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Originally published December 27, 2009 at 7:51 PM | Page modified December 28, 2009 at 7:34 PM

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Danny O'Neil

These Seahawks can't get any worse

It was the second time in two seasons that Seattle has been beaten by 38 points, which means that two of the four largest losses in this franchise's 34-year history have come in the span of 14 months.

Seattle Times NFL reporter

GREEN BAY, Wis. — At some point Sunday, dead horses everywhere began to feel a tinge of sympathy for Seattle.

They had to. No one should be beaten as severely or as regularly as the Seahawks have been this season, and the subfreezing temperatures of post-Christmas Wisconsin only added to the sting of their 48-10 loss at Green Bay.

It was the second time in two seasons that Seattle has been beaten by 38 points, which means that two of the four largest losses in this franchise's 34-year history have come in the span of 14 months.

Think about that. This is a franchise that has started quarterbacks like Kelly Stouffer, Dan McGwire and Rick Mirer. This is a team that went 10 quarters without scoring so much as a single point in 1992. A case could be made that Seattle is currently as uncompetitive as it has been at any point since the expansion season of 1976, when nine of Seattle's 12 losses were by double digits.

The 1992 team that went 2-14? At least it played defense. Cortez Kennedy was the league's Defensive Player of the Year.

What's worth watching on this team? Well, besides the punting.

Seattle has scored a total of 24 points in three consecutive losses, its lowest total in any span since 1992. And before anyone goes feeling sorry for the Seahawks defense, let's not forget that it just let Green Bay score on six consecutive possessions.

No one can be surprised that Seattle lost this game. The Seahawks have gone more than two years without winning on the road outside the NFC West.

And no one can be surprised at the size of the loss. Of Seattle's 10 losses this season, nine have been by more than 10 points.

The sheer magnitude of all these defeats piling up on top of each other is crushing. Tim Ruskell's resignation at the beginning of December has left coach Jim Mora to spend a chunk of every news conference answering questions about the state of the Seahawks.

But the truth is, Seattle began backpedaling into irrelevance last season. Seattle suffered a 38-point beating at the Giants last year and a 25-point Thanksgiving massacre in Dallas, but a rash of injuries was used like a Monopoly card to get out of jail free.

The Seahawks have improved on last year's win total, but don't mistake that for improvement. If anything, Seattle's slide has accelerated, which is why Ruskell was told earlier this month he wouldn't be back as president, prompting his resignation. That was just the start of the changes Seattle will face once it hires a new head of football operations.

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This is the NFL, so rebuilding doesn't require a five-year plan. There is always the possibility of bouncing back from rock bottom. The Dolphins went from 1-15 to the playoffs last season, and the Rams went from worst in their division to first in the league last decade.

And after they spent another Sunday belly-up in the ditch, it's clear the Seahawks have nowhere to go but up.

Seattle is 9-22 since its last playoff appearance, and 16 of those losses have been by 10 or more points. That's as many double-digit losses as Seattle suffered in six seasons from 2002 to 2007.

And when Seattle lost by 38 points for the second time in two seasons on Sunday, it underscored the ugly, uncompetitive reality of a franchise that is bottoming out.

Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or doneil@seattletimes.com

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About Danny O'Neil

Danny O'Neil will comment on issues, events and personalities in the NFL. His column will appear on Sundays during the regular season. He also posts most days on the Seahawks Blog.
doneil@seattletimes.com | 206-464-2364

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