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Friday in Hawkville: John Schneider views Super Bowl as a beginning, not the ultimate destination

Posted Jan 24, 2014

The 2013 Seahawks are about to go where only one other team in the first 37 seasons of the franchise has been – the Super Bowl. But general manager John Schneider says, “We want this to be a consistent championship-caliber team.”

A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Jan. 24, when the Seahawks held their final practice before heading to New Jersey on Sunday to continue preparing for Super Bowl XLVIII:

WORD OF THE DAY: PEAK

The Seahawks are preparing to depart for New Jersey, where they will play in the pinnacle game of this season: Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium against the AFC Champion Denver Broncos. But win or lose, this is not the peak of what coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider started building when they arrived almost in tandem in 2010.

“We just have a ton of respect for the league and how hard it is to get to where we are right now,” Schneider said after Friday’s practice, when he stepped out of character by stepping in front of a group of reporters who cover the team on a daily basis.

“But more importantly, where we’re at peace is that we know that we’re trying to get better every single day beyond this game. Because we want this to be a consistent championship-caliber team, and not a team where the fans feel like we’re just kind of cruise in and cruise out for one year – where there’s a solid base and we have to make tough decisions every year.”

Not only well said, but something that needed to be said.

This is not a one-time wonder team, or organization. And having respect for how difficult it is to reach the Super Bowl is a good place to start in making sure it happens more than once in a while. After the 1983 Seahawks reached the AFC Championship game, it took until 2005 for the Seahawks to play in another conference title game – when they won to advance to their first Super Bowl. But since that appearance in Super Bowl XL, there have been 4-12, 5-11 and pair of 7-9 seasons – the first two under Carroll and Schneider, while they were still compiling the talent on the 2013 team.

Asked if there was any validation in the Seahawks dispatching the rival San Francisco 49ers in Sunday’s NFC Championship game to earn this Super Bowl trip, Schneider pondered the question before offering, “That was a very physical football team the other day, so I was just very, very proud of the way our guys overcame adversity. Big-time game. So yeah, there’s a sense of satisfaction in that regard.

“But we have our sights set much higher, because of what we want to do here for as long as we possibly can.”

INJURY REPORT: SIX PLAYERS LISTED AS PROBABLE

The official end-of-the-week status report, as issued by the team:

Probable
WR Doug Baldwin (hip)
WR Percy Harvin (concussion)
RB Marshawn Lynch (knee)
CB Byron Maxwell (neck)
NT Brandon Mebane (ankle)
LB K.J. Wright (foot)

Baldwin, Lynch, Maxwell and Wright did not practice and Mebane was limited when the team worked on its outdoor fields on the shores of Lake Washington. But Carroll expects all to be ready for the Super Bowl.

Carroll on Wright, who returned against the 49ers after missing four games with a broken foot: “K.J.’s going to play. If he’s fine through the week and all that, he’ll play and he’ll start in this game.”

Carroll on Harvin, who practiced for the third consecutive day after missing the NFC title game because of the concussion he got in the divisional playoff game against the Saints: “He did great. He looked like he was full speed, 100 percent the whole time. Had no problem with installation and all that. He looks ready to go. There’s no hesitation in saying that. He’s playing and doing everything we want him to do, every aspect of it.”

STAT DU JOUR: WE'RE NO. 1'S

The Seahawks had the league’s No. 1-ranked defense and the Broncos had the No. 1-ranked offense during the regular season. But then you knew that. But did you know that this Super Bowl will be only the fifth since 1970 that the top-ranked offense and the top-ranked defense have met? Here’s a look at the other four, and who won:

Super Bowl Offense Defense
XXV Bills Giants(won)
XXIV 49ers(won) Broncos
XIX Dophins 49ers(won)
XXII Cowboys Steelers(won)

For the Broncos:

Doubtful
DT Sione Fua (calf)

Questionable
RB Knowshon Moreno (ribs)
K Mike Prater (illness)
DT Mitch Unrein (knee)

Probable
CB Tony Carter (shoulder)
TE Joel Dreessen (knee)
DT Terrance Knighton (knee)
OG Chris Kuper (ankle)
QB Peyton Manning (ankle)
CB Kayvon Webster (thumb)

Fua and Prater did not practice, while Moreno and Unrein were limited.

POSITION WATCH: LEFT GUARD

The left guard position has been in flux during the postseason, with rookie Michael Bowie starting against the Saints – and James Carpenter inactive; and Carpenter starting against the 49ers – and Bowie inactive.

As for the Super Bowl, Carroll said, “Guys have been competing there. We like the way it went last week (with Carpenter and Paul McQuistan rotating), so it’s more likely to be like that than it was a couple weeks ago.”

UP NEXT: THE LULL BEFORE THE RELOCATION

YOU DON'T SAY

“When you sit down and talk to Richard, he's a very engaging, intelligent, good-hearted guy.”

Owner Paul Allen, when asked about All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman at the Blazers’ game on Thursday night

The Seahawks are about to be on the move, and Hawkville will move with them. The players will be “off” on Saturday and the team then travels on Sunday to New Jersey, where the Seahawks will be housed and continue to prepare for the Super Bowl matchup against the Denver Broncos next week. The team already has shipped a truckload of equipment to the Giants’ practice facility, where the Seahawks will practice next week.

There will be no Hawkville report on Saturday, but we’ll be back Sunday – from New Jersey.

In the meantime, All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman will be featured in the “Sunday Conversation” on ESPN’s SportsCenter. He taped the segment Thursday with Kenny Mayne. Excerpts also will be shown on SportsCenter on Friday and Saturday.