The Seahawks have signed eight guys over the last week, but only one would be considered an improvement over what they had last year. In other words, they are still just getting started trying to make this club better.
So far, they have kept the status quo at offensive line (D.J. Fluker and George Fant back, Mike Iupati replacing J.R. Sweezy), defensive line (Frank Clark and Quinton Jefferson both tendered) and linebacker (K.J. Wright and possibly Mychal Kendricks back). The only upgrade has been the makeup signing of kicker Jason Myers, who should have been their kicker in 2018.
At this point, the Hawks are basically the same team that won 10 games last year. To get better — and have a chance at the necessary home field next season — they absolutely have to add a couple of defensive linemen before the draft arrives. Once they do that, we will see whether they actually have improved.
Meanwhile, let’s see how their status quo approach compares to the moves of their 2019 opponents:
Continue reading Seahawks aren’t much better yet, but what about their opponents?
Pete Carroll has said he wants to create continuity on Seattle’s offensive line.
He said he thinks Seattle’s young guys are going to improve and he hopes Luke Joeckel becomes part of the core. As he said after Joeckel signed, “Now that we have a good young bunch of guys, we’re going to try to keep this thing together.”
It’s debatable whether they have enough good guys yet, but the bigger question as pertains to Carroll’s stated goal: Will they ever be able to keep a quintet together in Tom Cable’s zone blocking system using their scattershot approach?
Whether it’s bad drafting, a bad scheme or just bad luck, Carroll’s Seahawks have had terrible fortune on the offensive line — typically fielding one of the weaker units in the NFL and annually needing to overcome its deficiencies just to get to the playoffs.
Why has it been so terrible? John Schneider and the coaches have consistently pointed to the disconnect between college and NFL offenses and the CBA-mandated lack of practice time.
But every team faces those issues. For Seattle, it has been more than that. It has been a complete inability to field a healthy, consistent line — and a total failure to set up a line of succession.
Continue reading Are Hawks capable of building a talented, consistent O-line?
The Seahawks are finally going to have their so-called first-team line together, but that doesn’t figure to help them much as they face another stellar defensive line in New York.
Germain Ifedi hasn’t played an NFL game yet and will be slow to get back into the groove, so we can expect Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson to dominate the line of scrimmage the same way Miami and Los Angeles did.
In case you forgot, the Seahawks were horrendous on offense in those two games. They scored just 15 points, ran for just 180 yards (3.2 per carry) and gave up five sacks and 18 hits on Russell Wilson, who sprained an ankle trying to get away from Ndamukong Suh.
Usually one of the league’s best rushing teams, the Hawks have been a middling unit so far with their revamped line going against strong defensive fronts. Even in the blowout of San Francisco, they were barely above average — 127 yards on 31 carries (4.1 average).
Led by Williams, the sixth pick in the 2015 draft, the Jets are the third-ranked run defense in the NFL — much better even than the Dolphins and Rams. So the Hawks are going to go nowhere on the ground in this one either.
Tom Cable just hopes these butt kickings will make his unit better down the road.
Continue reading Cable hopes butt kickings will make his revamped line better
It’s no wonder John Schneider and Pete Carroll had developed an aversion toward drafting offensive linemen in the first round: They always get hurt.
After going back-to-back with first-round linemen in 2010-11, it took them five years to try again. Now it might be another five years before they do it again.
We can only hope Germain Ifedi’s high ankle sprain, which is expected to sideline him for at least three weeks, will not send him down the same injury path traveled by Russell Okung and James Carpenter.
Continue reading Curse of first-round linemen continues
It’s official: The Seahawks have completed the deconstruction of the offensive line that tagged along for the Super Bowl XLVIII win and are in full rebuild mode.
With injured (again) Russell Okung headed to the new Super Bowl champs in Denver on a prove-it deal, the Seahawks have completely turned over their line since 2013.
While continuity is one of the hallmarks of any great line, the Seahawks have not had much of that due to injuries and inconsistent play, so they aren’t really missing anything by letting Okung and company go. None of them were worth keeping.
Continue reading With XLVIII O-line deconstructed, will Clady be part of rebuild?
As expected, the Seahawks will have three compensatory draft picks this year — including a third-rounder for losing Byron Maxwell last offseason.
Adding a fifth-rounder for losing James Carpenter and a sixth for Malcolm Smith, the Seahawks now have nine picks: a first, a second, two thirds, a fourth, a fifth, a sixth and two sevenths. They have four picks in the top 97.
Last summer, they traded their fifth to Kansas City for safety Kelcie McCray and their sixth to Detroit for cornerback Mohammed Seisay. They acquired the other seventh from Dallas for running back Christine Michael.
This will be just the second time the Seahawks have ever had a third-round comp pick. In 2005, they pulled a third-rounder for losing Shawn Springs that they used on Leroy Hill.
Continue reading Hawks get rare third-round comp pick
John Schneider’s worst draft pick is coming out of retirement.
John Moffitt was so bad that Schneider and the Seahawks actually changed the way they evaluate draft prospects largely because of him, focusing on football character over skill starting in 2014.
“There’s certain guys you spend a lot of time with, because you’re trying to figure out the man,” Schneider said before the draft last year. “What’s in his heart? What his personality’s like. Would he fit in in the locker room? There’s certain guys that we haven’t done that good of a job with, in my opinion, in the past.”
That’s a clear reference to Moffitt, who was traded by the team after Tom Cable got tired of his lackadaisical attitude — which it turns out was caused by his drug problem.
Moffitt started 15 games in 2011 and 2012, alternating with J.R. Sweezy toward the end of the latter year. Cable was never impressed by Moffitt, whose drug addiction apparently scuttled whatever ability or desire he had.
Moffitt always came across as a buffoon, running into trouble with the law and the NFL more than once. Apparently he has addressed his drug problem and wants back in the NFL. The Seahawks clearly are not an option.
We consider him the worst pick in Schneider’s six drafts. Here’s our bottom five:
Continue reading Moffitt was Schneider’s worst draft pick
Do the Seahawks prefer Russell Okung or Bruce Irvin? Because — barring Marshawn Lynch retiring in 2016 — that is probably the choice they are going to have to make. By May 3.
The San Diego Chargers reportedly picked up the fifth-year option on linebacker Melvin Ingram on Tuesday, which raised the question of whether the Seahawks will do the same with Irvin by the May 3 deadline.
The smart money says no — unless the Hawks have decided they don’t want to re-sign Okung.
Continue reading Irvin or Okung? That is probably the question
The Seahawks’ offensive line has been a mess for years. The unit has not started the same five since 2007 and has averaged seven combinations per year under Pete Carroll.
It’s not for a lack of trying. Since 2009, the Hawks have drafted two linemen in the first round and two in the second.
But that group has just not stayed healthy or developed as a unit — so it’s no surprise at all that the Hawks let two so-called starters go Tuesday.
Center Max Unger missed 13 games over the past two seasons, and left guard James Carpenter never played a full season in four years as a Seahawk. The Hawks were no longer interested in paying Unger, preferring to bring in Pro Bowl tight end Jimmy Graham instead, and they were not going to keep Carpenter for $5 million a year either.
Some people are wringing their hands over the loss of two nominal starters, but the fact is they were more like part-time starters, the Hawks did well enough without them and it’s time to bring in some new blood.
Continue reading Hawks have not lost much on the line; it’s time to upgrade anyway
A day before free agency, the Seahawks took care of several roster questions — adding two cornerbacks and keeping two of their own pending free agents — while also learning James Carpenter probably will join Byron Maxwell on the way out of town.
The additions of 30-year-old cornerbacks Will Blackmon and Cary Williams address the major depth problem the Hawks face at that position — Maxwell leaving, Jeremy Lane dealing with a broken wrist and torn ACL, Richard Sherman healing up a torn ligament in his elbow and Tharold Simon apparently recovering from shoulder surgery.
Continue reading Hawks address CB depth, other roster spots