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News » Seattle Seahawks Inside Slant 2008-12-30


Seattle Seahawks Inside Slant 2008-12-30


Seattle Seahawks Inside Slant 2008-12-30
Technically, Mike Holmgren's tenure as Seattle Seahawks' head coach is not yet done.


Yes, he is retiring from coaching for at least a year, and possibly permanently if he comes back in a front-office capacity.

And yes, Jim Mora is taking over the coaching job from Holmgren.

But the franchise has given Holmgren 10 days to clean up his affairs in a place he has spent the last 10 years, after which his rather sizeable office in the team's new practice facility will be taken over my Mora.

Holmgren began his process of closure by meeting for a final time with his players on Monday. He said he was too emotional after Sunday's finale, a 34-21 loss to the Arizona Cardinals, and that addressing the team then would have been "ridiculous."

"I thought it was going to be a little more emotional," fullback Leonard Weaver said Monday afternoon, "but I guess he got all the crying out before he talked to us."

Holmgren paved the way for Mora in another part of his speech.

"Mike gave a great talk to the team today, basically affirming Coach Mora and affirming the guys that are going to have to take the reins," quarterback Matt Hasselbeck said. "Basically, his message to the team was, 'Listen, they're not going to be the same as me, but you've got to buy in and listen to them just the same.'"

Seahawks general manager Tim Ruskell has not spoken with the media in about two months, since the team began its injury-induced free-fall from four consecutive division titles to the fourth pick in the upcoming draft by virtue of their 4-12 record.

Ruskell is scheduled to meet with the media next week, ostensibly to discuss his beliefs about why the team dropped so dramatically and what he plans to do about it in the offseason.

A week after that, Mora will meet with the media for the first time officially as the team's new coach.

He was introduced as Holmgren's replacement last January, but neither Mora nor Holmgren were present.

Since then, out of respect to Holmgren, Mora has declined to address his role as the new head coach. He has spoken to the media in his current role as defensive backs coach but has deflected any questions about his ultimate succession to Holmgren.

One of the first things Mora must do is, in the process of filling out his coaching staff, determine which coaches from Holmgren's staff will remain.

It is a near certitude that offensive coordinator Gil Haskell and defensive coordinator John Marshall will not be retained, as well as several coaches who are old friends of Holmgren's.

But there is a chance that special teams coach Bruce DeHaven, whose units performed very well this year, stays with Mora, as well as first-year coaches Mike Solari (offensive line), Bill Lazor (quarterbacks) and Kasey Dunn (running backs), about whom Mora presumably had a say when they were hired last offseason.

It has been widely assumed that Mora will fill out his staff with coaches from his staff in Atlanta, including offensive coordinator Greg Knapp, who is filling that role in Oakland, and defensive coordinator Ed Donatell, who was the defensive coordinator under Tyrone Willingham at the University of Washington before Willingham was fired.



Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 30, 2008

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