Danny O'Neil covers the Seahawks for The Seattle Times.
July 25, 2008 12:14 PM
Posted by Danny O'Neil
The question was straightforward enough.
Coach Mike Holmgren was asked about the kicking competition.
His answer took a few sharp turns before characterizing last season's long-snapping fiasco as Mr. Toad's Wild Ride from the Wind in the Willows.
Two hours into the first day of his final season and already the Seahawks coach was in midseason form. The big man even showed some mobility in the pocket when the topic turned to Brett Favre and reports the he's going to show up at Packers training camp on Saturday. Holmgren was asked to put himself in the Packers' shoes.
"I don't have to," Holmgren said.
Nope, certainly not, but if you were in that situation?
"I'm going to stay away from that one, OK?" Holmgren said. "I know everybody, they're friends of mine. I have great fondness for everybody involved in that thing. We're going to deal with the Seahawks."
Fair enough. Nine minutes later, he reacted to another blitz when he was asked putting the Packers aside, if he was surprised at anything regarding Favre.
The coach lowered his head, raised his eyes and delivered a punchline.
"You misunderstood me," Holmgren said. "I'm sorry. I'm not talking about any of that."
Holmgren, he's the coach whose comic timing says so much even when he's saying nothing. Someone who can make a routine Q&A after the first of 43 training-camp practices into something that's at least a little entertaining.
He is earnest, he is honest and he'll make any press conference at least a little more enjoyable. On Friday, he was asked if he remembered what it was like back in 1999 when he arrived, the grand poobah of all things football for the Seahawks.
"It was certainly an adventure," Holmgren said. "It's hard to believe it has been 10 years. But it's the same for me. It has been honestly the same every year, the start of training camp. This time of the year, getting all the players in here and getting going again, and anticipating a great season, that's always very exciting. That's why I've been able to do it for a long time."
Just don't think he's going to get too nostalgic. Not yet at least. Maybe when things get closer to the end. But on this morning, it was one more start to one final season in charge of the Seahawks, but did he find himself thinking about this being the start to one final lap?
"Honestly, no," Holmgren said. "But I will admit to the fact I've had a little talk with myself about that. That doesn't help anybody if I'm thinking about it. At the end, there will be some time, I'm sure that I'm thinking about it. But for now, it's a new year. I'm the same person. My staff clearly understands that, the players understand it. Business as usual."
So that's what he said to himself, right?
"Well, of course, my wife chirped in a little bit," he said.
Cue the laughter because this coach knows how to perform.
Posted by shane/olympia
1:00 PM, Jul 25, 2008
holmy will be missed when he goes!
Posted by patrick/sf
2:10 PM, Jul 25, 2008
Sorry to see him go.
Posted by Ryan
2:26 PM, Jul 25, 2008
Great coach. Classy guy. Irreplacable.
Posted by KG
2:28 PM, Jul 25, 2008
Man, it's going to be a sad day when Coach leaves - I don't think most fans realize the impact he has had on this franchise. He continually gets critcized for his "conserative play-calling" but most who have played the game before him and other coaches will tell you he is hte best play-caller out there and his team always has a chance to win due to his play-calling skills.
We finally got to a Super Bowl, we've been NFC West Champs consecutively, playoffs are expected and the list goes on. I hope we make sure to thank him enough in this last season - and lets try to get him a Seahawks Championship Ring -- Go 'Hawks
Posted by jrtking
2:35 PM, Jul 25, 2008
I agree with the meloncholly sentiment about Coach, but guys the season has just begun. Pace yourself!
Posted by SeahawkRick
4:48 PM, Jul 25, 2008
I've said ever since he announced this last offseason that he was stepping down from the Seahawks......I'm going to miss Holmgren BIG TIME. It pains me to think that this will be his last year - I think any true Seahawk fan has to feel similar thoughts. What he brought to this franchise is stability, respect and winning. Now it didn't hurt having Paul Allen as the owner. And I also commend Holmgren for having the guts 3 or 4 years ago to step down as GM. Like any long time successful NFL head coach, he has an ego, no doubt. And for him to do that showed me alot of class.
I just hope like crazy we could send him out on the 'right note' and win a Super Bowl! Wouldn't that be something? And I also hope that he doesnt' coach anymore in this league - the thought of him on another team's sideline sickens me. HE'S OURS AND LEAVE HIM ALONE!!
Posted by freebies
8:26 PM, Jul 25, 2008
I like Holmgren,as the rest of you and hate to see him fade into the Arizona sunset, it's the uncertainty of the next coach that bugs me, winners or back to years and years of losing?
Posted by Scott
2:45 PM, Jul 31, 2008
First off, I can't blame the guy for staying out of the Favre mess - anything he says will go straight out on the AP news wire and all the involved parties will know it within the hour - he would inevitably burn bridges.
As for his leaving, it is difficult because it brings us to the unknown. I wish we could have kept Zorn around to run the offense next year, but it is what it is. I think Holmgren will either fade into the woodwork to do charity work for an NPO, or he might pursue a GM job again. It'll be interesting to see! I doubt he knows yet himself.
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