Anyway, I think it’s pretty cool that the Yankees are going to retire Torre’s No. 6. When Jeter’s No. 2 is retired, and they might as well do it on the final home game of the season instead of delaying the inevitable, every Yankees number form 1 to 10 will be retired. Thurman Munson (No. 15) and White Ford (No. 16) also had their jerseys retired.

No. 1 Billy Martin

No. 2 Derek Jeter

No. 3 Babe Ruth

No. 4 Lou Gehrig

No. 5 Joe DiMaggio

No. 6: Joe Torre

No. 7: Mickey Mantle

No. 8: Yogi Berra and Bill Dickey

No. 9: Roger Maris

No. 10: Phil Rizzuto

Fantasy football: My league drafts tomorrow. Let the trash talkin’ begin.