From the sidelines: Seahawks at Raiders

Published on November 2, 2010 by     Tacoma News Tribune (Feed)

The Seahawks still have taken enough steps forward in 2010 that one backward — no matter how giant — still leaves them in prime position to turn that corner for good.

Just when you thought the Seahawks had turned the corner, they slinked back around the bend.

Fortunately, though, they’ve taken enough steps forward in 2010 that one backward — no matter how giant — still leaves them in prime position to turn that corner for good.

Seven games into the 2010 season, and the journey has already featured enough peaks and valleys to fill a mountain range. Now the challenge is to make sure that what happened on Sunday in Oakland — a 33-3 all-around drubbing at the hands of the Raiders — is merely an anomaly instead of normalcy.

“We’ve got to fight so hard so this never happens again,” Coach Pete Carroll told his players in a very subdued postgame locker room. “We’ve got to come in on Monday and get to work and start a new streak.

“We don’t have to accept this one bit.”

That’s the same phrase he uttered after a similar beatdown in Denver earlier this season. That game was followed by wins in three of the Seahawks’ next four games, so something must’ve clicked. Carroll’s hoping it clicks again after the latest setback.

“We got nothing done today,” Carroll said after the game. “It’s a day to forget, but it’s a day to learn from and grow from.”

The Seahawks knew exactly what they wanted to accomplish going into Sunday. A win would’ve given them three straight overall and two in a row away from home, and it also would’ve signaled a turning point in the season. At 5-2, the Seahawks would be a team on the rise and a team with a stranglehold of their division.

“Our challenge is to take our game on the road,” Carroll told his players in Saturday night’s team meeting. “The last two weeks, we’ve gotten better. We’re not the same as we were two weeks ago.”

But everything that had worked so well in the past two games flat-out failed to show up on Sunday.

The running game, which had been awakened in the Chicago win, puttered in Oakland, compiling just 47 yards on the ground for an average of 2.5 yards per carry.

The defense that had shut down Arizona and pulled away three turnovers last week spent more than 36 minutes out on the field in Oakland, giving up 545 total yards and 33 points, all while not posting a takeaway.

Even the usually dependable special teams struggled, with Olindo Mare missing two field goals.

Everything that could go wrong did, and every break that could’ve gone the Seahawks’ way didn’t.

So instead of continuing to ride a hot streak, the humbled Seahawks now get back to work still waiting to turn that metaphorical corner. They know it’s there, if only because they’ve gotten so close to making that 90-degree rotation, and they can take solace in the fact that one game — Sunday’s in particular — isn’t going to define them this season or even next week.

“It’s way bigger than one battle,” Carroll said during Saturday night’s team meeting, words that applied so aptly following Sunday’s defeat. “If we join together in this thought, it’ll take us to places that are unique and special.”

The theme before, during and after the loss in Oakland focused on unity. It might not have reaped its rewards on the scoreboard on Sunday, but it will carry the Seahawks onward from this defeat.

“When we’re together, it’s so powerful,” Carroll said in the locker room just before kickoff.

After the loss, it was the same message.

Said Carroll: “This is a very tight locker room, and we’re going to stay that way.”

Together, they’ll move forward. Together, they’ll aim to turn that corner once and for all.

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