Hawk Talk highlights: Are the Cardinals the Seahawks’ new big rival?

Dec 23, 2014, 1:14 PM | Updated: 1:17 pm
Bruce Arians and the Cardinals have been the Seahawks’ toughest competition in the NFC West i...
Bruce Arians and the Cardinals have been the Seahawks' toughest competition in the NFC West in 2014. (AP)

Highlights from the latest “Hawk Talk” with Danny O’Neil:

Brandon asked if coach Bruce Arians and the Cardinals can replace Jim Harbaugh and the 49ers as the Seahawks’ biggest rival and most hated opponent going forward.

Danny O’Neil: We’ll see. Arizona’s gotta win a few more games for it to get feisty. Right now, it’s one of those things where the Cardinals see the Seahawks as their rival, but not necessarily vice versa.

tom page asked if Danny was surprised by the contract extensions of linebacker K.J. Wright and Cliff Avril?

Danny O’Neil: I was surprised by both signings. I didn’t expect Seattle to be dipping into the kitty at the end of the year, but I probably should have. The trade of Percy Harvin opened up some room.

The Ghost commented that the Wright and Avril contracts sent a message to the rest of the team that the Seahawks pay for performance.

Danny O’Neil: It’s not just that, either. You can’t keep making symbolic gestures. It’s about picking guys that fit in to the system, and in Avril’s case, guys that rush the passer. Pass rush is at a premium. It’s a spot that gets paid.

howker asked if Danny thinks Marshawn Lynch’s upset stomach that held him out of the first quarter Sunday was really an upset stomach or a symptom of something else.

Danny O’Neil: Look, this is one man’s opinion. And while there were times it appeared he was kind of heaving on the sidelines, I tend to believe that story is not as straightforward as it appears. I don’t want to make a big deal and say somebody is lying or it’s a big ruse, but no, I don’t think the full explanation for his first-quarter absence is an upset stomach.

O Line fan asked if Alvin Bailey is the next Michael Bowie, noting that the last time Pete Carroll commented on the need for one of his offensive lineman to lose weight, like he did with Bailey Monday on 710 ESPN Seattle, was Bowie, who was released last offseason.

Danny O’Neil: If Alvin Bailey is interested in continued employment, he probably shouldn’t weigh 350 pounds next year.

rymong asked if kicker Steven Hauschka is OK after missing three straight field goals vs. Arizona.

Danny O’Neil: I hope so, man. That was my biggest concern coming out of that game. And I’m not kidding.

mike K asked how defensive tackle Jordan Hill has changed the Seahawks’ pass rush.

Danny O’Neil: He has given the team a superior inside nickel pass-rusher, someone who feasts off the attention given to Michael Bennett in much the same way that Clinton McDonald did a year ago.

Jen asked if potential playoff opponent Dallas, who beat the Seahawks in Seattle earlier this season, is a concern.

Danny O’Neil: Yes. A huge concern. Dallas has a physically imposing offensive line, a powerful run game.

Hawkmode asked if Danny thinks the Hawks will go after a top-flight wide receiver or tight end in the offseason.

Danny O’Neil: I think they will look for one in the draft, but no, I don’t think they’re going to be trying to buy one in free agency.

Josh B. asked if injured center Max Unger will make it back for the playoffs.

Danny O’Neil: Yes, I think he will. It sounds – from Pete – that he’s getting closer and closer.

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Hawk Talk highlights: Are the Cardinals the Seahawks’ new big rival?