Persistence. Game 2 Final, Seattle 56 Portland 6

For those of you that don’t know, this is my 9th year playing football. I spent 3 years playing Corvallis, Oregon, 5 years in Portland, and this is my first year with Seattle. So it was very interesting to open this season with back-to-back games against my former team.

The first game was in Portland. I went down on Friday night to avoid driving on game day which tends to wear you out. I stayed with a former teammate and was able to sleep in and relax before heading to the field. It was bittersweet to be back at the same field. Except this time I was in the other locker room and the other side of the field. We ended up winning 20-0. A win is a win but we definitely had first game mistakes. We left points on the field. New players were out of position. We had a bunch of injuries to experienced players. And we just didn’t execute well in the red zone offensively.

This Seattle team I play with has a long history of success. Many years of divisional titles and deep playoff runs. This team last year made it quite far. However, a few of the key players from last year are now gone. There were outside question marks on how this team would move forward. We have replaced those players with just as much talent if not more. And an extremely talented rookie class. But as with everything, it takes time to put the pieces together and get it to all click. We were not satisfied with how we played in the first game.

We had a bye the 2nd week and had 2 weeks to prepare to face the same team again. We worked hard in practice to shore up things we struggled on. Sometimes it’s as simple as an adjustment and repetition.

We were absolutely fired up for this 2nd game which was on our home field. We came out on fire in this game but the first offensive drive still stalled in the red zone. We forced a 3 and out on defense and got the ball back and finally scored a touchdown but it was still a struggle.

Later in the first half we had a 70 yard touchdown called back due to a block in the back which put us about at our own 15 yard line. That’s an 85 yard penalty. It would have been easy to get discouraged but the offense marched the entire field and still put up a touchdown. I believe that was the turning point in the game for the offense. Our confidence grew and we started clicking on all cylinders. The offensive line executed greatly.  The passing game came a live and the run game had huge holes.

The defense which was strong in the 1st game continue its overall dominance. The only blemish was late in the 4th quarter with many newer players in different positions and even then we made them work for every yard which was both great experience and telling of the mental make-up of the team.

But really that’s the nature of football. You are not usually going to be the best version of your team Game 1. But we kept with it and pushed through.

WATCH HIGHLIGHTS BELOW:

We now look ahead to our game this week against the Utah Blitz. Utah has always been a feisty team that no matter what the score will still compete. They are coming off a loss to Tacoma where they traveled the long way up here with 13 people. That tells you right there about their heart. They turn around and come right back up here this week. Although they are at a disadvantage with their numbers and all the traveling, we will not take them lightly for anything can happen in football.

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