INDIANAPOLIS — As he had done on each of the previous two Sundays, Jim Mora presented a positive message after a Seahawks loss.
And pep talk No. 3, which followed Seattle’s 34-17 loss to Indianapolis, included a reference to the Seahawks’ dreary 2008 season.
“Last year going 4-12 was extremely disappointing, and we don’t want to relive that,” Mora said after his team fell to 1-3. “Right now we’re in a little bit of a dark spot, but we’re going to find our way out of it, I promise you we are.”
Mora didn’t bring up 2008 to compare the two seasons — he still maintains the Seahawks will break out of their funk this time around — but following a blowout loss to the Colts in front of 66,112 at Lucas Oil Stadium, it’s hard not to notice the similarities between last year and this young season.
Just like last year, the Seahawks are 1-3 after four games with their only win coming against the lowly Rams, and just like last year, injuries have contributed to a slow start. On Sunday, another similarity emerged. During the first weekend of October last season, the Seahawks traveled east and were blown out by the New York Giants. This year, on the first weekend of October, the trip was slightly shorter, and the score slightly less lopsided, but the end result is still the same: the Seahawks are beat up and trying to rally after a 1-3 start.
“We can’t make excuses, we’ve just got to continue to fight and work hard to overcome it,” Mora said. “I can’t emphasize enough that we’re very disappointed, very disappointed. We’re disappointed in the loss, and we’re disappointed in the start, but we really welcome the challenge.”
One of the big challenges on this day was to contain Peyton Manning and the Colts offense, and the Seahawks weren’t able to do that. Down its starting quarterback, Seattle hoped its defense could step up and keep Manning in check, but the Colts’ quarterback instead was nearly flawless, passing for 353 yards and two scores while completing 31 of 41 attempts. He was 17 for 20 for 220 yards and two touchdowns in the first half as the Colts built a 21-3 lead by scoring touchdowns on three of their first four possessions.
Indianapolis opened the second half with another touchdown — it’s fourth in five possessions — to make it 28-3. The lead would eventually get as large as 31 points before the Seahawks scored a pair of fourth quarter touchdowns to make the score a bit more respectable.
The Seahawks had some success moving the ball with backup quarterback Seneca Wallace, but in the first half — before the game turned into a blowout — they were unable to turn drives into points because of miscues and penalties.
“We shot ourselves in the foot a couple of times and we just didn’t score enough points,” said Wallace, who completed 33 of 45 attempts for 257 yards and a touchdown. “Obviously going against Indy and Peyton, they’re going to put up points and we had to match it, and we didn’t get a lot of points.”
The goal now for the Seahawks is to win its next two games, both at home, to head to the bye week with a 3-3 record. Getting even by the bye is especially critical for the Seahawks because they play four of their next five on the road following their off week. Even at full strength, earning a road win over the Colts, who are now 4-0, would have been asking a lot, so this result by itself won’t make or break the Seahawks year.
Instead, it’s how they respond the next two weeks that will tell the story of this season, and the players are as confident as their coach that they will bounce back.
“I’m not going to quit,” Seahawks receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh said. “I wouldn’t have made it to this point, and I don’t think anybody in this locker room would have gone this far in their career if you’re going to quit. It’s a long season. We’re 1-3. All right, cool. We can win next week: 2-3. Next week after that, 3-3, and you’re right back in it. That’s how you have to look at it. You can’t get down on yourself, the season is early. We wanted to be 3-1 after the first four games, we’re the complete opposite of that, but you keep grinding.”
Herald Writer John Boyle: firstname.lastname@example.org. For more Seahawks coverage, check out the Seahawks blog at www.heraldnet.com/seahawksblog.