Catching up with former Seahawks placekicker Norm Johnson

Mr. Automatic

When I got a chance to speak with former players and members of the Seahawks 35th Anniversary Team Mack Strong (that interview coming soon) and Norm Johnson, I pounced on it.

Not every day you get a chance to talk to the guy who pulled off the gutsiest decision in Super Bowl history, as well as the best blocking fullback of his generation.

This opportunity was brought to me by Degree Men, who got Mack and Norm to help promote their new MotionSense technology.  It really is a fascinating new technology for deodorant and stay tuned to the NWSB Seahawks Forum for more information on that and a recap of my entire day.

Johnson played 18 seasons in the NFL for the Seahawks (1982-90), Falcons (91-94), Steelers (95-98), and the Eagles (1999). He graduated from UCLA in 1981.

Johnson was a 2x Pro Bowl selection, and a 2x All-PRO.

Norm was really fantastic in answering some questions for me, and he even held for me while I nailed a 20-yard field goal on the field at CenturyLink Field.

Before I get to the interview, I wanted to share a quick story he told me, with you:

As you all should remember, the Pittsburgh Steelers pulled off the gutsiest call in Super Bowl history, doing a surprise onside kick following a Norm Johnson field goal.  The Saints’ did this a few seasons ago, but it is well documented they had practiced and practiced and even had a code word for it.

Norm Johnson

Johnson was a 2x Pro Bowl selection, and a 2x All-PRO. (photo:

Not for the Steelers.  Norm hustled off the field after hitting the aforementioned field goal, and went to grab his kicking tee.

As he walked past Coach Bill Cowher, he heard Cowher say to him ‘Surprise Onside Right’.

The rest as they say is history. Full story (Recap from NY Daily News)

Without further ado, here is my chat with the former kicker!

AC: What are your thoughts on this year’s Seahawks team?

Norm Johnson: Well I’m really excited about the Seahawks this year.

It appears to me that Pete Carroll has had a design for the team he wanted to create and I think we’re kind of seeing basically what he is trying to design for the last couple years.

We see a fast defense, good quarterbacks in place and he’s created I think, an atmosphere that is a good atmosphere for players to play in.

They have good chemistry it appears.

From the outside looking in it looks like they respect Pete and what he’s doing so I’m really excited, that’s a lot of the pieces of the puzzle you need to win.

AC:  What do you believe this team’s ceiling is, or what they need to add to get to where they want to be?

Norm Johnson: I don’t know that we need too many more pieces really.  As we start gelling and the quarterbacks start meshing we have a lot of new players.

As they start getting used to their surroundings and teammates, they can only just get better.

AC: So you went to the Super Bowl with the Steelers, what similarities do you see between this team and the team you played for?

Norm Johnson:  We had a real quick defense and I believe ours (Seattle) is really coming along.

We have some real speed, and good defensive backs here.

We (Pittsburgh) had a good linebacking crew it seems like this years Seahawks, who also have a pretty good linebacking crew.  We were pretty strong on the defensive line and it looks like our defensive line is really coming along.

AC: Awesome, thank you very much for your time today Norm.

Norm Johnson: You bet

Again a HUGE thank you to Degree Men and Norm Johnson for giving me this opportunity, and stay tuned to NWSB for the Mack Strong interview!


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