While the Seahawks prepare for the defense of the NFC West title, things seem to be on track for a former League leading rusher, as Shaun Alexander says his left foot is close to 100 percent. Alexander missed six games last season after cracking a bone in his foot, and while he did return and ran well late in the season, there was concern in this offseason that the crack was still there.
Alexander brushed that off last week, and now tells the Seattle Times that he feels he is ready to go full speed ahead for the teams upcoming training camp and 2007 regular season. “I think by the time we get to the season I will be in the best shape of my life,” Alexander said Wednesday . “I’ll be faster and stronger than ever and hopefully I’ll be able to do some good things for our team to win.”
If the Seahawks are going to make a deep run in the playoffs in 2007, they will need the Alexander of two seasons ago, as he led the league with 1880 yards on the ground and a NFL record 27 touchdowns. It was no surprise that with home field that season the Seahawks marched to the Super Bowl, only to get halted from their dreams of a Championship by the upstart Pittsburgh Steelers.
Last season the team struggled without their MVP, and despite a 9-7 record and third straight NFC West title, the team had to play a wild card game vs the Cowboys, which they won 21-20 when Tony Romo dropped a snap on a chip-shot field goal attempt that could have put Dallas ahead late. They then put up a gutsy effort the following week in Chicago before losing to the Bears 27-24 in overtime. The team realizes that Alexander, along with QB Matt Hasslebeck is the key to the teams offensive success, and you can bet that with injuries to both last year, they both will get every chance to take a break here and there in training camp.
For Alexander, with five straight 1000+-yard seasons before last year’s injury, he is just looking forward to staying healthy and being on the field the whole season to help his teammates. At 30-years-old when the season starts, he looks poised to have a breakout season after having to watch part of 2006 with his foot injury.