BY Art Thiel 11:47AM 12/27/2019

Thiel: Just to add to the circus, Bosworth is back

The Seahawks again reach back into their bad-boy past. LB Brian Bosworth (1987-89) will raise the 12 Flag Sunday, apparently because the game needed more hype.

Brian Bosworth, 30 years after his Seahawks career ended ignominiously, is back Sunday. / Seattle Seahawks

As if there wasn’t enough about the Seahawks-49ers nationally televised game Sunday night to draw attention, apparently it’s anti-hero week too.

After the Seahawks re-hired Marshawn Lynch Monday, former Seahawks bad boy LB Brian Bosworth will raise the 12 flag before the game, the club announced Friday. For those too young to remember, Bosworth posed himself as a ruthless rebel in the fashion of Lynch, with two notable differences: It was a pure con job, and he couldn’t walk his talk.

Bosworth was taken by the Seahawks with the first pick in the 1987 supplemental draft after a controversial career at the University of Oklahoma, where he was a two-time All-America selection, and also banned from the 1987 Orange Bowl by the NCAA for using steroids.

After initially refusing to sign with the Seahawks, he eventually signed the largest rookie contract in NFL history, $11 million over 10 years. He started 24 games over two years before a shoulder injury, likely complicated by his use of steroids, ended his career in 1989.

In a short career known more for hairstyles than hits, his most infamous moment was in a Monday night game in his rookie year against the Los Angeles Raiders, when, in a 37-14 victory, RB Bo Jackson ran for 221 yards and three touchdowns, including a sweep left that carried a helpless Bosworth into the end zone.

Jackson claimed he told Bosworth in the end zone, “Next time, make sure you have a bus fare.”

In his 1988 autobiography, The Boz, co-written with Sports Illustrated’s Rick Reilly, Bosworth was honest about something for one moment in his career:

“He freight-trained my ass.”

By 1989 he was done, team doctor Pierce E. Scranton Jr. explaining, “Brian was a 25-year-old with the shoulders of a 60-year-old. He flunked my physical.”

In July 2004, Bosworth was named the sixth worst flop on the Biggest Flops of the Last 25 Years list by ESPN and No. 3 on NFL Network’s Top Draft Busts.

Now, after a modest acting career in TV and movies, Bosworth, 54, is grateful to have more attention in Seattle. In a statement released by the club, he wrote:

I am truly blessed and honored to be asked to raise the 12 Flag for the Seattle Seahawks and the amazing city and fans. There are few moments bigger for a former Seahawks player than to be invited back to relive and experience the emotions the 12s invoke for their team.

I can truly say there is no better fan base or more magical place to play than in Seattle. My heart still pains that I could not fulfill the expectations that I had for myself and for the fans when I was blessed to be drafted to be part of this great organization. Players play this sport of football with such emotion and passion but rarely are there fans that are as emotionally connected and invested as are Seattle’s 12s.

In life, things are too often taken for granted due to not being focused on how truly special the moments we are graced with occurs . . . this moment has more meaning and focus than I can express. I am truly humbled and forever grateful!

Fortunately, Bosworth has not been invited to play.

But it’s only Friday.


  • Husky73

    My wife was watching All My Children, when the TV station (KOMO, I think) went into breaking news– Brian Bosworth exiting an airplane and arriving in Seattle.

    • art thiel

      Boz has guest role in an episode titled, “All My Worst Children.”

      • BB46

        Got to wonder about hair color now. Heck,,, does Boz even still have hair???

      • Husky73

        Make sure you read Blanchette’s column today.

  • wabubba67

    Nice statement by Bosworth (or his agent). Will he be selling T-shirts to 49ers fans in attendance??

    • art thiel

      I think he’s moved on to coffee mugs and calendars.

  • jafabian

    Pure hype for someone who was a footnote in Seahawks history. He was arguably their best defensive player his rookie season and that’s about it. IMO too much is made about Bo running over him into the endzone. When an RB has a full head of steam no one player will stand in their way. If anything seeing Boz raise the flag will get the 12s pumped up. Will Macklemore or Pearl Jam perform at halftime? Or are they saving that for the playoffs?

    • Husky73

      Will Dan McGwire and Kelly Stouffer be with him?

      • art thiel

        No. They don’t want the flag intercepted halfway up.

        • 2nd place is 1st loser


      • jafabian

        They’ll be in the stands hawking the classic “Ban The Boz” t-shirts.

    • art thiel

      Don’t forget the Bo vs. Boz hype that led into the game. It magnified that play, especially on the Monday night platform. It also played into Jackson’s Superman persona.

      • LarryLurex70

        But, were we all NOT entertained that night? Final outcome aside, it was really fun to watch.

  • Tim


    • art thiel

      As Wilson likes to say, Why not us?

      Amnesty is a healthy thing.

      • Tim

        But Boz is a football player like Trump is an intellectual. Will he be wearing a clown suit Sunday night?

        • 1coolguy

          Always room for a Trump dig by a snowflake in blue Seattle – it’s really gotten passe

          • Tim

            Come on now, if you love the Hawks, you love the color blue. Happy New Year.

          • tor5

            Tim keeps it classy. Good on you!

          • Husky73

            Impeachment is God’s plan.

        • JayLO

          He was pretty good in college (2 time All american and major disrupter of offenses at a pretty good school…despite what they did yesterday). He had a chance to get paid and took it. Lot of guys took steroids back then. If Boz was coming out of college now doing what he did to market himself, no one would bat an eye. He was ahead of his time. He’s not a good actor but he still gets paid (suddenly, I’m craving a carbonated beverage based on prune juice) Take him for what he is… An entertainer. And tell me which linebacker in the NFL or on planet earth WOULDNT have gotten trucked by Bo Jackson with a 5 yard head of steam? Go Hawks!

  • Mícheál Mac Cionnaith

    Why not? If we are going to go “whole hog,” we should also add a greased pig contest, and a pie-eating contest in which first prize is all the pie you can eat.

    • art thiel

      I’ll do pie. First-team All-America.

  • coug73

    I still got my Raider Buster Hat, I believe Boz marketed this hat and T-shirts. Boz was damaged when he got drafted by the Hawks. Who wouldn’t get freight-trained by Bo who had a full head of steam? Still odd he was invited to raise the 12th man flag. Go Hawks.

    • art thiel

      Lots of things are odd about this Seahawks season. Why stop?

  • Kevin Lynch

    I was at the King Dome when Bo made that throw from left field to the plate. Unfortunately, I was in the left field stands and lacked perspective. Insane. I did see on TV the incredible run over Bosworth and the All Star Game home run. Was it a slam? ‘Special Player’, as they say too often. Maybe the greatest of the two-sport players.

    • art thiel

      No maybes. He was.

  • Ken S.

    What the hell, lets get Zorn warmed up,,, just in case.

    • art thiel

      Actually, the receiver group could use Largent.

  • rosetta_stoned

    Drafting Bosworth and signing him to that monster contract cost us an all-pro linebacker in the name of Fredd Young.

    • art thiel

      Yeah, but we columnists had more fun with Boz.

  • woofer

    This just in. The NFL football game scheduled in Seattle for Sunday evening has been canceled and replaced with the season’s premiere of Jock Voodoo Extravaganza. As previously announced, the feature event will be a ritual raising of Beast Mode from the dead. And we now know that the opening act will be an exorcism of the Curse of the Boz. As the hallowed 12th Man flag soars up the flagpole the Curse will be lifted right with it. Or at least that’s the plan.

    But some experienced witch doctors question whether the flag raising will generate enough cosmic juice to get the job done. The root problem is that the Boz’s steroids were laced with kryptonite. The super powers generated by the steroids were negated by the enfeebling effects of the kryptonite and now must be separated in order to effectively release.

    According to chemnical experts, the molecular bond between the steroids and the kryptonite may prove too strong to be broken by a mere flag raising. An intense supporting sonic vibration may be also required — something in the 140 decibel range. The existing stadium record is slightly below that level. Can those extra few critical decibels be generated? To generate some extra lift-off the Boz has offered to snort a line of powdered Skittles.

    Yet to be announced are the half-time activities. Rumor has it that the infamous DB Cooper will parachute into the stadium just after the Sea Gals complete their routine. So we will finally find out who that crazy dude really is. He will suit up for the second half and maybe get some playing time late in the fourth quarter if, as expected, the contest is not too close. As a DB he could he could easily slide into the nickel package. Also don’t be too surprised if Pete Rademacher makes a cameo appearance at linebacker.

    • art thiel

      Whoa, woofer. Put down the crack pipe and back away.

  • DJ

    Thanks Art!
    What the?! There’s certainly a lack of continuity with any sort of hype machine in the works at Seahawks HQ. From bringing back Superbowl winning, bad ass and potential HOF running back, representing much of what has been great with this franchise, to having Bosworth (your definition stands pat) wave the 12th man flag, who little represented winning at all. Michaels and Collinsworth are gonna have fun with this lineup! Whomever made that decision must be too young to remember Bosworth’s anti-legacy.
    Sunday, I’ll be wearing my #24 jersey while warming my hands to the burning of my hardcover The Boz book (yeah, I got fooled too and bought it at Costco, cheap!)

    • art thiel

      Did you rainbow-stripe your sidewalls?

      • DJ

        Ha ha, nope, not even close. Besides falling we’ll short of expectations, the anticipation of greatness at the time was exciting. There were flashes of great too. His selling “Beat the Boz” t-shirts to Denver fans was pretty cool.

        Dave Wyman was buddies with Bosworth and speaks quite fondly of their time playing and hanging together, where Wyman was drafted the same year. I guess that gives Bosworth credit at being a good dude at least. He sure was good at hyping himself.

  • Effzee

    What I don’t want to hear is something along the lines of “I don’t know why we didn’t get him (Lynch) more involved earlier. Obviously we would have liked to, but the game kind of got away from us…”

    Because then I would be like…. “Well, that’s not obvious, actually. Because he was there, getting paid, and you didn’t get him more involved. So…… yeah. Not obvious.”

  • LarryLurex70

    Anyone else besides me noticed the Q13 app notification about this “story” described The Boz as a “Seahawks legend”? Apparently with a straight face too!

  • Robin & Maynard

    Called the Seahawks and said we’ve swapped radio swag for Boz’s stolen license plate (White Corvette). They said, “bring it down”. We said if he wants it have him come to the “X” and pick it up. Didn’t happen.