Instant reaction: Seahawks claim must-win game

November 19th, 2020 | Written by Rob Staton

The Seahawks couldn’t afford to lose this game.

A loss would’ve effectively put them two games behind the Cardinals due to the tiebreaker. Even with the easiest remaining schedule in the league, it would’ve taken a big effort to overcome that deficit.

More importantly, it would’ve felt like a crisis. It would’ve meant four defeats in five and a season spinning out of control.

Crisis averted.

Overall it felt very much like an old-school Thursday night game. The quality has improved over the last couple of years but when the NFL introduced these mid-week games initially, they were littered with errors.

Both teams made a series of headache-inducing mistakes.

Quandre Diggs turned a three-and-out into an extended touchdown drive with a needless hit. Not to be outdone, Dre Kirkpatrick duly returned the favour with an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on fourth down at midfield (leading to a Seattle touchdown).

D.K. Metcalf had two drops — including a football to the face right before half-time. Kyler Murray took an intentional grounding penalty on his own two-yard line, leading to a vital safety on the very next play.

Jason Myers missed an extra point which could’ve been important at the end and Patrick Peterson gave up a major pass interference call right before half-time, gifting the Seahawks three points.

The two teams combined for 18 total penalties.

The officials didn’t help matters with some glaring errors — adding to the overall sloppiness of the occasion.

Nevertheless, the Seahawks were victorious and showed some spirit and character to be the last man standing.

The Russell Wilson for MVP bus has been parked in favour of a more balanced attack and the benefits were clear for all to see tonight. Wilson is a sensational player very capable of winning games on his own. However, like practically every QB who has ever lived, he benefits from support in the form of a productive running game.

Seattle ran for 165 yards and felt in control for pretty much the whole game. The scoreboard was always relatively close and that’s the downside of this kind of game plan. Yet at the end of the day, this is only the second win of the season where things felt somewhat in hand. It’s not a coincidence that it worked alongside Carlos Hyde’s return and a much more complementary offense.

Defensively, some of the season-long issues remain. Tre Flowers is a big problem as a starter. Jamal Adams looks like he’s freelancing and doing whatever he wants and I’m not entirely sure it’s working the way Seattle hoped. There were a few too many long conversions too — with Seattle conceding 6-11 on third down.

Even so — there were also reasons to praise the defense for a change.

Carlos Dunlap had two sacks and a further impact play and looks every bit the defensive end Seattle badly needed to add in March. His presence on the defensive line is a major boost and that was an excellent trade prior to the deadline.

L.J. Collier also had a sack but a much more important act was his ability to draw the holding call in the end zone that led to a safety and two points.

K.J. Wright covering ground with supreme agility to deny Kyler Murray on a scramble before half-time stole an extra possession for Seattle, enabling them to claim three points.

And at the end, when they needed a stop, they found one. Not for the first time this season admittedly — but this one was a lot less stressful and desperate.

I said in our pre-game podcast on Tuesday that I thought Seattle would win this game. The key now is to try and keep growing while also winning. Nothing was solved tonight. All of the big problems discussed yesterday still exist. The defense, especially the way it is coached and has been taught, is probably going to be an issue for the rest of the season.

However, they have a mini-bye before playing the Eagles. They need to launch another winning run before a key week-16 rematch with the Rams. They needed this one and they got it.

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267 Responses to “Instant reaction: Seahawks claim must-win game”

  1. CaptainJack says:

    It will be nice to have Penny back. I suspect Olsen is done for now… time to start playing Colby Parkinson, a player I thought really highly of during his stanford days. Lewis did an admirable job but still looked like a guard thrust into playing center at times. The major injury I am worried about is Brandon Shell.

    • Big Mike says:

      Yeah be shocked if Olsen’s not done.

    • Sawdust says:

      I know Parkinson is know for his high catch rates and incredible height, but what’s the verdict on his blocking ability?

    • Michael P Matherne says:

      Going from Olsen to Dissly is a lateral move at worst. Never wanna see a guy get injured, but this isn’t gonna keep me up at night.

      • Mike says:

        Yeah. Jot sure if he has been a good influence in the locker room, but in the field he has been either irrelevant or making boneheaded mistakes. Luckily his false start didn’t get called.

        Never want to see a guy injured, but he was certainly a disappointment this year in play.

  2. Big Mike says:

    Still pissed at the refs for the phantom hold in the 1st that cost us at least a 10-0 lead if not 14-0.

    Now let’s get some guys healthy……Carson and Pocic in particular. Hope Shell is able to get back.

  3. cha says:

    I can’t believe I’m typing these words, but the run defense was very, very good tonight.

    Arizona didn’t abandon it. They tried to establish it, and were denied time and time again.

    Well done fellas.

    • Sawdust says:

      Signs for mild optimism on defense if they can clean up stupid penalties.

    • Michael P Matherne says:

      Kyler Murray ran 5 times for 15 yards. Absolutely superb job.

    • Duceyq says:

      I can’t believe I’m saying this but props to a good Defensive game plan to start the game. The defense looked prepared for the first time all season.

      Great halftime adjustments is code for bad pregame preparation. It’s like asking your teacher to take home a test. Let me review these questions before I answer. It’s a backhanded compliment.

      Conversely they looked less prepared for the 2nd half test so there’s that.

    • 740i says:

      I feel like snacks did a good job eating blockers and clogging gaps when he was in there on a few plays at least

    • Miami Hawk says:

      It has been very good all season and this was just another example. Teams are averaging 3.6 per carry against then which is the 4th best in the league.

  4. downtownjewelrybryan says:

    loved that murray stop by KJ

    • Simo says:

      That was a truly fantastic play by KJ on probably the most slippery, quick and elusive player in the league! Allowed the offense another possession ending in 3 points.

  5. drrew76 says:

    Mike Brown may have saved the season.

    While this is still an eminently flawed roster, if Carson and Griffin can get back, this team absolutely should be 11-3 in a month with a legitimate shot at the #1 seed,

    2020 is quite a year.

    • CaptainJack says:

      Getting Rashaad Penny back would also be huge. Darrell Taylor is really close according to Pete… kind of curious about that.

    • Michael P Matherne says:

      Rams still have to play Tampa Bay, New England (who I feel like you just can’t ever count out), and AZ twice. Meanwhile the only game left on our schedule against a winning team is against those Rams. A lot can happen in any 6 week stretch, but 12-4 is very much on the table, and it’s not crazy to imagine running the table with a little luck.

  6. CaptainJack says:

    I really, really hope we can resign Dunlap.

  7. Jordan E says:

    Q. Diggs penalty well worth it imo. Im glad to see that he is willing to hit someone downfield. Its BS too since Hopkins could have caught that. If he did it would be a great catch and/or if it were closer Diggs hit would have perfectly knocked it out. He hit him with the shoulder too. It was close to the helmet but it was definitely shoulder first.

    Russ played very well too. Would have had 3 TD passes if DK caught it. Russ is best when he is efficient like this and throws dimes for TDs. Glad to see the Hawks actually play some real Hawk football tonight. The defense actually seemed to punch back. Plus our power runners. Enough with the finesse on this team.

    • Zach says:

      I can’t really figure out what the difference is between his hit on Hopkins that got flagged and his hit on Arnold that knocked the ball loose, besides the fact that Hopkins didn’t get a hand on the ball…but how could Diggs be expected to make that distinction?

      • JLemere says:

        From the replay angle on the broadcast, it looked like Diggs hit Hopkin’s shoulder with his own shoulder, but that was the only angle they showed on replay. Referees might have had a better angle than we did.

    • Brik says:

      Yea I actually thought that call was bogus on Diggs, he didn’t hit him that hard, Hopkins just flopped.

      • Jordan E says:

        Exactly, they were the same! The only difference is that Arnold didn’t flop and look hurt. Hopkins on the other hand is smaller and flopped. Diggs is running full speed too so no way he can tell that Hopkins is gonna catch that or not. He did the right think and led with his shoulder too so it was a clean hit.

      • Michael P Matherne says:

        Hopkins pointing to his own head before he even hit the ground looked pretty silly.

      • Simo says:

        DeAndre Flopkins!!

    • Sawdust says:

      Good to see them implementing the shorter passes and screens to help offset the blitz.

    • James Z says:

      RW needs a power runner with chops (Carson, Hyde, even Scar.) especially on 1st and 2nd down. He looks so much more comfortable. Dallas and Homer just don’t get it done except maybe on 3rd down for protection (Homer) or screen/outlet (Dallas).

  8. 12th chuck says:

    Carson, Penny, Dallas, Scorborough, Homer, and Collins and it still seems like we need a running back

  9. AndrewP says:

    Sorry, this isn’t how this works… This is a place of doom and gloom only.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Seahawks win and you rush on here to write that.

      Seahawks winners tonight but you’re the loser I’m afraid.

      • AndrewP says:

        Actually, first I texted friends and family to boast the Seahawks were winning the NFCW (which they are).

        Then, I had a couple celebratory libations.

        Then I came here, simply referencing 75% of the material posted since the Seahawks didn’t follow your offseason plan.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Do you not realise how silly you sound though?

          The Seahawks win and you’re on here, acting like all the complaints I voiced about the defense haven’t come true x1000.

          What kind of a person decides, after only the second win in five, ‘I know, I’ll rush onto that website I don’t like and try and serve some crow to the person who said they did a bad job with the defense (in a year where they have one of the worst defenses in history)’.

          • AndrewP says:

            Its almost like you didn’t wait for the season to play out, made declarations 9 weeks in and are now getting defensive…

            Might want to take the L, Rob…

            • Rob Staton says:

              I don’t need to wait for the season to play out.

              Every concern I voiced about the defense came true.

              You coming on here after a win (that I predicted in our preview podcast) trying to return serve is just silly and says more about you than I.

              So bugger off and enjoy the win.

              You don’t want to end up like Sunil on Sunday.

            • God of Thunder says:

              Sorry Andrew, whilst no one is perfect, Rob had been smart thorough and above all consistent for months about what ails the ‘Hawks. He argues for his views and does so without name calling. You don’t have to agree.

              I didn’t agree about Clowney. (I feared the team would sign him.) I’m still happy to learn from Rob.

              Great win, let’s hope this team goes far. Let’s hope the injured players come back and excel. Let’s hope the good things JS has done outweighs the mistakes.

              Speaking of which, Collier had a sack and a big hit tonight. He was fired up too. He knows he must be better. With any luck he’ll become a good serviceable player.

        • Duceyq says:

          AndrewP please! Rob had every right (on his own blog btw) to point out concerns he feel the Seahawks need to address or didn’t address properly, I disagree with him on some aspects but to come here to troll a win is an elevator fart. Stop! Make a point with supporting material, not a fart!

  10. Russ says:

    Agreed. Dunlap looks like a savior at this point. Would have been nice to start the season with someone like a Dante Fowler.

    For now, let’s hope they stay healthy and keep building on this performance.

    • drrew76 says:

      The Fowler cap number in year 2 is $18m+!!!

      All things considered, Dunlap may have been the best thing that could have reasonably happened at DE.

      • Russ says:

        That’s true, but looking at his contract, he could have fit the Seahawks timeline pretty well.

        3 year, 45mil contract is a pretty fair deal for an above average pass rusher who still as upside (only 26).

        He has an out after 2 years also. So, if Darrell and Robinson look like a solid duo, you could cut him with minimal dead cap. Or, if they need more time, hold onto him for the 3rd year.

        All this being said – I agree that Dunlap was an amazing pickup. It just would have been great if there was the potential to have both for this year.

    • Brik says:

      We did have Irvin, who is solid even if he’s unspectacular. I think we can win with what we got, like you said we just gotta build of this performance.

      • Russ says:

        Agree completely. If he doesn’t get hurt and we have a pass rush rotation of Dunlap, Mayowa, and Irvin (with a little Robinson sprinkled in), that’s a solid look.

  11. Paul Cook says:

    HUGE WIN! We are going to be the clear favorites in the next 4 games and it’s not at all unrealistic that we could be 11-3 a month from now and in firm control of the division heading into the last two divisional games to end the season. There’s no QB that really scares me the next four games, and that is our nemesis now, stopping the pass.

    I hope Shell is just an ankle sprain and can return in a few weeks, but we’ll see. The relative consistency of the OL has been a plus for us this year, though it was strange to see Lewis play C tonight.

    Anyway…some players deserve some real recognition, like Hyde, Amadi, Dunlap, RW, etc.., and some deserve some constructive criticism. But all in all this was a start to getting us back on track for making some noise this year.

  12. Donovan says:

    Thoughts:

    1. Complementary Football (run/pass) – So nice to see it back. Seems like it’s a definite component of this team, and was only missing when they were down to their 4th string back. That bodes well, as it should take pressure off Wilson and the D.

    2. Props to Damien Lewis – A rookie stepping in at C and performing admirably? Nice job.

    3. Defense – We just need to be average! And sometimes that’s too much to ask. But outside of Flowers, I do think the talent is now present to be average. I think the coaching is the big problem. With Dunlap, I’d like to see them revert to the old Seahawks playbook of being stout against the run, rush 4, and don’t give up the big play. Q is: Can Adams play in the scheme? I agree he freelances a lot.

    • charlietheunicorn says:

      I’m thinking leave DJ Reed on the outside opposite Flowers when he returns.
      Flowers has been better, but if you are facing a smaller or faster WR on the outside, it would be a better match-up. They rotated in 2nd SS/3rd LB in and out of the lineup. Generally they matched up or at least stuck their nose in on some passes. BW and KJ got really good drops into coverage. Some of the best zone drops perhaps all season. Overall, the defense seemed much more on the same page and played more disciplined as a unit.

      • charlietheunicorn says:

        Reed + Griffin* play outside until and unless Dunbar returns from IR.

        • 12th chuck says:

          I dont think dubar wants back. on 710 today they were talking about his lack of prep etc. from an insider

          • Spencer Duncan says:

            Leave him off.

            Griff and Reed on the outside with Amadi in the slot should be just fine. Lets try and play some classic jam at the line of scrimmage defense, enough of these massive cushions.

  13. Zach says:

    I actually thought this was maybe the first game all year where it felt like the Seahawks didn’t have a terrible D-line. Dunlap and Collier both made plays, Reed and Ford pushed the middle, and letting guys like Mayowa and Green be complimentary rushers could actually make this a slightly below-average unit, not the bottom of the barrel group it was to start the year. If so, I’m optimistic that they can be decent moving forward. They’ve also got a great chance to get healthy (physically and mentally) against some bad offenses the next few weeks.

  14. jed says:

    Have to say they did play hard. That was nice to see. Play hard and and a little more disciplined and that should make them not the worst defense of all time. Even a lower third defense changes the outlook. Hope they can keep it up.

  15. Hoggs41 says:

    This felt more like an older Seahawks game. Defense played much better today and is a good sign. Still should have been a blow out though. DK dropping that pass should have made it 20-7. Diggs doesnt make a dumb play and now its 27-7 and the Cards are chasing. Most importantly we got the win.and I agree we just need to win games and get better in the process.

  16. Gohawks5151 says:

    I’ll say it again. Finally completed the circle

  17. Hawkdawg says:

    Collier seems to be at his best on passing downs inside. Is actually flashing occasionally there now…

  18. BobbyK says:

    Having Dunlap reminds me of the 2012 defense (not the LBs and DBs) in terms of Dunlap now being our version of Chris Clemons. Clem was our only legit pass rusher that year, but some of the other guys were okay when they didn’t have to be ‘the man.’

    Like Reed is a solid player. But he’s not a Pro Bowler. Although different in style than Brandon Mebane, they serve a similar purpose (being pretty good even though not a star by any means).

    I don’t think too much of Griffin at CB but it’s amazing how much better he is in comparison to Flowers. If Reed can start at RCB and Griffin can take back over at LCB – that’s some major gain at CB.

    Adams seems to be a splash player we need and yet he seems quite fundamentally unsound in terms of a majority of his assignments. I do not see anything yet that would make me comfortable trading a pair of 1st round picks and a 3rd rounder this year (even if the ‘Hawks get a 4th rounder back in ’22).

    I still don’t see Brooks as being worthy of a 1st round pick. I wish he’d alleviate my fears a little more (make some plays).

    It was a win they needed and got. Thankful for the Dunlap trade! Who would have thought Finney could actually have served a positive purpose to this season?

    I don’t ever want to see Lewis at C ever again. He’s a plug and play guy at RG. You put him at that one spot and leave him there for 10 years.

    Hope Shell is okay! Ogbuehi looked like himself when he replaced Shell. Terrible.

  19. pdway says:

    that was stressful as hell – – but ultimately that makes it that much sweeter . . . stakes about as high as you can get in a week 10 game.

    Keys for me — as we all knew, the run game is a huge deal toward making this offense go. I think I undersold Hyde a bit – he looked ready to go and tough today. He was a load. Great game for him. And Russell was the careful/smart Russell today – stayed calm in the pocket (that’s been an issue), and ran every time he should have (noticed that he didn’t slide like he usually does, which showed the stakes of this one).

    Best game of the year for our D-line, Dunlap, Collier, Reed, all got push. The whole defense had more energy today. I know it’s beating a dead horse, but jesus h., Flowers is terrible. An easy completion every time you need one. The importance of Shaq coming back isn’t that Shaq is a superstar, it’s that he’s a huge upgrade from Flowers. And DJ Reed can play a little, I don’t mind him at all at the other corner.

    I’m enjoying this one, AZ and Kyler came in red hot and confident, and for the most part, we shut them down. 314 total yards, under 25 mins of possession.

    Let’s get Shaq, Pocic, Carson back….

  20. cha says:

    Post game PC conf

    “Really fired up about this game. All the guys in and out of the lineup, didn’t matter. ST lights out, great coverage in kicks. Defense did a nice job, giving up 50 some yards. Offense, no TO’s 160 some yards rushing. Really good night of FB. Great to see Dunlap with a walk-off sack. Hearing me talk about but we’re getting well. Gonna get better and stronger. Good ball week in and week out. Big division win. 3 days off, mini break for us. Kick butt COVID-wise, come back next week.”

    [corbin] Balance on offense? “Carlos run hard, tough, knock people backwards. Guys up front responded with him. Great contribution. RW didn’t have to throw for 400 to have a great night.”

    [gregg] Changed for defense? Motivation vs top offense? “Real important. But we have to keep going. Just getting started. Jamal out there, Brooks playing a lot. Carlos, DJ Reed, Tre played well, LJ couple huge plays. No reason we cna’t come together and play really good FB. Just have to get comfortable. Shaquille will return when we come back.”

    [joe fann] RW didn’t force much downfield? “Really good solid FB, quick decisive decisions. Scrambles really effective. Decision making excellent. Didn’t force anything. Good spots.”
    [joe] How much Schott? “Whole team working together. Nice night.”

    [brady] Dunlap game? “Boost. Lot of sacks recently, enough to be a factor. Desperately needed him. Really comfortable now, thrilling to see game winner.”
    [brady] Greg Olsen? “Facia tear in foot. Ruptures we think. Best thing for a quick recovery. Had it before, he understands what’s coming up.”

    [] Lewis center? Shell injury? “Marvelous job by him to pull it off. Started working last week. Now forced to action, pulled it off. What an effort. Really poised, handled it well. Shell sprained ankle, don’t know how bad.”

    [mark schwartz] Dunlap impact going forward? “Gonna be a big facotr for us. Really good FB player. Monster out there. Flexible in what he can do. Very positive effect and only be better. Couple weeks away from Taylor back too, boost we can get. Mayowa back. Don’t know how much he played, great to have him back too.”

    [art] 3 sacks, 7 hits, difference? “Kenny went after him differently, adjusted from last time we played him. Last game late we’d been in pretty good shape, watched film from last game, adjusted, we were ready. Moved some guys around worked out well.”

    [jackie] Run defense? “Really good job by edge guys. Dunlap, KJ part of that, Alton, Benson, doing job to keep game from getting to perimeter. Executed really well, disciplined. Guys had been nightmare for D’s knew what we needed to do and execute.”

    [] Rush game w Hyde helps OL shuffled? “Exactly. Major opps for us to be in trouble and guys came through. Coaching org’d to take adv of it. Hyde brings to us, that’s what we’re looking for. Chris Carson back next week, Penny couple weeks away. Could be really healthy going into stretch.”

    [maz veda] Defensive discipline due to continuity? “Yes, it is. Waiting to see, keep guys out there to communicate. KJ to Jamal to Bobby, talking about stuff to fix as the game went on. Ability to handle it and make good choices. That’s what continuity looks like. Have to be out there to max it out.”

    [chris francis] DK performance? “Excellent FB. Few more shots trying to get to him. Ready to really go tonight. Tough as always, got them riled up, got big penalty when we needed one.”

  21. Justaguy says:

    I don’t think we saw anything that says the defense has made a significant improvement. This was another death by a thousand cuts. Murray just didn’t play at his best or this could have been much different.
    Hawks are so much better on offense with a good running back. The balance is obvious and that opens up the options Russ has.
    Overall it was good enough to win.

    • Comfect says:

      I mean, I feel like “good enough to take advantage of Murray not being at his best” is a significant improvement…

    • Jordan E says:

      Heres a big one. We actually touched Murray this game compared to last game. Huge difference in the defense. Not a great unit, but this defense definitely has improved.

      • Justaguy says:

        I agree the defense is improved and especially the line holding up the Zona run game and Dunlap getting to Kyler Murray. I just feel like it was slight not significant improvement due to Murray misreading many of the open routes and his throwing shoulder was injured which impacted his accuracy and arm strength. I am happy to see any type of improvement btw

    • pdway says:

      you got to give some props to the defense for holding the top rushing team in the league 57 yards and 3 ypc average, esp when that team has a QB like Murray.

      Dunlap looks like a difference maker; DJ Reed looks like a decent starter, and Diggs was better today too. We get Shaq in for flowers next game. Still a pass rusher short, but way better effort today.

    • Group Captain Mandrake says:

      What are you talking about? They held the leagues top rushing attach to about a 100 yards under their average, and the offense in total to about the same. They actually put hands on Murray in both sacks and hits. Was it perfect? Hell no. They gave up some long drives and had some dumb penalties, but this defense was a lot better than it’s been in some time. No question the D needs to be consistent and continue to play hard and smart, but there was a lot to like in this game.

  22. Alex says:

    Well to be fair, little jabs at the front office about the pass rush all year have gotten a little tired. Did they need to sign a pass rusher like Dunlap in March? Absolutely. Was one available, especially at a reasonable price? No. They got it done eventually, those early season trades JS keeps making have kept us competitive and i don’t know if it’s sustainable but somehow it keeps happening. Good on him.

    Hope the team can get healthy and maybe make a late season push.
    Go Hawks

    • BobbyK says:

      Don’t you think jabs are deserved when you’re 1/2 way through an entire season and are on pace to shatter the NFL record for most passing yards allowed by almost 1,000 yards?

      Yeah. I’d say criticism is fair when you take it into that context.

      But, yes, lets do more than “maybe make a late season push.” Let’s get healthy, lets watch Dunlap change this defense, lets get Griffin back at CB and see what he, Reed, and Amadi can do. There’s really no reason they can’t claim a bye and that would be HUGE. Go Hawks!

    • Rob Staton says:

      The Seahawks created a horrendous pass rush, leading to one of the worst defense’s in NFL history on the field.

      And people still come on here to complain about me talking about it.

  23. Forrest says:

    I liked what I saw, I still think the Rams are the team to beat, and the Saints, Bucs and Packers all look scary right now, but winning against a red hot team restores some of my lost confidence for this season. There are still major issues, but it does look like things were at least somewhat cleaned up.

    If history is anything to go by this is when this team starts heating up, so hopefully they can go on an absolute run over the next 4, and have the Rams drop a few. Getting in a rhythm will be important. 12-4 is a possibility, but I do think it would be a very weak 12-4. The Rams are the team to beat at this point.

    Knock on wood for no more major injuries and healthy reinforcements. Taylor, Parkinson, and Penny will all be welcome additions at this point. Onto the 4 (L)east coast teams, Go Hawks!

  24. Trevor says:

    Solid win. Looked much more like a Pete Carrol Seahawks team tonight running thr ball and stopping the run. Still lots to clean up but a huge win that puts them in a great postion to win the division. Going to come down to that rematch with the Rams I would assume. Will be nice to get Carson back before then.

    I think the best CB on the roster right now is DJ Reed and I would like to see them sign him to an extension. He is better in the slot but competes outside as well,

    • BobbyK says:

      I think a combination of Hyde/Penny can carry the load for a well-balanced offense for the remainder of the year. I know Penny is a few weeks away yet, but I assume this because Chris Carson is an injury machine and has been for 8 years… he’ll probably get hurt again by the time Penny is able to go, but I’m still okay with Hyde/Penny. Would love a healthy Carson, just looking at history to judge the future like many historians do.

    • God of Thunder says:

      When the injured D players return we could be solid.

      Looking at tonight – second viewing – the DBs are a worry. Flowers obviously. Reed is game, but small. Dunbar had been disappointing this season. I’m now thinking if we had better corners, opponents would have to run more and our run D has been surprisingly stout. Generally.

    • 740i says:

      I’m digging what Reed is doing as well but isn’t he a converted safety? We need more than a few corners moving forward

  25. Kenny Sloth says:

    So fun to watch a chippy division game where we can impose our will on the defense. Some big tits and punishing runs.

    Need to get those penalties cleaned up but im happy to see some flexibility now that we have a decent starting tailback healthy.

  26. Hawks fan in Toronto says:

    I’ve been reading this site for a decade and it is excellent. The commenters are as well.

    Everyone knows a Pete Carroll team doesn’t function without a running game. Hyde returns and suddenly it feels like a Seahawks win. They almost certainly don’t lose the first game against the Cardinals if Carson didn’t get hurt. I like their odds against the Rams with a healthy Hyde/Carson, too. Wilson was legitimately bad in that game and it appears quite clear to me the lack of run game, more so than the defense, was weighing on him. You’ve been dragging the team through the mud since the offseason and while there are legitimate complaints, some of what’s being said here is head scratching, too. They are 7-3 with an easy schedule the rest of the way. This season isn’t a colossal dumpster fire as things currently sit. If they take care of business against a slate of weak teams and beat the Rams at home they almost certainly win the division. Every single contender in the NFC has thrown up at least one stinker. This is not a bad spot to be in.

    The last two weeks the defense has shown legitimate signs of life (really the last six quarters). That is undeniable. The DL is getting healthy and looks solid – a key to the Hawks defensive line has always been rotating in fresh legs, and now they have Dunlap, Mayowa, Reed, Ford, Green, Snacks and Collier. It is not great, but it appears better than average. The linebacker group is still solid (is Wright their best linebacker right now?). Reed looks like a player at CB. They obviously need Griffin back as Flowers simply isn’t good. The Blair injury was probably bigger than we thought. Amadi has been reasonable and is a better tackler than given credit for. Diggs has, generally speaking, been disappointing/simply bad. I’m still not really sure anyone knows what to do with Adams. The secondary is *the* clear issue but there is some reason for hope with this defense to be serviceable enough to pair with what should be an elite offense. The defense should rightly be criticized but there are clear signs here for optimism and the season certainly isn’t lost as its being made out to be.

  27. charlietheunicorn says:

    Lumen Field : 1-0

  28. Josh says:

    Good to see the team making plays on defense. The defense made some steps towards playing together better. Good to see them taking steps forward. Damien Lewis has been an absolute find. Football is a violent game and the hawks depth has been tested the last couple years but the depth looks pretty good this year. I can’t believe how the Oline number 2’s came in and held their own. Stoked about the win. First in the west is awesome. Toughest division in football.

  29. Gohawks5151 says:

    The ghost of the 12th man was there. At least 4 false starts!

  30. fisheyeguy says:

    the sky was falling!

    • Rob Staton says:

      No, legitimate concerns were voiced — at the same time that I predicted a win in this game.

      If you can’t handle a serious discussion about this team that isn’t entirely positive, that’s your problem.

      • fisheyeguy says:

        first place NFC west and some blogger is calling for heads to roll. What a joke you are.

        • Trevor says:

          The only joke is you troll if you look at the leagues worst defense and don’t see it as a problem. Go back upstairs your mom is calling you.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Better to be some blogger with an opinion and the conviction to back it up and put my name to it.

          Rather than some loser hiding behind a name like ‘fisheyeguy’ logging on to be an angry keyboard warrior on the internet rather than enjoying the win.

          I’m starting to think some people watch the games and spend most of it thinking about this place.

        • James Z says:

          I am no longer surprised when a thin-skinned SH’s fan just can’t take even a shred of concerned and healthy criticism about the team. fisheyeguy is one of those… thin-skinned to the bone.

  31. Jason says:

    If you’d asked me last week I’d have said the Seahawks had no chance, but Rob’s comments (predictions) in the last video really made me think this was a pretty winnable game. Cards are really up and down and really haven’t had a quality win (kind of like the Seahawks).

    Defense looks to be pretty mediocre, finally, what with the addition of someone on the DL that can actually rush the passer with consistency. Allows us to drop more in coverage – watch that last series and how often 7 or 8 guys were dropping into zones. And it worked.

  32. Michael P Matherne says:

    Here’s a sentence I never thought I’d write: We really need Ethan Pocic back in there.

  33. dcd2 says:

    Just throwing this out there… as plausible.

    Next four games: PHI, NYG, NYJ, WFT… combined record 10-26-1
    +
    Rams & Niners.

    We’re 7-3, with a realistic shot at going 12-4 and getting the #1 seed. (knocks wood until knuckles bleed).

    Still a flawed team, but honestly who isn’t. Really proud of the defense and the team in general tonight. For a week or so, I’m ready to bask in some victory and worry about the big picture later.

    Go Hawks!

    • Jason says:

      This team is way too inconsistent to not lose two of those games. I’m actually thinking more like 10-6 (don’t shoot me) and squeaking into the playoffs, then maybe surprising someone first round then losing right after as usual.

  34. Hughz says:

    I feel like Jamal is going to keep us on a roller coaster of emotions. He will make one amazing play and then the next completely lose focus of his responsibility. The last touchdown AZ scored, I believe he left his coverage to go after the rush. It left the end zone wide open and gave Kyler an opportunity to just loft the ball to the TE. If Jamal maintains that area the play results in a sack. Unfortunately I don’t think Jamal can contain himself. I really love his tenacity. Just hope he can harness it a bit.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I want more than that for the price.

      • Hughz says:

        Agreed. I think there’s only one way that trade becomes an afterthought and that’s if this team wins a Super Bowl.

        • Scot04 says:

          I would assume if we win the Superbowl he would have atleast made a few plays to make us think it was worth it; atleast I hope so. Still I hated the trade when it was made and it’s only looked worse as the season has progressed. I hope by seasons end I’m proven wrong and it turns out to be a great trade.

      • James Z says:

        If Adams can work on his coverage skills and play more disciplined than he might be worth a decent contract, but without seeing some improvement in those areas between now and the end of the season, the SH’s have a difficult decision going forward with him, despite the treasure thrown to the Jets to have him.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Coverage and discipline don’t seem to be his thing. He’s an aggressive downfield attacker, more akin to the ‘glorified linebacker’ Greg Cosell called him this week.

          That isn’t worth $15-20m.

    • BC_Hawk says:

      It was a communication issue; he thought there was coverage back there. You could see him confused and passed at himself after the play. Though inexcusable, it wasn’t just a freelancing thing. On the flip side, way better communication on the back end overall…and Jamal made some good plays in coverage.

      DL is coming together after acquiring Dunlap and getting healthy. This is the DL that should have started the season. My guess now; JS thought we’d see the Dunlaps of the world available earlier with the obvious 2021 cap issues. They weren’t…he got it done at the deadline. Let’s just rejoice the line is getting push with 4…and even 3 at the end!

      And Russ getting the quick hitters out on the blitz; seam route to Olsen and comeback by Lockett were beautiful to see.

      And those that said Hyde was a waste of money; real sad to see people pile on when he got hurt same game as Carson; that’s unlucky. Worth every penny we paid..pardon the pun

      Now let’s get healthy at CB….

      • Ty the Guy says:

        Agreed BC_Hawk. We are still seeing the effects of an abbreviated offseason that Adams was brought late into. Having to learn, practice, and master the communication aspects of our scheme is tough to do over a normal offseason. Add in a multi-week injury. I think it is understandable that there are some communication isssues.

        Now that said, I have not watched the All-22 to see if he was freelancing as Rob put it. That’s a different story.

        Also agree on your point on Russ seeing the blitzes and following the plan.

  35. Michael P Matherne says:

    Murray was not fully healthy tonight. I don’t want to take anything away from the performance by the defense tonight, especially since the most impressive part was how they were able to take away the QB running game, which is an aspect you’d think would be emphasized if your arm is hurting. I point this out only to bring up the question I’ve always had in the back of mind about Kyler Murray; is he going to be able to stay healthy long term? He’s just so dang small, and though the rules of the game continue to change, physics does not. He generally does a good job of avoiding needless contact, but you can’t avoid everything. The hit tonight that had him wincing on the sidelines was not anything crazy. He’s going to take a lot more those, and I just have a hard time imagining it not catching up to him at some point.

    To be clear I’m not rooting for injury. I enjoy watching him play even if it is for a rival, and I think this could be the best in-division QB rivalry in football over the next 5-6 years (since I don’t expect Brady v Brees to last nearly that long).

    • Tallyhawk says:

      Murray got hurt this game so perhaps a little credit should go to the D. They pressured and hit him pretty consistently in the first half. We’ve been begging this D to just be average and last night(coupled with the 2nd half of the rams game) they were that if not slightly better. They were also more physical than they had been all season. If and it’s a big big if they can maintain that level moving forward this team has a good shot at a deep run imo.

      Offensively they were more balanced and the way Hyde runs, while not at the level Carson brings, is what they need. He’s aggressive in his style and that suits what they want to be. I think the lack of that has contributed greatly to the recent struggles of Russ and the O. If they can get Carson, Hyde and Penny healthy by seasons end the O will get back to its best just in time for the playoffs.

  36. cha says:

    Grading my watch points

    Win the turnover battle.
    Grade: B-

    No turnovers generated by the defense. No turnovers from the offense though, and that is a marked improvement for RW and the Seahawks. A win by itself. However. That flip to Hyde was nearly a disaster. Up by 4 late in the game and that’s the play you call? Playing with fire, boys.

    Find some offensive rhythm.
    Grade: A-

    Very welcome return to form. RW played cool, confident and decisive. A huge recovery step after the last two weeks. He still hung onto the ball too long at times, but that’s always going to be part of the package with Russ. However, he much more readily took the 5-6 yards on the ground the Cardinals gave him.

    Excellent running game. Fantastic audibles by RW when the Cardinals had their featherweight package in to give Hyde 4-7 yards right up the middle with ease and eat the clock. That run by Hyde culminating with a hit on Peterson fired the entire team up something fierce.

    That little flip play to Hollister to convert a third down was a thing of beauty. I know that type of creativity is there and it will take some burden off of Russ to carry this whole team by himself. More of that please!

    Also nice job to get DK and Lockett some looks early and get them involved.

    Jamal Adams, put up or shut up.
    Grade: Shut up.

    What kind of performance was that? 3 tackles and a QB hit. Freelancing, probably blowing an assignment on the Edmonds TD, getting faked out of your jock by Kyler Murray a couple times, doing your little jittery 4 year old has to pee dance at the LOS and then watching as the offense runs to the other. What’s the point if you can’t effect the game much more than that?

    Get creative when defending Kyler.
    Grade: B

    427 yards allowed in an OT game Week 7. Tonight? 284. He still had an impact but only 15 yards rushing is a job awfully well done. You can argue he was hurt, but some of his throws and runs still showed plenty of electricity. And the Hawks did a job containing him.

    Make tackles.
    Grade for everyone but Tre Flowers: B+
    Tre Flowers: F

    Marked improvement from the prior Cardinals game Week 7. I wrote about Wagner and Reed missing two key tackles in that game and how it could’ve impacted the final outcome.

    Well, tonight the Hawks made those impact plays. Dunlap sacking Kyler twice. KJ with a sparkling tackle on Murray. A signature tackle. And big kudos for Collier on his sack. Very savvy, keeping his gap, and coming off the blocker when Murray took off and wrapping him up. I can see Collier making that type of play many times per year.

    Flowers, I’m not sure what you were doing out there. Bad angles, not being aware of where your support is, no fire or passion out there.

    • Huso Liszt says:

      Isn’t a safety a turnover?

      • Rob Staton says:

        A safety is not classified as a turnover officially, no.

        • fisheyeguy says:

          maybe the genius coach of Arizona needs a blogger to take over on the sidelines? Kyle Shanahan could use a genius like you to scout stuff out on his way to his next 4-5 start?

        • fisheyeguy says:

          Derp Derp, thankfully you are just a blogger and not a personnel person in our front office ” How huge has Carlos Dunlap been? In just three weeks as a Seahawk, he already has more sacks than Jadaveon Clowney had all last year.” this blogger put the tombstone on this seasons team last week, ha!

          • Rob Staton says:

            The difference between me and you is though, I couldn’t give a toss about your opinion.

            And you clearly live and breathe for mine — otherwise why are you on here after a win posting this?

          • James Z says:

            fisheyeguy: Dude, give it a rest! You’re being eaten alive here, mostly by you own comments… self-cannibalizing is not a good look.

    • Jeff Chen says:

      You are being harsh on Flowers, he was told to leave everything in-front of him. I hate these kind of prevent schemes ,and leave players with no chance to make any play.

    • Hawkdawg says:

      And yet Pete said n his postgame that Flowers played “really well….” Actually, on ball he was not uniformly terrible. But the cushion he was giving was wince-able. Some of that was on the play call–lots of soft zone out there….

    • 12th chuck says:

      i think any game where flowers has a tackle or a pass defended should be an a

  37. Rob Staton says:

    The instant reax podcast is now live at the top of the page.

  38. Ryan says:

    Nice to see a game where it felt like we were forcing them to react to us instead of the other way around. Loved the fake pitch and then the pass to DK (which he dropped). That was going to go for a mile if he hauls it in. Running game big. Defense starting to gel a little. Damien Lewis! Also Collier making the play of the game forcing the safety and picking up a sack earlier as well.

  39. RWIII says:

    L. J. Collier had his BEST game as a Seahawk. The question is! 3Is this a one game wonder for Collier or is higher level.

  40. Noah Parker says:

    SHAMBOLIC! excellent word choice. I had to look that one up to see if it was actually a real world. This just in… it is! My biggest gripe, which I don’t think I have seen yet, was Mrs. David Moore. What in the hell was he thinking on our second to last possession of the first half? He had an easy run to pick up the first down on what I think was 3rd and 3 and he just ran out of bounds right in front of the sticks. Could have been a huge swing if we gave the ball to AZ and they took advantage with a score to end the half, then starting with the ball in the second half. Fortunately for us, none of that happened. Also, noticed a few scrambles where the WRs just stopped running routes/trying to get open. Not sure what’s going on there. I’d bench Moore and get “Lucky” Penny Hart in there.

  41. Noah Parker says:

    Tre Flowers Interview (Drivin’ with Gee)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KvEsJ8sKr10

  42. Noah Parker says:

    Wondering what you guys think about the versatility and overall play of the OLine. I was pretty amazed by not only Lewis playing C but I think Jones stepping in at guard? Am I giving them too much credit here? Is this more about versatility/talent/IQ on the OLine or Solari as a coach? I dunno if I am overreacting here but seems like an under rated win out of this game and potentially a huge positive for the rest of the season.

    • Josh says:

      I feel like when Tom Cable was the oline coach they just did zone runs every play and drafted players with certain attributes and when they didn’t have the guys to make Cables Scheme go they struggled and were very predictable. With Solari they have a diverse run game with with better all around football players. I like it

  43. Jason says:

    Just watched the podcast, agreed on pretty much everything… but I gotta say, I agree with Aikman when he goes on about DK and Hopkins not getting targets. These are players that, in my opinion, you just throw the ball to downfield over and over. You just do it. They’re so dangerous that your odds of getting a 30+ completion are as good as they are of your 15-ish yard completion to Lockett or Moore, so… just do it. Especially when you have arguably the best deep-ball thrower of the decade.

    I think Aikman plays this up – other than the “let’s talk about the big star” – because he knows what the value is of a game-breaking WR. He knows he was a mediocre-to-good QB who could essentially put the ball up to Irvin and let the guy bring it down. He was there for Randy Moss, he was there for Terrell Owens, the guys who could just pull the ball out of the sky with three defenders floating around them.

    Hopkins and DK are unearthly physical talents who need the ball. I think the Seahawks do themselves a disservice by not throwing him the ball deep five, six, seven times a game. At worst you’re scaring the crap out of the defense and pulling safeties further and further back, allowing your Locketts and Disslys to roam around underneath. At worst you’re scaring the corners off, allowing yourself the ability to just toss the screens and hitches his way for easy-peasy six-to-eight yard gains.

    That said… this isn’t Pete’s gameplan. Pete’s gameplan is to sucker the other way, to bring those safeties UP to the line of scrimmage with the running game, and then occasionally take shots over the top. I think (unfortunately, quoting Aikman again), even HE doesn’t know what he’s got in DK. But then again, I don’t think Pete knows what he’s got with Russell either, so, that’s not exactly a surprise.

  44. Darnell says:

    Gotta send DK for a gasser at minimum once per half. The payoff is too great not to take those shots.

  45. All I see is 12s says:

    Watching the nfl network post game show. About 98.6% sure that Steve Smith is high…

  46. matty says:

    a great win, all round team good performance under pressure.
    problems there are and need addressing but sport is only ever truly judged on results and team building should always be fluid . . . keep rolling the W

  47. Spencer Duncan says:

    Im seeing a lot of comments on other websites about how Flowers shutdown Hopkins. I was watching on a pretty poor stream but to me it still seemed like big cushions and the ball just wasnt going DHops way. Can anyone else share how they felt about Flowers performance?

  48. Troy D says:

    Big, big win. With the remaining schedule I think we could have overcome a loss BUT this should give confidence that they can do it against a very good team later, especially the way they played the game. Russell became the 3rd QB in NFL history (Favre and Brees) to have 4 consecutive 30 TD season last night and also because the 5th QB to get to 30 TD’s thru 10 games. The other 4 guys won the MVP. Best part of it is it was exactly what he needed.

    Dunlap’s acquisition was massive and I hope he continues to produce and he has the history to suggest that he will continue to produce at a fairly high level. We shall see how the freelancing of Adams plays out over the next few games…I have an inkling the defense is gonna come together and build confidence because of schedule and hopefully some continuity. Realistically we should be winning the next 4 games and then we shall see what kind of form the division opponents are in for the final 2 games.

    For what is essentially a rookie season, Collier is showing some flashes that he can be a part of the rotation going forward and hopefully helps improve the run defense. Sounds like Taylor may enter the fray and maybe he can get some reps for the long term outlook.

    I do hope they build off today’s plan though. Im sure we are capable of running up some high scores if we want against the next 4 opponents but the balance needs to be there and hopefully a progression by the defense into something bordering on respectability. Its the only way we are gonna win in the playoffs.

    Last thing. Im glad the no call on 3rd and 18 where Wilson got hit in the head didnt come back to bite cause Ive seen plenty of QB’s, including Wilson get that call. Also right when the Cardinals started the final drive Dunlap had beat his man and it was a blatant hold (you could hear him yell it on audio as well). Two pretty easy calls in my opinion. Just glad Dunlap got the job done in the end. A little extra rest for the stretch run and maybe a Penny and Taylor added to the mix. Obviously one should be expected to have some impact and the other just hoping he can show some signs of long term growth potential.

  49. SeattleLifer says:

    So a back to the roots kinda win. As you alluded to a bit Rob, I think Russ has let go of the mvp pressure and bought back into Pete style winning of no turnovers and more measured close games etc(and yes getting the running game back to speed as well).

    Plenty of good and better performances. Of course Dunlap, djReed, Hyde really stepped up and looked better than I imagined he was capable of. Brown, Lockette and Russ were there normal excellent selves. Thought Diggs was better, Bobby and KJ looked pretty good and even Collier flashed.

    Overall D-line it was nice to see 4-5 man rushes applying some upfield pressure verses none. Running game looked good but more on that shortly. Run D was really solid. Really nice to see the defense enjoying themselves and making a crucial stop for a win.

    Reffing was so bad in this game. So many missed calls that were obvious, o-line holds, bad blocks in the back, all those mentioned above and more. Troy Aikman is so stale – makes a game more boring than it should be.

    Brooks still looks bad to me. Just blends into the field and disappears, average at best read and react especially in pass coverage and takes bad angles in short areas. Trey Flowers = automatic first down. Olsen signing = ridiculous when you factor in age, money and declining speed/skills. He hurt his foot while barely walking with no contact. David Moore not just his play tonite but has gone very quiet during our rough spell and given how many times Russ dropped back tonite and never really found anyone open Moore should be that guy at least sometimes since teams are going to be focusing so hard on DK and Lockette. For all the hedging depth we picked up in the off-season the one area that was glaringly neglected was RT and LT – we better hope Shell makes it back sooner than later….

    I want to bring up something that I think could give us a bit of false hope from this game – Arizona’s defense. They have been pretty darn bad over the past month and lost their two best DT’s recently which I think played a big part in us running so well and finding balance and for Russ to be able to step forward in the pocket so much in the game. There were also a good number of plays where nobody was getting open (or Russ was being extra careful…?). This was all against a defense faring poorly and missing so much on their d-line. Just saying. And pasty in the concerns department this was still a really bad game for mistakes, missed pint after attempts, penalties and yes even a trademark bad timeout. That stuff needs to be cleaned up if we want to beat the really good teams.

    A good team win that was needed. Just show us they can play even better and beat the truly good teams. Something to build on for the defense and with healing time off and some reinforcements on the way this could be a building block type of win – they just need to keep that kind of level up and continue to make improvements going forward.

  50. Sea Mode says:

    Well, just finished watching the game on replay. Too late to stay up for.

    We shoulda been up BIGTIME if it weren’t for a bogus holding call on Lewis, a total flop by Hopkins looking for the call on a clean hit with the shoulder, and DK’s drops (1 for sure a TD and the other one you know had a chance). A hit the the QB head/face call would be nice to finally get one of these times too… 🤷‍♂️

    Finally a better job by PC/Norton in balancing the blitzing and coverage calls. Let’s hope that continues.

    What a difference any semblance of a running game makes on RW’s performance. A mini-bye and Carson coming back should help even more. Shoutout to the OL for making it work even with guys shifting around.

    Overall, an enjoyable and (for me at least) unexpected win. We were trending downwards and I had little faith in the coaching to turn it around against a hot offense.

    I will, however, put a tiny asterisk next to the defensive performance since Murray was clearly bothered by the shoulder. Without that, he probably doesn’t miss a few of the throws he did and is probably bolder with his legs too. He didn’t even attempt any down-field shots either to test our secondary. I feel we’ve had more than our fair share of luck in that sense facing injured/backup QBs the past couple seasons.

    Anyway, my hope now is to get healthier and not play down to the NFCE teams’ level when we face them.

  51. Tree says:

    Finally, this D is starting to take form. DJ Reed gives us speed in the secondary and showed way more tenacity than Dunbar has shown all year (he is also a plus returner!). The push in the middle of the DL was good. Adams and Brooks give us speed we simply didn’t have last year and Snacks’ presence is starting to help. If we can cover the rush defense will matter especially in the NFC West where every team needs to run. It appeared Adams didn’t do his job on one TD but give him credit for a great contain type pass rush which forced Kyler into an intentional grounding (better than a sack) and set up the safety. He and others were hitting Kyler all night and beat him up. Hawks doubling down on positions in FA and the draft is starting to pay off. We need a power back to make this offense click and have a tougher mentality (loved Hyde blowing up AP!). Lewis a stud and Jamarco is the type of versatile OL every team needs.

  52. Rob Staton says:

    What I don’t understand about the trolls is…

    — All of the worst fears for the off-season came true
    — All of the in-season concerns about the franchise’s direction are legit
    — It’s abundantly clear that difficult decisions need to be made in the off-season (players & coaches)
    — I predicted a win vs Arizona

    Some people act like because we’ve delved into some pretty uncomfortable topics this year that any win is now a counter argument.

    Believe it or not, the Seahawks are going to win games and the concerns raised will still be legit. It’s also very possible they finish with a handsome record, as they’ve done for the last few years, and don’t make any post-season noise again — which has been the long standing concern.

    My question to the community is — should I go back to just deleting all the nonsense post-game, or would you prefer an opportunity to tell these people to get stuffed?

    • Gary says:

      Please delete them and don’t give them the satisfaction of seeing their garbage appear in print.

    • Big Mike says:

      If EVERYONE ignored them they’d go away rather quickly. Easier said than done though. Tough call.

    • cha says:

      Delete them

      I don’t care about the trolls, but personally I was very uncomfortable with how some of the regular posters reacted to them. Some of their comments were vulgar and I’d rather not see that side of the community. It was disturbing.

    • SeaTown says:

      Trolls are gonna troll. I would be surprised if they were even real Seahawks fans. I say don’t delete. Just ignore. Trolls who don’t get fed usually leave.

    • dcd2 says:

      If they aren’t bringing anything to the conversation, I’d say delete them.

      One of the best parts of this community is the informed opinions of most of the commenters. Wasting what little free time I have on reading unconstructive, petty, trolling comments from naive or jaded ‘fans’ is something I can do without.

      ~my 2 cents

    • Shane says:

      For the love of God, please delete the people who are trolling and looking for a reaction without any opinion

    • Hawkdawg says:

      I dunno. I was always taught that the cure to stupid speech is more smart speech, not censorship. Hard to draw the line on censorship sometimes, so I personally would err on the side of inclusion when in doubt.

    • Jawbreaker says:

      I hate when comments (that aren’t spam) get deleted. If you are confident in your position then leave the comments of those who disagree with you.

      • Rob Staton says:

        I never understand comments like this.

        How can anyone who reads the comments section regularly accuse me of not indulging people who disagree? I spend so much time defending my position. I’m seemingly debating — or arguing with someone — every week.

        I don’t delete comments that I disagree. I delete comments when people are being an arse.

        • Jawbreaker says:

          Did I make such an accusation? The discussion was over whether to delete comments or not. My opinion is that all comments should stand. If people act like an “arse”, that only enhances your argument.

          • Rob Staton says:

            You certainly implied it, seeing as it was the only thing you referred to in response to a question about the trolls.

            • Jawbreaker says:

              Hope you have a nice day

              • Travuw says:

                Agree with Jawbreaker. Deleting trolling posts is good moderation. Deleting posts which refute your arguments without resorting to animosity isn’t good moderation.

                You have a great blog here, Rob. You’ve created so much excellent content for years and years. That said, defending your opinions and being defensive are two different things and you’ve resorted to the latter with regularity over the past year. No judgement, just my opinion.

                3 days ago, the whole discussion here was about wishing we could move on from Pete, John, and all but like 3 players. 48 hours later, the team played a great game against a solid in-conference opponent and those takes should be criticized for being overly reactionary.

                • Rob Staton says:

                  For starters, the legitimate concerns raised in the aftermath of Buffalo & the LA games aren’t suddenly ‘washed away’ like you’re implying here because they won a game. The way you’ve written that makes it seem like we were all ready to jump off a cliff three days ago and now we’re all building our own Pete Carroll shrines in the garage.

                  The conversation was far more nuanced than that — before and after the game. Amid all the complaints about the direction of the franchise, I even predicted a win against Arizona. So it’s dishonest of you to suggest that anything was ‘overly reactionary’. Everything I wrote in the week was done for a reason. Nothing was proven wrong by a win and every time the Seahawks win a game this season, I don’t have to avoid celebrating it simply because I’ve criticised the franchise and voiced concerns for the future. This, to me, just reads like a ‘true fan’ argument. Either you’re 100% devoted to blind faith otherwise you’re 100% negative. With us or against us. It’s this kind of divisive bull shit that makes fandom so tiring and anti-intellectual.

                  Secondly — defending ones opinion is defending ones opinion. I don’t have to dance around your comments through fear of being labelled ‘defensive’ or delivering ‘animosity’. After all, you’re being passive aggressive and I’m just saying what I think. I prefer robust, direct conversation instead of sly little digs.

                • Gary says:

                  I just want to say that after last night’s important win, I still want to move on from Pete, John, and “all but like three players”. I have felt that way for several years and it has nothing to do with the aftermath of the Buffalo and LA loses, which just highlighted the reasons. And isn’t changed by the results of last night’s game. Rob has done a great job over the past two weeks articulating all of the undeniable deficiencies and I am just sick and tired of the wasted draft capital, poor coaching, nepotism and cronyism, hubris and “smartest guy in the room” draft strategy, lack of game planning or in-game adjustments, poor player development, and ridiculous game management. Nothing here that is “overly reactionary.”

                  • SeattleLifer says:

                    I’m in the same camp Gary. Even with the win records and post season berths we see the house rotting from within and know a tear down would be best. We enjoy and appreciate the team as much as anybody and if anything that drives our desire to see it kept up and run better as a whole.

            • New Guy says:

              Rob –

              Perhaps the determinate for deletion could be simply a personal attack on the blogger or other respondents – not a reasoned disagreement on any particular subject by the blogger or the respondents.

              This place should be about ideas – not personal issues.

              .

    • KennyBadger says:

      It’s your blog Rob and I think we can support whatever you decide is best for you, even if that changes from time to time. I used to get angry about these kinds of posts, then I realized it’s ridiculous to get concerned about the opinions of booger eaters.

    • Henry Taylor says:

      There’s a difference between disagreement and abuse. If someone disagrees with your assessment of the team and they want to challenge it let it go and people can respond, which is generally good engagement even if it can get a little heated. If someone, as we’ve seen plenty this year, is just hopping on to call you a joke and the community an echo chamber without engaging with the arguments then theres no point responding to or even reading thsose comments, so they can go.

      Can be a fine line though, do what you think is best.

    • Dave1401 says:

      Delete the trolls. My favourite thing about this website is how different it is from the rest of normal internet comment sections.

    • SeanMatt says:

      One of the things that bugs me about the trolls is that they clearly have not been around here for long. You have been very positive on this team even when folks (me included) have been calling for Pete and John to be fired. You have always had great analysis but you also have always been on the “glass half full” side. The pass rush (and the FO’s plan on the pass rush) was SO BAD that even you, a person who is generally very bullish on the team, have been a critic. This crop of folks giving you heat are pretty week sauce.

    • Sean says:

      Delete them. I have been a regular reader for awhile and love the site because the articles are thoughtful and many of the comments are thoughtful. Disagreeing and making intelligent arguments is interesting. Just saying I-told-you-so is , above all, boring.

      • Sean says:

        And if all I really wanted to read was unfettered optimism without critical thinking, I would just just listen to Pete’s press conferences. Unrealistically optimistic and uninteresting.

  53. SeattleLifer says:

    It may go against your journalistic spirit but I say just delete them. If it’s an obvious jab and brings nothing to the pertinent conversation then axe em’. Besides they learn to take they’re trolling elsewhere quickly.

    I do get that it must wear on you in fact I could see if being easier when it’s directed at you/this blog but more difficult when it’s taken to other blogs/forums as you have no voice/recourse there but it kind of is what it is – you’re putting yourself out there and unfortunately fans can both come from all walks of life and get pretty emotional/irrational over their team. Just have to stay grounded in who you are and what you know and present – which is truthful, informative, legitimate, insightful, and just all around excellent writing.

  54. L80 says:

    I LOVED that opening drive. Took the ball all the way down the field for the TD and that set a good tone. Nice play calling on that drive.

    Diggs had an up and down game. He should have had Brooks’ back on that pass to Williams. Not sure why he was so out of position. I truly think McDougald is a better all around safety than Adams.

    Adams does provide talent but he is also a liability in this defense. I wish we would have kept McD and those picks and just try to trade for Griffin whom they could have had without a trade.

    Scarborough looked decent as well. Hope he is ok after doing the splits, more than likely a groin issue.

    All in all, it was a fun game to watch and seeing several 3 and outs was excellent.

  55. no frickin clue says:

    Wow, that was tense but enjoyable. That reminded me more of Seahawk games of prior years – more balance, less room for the opponent’s running game.

    Maybe this is something they have done before against other QBs and I simply didn’t notice, but in this game I saw a lot of defensive fronts with no one over Center, and rushers lined up wide on both sides. It seemed like this helped bottling Murray up in the middle.

    Collier flashed on a few plays, Poona flashed a bit, and of course Dunlap stepping up – huge.

    A little concerned about Brooks though. Completely beaten on that long pass to Maxx Williams. I would have thought he could stick with a TE.

    • Hawks fan in Toronto says:

      I think Brooks getting beat by Williams was more an issue of the angle he took vs. his actual speed and ability to keep up with him. That said, the complete lack of actual impact plays he makes is really concerning. Just looks like another guy out there right now. To compare to another not so great pick, at least LJ Collier is making *some* splash plays…

      • Rob4q says:

        Watch that play again – Brooks is peaking back at the QB and loses a step. He needs to just run with the TE and then look back when the TE does. It’s something that was talked about when they drafted Brooks – does he have the coverage skills? I think he has the talent, ability and speed, just needs the reps and learn how to do it right.

        Also, Diggs should have been able to get there to help but was a little late. Have to think he was expecting Brooks to keep up with a TE who was coming off an ankle injury…LOL!

        • Hawks fan in Toronto says:

          That’s a good way to characterize it! I was trying more to say that I don’t think speed is an issue – he would almost certainly beat Williams in a race (lol). As you noted, the coverage was poor overall whereas I just said the angle was poor. Diggs also played it poorly. I see he is getting some credit here and there but to me he’s been bad and I don’t think he defends the backfield and deep threats particularly well. Probably just spoiled with Earl all those years and forget what not elite really looks like.

          Also Brooks’ ability to rush the passer was hyped but I haven’t seen that at all. Might be a result of them blitzing Adams so much because they don’t know what else to do with him? I don’t know. Maybe I’m grasping at straws here.

  56. TheOtherJordan says:

    The strange thing about how this season ends will be that it is similar to two previous playoff runs combined. We need a healthy Carson and ideally Hyde to have a balanced attack. Last year in the playoffs it proved fatal not having a healthy RB. And Dunlap seems to finally give us some desperately needed pass rush and like the year Chris Clemons got hurt, it will be fatal for us in the playoffs without him IMO.

    Carson and Dunlap healthy for the rest of the season is the key. I see the trolls are out. The next four weeks the delusion will get worse as we play some of the worst teams in the NFL and people convince themselves there are no major problems with the defense. The Jets really are as good as the Steelers. The Eagles and Giants could win their division therefore, they’re good. And its ok if we lose to the Rams……again…. because we could still win the division.

    Still think 11-5 is the most realistic ending point. But I hope it’s 13-3.

  57. Matt says:

    Very happy we won but I can’t shake this feeling that we just watched two middle of the road teams (maybe slightly above). I really wasn’t impressed by either team…possibly a byproduct of playing on Thursday.

    Kyler Murray was clearly dinged up – so while I’m happy with the defense last night, I’m taking it with a giant grain of salt. The real litmus test before the postseason will be the Rams game. I’m very curious how that goes.

    Russell played better but still does not look right. I’m still amazed they can’t get DK more than 4 targets – it’s an absolute waste of talent on the field to do that. Yes, he had a bad drop. No, I don’t consider the “would have been a TD” a true drop. He was coming in blind from behind the defender and RW threw a major league fastball. I can only think of a couple WRs who can actually catch that ball.

    Run Game looked good. Happy to have that rolling. Makes a big difference for RW.

    Jamal Adams continuing to look like a dud – I’m now worried we won’t recoup much draft capital for him if they go the route of trading him. If we can only get a 2nd – do we still trade him?

    Jordyn Brooks…where’s the speed? He looks kind of plodding both mentally and physically. I’m not writing him off, but I’m thoroughly underwhelmed by a 23 year old 1st round LBer performing at his level. That Williams completion was some of the worst coverage I’ve seen.

    Great win despite my lack of enthusiasm in this post. I really just don’t think either of these teams is all that great. Arizona was thoroughly underwhelming – I’m hard pressed to believe either of these teams are a real threat in the postseason.

    Hope to see RW get back to normal – still looks hesitant but at least it was a small step in the right direction.

    Great work Rob.

    • Hawkdawg says:

      DK had more than one bad drop. But I agree, you need to keep feeding him.

    • Hawks fan in Toronto says:

      DK had a touchdown hit him in the face and dropped a catch and run route that probably would have went for 25+. He also had what was it, 40 yards? negated by a crappy holding call. If those plays shake out he has a ~125 yard day with two touchdowns. Lockett was 9/9. Nobody else had more than 3 targets (and the two guys with 3 targets were Hyde and Hollister, which makes complete sense). Easy to say DK should have more targets but realistically he received more than enough to do damage and Wilson was 23/28 on the night so your actual argument is they should throw more in general to increase his targets? If the goal is to win games they clearly need a good run/throw balance.

  58. SeaTown says:

    Jamal Adams

    Question for Rob and anyone else who does deep dives into college football and the NFL draft. I’ll admit I don’t watch a ton of college football nor do I study tape of prospective players.

    Adams was a top NFL pick, number 6 overall. Did you draft experts see him that way? I see a free lancer who doesn’t play well in a system and who can’t cover. Is this version of Adams what you saw on his college tape? I assume the Seahawks have college and pro scouts who obviously signed off on this trade, but the more I watch him the more I realize how badly JS got fleeced. And then I have to question the scouting department who watched his NY tape and felt he was worth the price they paid.

    I’m actually stunned at poorly he has played. I was not a happy about giving up those picks, but I was a bit excited to see what I thought was a game changing safety come to Seattle. Now, I’m afraid we rented a blitzing LB for a season that won’t amount to much in the end and now will have trouble overcoming the loss of draft capital.

    Any thoughts on this?

    • Gohawks5151 says:

      I don’t want to harp on this over and over but when I watch Jamal have up and down performances I see a guy that needs to be coached. He was taken high in the draft and deserved it. He was also taken by a horrible franchise. Todd Bowles and Greg Williams run attacking defenses that strengthened his strengths but never addressed his weaknesses. Look over Greg Williams defenses and you will see little if any dominant DBs that he produced. He is probably running more deep coverage now than ever before. The lack of a rush only further highlights his deficiencies.

      I keep saying that he is 24 years old and can shore up his game. He has too much potential to be a finished product. I think that’s why you always see Pete rush to him on the sidelines. This guy WANTS to be coached. He would do well with another DB coach that focuses on the fundamentals (They all would at this point really). He will always have a little free lance in him even if he maxes out his potential, but so did Earl in his prime. I think for the good of several young players we should sign Sherm back next year or make Kam a coach. Jamal’s skill set will always include blitzing him so it will fall on the staff to find the correct balance in scheme as well. People talk about the money he will cost and the only thing i can say is that I think he is a guy that if you put the effort into him and adjust your scheme to him he wouldn’t disappoint.

      • Big Mike says:

        But will they adjust the scheme or will it be another Jimmy Graham situation were they try to pound a square peg into a round hole?

      • SeattleLifer says:

        Adams obviously has supreme physical ‘traits’ (I’m sure why Pete/John wanted him so bad…). The concerning problem for me is he just seems to be a turn him loose attack dog kind of a player who lacks some mental acuity to complete the package. A super jock type if you will and those types are hard to coach because like speed it can be difficult to coach football smarts and awareness into people. Not saying he’s near as bad in any way, but to make the point Aaron Curry had all the traits but unfortunately (even more so than Adams) had poor football smarts/awareness and (beyond Adams) even bad field vision.

        I hope I am wrong and he can learn and grow into a more disciplined player who sees and diagnoses better because he could really be something if he could.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I thought, at LSU, Adams was a tone-setter. A strong safety or deathbacker type rather than a FS. Very quick and physical. He stood out in his final year and I thought he would go very early in the draft.

      Clearly he is a very talented player. I’m just not sure this is the scheme fit for him. He’s better in a very aggressive 3-4 run by Williams/Bowles (where he had so much success with NYJ).

    • SeanMatt says:

      I feel like this was a really weird year to come into a new system. He came in fairly late and this was not a normal training camp. Plus, no pre-season games. AND for half the season he has been our only legit pass rush and has been nicked up. I agree that his current play does not equate to what we traded for him (although, with how our first round picks tend to play that might even be questionable), but I think that we really need to see how he plays down the line and even next year (hopefully with a normal pre-season) as he learns the system.

  59. ScottS says:

    Not to say that they’ve fixed their problems, but I didn’t expect that win and this morning I’m very happy with their overall performance. This seemed like the first time this season that the entire team played with intensity and drive. A competent RB makes a huge difference. Also, a 4th down sack while rushing 3? I love Dunlap.

  60. Denver Hawker says:

    What a relief. While not in any way a certainty, this team has the ability to run the table and finish 13-3. I won’t let a soft schedule delude my eyes about this team though as they just as easily could go 3-3 down the stretch. That said, I was encouraged by the following:

    – The impact of a commitment to the run. It looked clear Arizona was trying to take away the pass with their big linebacker/safety packages so this could have simply been a scheme fit for the day. But it takes so much pressure off of Russ and slows the pace of the game giving the defense more rest.

    – Some attitude. DK, DJ Reed, Dunlap, Hyde all stood out to me with their emotion and it showed on the field. I love Russ/Bobby/Lockett, but they rarely show this and sometimes it pisses me off as leaders.

    – Defense finding some footing. Collier playing inside, Dunlap playing well on the edge, DJ Reed deserves to be on the field, KJ continuing an awesome season, Poona’s development. Room for growth and at the right time.

    – Getting healthier. Carson and Pocic are needed on this offense and should be resigned. Griffin, although not a top corner in the league, does play his assignments well and mostly a good tackler. He’ll spell Flowers when he gets back and the secondary will be much improved by default.

    – Winning despite ourselves. The contributions from offseason signings are staggeringly abysmal: Mayowa, Irvin, Olsen, Hollister, Adams, plus the the top draft picks of Brooks/Taylor. While the narrative is certainly “what could have been” (deservingly so), others have stepped up to get W’s on the board.

    • Denver Hawker says:

      Not so minor footnotes:

      – offense play calls came in quick which gave Russ time to assess coverage and audible.
      – defense play calls still coming in late, at least a couple occasions I saw Bobby urgently perplexed at the sideline which the cards were walking up to the line. Wonder if this plays a role in blown assignments. 10 seconds is eternity before a play to quickly think about individual responsibility before the ball is snapped.

    • Big Mike says:

      “The contributions from offseason signings are staggeringly abysmal: Mayowa, Irvin, Olsen, Hollister, Adams, plus the the top draft picks of Brooks/Taylor”
      Well said. At least Lewis is solid. Need more though.

  61. Gohawks5151 says:

    My Random thoughts:

    – Damien Lewis is the pick that keeps giving. Never played center and stepped up big.

    – Having Hyde was a boon to the run game but also Iupati was back and had several good blocks. Gonna need him down the stretch.

    – I hope Shell is ok. Cedric Ogbuehi had several plays where his man had taken 2 steps before he is out of his stance. Yuck.

    – LJ Collier is pretty slippery inside and he has done it a few times this year. He is essentially a rookie and will have role if he keeps it up.

    – Amadi makes a few plays a game that are great. Continually flies up with purpose and drops a guy for a loss. Underrated.

    – Agree on the Olsen injury. I think we may see more out of the tight ends. Russ just seems to have a connection with Hollister. The injury gloves are off with Dissly. Lets see Parkinson.

    – Seattle is so vanilla that when they throw in motion or an RPO look the Defense complete overreacts and Hollister is wide open on a big 3rd down. More of this please. Fly sweeps to Moore and Dk too.

    -We could still sign Deondre Baker because he is just on the practice squad right?

    • dcd2 says:

      Good stuff GH51.

      Regarding Baker:

      This year each team can protect 4 players that are on the PS (not sure if there is a place to determine who each team protects). Also you’d need to put him directly on your 53 if you sign him off of a PS. With no idea where he is physically, or in regards to NFL discipline, it’s pretty unlikely. He would also have just a week to learn the system.

  62. Rob Staton says:

    I’ve taken on board feedback from the community and have decided to delete comments from deliberate trolls or people just logging on to criticise for the sake of it. It was a tough call because some people preferred this to be a completely open forum. Yet I’m concerned about the tone, the quality of the debate and the risk that this place ends up being ‘angry few vs Rob’ every week.

    In return let’s get back to this being a civil, intelligent place to discuss the Seahawks — rather than a place where silly people who can’t cope with uncomfortable conversations relating to the Seahawks clash with community members who get what this place is about.

    Thanks.

  63. Group Captain Mandrake says:

    The irony of you calling Rob a joke is probably lost on you.

    I may not always agree with Rob, but he does not come to his conclusions without thought or evidence. Is he always right? No, but find me someone who is. In regard to the D, he is absolutely not wrong. This defense was, until this game, a serious issue and concern, and will continue to be until they are consistently better. I only hope that this game marks a turning point and they are improved enough to be middle of the pack.

  64. Big Mike says:

    “You need to be more positive Robbie, like I am”.
    I literally LOL’d Rob.

  65. Ty the Guy says:

    Rob,

    Can you elaborate on why you feel Tre Flowers is a “big problem as a starter?”

    He has missed a few tackles, but has always shown a willingness to hit. He lacks elite speed, but is usually where he is supposed to be. Is he Sherman? No, but I’ll take him over Dunbar. I’ll take him on the outside over Reed or Amadi.

    Could the position be improved in the offseason, sure. But from my perspective, Flowers is not one of the top issues on defense.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I would recommend watching the Brett Kollman and Chris Simms videos this week.

    • Henry Taylor says:

      Having just rewatched the game, I’m not sure he actually had that bad a game. Some horrendous open field tackling, but was on Hopkins for much of the game and generally had pretty good coverage.

      He wasn’t tested in that coverage much, which helped because we all know Nuk can make you look silly on jump balls, but I’m generally fine with how he played last night.

      • dcd2 says:

        I thought last night was ok/poor AND his best game. He’s looked downright awful trying to guard Josh Reynolds and Diggs the last two weeks. He’s also been responsible for plays like the huge Kupp gain on the first drive last week and the Mackenzie TD on the Bills first drive because he is playing his zone incorrectly.

        I’m stunned and relieved that Kyler didn’t look to Hopkins consistently last night. He was open plenty, and just didn’t get the ball. The defense did a nice job of keeping Kyler guessing and under some pressure.

        • dcd2 says:

          I will say he’s been better than Dunbar though, and probably can’t be used as a nickel, while Reed might. So Flowers will probably be outside going forward, even when Shaq is back.

    • pdway says:

      He has so little confidence in his ability to stay with guys that he plays way off his WR’s. There is always an easy completion in front of him.

      And then his lack of agility stands out when he tries to get guys in the open field.

      On the plus side, he’s a willing hitter and normally a decent tackler.

  66. Simo says:

    Do what you feel is right Rob, your regular crew is behind you!

  67. Chase says:

    One thing that stood out to me this game was the overall energy of the defense. They were fired up and flying around, although it seemed more of a bad kyler game than good seahawks defense game. One thing that isn’t arguable is how well the run-defense was yesterday. 18 for 57 against the #1 rushing offense in the league.

    • Volume12 says:

      Why does everyone keep saying this? His shoulder clearly bothered him, but are we not gonna give Seattle any credit for not letting him get to the perimeter where he excels? He’s not a pocket passer yet and his 1st few throws of the game showed that.

      • Volume12 says:

        * and those throws were before the shoulder issues

      • Chase says:

        It boils down to me needing to see more before I’m convinced this wasn’t just a one time game. History tells me this defense is terrible. I’ll give credit where credit is due, especially to the run defense which was tremendous. It is also entirely possible that our defense just got Arizona on a bad night where they had 94 false starts and 50 holding calls, and could never really get out of their own way, except when we made our own bonehead penalties.

      • pdway says:

        totally agree. one of the hottest, hardest to defend QB’s in all of football comes in – and we hold him to a very controlled game. of course the D gets credit for that.

  68. cha says:

    I brain farted and missed the PC show this morning. Brandon Gustafson has some good notes on his timeline.

    https://twitter.com/TheBGustafson

    • dcd2 says:

      Better late than never…

      “Carroll said Ken Norton recently led a defensive meeting where every player rattled off their assignments and who they had to be communicating with and Carroll said that it was clear that was a turning point. Adds it was one of the most remarkable meetings he’d been a part of.”

      from BGustafson

  69. James Cr. says:

    The point about the targets Rob – I think it is 100% a fantasy football related thing.

  70. Kurt ZUMDIECK says:

    Rob,

    Well run blog. Deal with the fan-animals as you will.

    Part of the problem going into this season is the level of expectations, some from RW’s camp, and the national media, then the 6-0 start, which could have been, should have been 3-3. Now with the resurgence of the Vikings and Miami it looks a lot stronger than first thought.

    Never liked the thought process that somehow Russ is not a product of this system, – complimentary defense, run-pass balance, good special teams, ball/clock control – because of his limitations as a NFL QB.

    You are only an MVP if you are on a winning team – last night he went back to being a system guy.

    What I saw last night was the re-emergence of the Play Action QB, who works better outside the pocket where he can see the field and use the threat of his legs to freeze the linebackers. Without P-A, especially on 3rd downs, RW was terrible, his numbers were the worst in the league. He was becoming a TO machine in those situations, since teams were throwing a lot of zone, 2-deep and three-deep, to keep DK under control.

    Clark on ESPN said RW for the first time wasn’t trying to win the game on every throw, like it was his last play in the NFL EVER.

    RW himself admitted he plays “BUICK” street football – just go to the parked car and get open. Last night, things were really simplified for Russ – Three step, 8 yard hook routes to the TE’s against pressure, roll outs with backs and TE’s dragging across his face. RW is a really dynamic player in these situations, when his options are simplified and he feels like he can see what’s in front of him. Did a good job of keeping his head up, his duck-and-dance habits from years of being under constant, immediate pressure has left some scars.

    The Quick Tempo of the offense is where RW shined earlier in the year and they went back to it tonight. I have been screaming for it the last month because it limits the nickel and dime packages that the defense can throw at Russ. With the defense on their heels and the ball coming out of RW’s hand quickly, he seems really in control of the game, like a good point guard getting his shooters involved.

    The problem is that PC HATES tempo offense. In his old school world, controlling the clock is what the offense does. Just contrast the first drive with the last – where RW coulda got called for delay two or three times as he milked the clock past zero. Quick TD’s put PC’s defense right back out on the field. Notice how as soon as we get ahead, our offense starts standing around, substituting, looking to make the knockout play – max protect, go routes on the outside or conservative stretch run plays, things that PC probably still calls “Sweeps”

    As a defensive coach, PC will never allow the Hawks to win 49-45, even though all the rules have changed to favor the offense since PC started coaching in the Black and White TV era. He dreams of lining up in the I-formation with two tight-ends and pounding the rock on EVERY PLAY, which is kinda what we did on the last drive and when we don’t make it on third and three after running into another run blitz, we punt. Or kick a field goal.

    When PC was at his LOB best, we were winning games 19-7, 16-0, 15-6. That’s Pete’s dream.
    PC has made some concessions to reality, but it kills him. A one score game where the defense gets a fourth down, walk-off sack, that’s more to his liking. System Football is exciting when you are playing for a one score game, needlessly nerve-wracking but we have PC for five more years so get used to it.

    What was most impressive last night besides the run defense, which held that little squirt in check, but the special teams. Great punting, smothering on coverage and right on the edge of breaking a big return. Besides the missed PAT, that is best Special Teams outfit in the PC era.

    One game at time guys. It’s hard every week to win in the NFL. The Giants are playing pretty good football right now.

    • Volume12 says:

      A lot of good points made here. Nice post.

      Slightly disagree about Pete hating up tempo football. I don’t think he HATES it as much as he wants to play complimentary football. Last night he was able to use the passing game as a compliment again.

    • pdway says:

      bellevue high?

  71. Frank says:

    Haven’t had time with a busy week, but excellent writing on the last few articles. Always surprised when I read the comments at the amount of chest pounding involved when people see something that validates their point of view. It’s just gross and childish. I’m not sure that you have time Rob, but I’ve had a feeling which isn’t unique at all to Hawk fans that the defensive scheme and coaching is letting down the players. Do you feel LJ is becoming a player with starting potential across from Dunlap? He’s came up big a couple times this year, but has had so many games that he didn’t produce a single stat over the last couple. Why isn’t there more excitement about Penny returning from injury, and why isn’t he considered an elite player with how often he breaks off game changing chunk plays. why is Adams going rogue on assignments, and I’m sorry if it’s too soon to ask, but could the team get a first round pick for Wagner or does his contract cost prohibitive to that type of thing?

  72. SeaHawkNut says:

    Hello 12’s

  73. GoHawksDani says:

    Good game! Nice complementary football.
    Just two minor things: KNJ should abbandon zero blitzes any half-decent QB will beat it against this group and that TD was awkward
    Flowers played some press at the end and he wasn’t beat badly in the first 5-7 yards. I’d instruct him to play closer and put safety help more on his side.

    As for Adams. It would be nice to play either 3-2-6, 3-3-5 or 4-2-5. He’s an LB-SS hybrid so anytime he’s on the field it’s like having half a safety and half an LB/rush LB.
    I’d play Dunlap/Green-Ford/Collier-Reed, Bobby-KJ, Griffin/Flowers-Amadi/Reed-Diggs–Neal-Adams-Reed/Dunbar for the 3-2-6. 3 safety+nickel. But Adams would mostly play LB/EDGE then.
    3-3-5 could be the same just lose either Neal or the nickel depending on the opponent. 3rd LB is Brooks and it could be basically a 3-4 front with Adams either rushing or dropping into coverage to help. 4-3-5 would be a more traditional look but I’d use more big nickel unless the opponent is really pass heavy

  74. kitrak says:

    Rob, I could not agree more with your comment about having someone leak out in max protect to catch an underneath pass. This is what Chris Carson was fantastic at the first few weeks (and also why he had so many passing touchdowns). I’m confident his return will bring that back and we’ll see Russell’s game elevate as a consequence.

  75. Darnell says:

    13 sacks in the 3 games with Dunlap. What a needed boost.

  76. Volume12 says:

    Rob, have you seen Tulsa’s Zaven Collins yet? Finished the Tulsa/Tulane game from last night earlier this morning. My goodness! Highly recommend.

  77. jed says:

    Just listened to the podcast … I enjoyed it & thanks for staying up all night.

    About the WR target question. If you look at an entire season, if DK or any other receiver had 1200 yards & 12 TDs, you’d say that was a really good year. Maybe that’s too low for top 2-3 receiver in any year, but probably top 10-ish. That’s less than 1 TD and 75 yards per game. Nobody gets 16 games with the same stats, so there will be games with 0 TDs and 50 yards. There will be games with 2 or 3 TDs and 150 yards. Games like yesterday will happen for every receiver in any season.

    Just cause it was Troy Aikman talking about it so much, I decided to take a peek at Michael Irvin. Granted, it was a different throwing era, and the Cowboys had a ton of rushing TDs with Emmitt Smith. But per Pro Football Reference, at his peak Irvin averaged about 8-10 targets a game, 80 yards, and a TD every other game. Even in 1995 (Irvin’s best year), he got 5 targets in a playoff game against the Eagles. Irvin also didn’t have a 2nd great WR (Novacek & Smith were the 2/3 receivers getting about 60 catches a season).

    Now I don’t think DK is at peak Irvin level yet in his career and it took Irvin until year 4 to reach that HOF quality. Maybe Troy thinks DK is already at that level and should be getting the ball 10 times a game. But regarding targets, I would argue that yesterday was a slightly below average game for a HOF WR in his prime with 5 official targets (2 taken away by penalty). It happens a couple times a year for pretty much every WR and isn’t really anything to worry about, especially when playing top CBs.

  78. Gaux Hawks says:

    great articles rob.

    just frustrating that you’ve been mostly correct over the last few months (really would have been better for my health had you been wrong about green/collier/mayowa). maybe there’s hope after last nights game, but i’ve been burned by those emotions in the past.

    again, i was completely wrong about hollister/moore. these two guys may turn out to be absolutely critical to the 2020 season… i would have traded them for chips and salsa.

    hoping shell’s recovery is quick and that taylor proves he’s the steal of the draft by week 14.

    winning only makes it more painful, sometimes i wonder if jets fan have the good life.

  79. SeattleAztec says:

    “Nothing was solved tonight” just seems so pessimistic to me. The secondary’s biggest issue has been playing undisciplined in zone. Outside of Adams likely freelancing on that TD, I thought they played very disciplined on the back end. Another issue has been inability to generate pressure rushing four – that’s improving as well. And defensive play calling has been very bad, but was more varied and disguised. One game isn’t enough of a sample size, but if they keep this up, everyone should point to the second half of the Rams game or last night’s game as the turning point aka where the defense solved their issues.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Nothing ever gets solved in one game.

      That’s not pessimistic. It’s realistic.

      • SeattleAztec says:

        Agreed – “One game isn’t enough of a sample size.” If you look at the entire season and the defensive side of the roster was exactly the same, I’d say you are correct that it’s a realistic viewpoint. But with the emergence of Dunlap allowing the team to play more rush four cover 3, the defense has a different feel to it. And considering that, this is how I would classify views:

        Optimistic = defense has solved their issues
        Pessimistic = defense hasn’t solved their issues
        Realistic = defense has taken a step towards solving their issues

        We can’t say until this happens, and it’s a big if, but if the defense continues to play how they did last night, the game has to be viewed as a turning point where they began to solve their issues.

  80. Rob Staton says:

    Jordyn Brooks grade vs Arizona — 27.7

    Jamal Adams’ grade vs Arizona — 53.1

    Not good.

    • pdway says:

      I don’t mind Brooks grading low – it’s what, his 3rd NFL start? He looks fast/athletic, and a bit lost. I’m not down on him yet.

      Really don’t know what to think about Adams – I do think he’s a net positive – via attitude, athleticism, playmaking — but it also still feels like a race car in search of a race track, it’s not clear to me how is best used on this team.

    • ElPasoHawk says:

      I don’t watch game tape, but Brooks coverage on the AZ TE last night looked terrible to me. He looked slow to turn and run and had zero closing speed. In LA last week he completely gave up on a TD run where he was lined up on the other side of the run. I’ve never seen a player give up and jog on a play like that. I am still in the pro Adams camp. He is impactful in my untrained eyes and must be accounted for by the offense on every play due to his rush ability. I know he has broken down in coverage a couple of times and appears to freelance allowing busted coverage, but I’m hopeful that as the coaching staff settles into a real plan on how to fit his abilities into Carroll’s system he will settle down and the defense as a whole will improve. I think the lack of training camp and his injuries have to be factored in when evaluating his fit in this defense. I’m disappointed in how disjointed their defensive scheme has been with him. I liked the mix of play calling last night of strategic blitzing and his occasional placement at the LB level with KJ on the line was interesting and effective. To me he’s a Swiss Army knife that can be lined up at all three levels to complicate the look of a normally vanilla scheme.

      • SeattleAztec says:

        Matty Brown had pointed out that Brooks did a good job rerouting that TE and likely expected more help over the top from Diggs. It was also a perfect throw. In the last game against AZ Brooks showed he can run down field with a TE and maintain good coverage and he also had a great PBU against Woods last week. I think he played better than that grade.

  81. Kenny Sloth says:

    New Oregon kits 🤤🤤🤤🤑🤑🤑

  82. Scot04 says:

    So it looks like Cedric or Jamarco at RT vrs Eagles

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