I'm feeling pretty good about the Seahawks' chances all through the playoffs. With the exception of the Carolina game (an anomaly I believe), they've shown themselves to be a very capable team. They've shifted from a Shaun Alexander offense to a Branch, Hackett (when healthy), and Engram offense. I've been listening to the talking heads on the television machine saying that without a running game, they just can't be considered a real threat. Yes, most NFL fans would agree, but that's a statement of probability. It by no means slams the door on the 'Hawks.
First of all, a great passing game is difficult to stop. Hasselbeck has been on his game for most of the season, and I think that when Holmgren made the change to a pass-heavy scheme, he discovered a strength that he never wanted to acknowledge before. He is famous for his running schemes, and has generally downplayed a strong passing offense.
Second, the running performance of Alexander and Maurice Morris has improved little-by-little. In my humble opinion, it plays into Seattle's hands to have this reputation of not being able to run the ball. Shaun is definitely a threat, and is heating up at the right time of the season. I don't know the extent of his wrist injury, but he's been wearing that cast almost all season. That's a long time. It MUST be healing, right? His knee/ankle problem is behind him, according to team experts.
And think of this: Shaun was getting booed by his home town crowd before he had to sit out, and while he was on the bench, he must have been watching Mo with more than a little nervousness. Here's his backup, who by all accounts doesn't come close to his own ability, tearing it up on the field, running north/south like he himself used to. The crowd's not booing him, and he's gaining yardage. Mo was running like he had something to prove. So even with the wrist in a cast, Shaun gets back on the field and seems to be playing with a little more fire than before. And he kept performing a little better each game. Fast forward to today. Now Holmgren is using both backs and passing the ball more than usual, with very good results. I suspect that Seattle WILL have a running game, right when they need it.
Third, Seattle's defense is stout. They have a secondary that loves to jump routes and intercept. They have the NFL's leading sacker, and two more guys with several multiple-sack games this year. They have the 3rd lowest points allowed. AND to top it all off, they have LOFA TATUPU.
Watch out, NFC! Here come the Seattle Seahawks!