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Shaun Alexander, NFL Legend

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb
The Truth Network Radio
February 8, 2023 9:17 pm

Shaun Alexander, NFL Legend

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb

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February 8, 2023 9:17 pm

Former NFL star Shaun Alexander joins the show to discuss his hall of fame credentials, how Pete Carroll was able to rally the Seahawks this year, and the maturation of Geno Smith.


...Center on Radio Row and now joining us, one of my favorites, the former NFL MVP, Seahawks legend, and Sean Alexander. Sean, how you been? I'm good, brother. How you doing?

Well, I'm doing fantastic. So, I gotta start you off with your Seahawks this year. I know we were talking throughout the season. Yeah. That team was supposed to be down and out.

Yeah. They were supposed to be a terrible football team this year. And I hate to sound so cheesy, but I really think the way that people were talking about Pete Carroll this year... Yeah. got to that locker room. And I don't think that's the main reason why they went to the playoffs, but I think they really rallied around their coach.

Yeah. Pete has that ability to get people to play, you know, in a sense better than what everybody thinks they're gonna play. You know, you think of the Legion boom, you're like, you would have never thought right out the gate, oh, this is gonna be one of the best defensive secondaries in NFL history. And, you know, even that's what he did. So, yeah, I think the guys rallied around and the Seahawks did Seahawk football.

Great special teams, controlled the clock, run the ball, quarterback takes care of the ball, makes some big throws. Like, that's a Pete Carroll thing all the way back to USC, you know. Shoot, that's how he goes back to New England Patriots when he was good. Like, that's how he's always done it. And if you get it going in the right way, you win some close games.

Now you're there. Was it surprising to you to see what happened with Russ this year? I know you and Russ are close. We are.

Yes and no. I'm always surprised that he doesn't figure it out in the middle of the season. But then also, I know, like, new teams, new coaches, that's just the the wrestle of it. I think that their first game of the season, they're against Seattle. It's, you know, third and 15, completes a big throw. It's fourth and two, you know, and they're like, hey, I was screaming timeout, timeout, timeout, you know, and they decide to kick a 60 yard field goal and they miss it. The reason that that's not good is if they kick it and make it, who's the star? The field goal kicker. If they go for it and they get it, Russell's the leader. He's worth every penny that we gave. You know, I mean, if he goes for it and doesn't get it, they're like, oh, man, we made a statement.

This is going to be our guy. And what they did by kicking and missing it, they don't have a hero as a kicker. I mean, he's a good kicker, but they don't have a hero as a kicker. The quarterback, is he really that good? Why would we, why would we kick the longest field goal in history, you know? So it almost damaged the psyche of the team.

Now, well, whose fault is that? Well, that's what happens with first coaches, first year coaches, you know what I mean? So, you know, I don't like coaches to get fired, so I feel like he was going to get better as it goes.

But that's really what happened. He almost missed the whole psyche of Denver program in that one move. And it's tough to knock him for this because if I got brought into a job where they trade so much to bring you in and then they give you a contract, a huge seven-year deal, like right away, it's kind of tough for you not to get an ego and not to know, okay, like, I'm the man.

But it's how you carry yourself. And when you start to bring your outside team into the locker room, all right, you're a star. Players could maybe be miffed about that. But if you play at a high level, no one cares. When you're not playing at a high level, that's when I think everything backfired.

It's got a problem. If you would have said, hey, here's this quarterback that wants to study film all the time, can I get a room upstairs so I can make sure I'm always studying? You'd be like, yeah, you're doing great. But when you come out beforehand and say, I'm going to need a room to study, it's like, who do you think you are?

So, like, that's all troublesome. But that's also the difference from Russell, who has all that stuff, and it's Seattle, who built it into it, to going to a place and win it. And in his mind, he's thinking, well, this is going to make me a great player. I'm going to be really focused.

I'm going to try to be a great leader. But it comes off different when you do it in a different kind of way. And so they were in a no-win situation because they can take, you know, you can do the same action, and it could look fully arrogant or it could look fully driven, you know what I mean? And, you know, saying, oh, I need a room, and then this and that, and a team's going to come in.

It can look arrogant, where if you're like, man, I'm going to make sure I got the nutrition. I'm going to make sure I've got the masseuses here. I'm going to make sure I've got coaches here.

So I'm all locked in. They'd be like, wow, you're such a hard worker. You're driven for it. And so that's why I'm always very slow to critique anybody because their heart could be in the right place.

Their action of getting there could be what's questioned. Sean Alexander here with us. I say this every time I see you, and sorry to be a jerk about it, but it's just unavoidable. You should be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Now, every time I see you, and we're friendly. I love you.

You're great. But I always see Sean Alexander and I go, how the heck is one of the more dominant players I've ever seen when I was growing up? Yeah, not in the Pro Football Hall. I don't care if it was only like people say that the career wasn't long enough. Your numbers.

You can't debate. Yeah, it gets weird. I was just doing a thing with Nashville and they were talking about Derrick Henry, my little nephew. You know, he's had a great, great career, great season. And they're like, yeah, every year he breaks records. And they say, this has only been done by two guys.

Choosing me and somebody else. This thing has only been done five guys. It's me and for the guy, you know, and they said, how are you not in the Hall of Fame?

And it's it is it's it gets hard when I come down here to Super Bowl and I hear it because I'm like, oh, don't start. Don't trigger me. You know, that's the word.

Don't trigger me, you know, because, you know, my you know, if you said, oh, he didn't play long enough. Then let's go by the numbers. The numbers. Touchdown.

You didn't play long enough, but you have 100 touchdowns. Yes. They actually should compliment each other. You know, I need to get inside them. They won't let me inside the room because if I get inside the room, the meeting would go for 15, like 100 hours. I just would talk too much. But I would just get up and say, guys, I don't care that he didn't play 14, 15 years. He's a running back. Running backs don't always go for for that long. But you look at the dominance on the field. I don't care what your standard is, what your standard is. You guys have no argument. Well, I wouldn't think like if you just ask the other teams that we played against, you know, I mean, it was like, oh, did was this the passing attack?

And he just ran a couple of draws. Like, no, they're all like, you know, they'd say thirty seven. They'd circle it. They'd be like, if we stop him, we'll be the Seahawks.

And we would end up ten and two or ten and six and thirteen. You got to a Super Bowl. Yeah. When you think of that team, the first name that comes out of your mouth is Sean Alexander. Yeah, it's it's not no offense to Hasselbacher. I got it's not the quarterback. It's not a receiver. It's not a lineman.

It's not a defensive player. It is Sean Alexander. Yeah, it gets it gets weird. It gets weird.

It seems so bizarre because I've had Jerry Kramer here. I've said it for years. He eventually got in. Roy Butler was here. He said it for years.

He eventually got in. And it's just dumb how they make you wait. Yeah, yeah, it not.

It doesn't make sense. I mean, I've even heard like, well, your line was so good. I was like, believe me, my two my two my two Hall of Fame left guard left tackle were amazing. They blocked two guys the other night. You know, there's nine other guys. Everybody's working together. But even if everybody blocked well, it's still the NFL. Like, there's none of that. Nothing that we do is easy, you know?

And so it's a physical game. And somehow my 15 touchdowns for five years in a row, you know, it just doesn't count, I guess so. But my dad, my dad said something to me a long time ago. We were in Peewee leagues playing. He said, he said the great ones can make it look easy. And so you made it look easy. So when people say, oh, you scored 100 touchdowns.

Was he really that good? I'm like, oh, I just made 100 touchdowns look easy. OK, so I'm going to be taken for granted, you know? So in my mind, I have to say, well, you know what? They're really just saying that I was great, you know? But I think all the time, it does hurt sometimes, you know, because I'm with Emmitt.

Or we'll talk and say, man, we're going to do a thing with Tony Dore said. That's the most awkward thing. People think you're in the Hall of Fame. They all think I'm in it.

It's so crazy. And I'm like, yo, I'm not in it. They're like, yeah.

I saw Barry Sanders. He's like, hey, what's up, man? You know, blah, blah, blah.

See you in Canon. Yeah, he's like, I can't believe you're not in. I'm like, yeah, this is weird, you know? Jerry Kramer once told me his story. The legendary Packers offensive lineman that Goodell once came up to him and said, I'll see you in Canon, Ohio, right, Jerry?

He goes, why would I go there? I'm not a pro football Hall of Famer at the time. Yeah, isn't that crazy? But, yeah, that's it, man. So, you know, you just try to learn patience.

Humility, I guess, is a good thing I need to wear. Nah, I'm sorry. That's BS. I'll try to find a way. Try to find a way.

There's no spin zone here. It's stupid. I've done this conversation throughout the years. You know when a guy's getting screwed out of the Hall of Fame? You've been someone, unfortunately, that had been screwed out of the pro football Hall of Fame, right? Rapping up with Sean Alexander, Geno Smith this year.

Yeah. If I sat here and told you I thought that was going to happen this year, I'd be the biggest liar on the planet, that was unbelievable. Yeah, he played so well, man. I was so proud of him.

And, guys, I got to know him a little bit more this year, man. Like, he just focused. He's like, man, I busted my tail and I just felt like I was going to do well. And he was right.

He bet on himself. And many guys don't do that. They usually take an easy way out or they'll retire or they won't even take the step of going to be the starter. He was like, no, no, no, I'm going to start because you knew if he did not play well, he's probably not going to be in the league next year. So most people don't understand the severity of going from the back number two to the number one. Well, if you've been number two for a long time and you get that shot to be number one and you don't do it, you're not like, oh, I'll go back to number two.

They're like, why is he here? He actually saved his whole career for one season. Is it sustainable, though? I think so. I think he's a good player. He's just the right system. You know, so I think you come back to Seattle and do great, you know, do the same thing he's always done.

That's just him. Who do you like in the game this weekend? I'm going to have to go with the Eagles. They play so well together, both the trenches, offensive line, defensive line. They play well. You know, Jayla's a Bama guy, so I remember him being a freshman at Bama. His story's awesome.

Yeah, isn't it awesome, man? How many times he's counted out, got replaced. You talk about humility, handled it with such class, then the next year didn't just transfer, comes back, too unfortunately gets hurt at that SEC title game. He helps beat Georgia, and then he goes to Oklahoma, and the rest is history.

That's right, yeah. And then, you know, even getting their second-round pick, and they're like, oh, is he really that good, though? You're like, what would make y'all think he's not that good?

Like, you know, Tua had just a magical arm, so it's not like anything Jaylon did wrong. He just ran to a guy that we were like, man, we could win it with this guy. And so that's just part of football. And Miles Sanders is a solid back, but imagine if you were playing with Jaylon Hertz. I know.

And that offense, with the way that they dial it up? I think of stuff like that sometimes. I'm like, ooh, what would it have been like if I would have played with, you know, oh, even that, you know, and I might have told you off the phone, you know, when, was it 04? Are you talking about when Brady recruited you?

Yeah, yeah. 07. When Brady and Moss write that story? Yeah, so, like, it all started earlier than that when Tom was like, man, who can I go get and play with me? You know what I mean? And so, 05, I win the MVP. He's like, dude, I want to, you know, and so he's like, man, I think we can go get some stars. And, you know, when everybody forgets that we're all in high school together before cell phones, so that's Woodson and Moss and I, you know, so we laugh.

Kevin Faulk, you know what I mean? Like, we were in all those high school, all American things. Before ESPN did all those things that they do now and kids today, they know each other. We didn't know each other. We were just like, oh, people think we're the crew. We're the 95 crew, you know what I mean?

And so, yeah, but it would have been crazy. Before we let you run, and we'll talk about professional leadership program in just a second, Sean Alexander is here with us. I have a lot of friends that watch The Office, and they talk about this clip from Daryl who traded you for a defense, and I guess this had new life of its own on TikTok recently and the thing went viral.

Do you have any clue about this stuff? Oh, no, I didn't know that. Okay, you were talking about recent. I remember that was a show a long time ago, The Office. Oh, way back. Yeah, yeah. But the clip for some reason on TikTok went viral once again, like, and I think Barstool did a write-up, who trades Sean Alexander for a defense in fantasy football?

Why, Daryl is the worst fantasy football player ever. Oh, that's hilarious. No, I didn't know that was new, so, yeah, that's really funny, but it kind of goes into that's almost my story, you know? Take it for granted, you know what I mean? Or just TV writing of being a dumb football fan.

Yeah, they just didn't know, you know? So, no, but it was really cool, but I do know fantasy football had me going to stadiums, and it'd be like, we hate you, Sean, we hate the Seahawks, but we really want you to play good. You're on my fantasy team. I'd be like, this is so weird. I'd score a touchdown, and everybody'd be like, oh, yay, oh. I love fantasy football, but I hate when I watch with my friends, and let's say one of my friends is a Jet fan, and they're going up against the Patriots, and a Patriot player scored. They're like, all right, yeah. I'm like, no, that's not how it works. You should hate the Patriots.

I don't care about your fantasy football team when it comes to who you root for. It gets weird, doesn't it? It gets weird. It gets weird, like, why you're not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I'll tell you that. Just a lot of weird conversation there. All right, tell me about the great work you're doing today, professional leadership program.

Oh, man, so the PLP was what I came up with. Gosh, a long time ago, I talked with Roger. He was asking what I was doing with some of the players, and I was like, yeah, I just kind of walk them through how to master the five Fs, fame, family, friends, finances, and your future. And a lot of that is really, fame is about identity, and so a lot of guys, they're like, oh, we're spending all our money.

We're going broke. And you're like, well, man, that's like the fourth F. Like, if I just told you, you wouldn't even know what's inside you that's actually stirring you to go make these bad decisions to lose all your money. So we've been developing a program to give to the NFL and start walking players through being able to make healthy decisions and creating healthy environments. Those are two of the underlying, incorrect cultural things that we have in the NFL that causes broken marriages, broken friendships, and broken bank accounts.

It's when guys actually don't realize who they are, understand what's their why, like why they're on this planet, some of the things that they really desire. They don't understand accountability and responsibility of parents, whether it's mom and dad or children and even friends. When you put people in the wrong category, when you don't put them in the right places, then all of a sudden other people make your decisions. And it's unfortunate, but it's a part of a cultural thing that we've had because you're taught from 8 years old playing football, just play football, people around you will make all the decisions for you. And so you get guys losing everything, and even the guys that get it, they'll be like, well, I just gave my money away, I didn't want to have to deal with it.

No, healthy people can actually have healthy decision-making skills and say, hey, you know what, I would want to do this to you, but this doesn't fit for me. Whether it's the girl that's around or whether it's the friends and whatever they want to do for extracurricular activities or if it's something with their finances. And so we're just trying to let this program start and let people have conversations where they can actually think so we can finally get guys to the fifth F, which is their future. We can actually explain to them what it means to leave a legacy, what it means to be a community influencer. And so I've partnered with the Stand Together Foundation, and they are willing to put their skills, their finances, just about 700 of some of the most successful businessmen and women and philanthropic leaders in the country, and they're like, hey, we're willing to put our finances and our skills to go help some of these athletes really become community influencers and leave legacies that will last forever. So I'm super pumped about PLP. I'm super excited about Stand Together. I'm super excited about the NFL and Inspire Change. I think we're going to do some great things as we all partner together. Well, good to see you. I don't know. Maybe we have to go out tonight and beat up all these writers that are putting you in the Pro Football Hall of Fame because I've had enough of you.

Yeah, it doesn't make any sense, does it? It will happen, man. You'll be there with me?

Hey, if I could be like a, I don't need to be a plus one, but you know what I mean. Just get a back row ticket. I'm in. I'm good to go. You're in.

That's good, man. We'll make it happen. The biggest game of the year, the Super Bowl, is on Odyssey. And Westwood One brings it to you. Streaming live for free Sunday, February 12th on the Odyssey app. The Eagles have been the NFC's best team. Touchdown, Travis Kelce. It's the Eagles versus the Chiefs. The Kansas City Chiefs.

The Philadelphia Eagles are going to the Super Bowl again. Catch all the action from Westwood One. Your Super Bowl, your Odyssey. Get in the game and download the free Odyssey app today. The biggest game of the year, the Super Bowl, is on Odyssey.

And Westwood One brings it to you. Streaming live for free Sunday, February 12th on the Odyssey app. The Eagles have been the NFC's best team. Touchdown, Travis Kelce. It's the Eagles versus the Chiefs. The Kansas City Chiefs. The Philadelphia Eagles are going to the Super Bowl again. Catch all the action from Westwood One. Your Super Bowl, your Odyssey. Get in the game and download the free Odyssey app today.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-08 22:33:15 / 2023-02-08 22:42:34 / 9

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