The Seahawks are 6-4 and in front of the rest of the NFC West as they hit their bye, but – in the wake of a poor performance in Munich — the question remains: Can they sustain it?
The Hawks have outperformed expectations so far – they are two games better than we projected (we had them 4-6 on the way to 8-9) – thanks to Geno Smith and a surprising offense that ranked fourth in scoring through nine weeks.
A win in Munich would have solidified the Seahawks as contenders (especially considering the extreme travel involved), but their disappointing performance in a 21-16 loss to Tampa Bay left questions. Was it just a bad European vacation, with poor prep? Or was it a sign that the Hawks have peaked and cannot really hang with playoff contenders?
Continue reading Was Munich just a bad trip or a bigger sign?
The Seahawks had a heck of an October, going 4-1 to leap into first place in the NFC West, and credit has deservedly been shared by many players – Geno Smith, Kenneth Walker III and Tariq Woolen pulled a trifecta of monthly NFC awards.
Clint Hurtt also has gotten a lot of credit for flipping the defense – since Week 6, the Hawks have cut points allowed in half (30.8 to 15), rushing yards almost in half (170 to 92) and passing yards by a quarter (260 to 198) while tripling their sack total (six to 19).
But another guy who should get some credit is Shane Waldron. The second-year OC took some heat early in the season for getting too cute – the worst example coming when he trotted out four RBs against the 49ers and DeeJay Dallas threw an INT at the goal line.
But Waldron has presented a variety of formations and some great concepts that have helped Smith and the offense succeed beyond anyone’s preseason projections. They are the No. 4 scoring offense in the league, at 26.3 ppg – behind only AFC powerhouses Kansas City (31.9) and Buffalo (29) and undefeated Philly (28.1). The Hawks are the No. 7 unit by DVOA.
Continue reading Lots of credit to go around so far, including Waldron
Don’t look now, but the Seahawks might be turning into a playoff contender before our very eyes.
After a 19-9 win over Arizona, they are again tied atop the so far middling NFC West — and they suddenly might have figured out how to play defense.
The West has no standout team. With San Francisco and Los Angeles also 3-3, the division is up for grabs. So, if the Hawks have indeed discovered the secret sauce on defense, it could be a fun, competitive ride from here on out.
Continue reading If defense flipped a permanent switch, Hawks are a playoff contender
The Seahawks are in the thick of the division race – for now. But an average offense and horrible defense can’t keep them there.
Yeah, yeah, the offense put up 41 points Sunday in Detroit — against the NFL’s worst defense. That followed 23 against the league’s No. 25 scoring defense, Atlanta. But the Hawks were shut out by the NFL’s top scoring defense, the 49ers, after scoring just 17 (all in the first half) against Denver, which is a top-five defense.
So far, the Hawks have struggled vs. good defenses and scored well against bad ones. In other words, Geno Smith and Co. look like an average group that needs some help from the defense.
Continue reading Hawks won’t always face defenses that bad, so theirs needs to improve