Back from South Africa and Paris, a rare two-week vacation during football season, let’s catch up with some thoughts after the Seahawks improved to 7-2 while we were gone …
While we were watching lions (not the Detroit guys) devour baby buffalo (not the Bills) in the South Africa bush, the Seahawks held off Atlanta and beat Tampa Bay in overtime (we followed that one on Twitter from Nelspruit, S.A., which was fun).
Seattle also put Tedric Thompson and Justin Britt on IR, reportedly dangled Rashaad Penny, once again considered signing Antonio Brown and claimed Josh Gordon. And Quandre Diggs still has not played for them.
Continue reading Catching up ahead of huge Monday night game
“You have to learn in this game, if you’re going to be really consistently good, to get out of your own way … and we haven’t gotten there yet.” — Pete Carroll
The Seahawks probably would love to be playing this Thursday, rather than next, so they could quickly expunge the bad taste of that loss to New Orleans.
But it’s probably a good thing they go to Arizona first, before a huge Thursday home game against the Rams as they face division foes twice in the next 10 days.
The Cardinals are really the ideal elixir for a good Seattle team that needs to show it is better at tackling, rushing the passer, holding the ball and coaching than it showed against New Orleans.
“There’s so much for us to do,” Pete Carroll told 710 ESPN. “There’s so much.”
Continue reading Time for Hawks to show they are better than this
Jadeveon Clowney and L.J. Collier have each made their debuts over the last two weeks. Now it’s Ziggy Ansah’s turn.
If it goes well, the Hawks might have the trio that, for this year anyway, is supposed to approximate the 2013 pass rush of Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril and Chris Clemons.
“We wanted to make sure everything was right,” Pete Carroll said of the long wait for Ansah. “He’s had three good weeks of work and he’s in really good shape. … He’ll play a considerable amount. He’s practiced hard enough to do that.
“That’s really going to be fun to see him out there, to see how we’re going to use him in the game plan. I’m really excited about that.”
Continue reading And Ansah makes three: Hawks will have all pass rushers finally
Just how far from their best are the Seahawks?
Judging by the Week 2 league injury report, the Seahawks appear to be one of the more banged-up teams. They have six guys on the official game report (only the Chargers and Redskins have more), and they had 16 guys listed with injuries on the practice report Friday.
Almost every offensive lineman has some kind of ailment, and the Hawks are going to swap out two injured defensive starters this week, too.
Their most stable positions have been quarterback, running back (if you can believe it) and linebacker. Otherwise, they are in a state of flux everywhere else.
We previously said they are better almost everywhere, but right now we estimate they are only about two-thirds of what they eventually will be. And it might take a couple of months to find that final third — barring any major injuries.
Continue reading How (in)complete are the Hawks right now?
A year ago, few people thought the Seahawks could play even .500 ball — due to a completely revamped defense and an offense that didn’t seem capable of winning many shootouts.
Well, as we predicted, the Hawks won 10 games and made the playoffs for the seventh time in Pete Carroll’s nine seasons (and, as we all know, should have beaten Dallas in the wild-card round).
This year, it seems plenty of people have not learned their lesson — still forecasting the Seahawks as an 8-8 or 9-7 team. The main concerns are pass rush and a youthful secondary, plus the permanent loss of Doug Baldwin in the receiving corps.
Carroll knows his pass rush is weaker than it was — “We gotta make something special out of it” — but he also knows his team is otherwise very stout. (UPDATE: The Hawks acquired pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney the day after this was first posted.)
After the Hawks beat the Raiders in the preseason finale, Carroll said, “We’re going to be a really good team. … We’re going to be hard to beat.”
He’s right. When the schedule came out, we predicted 11 or 12 wins. It’s still easy to see that because they look better at
six seven of nine position groups.
Continue reading Hawks have improved almost everywhere
This Super Bowl matchup is near and dear to the Seahawks’ aching hearts: The division rival the Hawks cannot beat right now vs. the one-time Super Bowl nemesis the Hawks will always regret not beating.
The Rams and Patriots are the teams the Hawks have to figure out how to defeat if they are going to win another Super Bowl under Pete Carroll.
So how do they do that?
Continue reading Super Bowl clubs are Hawks’ targets, and it starts at home
The 2018 season originally was supposed to be the last hurrah for the Legion of Boom era Seahawks. But injuries in 2017 ruined that, so Pete Carroll and John Schneider turned 2018 into a youth movement instead — an audition for the core of Carroll’s next potential Super Bowl team.
The Seahawks surprised many (not us) by making the playoffs and then had an unnecessarily premature departure, but Carroll is confident he has created the foundation for his next Super Bowl window. Carroll already has re-upped through 2021, and he thinks he has most of what he needs to make a deep playoff push in the next three years.
“We come out of here with a great feeling about our future,” he said after the 24-22 loss in Dallas. “Our guys are excited about it. They know that we can do some damage in the playoffs. They know that we can go a long way …
“You can tell that the nucleus and the core of the team that you need to be a championship club is here. These are the guys that we’re going to build it around. I couldn’t be more adamant about that right now. That’s where we are.”
Continue reading Carroll says the core to ‘go a long way’ is here
“The Seahawks are going to be a running team as long as Pete Carroll is the coach. If you can’t handle that then you probably should pick another team to root for.” — Bob Condotta on Twitter
Condotta is right: Pete Carroll is not going to change his philosophy — or his offensive coordinator. Nor should he.
Unlike some fans, we have no issue with Carroll’s overall tactic of controlling the game with the run and great defense. This is the same philosophy that took the Seahawks to two Super Bowls, and Carroll is very confident it will take them back.
But he will evaluate how the first year with Brian Schottenheimer went, and they hopefully will improve their in-game adjustments so they can avoid the kind of unnecessary playoff loss they just experienced in Dallas.
As Carroll said, “We have to adjust a little bit quicker.”
Continue reading Carroll’s Hawks will run, but they ‘have to adjust a little bit quicker’
“It feels like we are just getting started.” — Pete Carroll
Consider the Seahawks’ next Super Bowl window officially open.
A day after Pete Carroll led the Hawks to the playoffs for the seventh time in his nine seasons, he signed an extension keeping him in Seattle for three more years.
It does indeed feel like the Seahawks are just getting started — both this year and beyond.
Continue reading With Carroll re-signed, playoff-bound Hawks ‘just getting started’
While everyone else marvels over the fact that the Seahawks are over .500 this deep into the season, we’re more concerned about how Seattle’s historically bad run defense might prevent the team from advancing in the playoffs.
We have always projected the Hawks to be above .500 at this point (they actually have underachieved by a game in our eyes), and it speaks well of their developing offense that they have been able to stay in games against high-powered offenses such as the L.A. teams, Green Bay and Carolina — rallying to beat the latter two.
But Seattle’s defensive line has proven to be more of a liability than we thought it would be. No one expected the pass rush to be very good outside Frank Clark — and that largely has proven true (Clark has 10 sacks, Jarran Reed a mildly surprising 5.5 and the rest of the team 12.5). But the run defense has been a major disappointment.
Continue reading Hawks’ run defense is historically bad