Please Welcome new 12th Man Rising Staff Writer Jason Rubin.
Well, it’s settled. The opponents for the 2012 version of the Seattle Seahawks have been set. The times, venues, and dates are now being met with a flurry of examination, and speculation. Whose schedule is toughest? Easiest? Can you project how many wins, or losses your favorite NFL club is going to be faced with? Is it enough for an NFL Playoff berth? And finally, has your head exploded with this assault of the unknown? Well, here’s one fan who won’t succumb to the traps of trendy prognostication. No No. Not so fast. I’m rolling the crystal ball right onto the floor, leaving it in thousands of tiny little shards of false hope . Let’s take a gander at the schedule, and apply what we DO know in the here and now….
September 9th, 2012 at Arizona Cardinals
– Seahawks haven’t been very successful with road openers in recent history. Add the fact they are 1-5 in Arizona’s new Glendale digs and this game could get dicey.
September 16th, 2012 Dallas Cowboys
– Ok, this is fun. So, the ‘Hawks haven’t had a lot of success playing the Cowboys over the past few seasons. All in the Big D. However, I think we all remember the last time the ‘Boys came calling at the Clink. A nail-biter of a game transpires to a close win when Tony Romo muffs the hold on the fan favorite “Big Play Babs” 19 yard field goal attempt. Plenty of new names on both rosters, but one in particular, one familiar to the 12th man, will definitely feel it from the hostile home gathering. Seattle welcomes you, Mr. Romo.
September 24th, 2012 Green Bay Packers
– Once again, there’s a lovely back story to another Green Bay-Seattle matchup. Can Matt Flynn become relevant as the ‘Hawks QB, and bury his old team on Monday Night Football? Well, that story goes out the window if T-Jax is at the helm, and Flynn is holding a clipboard. But playing the Pack always carries a touch of sentiment for someone within the Seahawks organization. Oh, and it’s on Monday Night. Love it.
September 30th, 2012 at St. Louis Rams
– Straight up. The ‘Hawks own the Rams. 13 of the last 14. While this team, like all of the NFC West, is up and coming (thank you RG3), they are still 1-2 years away.
October 7th, 2012 at Carolina Panthers
– Let the Cam Newton show begin for the ‘Hawks. Yes he pretty much had one of the best rookie seasons of any QB, ever. And the Panthers are a dangerous opponent. They lost how many games last year by less than 10 points? But this fan likes to think of the Panthers in one light…2005 NFC Championship game. Yep, it was 6 years ago. Yes, most of the Panthers and Seahawks rosters have been purged. But one notable name remains on the Panthers roster. One Steven Smith. I bet he remembers that day in January, not so many years ago…pull out the game tape, and let Bam Bam spy Cam all day. Greatness.
October 14th, 2012 New England Patriots
– Oh boy. Here comes Gisele. New WR’s coach for the Pats. Oh, and the rest of the members of one of the NFL’s most consistent dynasties. Never an easy matchup and this one is going to be a classic. If you haven’t noticed, this schedule is offering an early litmus test for our young Seahawks. Are they ready for the big-time? Or are we still a year away? This game will answer many questions.
October 18th, 2012 at San Francisco 49ers
– One of the most underrated rivalries in the NFL. This is the first game these two will play during the 2012 NFL season, but in no way is it anything but the continuation of the “Merry Christmas” game from last year. This story is still being told, and with the physical, hot-blooded rivalry that this has become, I find myself tensing up just thinking about it. A must win to take the division back.
October 28th, 2012 at Detroit Lions
– I’ve always liked the Detroit Lions. Don’t ask me why. But I’ve always been enamored. So this is a fun one for me, as I’m sure it is for most NFL fans. Watching the young, emerging Lions face a young, formidable defense in Seattle will make for a great game. Now, can the ‘Hawks offense match the effort? That will be the key to a mid-season road victory.
November 4th, 2012 Minnesota Vikings
– So, the Vikings are rebuilding? So what. Any chance to see our D-Line matchup with one of the NFL’s premier RB’s is enough to tune in to this classic battle. I still remember the game years ago when Hershel Walker led a monstrous comeback at the Kingdome. Always soured my liking for the Purple People Eaters. At any rate, Christian Ponder can always put this game on his resume in his bid to be a seasoned NFL starter. “Played road game in Seattle. Couldn’t hear a thing, so just handed the ball off…”
November 11th, 2012 New York Jets
– This game is exciting. I mean really exciting. I will be excited to just have this exciting opportunity to be excited. Oh, Tim Tebow. You and your clean press conferences. Lucky for him I’m packing all the excitement, because his will go right out the window when he steps through the tunnel at the Clink. Exciting.
November 18th, 2012 Bye
– It’s been some time since we’ve had such a late bye week. But this will be a perfect time, as they always are, for our team to get healthy for the playoff push. What you got for our record so far 12th Man? That’s right, 10-0! Niiiice.
November 25th, 2012 at Miami Dolphins
– Can’t remember many good games from the ‘Hawks when playing in Miami. 1-5 overall, I believe. Even with a rebuilding team, this is always a thorn in the side. Let’s go down to Miami, pound the ball with Marshawn, and get out of town with a solid Defensive win. We’re due Miami.
December 2nd, 2012 at Chicago Bears
– In what has seemingly become an annual matchup for the Seahawks, we find ourselves back in Chicago, where we’ve had relative success. The Bears are always ready for a physical game, and this will be nothing less than the sort. An early December game, in Chicago is bound to bring the elements, and a few bruises to boot. Great matchup.
December 9th, 2012 Arizona Cardinals
– Home stretch here. 3 of the last 4 are at home, and against NFC West opponents. Getting off to a good start to our finish is essential here. Home, against the Cards in December will create a ravenous state at the Clink, and it will be needed as we split with Arizona last year, both down to the wire. Who says the NFC West is the worst division in the NFL. I think by Week 14, the pundits will be singing a different tune.
December 16th, 2012 at Buffalo Bills (Toronto)
– Hello Canada!! The Seahawks find their last road game of the season at The Rogers Centre, formally known as the SkyDome in Toronto. The last two meetings between these teams have been all Buffalo. And this one gets no easier. With a formidable rushing attack and a young defense, this year’s version of the Buffalo Bills is no less potent, if not more so. A tough matchup on the road before heading home for the final 2 home games of the season.
December 23rd, 2012 San Francisco 49ers
– Round 2. Not to take anything away from the other two divisional opponents, but special attention has to be paid to the 49ers for 2 reasons in my opinion. The way the two clubs played each other last season, physical, violent. A massive makeover from the early days of the NFC West. And finally, the fact that the 49ers took the division from the Seahawks last year, with a cocky smirk on their proverbial face nonetheless. Why the NFL didn’t put this game on primetime eludes me. Maybe a flex consideration here. Late season matchup between two heated division rivals with possible playoff implications? At the Clink? How does the NFL Primetime saying go? “Come on Maaaan!!”
December 30th, 2012 St. Louis Rams
– See Week 4. 13 of last 14 go to the Seahawks. Add that we’re at home, in the season finale, against a division opponent and you would have to lean heavily for the ‘Hawks here. However, a healthy Sam Bradford for a full season, and a renewed confidence with the arrival of Jeff Fisher could catapult the Rams into relevancy. Only time will tell…
So that’s it. 17 weeks of illustrious Seahawk Football right there in front of us 12th Man. Will tendencies, matchups, and rankings give us the answers we’re looking for? Most definitely not. They may be a great help to the Vegas line makers, but nothing will be officially told until the clock strikes 1:15pm PDT on September the 9th. Until then, I’ll settle for water cooler championships, and dreams of a February Parade.