Instant reaction: Seahawks win, one game from the Super Bowl

January 11th, 2014 | Written by Rob Staton

Marshawn Lynch dragged Seattle's offense to victory

Well, nobody said it’d be easy.

For three quarters, it kind of was.

But that fourth quarter…. dragged from the depths of hell…. brought to earth to torture Seahawks fans.

A great big poke in the eye, lasting about 40 minutes.

Would the top seed in the NFC choke?

They just about held their nerve.

Just.

When you break it down, Seattle was comfortable for a lot of the game and it was unrealistic to expect the Saints to go quietly into the off-season.

The Seahawks needed to rally and got the job done. Any criticism here is intended to be constructive with absolute appreciation for what this team achieved today.

Let’s start at the top.

One of the big reasons the Saints put themselves in a hole is the way they tried too hard to be something they’re not.

Jimmy Graham jawed at the defense in pre-game, before a lousy one-catch, wet fart of a performance.

They tried to act tough. Prove to Seattle they weren’t going to be a push over. That they could play this brand of football.

And yet it’s when they finally put the ball in Drew Brees’ hands and asked him to make plays, that they came surprisingly close to snatching victory from a losing position.

This is one advantage Seattle has. They know what they are, and they never try to be anything else. They don’t waste time with gimmicks during the week. They get on with the job.

The Saints tried to be something they’re not. That’s a big no-no for teams like San Francisco and the Seahawks.

New Orleans are a finesse passing team who make big plays with an elite quarterback. That formula has won them a Super Bowl.

Today they should’ve just been the Saints.

I know the weather was shocking and not conducive to passing football early on. But even so — it took them an age to get Brees into a rhythm.

Their best chance to win today was a fantastic performance by the quarterback. They fought that too much.

Having said all that, you could argue New Orleans only had a shot because Seattle’s offense was frustratingly ineffective.

Marshawn Lynch ran well. But he can’t do it alone. The passing game is struggling and it’s a concern.

Russell Wilson — for whatever reason — has become an edgy, inaccurate quarterback who gets flustered too easily.

Against San Francisco, New York, Arizona and St. Louis — it was understandable. All four teams — including the Giants — were playing good defense. Three of those teams sport elite units.

Wilson struggling a little wasn’t a shock.

Yet when he played the Saints in week 13, he was sublime. He gashed them. Today it was a totally different story.

On basic inside slants he was all over the place. Throwing behind, throwing wide. For what is such a high percentage play, Wilson made it look difficult.

At 16-8 and with the Seahawks trying to respond after New Orleans’ first score — he missed a wide open Doug Baldwin downfield and tried to run instead, coming up a yard short on third down.

He has to make that play. Has to.

Nobody should overreact and Wilson is a terrific quarterback, but he’s picking a bad time to have a cold streak.

At least when he needed a big play to Doug Baldwin, he made it on the late third down.

Good throw, better catch.

I also took something else out of today. And you know I’m serious, because I’m putting it in caps.

SEATTLE NEEDS A BIG, TALL RECEIVER WHO MAKES PLAYS ON THIRD DOWN AND IN THE RED ZONE

This is the teams #1 need by a country mile. It was never more evident today.

In the red zone series where Harvin suffered his game-ending injury, Wilson tried to throw twice. This is classic fade territory. Drop back, throw it into the corner and get your big target to try and make a play.

The only thing is, there’s no receiver on the field bigger than 6-1 and 209lbs.

So instead, Wilson is scrambling around hoping someone gets open.

Nobody did.

It wasn’t just the red zone. The Seahawks had an absolute shocker on third down again, going 5/14.

How good would it be to have a guy with some size in there? Throw it up. Let him go after it. Watching Marques Colston make a couple of conversions late on was tough. The Seahawks need a body like that on offense.

The passing game is becoming very precise, when it’s set up to be explosive.

Wilson ended with 9/18 passing and 103 yards. It didn’t cost the team and Lynch ran the ball well enough to put some points on the board. Next week, however, I suspect he’ll have to do more with the weapons he has.

I still believe he’s a better quarterback than Colin Kaepernick and Cam Newton. But those two, especially Kaepernick, are making plays at the moment.

Wilson doesn’t take chances like Kaepernick did last week. He gave Green Bay a couple of big opportunities, including a dropped pick-six late on. He responded well, stepping up when it mattered and winning the game on the road.

It helps having Michael Crabtree, Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis to throw to. It’s the one area San Francisco is far superior to the Seahawks.

Wilson needs a receiver like any of that trio.

It’s perhaps reassuring that no quarterback like Brees is still around in the NFC. Even on what was mainly an off-night, he can put up 300 yards in a flash. I doubt we see that next week.

He also had a bit of fortune and that has to be remembered.

Kam Chancellor dropped one easy pick. Earl Thomas collided with Byron Maxwell on another should-be interception that ended up in a 52-yard fluke catch-and-run for Robert Meachem.

He had a chance to tie with seconds remaining only after Golden Tate muffed an onside kick (how are the Saints 3/3 on those by the way??).

It should’ve never got as far as it did. So Seattle must’ve done something right (and they did).

All that really matters is they’re one game away from the Super Bowl.

And despite some of the issues today — Marshawn Lynch is back to playing like an elite runner and the defense continues to be legit.

Some other notes:

– The offensive line played very well and made some huge blocks in the run game. Michael Bowie looked sharp at left guard. Is he the future at left guard? Breno Giacomini had a big day.

– James Carpenter being a healthy scratch was interesting. If he’s cut in the off-season, Seattle could make enough of a saving to keep Giacomini. That could be more important if Bowie’s future is at guard.

– Did I mention Seattle should draft a big receiver? Oh I did?

– Percy Harvin is a legendary flirt. Today was so tantalising. He took a sweep for nine yards and exploded. He made a great leaping catch to convert a third down. But he’s an elite playmaker in a body made of bone china. Seattle lacked any kind of spark when he left the game.

– Sacks can be a phony statistic. According to the box score, New Orleans sacked Russell Wilson three times. From memory, all three were scrambling runs that came up barely short of the line of scrimmage. It’s one of the main reasons why we can’t pay too much attention to stat-based ranking systems.

– What was up with the read option today? Wilson can’t keep handing it off to Lynch or teams won’t buy it. The threat of the quarterback keeping it has to exist for it to work. Maybe New Orleans played it brilliantly this time, I’ll have to watch it again.

– I didn’t see a hold on the big Robert Turbin run by any of the offensive linemen. Some people say Luke Willson held, but the ref’s put in on Giacomini who actually had a terrific block to seal the edge.

– The tight ends were quiet today. Zach Miller had one catch for 11-yards. Neither he or Willson were a big part of the passing game it seemed.

– The pass rush came close to getting five sacks today. Instead they recorded one. On one play Brees eluded a sack by virtually standing still. On other occasions it seemed like he was a finger nail away from being tackled. Just one of those days, I guess.

– The run defense appeared to have some issues against basic formations like 22 personnel. The Saints did a great job blocking the edge and regularly got chunks of yardage. That’s an area for work this week. Seattle’s run defense had been good for the last few weeks.

– Bobby Wagner, apart from a needless 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, had an insane game.

– There were two moments where you kind of thought ‘typical Seattle sports’. The fluke Meachem grab and the onside kick. It’d be nice not to have any of those moments next week.

Whether it’s Carolina or San Francisco in the NFC Championship game, it’ll be a war. Two teams who will play tough defense and run the ball.

Seattle is a home game away from the Super Bowl, a position they’ve only been in once before.

And it doesn’t matter how they got to that position.

The only thing that matters is they’re there.

127 Responses to “Instant reaction: Seahawks win, one game from the Super Bowl”

  1. CC says:

    Both Petey and Russell said they got conservative on offense up 16-0 and we all saw that. I said that I expected Marshawn to have a big game – as he was due and he did. Looked a bit like Ryan decided they weren’t going to let Russell beat them and guessed wrong that Marshawn wouldn’t play well. I really was surprised by several of Russell’s passes were behind his receivers – that didn’t help matters either. The D was awesome – especially in the first half. We all knew Drew would likely get some throws, but they kept everything in front of them – except for that underthrown ball that Maxwell and Thomas tipped while trying to get the pick and it ended up as a 50 yard play. Kam dropped a pick and if Wagner hadn’t had his unsportsman like penalty, there would have been another fumble. Very happy to get the win and get an extra day to get Percy healthy – they should fine the Saints guys big bucks for that head shot in the first quarter!

    • Michael M. says:

      In my humble opinion, they need to stop fining guys for playing football. First off, it doesn’t seem to have had any effect on the way players go about their business. Secondly, what is the guy supposed to do? His job is to separate the guy from the football. Better to get a penalty and a fine than to get cut; this is the choice some players are being forced to make. Of course I would have less of a problem if all of this weren’t being done in the name of “player safety”, which anyone with half a brain knows is complete bullshit.

    • hella says:

      I think Wagner got the unsportsmanlike penalty because there wa no fumble call. One of the refs said the runner was down even though 1) no part of his body (ie knee, elbow, etc) touched the ground and 2) no Seahawk touched him to even make him down by contact. Since the play was ruled him being down and not a fumble, challenging it would have been a waste at which point I think Wagner gave one of the refs an earful which resulted in the penalty.

  2. Colin says:

    Overall you can’t be too unhappy with the performance. Early on Seattle was physical and efficient- the trademarks of this offense. And then they decided to revert back to old habits:

    They ran it, and they play faked it, hoping to nail a big play. It didn’t happen, outside of Doug Baldwin making a nice catch.

    Percy NEEDS to be playing. His added threat opened up so much.

    Seattle really needs to come back to attacking underneath, which in fairness they tried to do with the number of slants they ran. As the game went on, it seemed like everyone was 15 yards down the field.

    And for those concerned with Russell being less than stellar, go watch Andrew Luck the last couple of weeks, including tonights game. How many careless throws does he make each game? At least 2 or 3. He’s a phenomenal talent, but not making mistakes counts just as much as making big plays. Let’s not forget that. Russell does need to improve, but he’s hardly a hindrance to this team.

    • Rob Staton says:

      For three quarters I was completely satisfied with the performance. Then they took the fourth quarter to ‘stress factor 10′ and it became less enjoyable.

      • Bruce M. says:

        Completely? On defense, sure. On offense, no. Either defenses are covering up guys way better than they once did, or Russell is regressing, period. Still, he made just enough plays to get us there, and continues not to make boneheaded turnovers. But the vibe from last season, heck even from the first Saints game, has gone missing. He just is not as consistently accurate as he has been when he does throw, and seems hesitant to pull the trigger on almost every deep drop.

        • Michael M. says:

          Kinda hard to get into that proverbial “rhythm” QB’s always talk about when you only throw 18 times all game. Also I would disagree with your very black and white analysis of “if you’re not putting up good numbers you’re regressing”. I think our coaching staff very clearly puts a damper on Russell and the passing offense as a whole when they know that the defense and run game is enough to win them the game. “Just don’t give them the ball” seems to be priority #1 in games like this.

      • Grant says:

        One note I’ll make, is that I think it’s hard to understate how tough the conditions were. Even when the rain let up, that wind was no joke. Just swirling around like mad. Russ was off all day, but didn’t get enough attempts in to get into a rhythm for the weather

        • Nolan says:

          Neither QB could pass consitintly in first three quarters I was there the wind was toying with the ball out of both qbs hands

  3. Michael says:

    Perfect evaluation. I really question why TE position isnt used better in receiving routes they always have the seam.

    • Phil says:

      I agree. I can’t remember if the Vikings ever featured a TE in the offense when Bevell was there. Other than the regularly called bootleg where RW throws to Miller, there seem to be very few plays where the TE is the first read. I think back to the playoffs last year where Miller showed how effective he can be if he gets targeted.

  4. Cysco says:

    Nice write-up Rob.

    I was shocked that there were really no designed runs for Wilson today. To conservative.

    I too thought the O-line had a great day. It’s a shame the passing game couldn’t click to take advantage of it. Tate had a pretty terrible game and the rest of the WR group didn’t seem to do a lot to help Wilson out by getting open.

    The coaching staff is going to have to get more creative if they expect to put up any points next week. Hopefully Harvin will be back and play the entire game.

    • Rob Staton says:

      That’s a damn shame. Incredibly talented receiver. Why, Dorial? Why?

      • Dave Crockett says:

        This is starting to look like a wrong place/wrong people situation, based on what I am hearing. He was a passenger in a car that got pulled over for tags. They found a pound of pot. Yet he wasn’t charged and wasn’t held. We will have to see.

        Still, this is his second pot-related incident. This kid’s father is a prominent high school coach in Springfield, MO. This isn’t a kid that grew up with the wrong element. He absolutely should know better. Regardless of any legal ramifications he will see some team discipline unless he can tell a really good story about why he was where he was.

  5. CiaranH says:

    Just seems like Russell’s really been struggling with contain DEs’ for the last month. Defences are gameplanning specifically to take the bootleg to the right side away, every time he runs that way there’s someone in his face. He needs to be more accurate with timing passes from the pocket, we’ll be coming up against an elite D either way next week, they’ll both be more than happy to limit him to the same kind of plays.

    I’d imagine Percy was a huge part of our plan, we seemed a bit lost without him. I’d like to be optimistic but my gut tells me we’d need to make the Superbowl to get another look at #11 this year

    • Rob Staton says:

      You nailed it on the bootlegs. It seems like an age since his last big downfield play on a bootleg. It might take an off-season to work around this.

      • CC says:

        I kept waiting on those pitch plays… the ones that we seem to lose yards on … for him to fake the pitch and take it on the boot leg!

      • Dave Crockett says:

        The NYGs put that on film. They left a safety close to the LOS, and didn’t send him to chase the play action from the backside. He stayed home specifically to play the boot action. Other teams are doing the same with a LB.

        This is on Bevell. Teams can employ the strategy because they know for a natural fact that Bevell is not going to feature the TE. So they can in essence take someone out of coverage and assign him to just play the boot action.

        • CiaranH says:

          It’s hard to assign all the blame to Bevell though. I’m not concerned about Russell’s future at the position but the way to move that safety out is by hitting quick slants behind him. The attempts at hitting those quick passes were atrocious, wildly mistimed and inaccurate.

          It’s of huge concern because this has been an emphasis throughout the year, execution at this point is on the players, not the OC. If we execute that play with any regularity, that game would’ve been over mid way through the 3rd quarter.

          On Lynch’s first TD run Percy motioned into a screen, which drew attention from the Sam linebacker. I truly pray he’s back next week because motioning him onto the left side and quickly pump-faking to that side could open up space to boot on the right side. My guess (totally unsubstantiated of course) is that in the event of the slant not working, we would have started running the read-option while using Percy as a decoy (back-field motion, screen looks) and I still think that could be a huge play for us going forward.

  6. smitty1547 says:

    Agreed next year we will need a big WR, this year we need a healty Harvin as well as they need to unleash Wilson. I understood the conservative play calling during the season to keep him healthy but now its the playoffs let him run once in awhile. Also cut Carp looks like Bowie is the real deal and not as fragile.

  7. MJ says:

    Rob,

    I hate to be that guy, but addressing the elephant in the room, do you have long term concerns with RW? It really pains me to say this, but he’s barely a functional QB right now. Not all his fault, but a good chunk of it is on his shoulders. If this troubling trend continues, at what point do we say, let’s get some competition in here?

    I know, great win, but this passing offense is literally Jacksonville Jaguar like. It’s incompetent. Thankfully, no matter what, next week is a slug fest no matter who wins tomorrow.

    • Colin says:

      You’re misusing the term ‘elephant in the room’. It refers to addressing a large problem that no one wants to address.

      Russell Wilson is not a large problem.

      • MJ says:

        He’s been downright awful for 6 weeks now. He and the passing game are a major problem and the biggest potential downfall of this team.

        • Rob Staton says:

          I think we’re right to ask questions but I’d dispute he’s been “awful” for six weeks.

        • Kyle says:

          He was awful during the ARZ game (11/27 108), but against NO, NYG, SF, and STL? He was anywhere between decent to great.

          • MJ says:

            It’s all subjective, but if you see a guy that has played decent-great football the past 6 weeks, then we are seeing different things, which is fine. I see a guy whonis struggling to function as a playoff QB on a team trying to win a SB. Agree to disagree,

            • dtrain says:

              Totally agree with you MJ. He is not playing at a superstar level. Hawks look like the Dilfer Ravens SB team. Hope we end up as successful as that squad, but I’m having my doubts. Wilson looks like the “game manager” rather than the dominant game changer we anticipated him to be. Hopefully, a sophomore slump. One thing keeps me optimistic…that maybe RW has bought into PC’s brand of football so much that he literally knows he is an extension of the conservative/defense/pound ‘em game plan that he refuses to take the shots/chances we all want him to take. On another note…kudos to the OGs (Sweezy/Bowie). I just watched the game again with eyes on just those two…they had to have graded out as well as any guards have in the Carroll era. Gotta think we’ve seen the last of Carp and McQ.

              • Nolan says:

                They take a ton of shots the problem Wilson is having isn’t the deep through a it’s the short and medium throws the throws that move chains and get first downs. The explosive throws are low % no matter who is throwing he isn’t making the higher % throws in middle and short distance.

            • Chris says:

              Guy has 0 real weapons without Harvin or Rice on the field.

              The offense has been a different creature ever since Rice went down. In the first half the offense was looking okay, since the threat of Harvin was finally there, but after he went down the offense went back in the gutter.

              RW is going through a similar thing Kap did without Crabtree and that Brady has gone through. Even elite QBs need at least one top end receiver to consistently perform or at least open things up for the #2, #3 receivers and run game. It’s no coincidence the run game went down the tubes at the same time this offense overall has.

              • Ed says:

                I have been worried about Wilson for a while now as well, though I keep telling myself it is due to not having the receivers needed to be great. More than Wilson, I have been worried about our offense as a whole.

        • Colin says:

          Downright awful? Nonsense. He’s been inconsistent, but far from truly awful.

          I don’t think the pass protection problems from earlier this year did him any good.

          • MJ says:

            I’d argue he has been very consistent the last 6 weeks and not in a positive way. Again, there has been a troubling trend for 6 weeks. He’s lost all semblance of poise, awareness, accuracy.

            Again this is just my opinion, but I’m seeing a guy who looks completely lost and doesn’t trust anything he’s doing. He looks like a college student with OCD, who is panicking before finals and just overdoing it, mentally. I honestly think his early morning film studies have paralyzed him in a sense. I totally believe in RW, but right now he’s playing like a QB that doesn’t trust his OL, WR, and most importantly, himself.

            • Belnorag says:

              You mean the last 6 games when he played against the #4 defense, Robert Quinn & the Rams, the #6 defense, the #8 defense, the #5 defense, and the #4 defense? Those last 6 games?

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think it’s way too soon to consider needing some competition. I think we’re fortunate that it’s taken this long to go through a rough patch. Let’s not forget, it’s not that long ago that he was being talked about as a MVP candidate. Teams are keeping him boxed in and he’s not doing a good enough job in the pocket. But there are ways around this and I fully expect him to bounce back — even if it doesn’t necessarily happen next week.

      Getting at least one big, quality receiver on this offense will help him. Sidney Rice is a big loss — he was the frequent downfield target on the play action deep throws.

      And he isn’t turning it over like Dalton last week and Luck this week. Sometimes it is about just managing the situation and Wilson is still doing that. He didn’t get close to a turnover today. And the third down pass to Baldwin late on was big.

      • MJ says:

        This is all true. I guess this really has nothing to do with numbers, turnovers, W-Ls for me; he literally looks confused on every drop back. He’s not scanning as well and his pocket presence resembles a Chinese fire drill.

        And yes, I do agree we desperately need to upgrade the WR, specifically getting a big body, easy completion machine. He certainly deserves an upgrade, it’s just going on 6 weeks now. I’d be more than willing to brush off a few games.

      • CC says:

        Agreed on Rice – while not spectacular, it has allowed teams to take Tate and Baldwin out of games. No turnovers today – that was big. He knows what he has to do – I just wish they would run some plays where he gets the ball out quicker which would push the defenses back a bit. But a win is a win!

      • Belgaron says:

        I agree on the need for Rice but I would add another. They could use a Wes Welker/Steve Largent type who really understands timing/space and deception to create space. This is an area that if Tate could add to his game, he would be a perennial all pro.

    • Michael (CLT) says:

      I would draft a qb in round 4

      • Belgaron says:

        They may already have that guy on the PS in Daniels. But if there is more talent to be added, it wouldn’t hurt.

    • Phil says:

      IMHO, we are way overreacting. The game was being played in bad conditions, we have a great defense, we have a very good running game, and our “star” receiver went down early. I’m really happy that we don’t have a QB who, face with this adversity, decides that it is up to him to take the game on his shoulders and start slinging the ball around.

      Get real! It was not RW’s finest effort, but it got us one step closer to the SB.

      • MJ says:

        I’m glad you brought this up as I unintentionally forgot to add, the weather was atrocious for passing and I totally agree that it could have been worse if RW was reckless.

        • Al says:

          Which way was the wind blowing? It may explain why Brees was so bad in the first half.

          • My Chest Is Beast Mode says:

            The wind was swirling but mostly blowing from south to north during the game. Remember one of Ryan’s punts just dying in mid air. It was whipping out there.

            A very important thing we should be noting is that in RW’s reluctance to take the game all on his own shoulders (or Bevell’s to put it on RW), the conservative game plan lead to us winning the turnover battle in nasty conditions. No turnovers wins games… and maybe championships. I think our coaching staff values limiting TO’s more than just about anything else in what seems to be a consistent theme lately of conservative calls. Go Hawks!

  8. AlaskaHawk says:

    My take is that the Seahawks look exactly like they have all season. Great defense that played sloppy with a number of dropped interceptions. Average offense with a great running back.

    I liked the change to Bowie, maybe we can finally cut Carpenter loose. The receivers didn’t look real good today, but RW didn’t throw the ball that much either. I don’t think we can expect much more from our passing game unless RW starts taking more chances and slings the ball around. Probably not a good idea. He does seem to have regressed since his rookie year, but I know completion wise he is about the same.

    A few penalties weren’t called against the Saints including the blatant face mask where they rippied the helmet off Tate. Also the blown fumble call. Still it was the Hawks who let the Saints back in the game. You would expect Tate to hang onto that kick 9 times out of 10.

    Not sure what the offense needs, but it will take more than one big receiver. We have two big tight ends that we don’t even pass to. Of course it would help if Harvin could play for a quarter or two.

    Till next week’s matchup with Carolina – Go Hawks!!!

    • Belgaron says:

      Rather than “average offense” with a great running back, I would say great running offense with a RB who really executes it plus adds incredible balance that makes him hard to bring down. This offense is built around running the ball from its Oline to its starting TE to its blocking receivers. It would be very interesting if Bevell leaves they could bring in some new approaches to the passing game that could benefit the offense and RW.

      • AlaskaHawk says:

        Our running yardage has not been that great. Especially when complemented by atrocious pass yardage. However we have had a lot of rotation in our offensive linemen, Hopefully we will continue to improve and run strong over the next two teams.

  9. chris says:

    i think bevell could help wilson out with some easy completions to get him in a rythm. also making the te’s part of the game plan would also help.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Inside slants are supposed to be easy completions to be fair. Wilson missed on a few today.

      • Curt says:

        Yup, and that is the only thing that has me concerned. He has ALWAYS been been touted in the past as being very accurate. I agree with MJ but really think it is his accuracy in the middle of the field. This was a bad day for throwing but in the second half when the wind calmed Drew came alive and our Offense went into it’s shell. Funny but the national commentators mentioned that PC said they were going to run in the second half because of the weather. Hello, let’s just tell the saints that. It worked out today but I sure hope they don’t do this again. Yes it was reminding me of Trent Dilfer and the Ravens. Ugh.
        2 min left I kept thinking of the Dallas game when we gave up 2 touchdowns in 2 min. IMO there is something wrong with Russell’s accuracy. Don’t know if he is hurt or what but for the last few games he has not been very accurate especially early. This defense is awesome though.

      • Belgaron says:

        I think the weather didn’t help Wilson today.

  10. chris says:

    also i would like to see some bunch sets to utilize the quickness of our wr’s.

  11. JW says:

    Nice write up, Rob.

    Great win today- and certainly hard fought.

    To build on your constructive criticism- let me preface by stating I’m a Bevell supporter-1. why no play action toss to Miller in the redone? Was very surprised they didn’t try that. 2. Second to last possession (I think), 3rd and short. N.O. W 1 timeout, and they do a slant, incomplete. Lynch is in the backfield. Why not run it there? Run off 30 sec, force a t.o., minimum. First down there eliminates a lot of ensuing drama. At the least, a play action. Very poor play call given game situation. Even a negative run there produces a positive benefit. Head shaker.

    I’m with you on the need for a big WR.

    It’s also important to bear in mind that even the Brady, Peyton, Rodgers of the world miss open guys- either don’t see them or miss throws. It happens. I saw a study once where Brady missed the ‘optimum ‘ guy an alarming number of times over the course of a season (forget the #, but it was higher than you’d likely bet). It becomes more pronounced in an offense that passes less often. But it’s part of NFL football.

    And yeah, Bowie > carp. Probably Bailey, too.

    Bring on the next victim.

  12. JW says:

    *in the red zone*

  13. Jon says:

    Please give me Coleman, or Evans.

    I don’t think Wilsons performance today that horrid. If 3 catchable balls were not dropped that already had first down distance, then we are talking about a different game. The receivers in several of the last 5 games have dropped multiple passes. With this said, I certainly would not give Wilson any better than a C+ grade. At least his bad games are not 4 int like Dalton, Eli Manning, or Romo.

    • Jon says:

      For that Matter, give me Kelvin Benjamin to.
      If the receivers are going to drop passes and have other mental errors, it might as well be a guy with that size and game breaking potential

      • Kyle says:

        This is an amazing class of WRs. I’m really warming up to Cody Hoffman as a 4th or 5th round option as well. I think he might go earlier, but unless the Hawks are really convinced that they have their guy at the end of the 1st, I doubt that they are going to make a day one pick. Picking up a 3rd rounder would be HUGE in this draft.

        • oz says:

          I like Hoffman too. He won’t be there in the 4th round though. He is steadily moving up mocks. I suspect after the combine he will end up in the 2nd round.

    • zh93 says:

      The way this offense likes to play I think coleman fits what they want to do a little bit more as a 60 yard play waiting to happen. But I happen to think Evans might be the “safer” bet as a guy who consistently fights off defenders for RW. Either way I’m not complaining. One is more of a first down machine, the other the big play guy. We have a big play threat in PH if only he could stay on the field… I can imagine PH over the top with Evans working the underneath on a single corner.

    • seahawks509 says:

      I think we need to get 2 guys this year. Target someone in the first that can immediately help, and get someone else who we can fix into a bigger role later. If we do keep Rice this here he won’t be here for long. We were already looking for someone across from him.

  14. Kyle says:

    First and foremost, we’re just one win away from being in the Super Bowl baby! What a fine day.

    Anyways, the one thing that I want to see is the Hawks come up with an efficient, dynamic game plan and execute it. As you just pointed out Rob, the loss of Rice is evident which takes away a big element of the passing/receiving game. Nevertheless, it’s the same group that put together a put together a convincing 27-9 win over a tough STL defense. Nobody other than Tate put up huge numbers in that game, but you could tell that the offense was just in sync. A run here, a pass there, and it worked beautifully all while gaining just 269 total yards (as opposed to 277 today).

    The defense was amazing once again, but I don’t need to see a huge offensive day; just one that is effective, efficient and in sync.

  15. Coug1990 says:

    Rob, if you think the Seahawks should draft a big bodied tall receiver, why haven’t you mentioned it before today? ;)

  16. Justin M says:

    I think that RW needs a security blanket. This can come in many forms. An elusive running back, versatile TE, A big, physical TE… etc
    It is easy to blame him for the struggling passing game, but in the end you have to build around him.

    In a perfect world we would have a third down running back that could be checked down to and still pick up 3rd downs. A athletic TE that can beat man to man coverages, and a WR that can be a read zone threat. Wilson does not have any of these. He needs help.

    Even just adding a healthy Harvin for a game looked to make a huge difference in the passing game.

    • Phil says:

      IMHO, the one place where RW’s lack of height really hurts is on 3rd and short where many teams just throw a little dump off throw right over the middle. To make that throw, RW either has to find an open passing lane (in an instant) or he has to loft the ball over the defensive linemen which is a really dangerous thing to do with the defense packed into the middle. So, we either hand the ball to Lynch, or we run a slant.

      Welcome to the future — teams are going to try to take away RW’s mobility and the Seahawks are going to have to figure out some counter moves. But, this is what I love about the game.

    • plyka says:

      Can someone wake up Mike Williams and lets hope he is not 500lbs by now.

  17. House says:

    My thoughts of today’s game (Only discussing OFF). The DEF played well, but the 4th was scary

    QB: I see the chatter about RW’s struggles and I’m trying to figure it out myself. The bootleg has virtually disappeared and his accuracy seems to be a tad off. I’m wondering if the “Vanilla offense” is a coy… Russ needs to find/carve a groove and ride it out!

    RB: The running game (Lynch) had a big showing today and I expect more of the same next week. Turbin came in and the penalty on his big run was BS… Michael was once again a HEALTHY inactive… Long live BEASTMODE!!!

    WR/TE: With Harvin in the game, NO game-planned/targeted for him. The dude is scary on the field and hopefully he makes it out there next week. Tate, Baldwin and Kearse all made a good catch each when the sticks needed moving, but with the lack of passes, stats would be very small. Grabbing a BIG WR early (Coleman/Benjamin) should remain our TOP priority in the draft. I expected the TEs to play a much bigger role and was a little shocked they didn’t.

    OL: The OL had a strong showing today. Bowie looked good at LG. I had seen speculation that with McQuistan leaving in FA, Bowie, Bailey and Carpenter would fight for LG. Does anyone know anything about Caylin Hauptman? I’m just curious if he is a stash plan for next season. Giacomini’s return or taking a OT early will be vital.

    • CC says:

      I think the Vanilla offense was exactly what they were doing up 16-0. Both Petey and RW said as much and that is what Petey does. While I wasn’t thrilled by the “lack of offense” please note that we basically had the same time of possession as NO – both about 30 minutes. So while I stress about the offense, somehow we were able to keep the ball and get the win. Get healthy Percy – we are going to need you! Bowie played well from what I could see and no holding calls – and the line did a pretty good job of giving RW time to throw. RW will have to play better, but the pass and catch to Baldwin was really good by both players. Let’s get another win this week Seahawks!

  18. JC says:

    SEATTLE NEEDS A BIG, TALL RECEIVER WHO MAKES PLAYS ON THIRD DOWN AND IN THE RED ZONE <=== YES! Receiver or a quality tight end like ASJ or Ebron, or both

  19. Ed says:

    Want D. Hopkins last year. Rice will be gone (and didn’t pan out). A must this year.

    I hope CAR wins tomorrow. Either way, I think both teams will crowd the box and play man, so Russ will have to make some throws and a little read option

  20. Michael (CLT) says:

    Russell should apologize to Harvin for the medicine balls thrown his way that got him hurt.

  21. seaspunj says:

    If we cut Carpenter to use that money to spend on Breno I am all for it.

    Also is there any realistic chance we can keep Sydney Rice?!?

    • House says:

      I could potentially see the Carpenter cut.

      The only way I see Rice sticking around is if he restructured and only received about $1M. That being said, I think there is about 0% chance of that happening

      • Phil says:

        Disagree. I think there’s a good chance to sign him to a vastly reduced one-year contract after he finds out that no other team wants to shell out big $$ for a WR recovering from knee surgery.

        • House says:

          While I appreciate Sidney Rice’s contributions when healthy, his pride isn’t going to let him stick around for peanuts. If we’re looking to draft someone to replace him, keeping him around would also be redundant.

    • bigDhawk says:

      Might see if we can get value out of Carp in a trade – maybe a late rounder or two.

      • CC says:

        Who would want Carp? The guy got beat out by a 7th rounder – it seems like Carp didn’t practice well or hard enough, what does that say about him? He is another example of drafting Alabama players – I think they are not really “hungry” and most haven’t been that successful in the NFL.

  22. Stuart says:

    We won the game and are just 1 victory away from going to the Super Bowl. Style points don’t mean shit at this point of the season. Yes, I am mortified the way RW has been playing for what feels far to long but he had 0 turnovers today.

    If we lose next week and it’s more of the same, then we have all off-season to whine to each other, and we will.

    Was Carpenter a healthy scratch for the game? If he was…

    • House says:

      Yeah Carp was a healthy scratch… Over the 2 weeks in practice Bowie performed leaps and bounds better. McQuistan was kept active as swing tackle, Carp rode the pine.

  23. John says:

    Not an expert, but at the beginning of the season Carroll said he wanted the Hawks to be the best team in the league at the scramble drill and it raised a certain concern in my mind. One of the things I wanted to see from Wilson from year 1 to year 2 was a better pocket presence and I think that, when he’s being encouraged to scramble, he’s not getting the familiarity and comfort in the pocket that he needs. I’m not saying he shouldn’t scramble and in certain games (especially early in the year when the OTs were hurt) he had to scramble. And we know he can play in the pocket but, when he’s been deadly in the pocket, the scramble drill wasn’t taken away, he just didn’t face heavy pressure. Now that the scramble is being taken away, Wilson is being FORCED to stay in the pocket and throw, which I think is throwing him off. It’s alot easier to play in the pocket when you aren’t RELYING on it. This was the case in the early parts of the season when he could run. Worse still, early in the year he no doubt lost some faith in his o-lines ability to protect him (i.e. the David Carr syndrome). So I think Wilson’s biggest issue now is that discomfort in the pocket now that he doesn’t have that safety net in the scramble drill.

    So, do I think he can fix it? Yes, but I think it will take an off season and conscious effort by Wilson and Carroll, much like what Harbaugh has done with Kaep. Kaep was horrible early in the season because (at least to my amateur eyes) he was forcing himself to stay in the pocket. And while I don’t think he’s a pure pocket passer, he has made strides in his ability to play from the pocket. Wilson is going through similar growing pains I think.

    Honestly, Wilson almost looks like a man who needs a vacation. He just looks haggard. Playoffs is not a moment where you want to be going through growing pains. Hope the dude can relax a little and just play. Those missed slants are so out of character. Honestly, it’s the most predictable play in the Seattle playbook. I can see it a mile away and I am not a great student of the game. He hits that more often than not, and he hit it early to Tate. I don’t know what happened to throw him off.

    In other news, I’m glad that I’m not the only one that loved Bowie at LG. I had my doubts when he was at RT but he looked like a force paired with Okung. Also Unger looked better with Bowie. Whether that has to do with Bowie or him getting healthy I don’t know but I thought Unger played well today. One of the most important things for me is the interior o line. I know Wilson’s height is downplayed, but a great interior line would do wonders for him. Don’t forget Brees won his ring with two pro bowlers at G.

    Rob, got to agree with the Harvin flirt point. For the record, I have been a perpetual hater of this trade, but the offense looked so much better with him on the field. Please please please let him be cleared for next week.

    I love Lynch.

    If we lose next week I will be heartbroken. This Defense is legendary good. I know some weird stuff happened late in the game but to hold Drew Brees for most of the game the way they did, shouldn’t be short changed. I don’t know if the D will be this good next year with Quinn likely leaving and with other changes that are likely coming. Seattle is primed to win with this Defense and I would be so bummed if our offensive ineptitude kept us from our first ring. Sadly, this is what happens when you base your O around the scramble drill. Honestly I believe this is on Carroll if that happens.

    More depressing… If we play anyone other than maybe Denver… who the hell is going to put up points on us from the AFC? The AFC is just awful…

    Anyway, Go Hawks. Made it to the final four. Can’t understate that. Go back 2 years and we were dreaming of just getting to the playoffs.

  24. James says:

    Rob, I would say it is Pete who is playing flustered, not Russell Wilson. The first half of last season, Pete reverted to his instincts and went ultra conservative. Russell was rarely allowed to throw, and only then basic patterns, no flair or creativity. He was told to not make mistakes, period. Then, in a desperate situation against the Bears, Pete had to ask Russell to win the game for them, which he did and they turned him loose for the rest of the season and he was brilliant. This year, the same Russell was asked to win the games with our massive injuries in the O line and elsewhere. He won game after game as the team struggled to get well, and then he played his best game of the year against the Saints on Monday night. After that big win, Pete thought they had control of the playoffs, so he again went 180 and put the clamps on Russell, beginning with the 49’ers game. Russell hasn’t been the same since, and your observations are correct, but it is not his quarterbacking, but him being totally taken out of his rhythm and not allowed to take command of the game. Pete really needs to let go his fears and remember what Russell can do if allowed to, and turn him lose to win a championship.

    • Phil says:

      Huh? So in a key game, in a driving rainstorm, with the NFL’s best defense, you’d tell RW to just go out there, put the game on your shoulders, and throw whenever you want to?

      I agree that the Seahawks offense has reverted to being a ball-control, risk-averse offense. But, you can’t argue with success. I expect the next game will be more of the same. Run the ball, avoid turnovers and other mistakes, rely on the defense and the kicking game …

  25. thursday25 says:

    The Harvin “too fragile” rhetoric is ridiculous. Especially in regards to THIS game. Dude gets concussed after two wicked shots, one that was obviously a target, no attempt to hit low, and he’s made of china? In terms of concussions, that’s not how it works. There’s no magical “concussion fitness” plan. I guess Vernon Davis is made of glass too with that logic.

    • Rob Staton says:

      It was a figure of speed… but I’d probably say yeah — Davis is a similar type of player in that regard.

      • Miles says:

        I agree with you. It’s still up in the air whether Harvin is a full-season type player. But I don’t think we can make judgments based on his exit from the divisional game. He was absolutely rocked to the point where maybe investigations about bounties should be re-opened.

  26. Michael M. says:

    Insane is the perfect word to describe Wagner’s game today. Absolutely stellar! his play to break up that screen pass before it got started was on of the best defensive plays all day. I am used to K.J. making those plays, so it was an area of concern for me in this one with him sitting out. Good to see another LB stepping up. Love me some Bobby Wags.

  27. Gramsci says:

    I don’t know why you excuse Brees’ early struggles passing on the weather but ignore the wind altogether when criticizing Wilson. If you had been in the stadium in the 3rd quarter when RW faced that wind, my guess is that you’d be singing a different tune.

  28. Michael M. says:

    Anyone else think they were sorta forcing the ball to Harvin a little bit?

    • rugby lock says:

      It was obvious they were trying to get him involved but I don’t think it was in an excessive manner.

      • Miles says:

        My guess is that Bev and Pete wanted to get Harvin the ball early to make sure the Saints were paying a lot of attention to him. This way, opportunities would have opened up across the field, and they were while Harvin was in the game.

        What Pete and Darrell found out is that the Saints were already paying a lot of attention to Harvin. Like, a lot. As in, they wanted to kill him.

  29. Kyle says:

    Can I also add that 5/6 of the last teams that the Hawks faced are known for having tough defenses? NO 2x, SF, ARZ, STL. The Giants stink, but every one of those teams the Hawks faced are known for having a tough defense.

    next week is not going to be any different. Whomever wins, we are going to be facing a team with a smothering front line, and it will not be easy.

    • JW says:

      Add to that the Giants had a pretty good pass D, especially at home. It’s been tough sledding for a few reasons. Opposition is one.

      Just win, baby

      • AlaskaHawk says:

        We will face good defenses for the rest of our superbowl run. And those teams have all faced good defenses. No excuses!

  30. kigenzun says:

    Great win today. 2 more wins and we are the Super Bowl Champions!

    An excellent wide receiver option to consider picking at #32, especially if Benjamin/Coleman/ASJ are gone, is:

    Allen Robinson Penn State 6’3″ 215 4.5/40

    2013 97 receptions 1432 yards 14.8 avg 65 long 6 TDs
    2012 77 receptions 1018 yards 13.2 avg 53 long 11 TDs

    This guy can catch the slant, highpoint the football, and competes like a Hawk. I’d rather have this guy than Benjamin, Adams, Matthews, or Coleman.

    #1) Evidence he can catch the slant and YAC it.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCJlXX8QlCw

    #2) If you have any doubts, watch the catch at 3:52; it truly is awesome to behold.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hrV19HYDCnk

    Great stuff as always Rob! Go Hawks!

  31. Madmark says:

    1st thing I’d like to address is James Carpenter being a healthy scratch for todays game. Seattle has stated that they take care of there own and with that said Moffit came back from injury before Carpenter but just couldn’t get it together and lost the RG spot and was traded. Carpenter was given all this year to capture the LG spot which he just couldn’t do and I get the feeling that he won’t be here next year. I think that Chris Clemons got his big payday this year but I think age and the injury has slowed him that he’ll be gone next year also along with Sidney Rice. My question is about Anthony McCoy and whether Seattle will offer him a 1 year prove it contract since he was breaking out in his 3rd year like Tate was doing but got hurt before this year started?
    The Game as of lately was a hold your breath for the last 6 minutes of the 4th quarter and pray. This team looks way to much like the Ravens Championship Team lead by Trent Dilfer. The offense does only enough to squeak by the opponent.
    I’ve been trying to figure out the last time this offense actually took the ball on the 20 and went 80 yards for a TD? Anyone remember.
    Can anyone tell me, of the +28 takeaways the Seahawks have, how many has the offense went 3 and out? how have been field Goals? how many have been TDs?
    I can see the argument for a big WR but picking so late in the 1st round I’m wondering if he’s going to take 2 years to get it together like Golden Tate took, who to me is a 3rd string receiver.
    Enough with my fears we won and I’m grateful for that. Would love to see the panthers in Seattle since we barely beat them twice at there place for last 2 years. The 49ers have been here before lets get someone that’s not been here for awhile. I think playing close in the NFC can work but in the Superbowl against an AFC team we are going to need to score points.

  32. Dave Crockett says:

    Two overall points on offense and two on defense.

    1. The off. line was as good as we have seen in several weeks. No McQ. No Carp and the line looked really good in both phases against a pretty good front. RW generally had time. He couldn’t find open receivers or throw them open.

    2. If this is RW’s rough patch, I will take it. He missed throws. He was indecisive at times. Yet he didn’t come anywhere close to a turnover, as Rob noted. Some of you may recall Pittsburgh riding precisely that formula to a SB “win”. If you are prone to panic there are enough legit issues to fuel panic. RW has clearly lost some accuracy. Bevell’s game plan vs man coverage appears to be little more than “get open.” All I am saying is that RW has faced a steady succession of ELITE defenses. If this is his floor we are still going to be in every game with a shot to win.

    For the record, I love Andrew Luck. But he gave his team absolutely no shot to win. None. And that’s after almost playing his team out of the game the week before. RW’s “awful” game included a whole lot of “meh”, but it also included a couple great plays and none that put the team in a bind. It is VERY easy to lose sight of how important that is when playing elite defenses.

    • Dave Crockett says:

      On defense:

      1. Run fits are a problem in heavy personnel vs squat, shifty backs. I really think it is mostly that they cannot always see the back. They are guessing on the hole in many instances. The LBs are not always flowing with conviction. Then on other plays they are swallowing plays whole. They are giving up run yards but still managing to put teams in long yardage.

      2. But for small things this might have been thorough domination. Two gift interception drops would have ended the game. Also, the rushers were a tad over zealous, and unable to break down and wrap up Bree’s on a number of almost-sacks that would have done the same.

  33. Ross says:

    – I definitely saw holding on Turbin’s run. Whoever was blocking the edge was grabbing the outside shoulder pad of the defensive guy. I don’t believe Turbin goes for 45 yards if the hold didn’t happen.

    — Also, Wilson had a screen pass called at one point (2nd half) and had he thrown it, could’ve been 10+ easy yards. Instead he tucked and tried to run. I wonder if this was a wet ball issue or what? I feel like Wilson has been missing open guys lately and wondered if this was related.

    • kevin mullen says:

      That shotgun formation, bubble screen I think, Wilson couldn’t find the seams of football in time to throw accurately, looked liked he went with the safer option of tuck & run.

  34. Tomahawk says:

    Two things:

    1) Tate may have had a concussion on that first catch. He seemed to have no concentration the rest of the game.

    2) I haven’t seen much talk about how important a Hauschka resigning is for the team. He is so clutch!

    Rob, would a healthy contract for Hauschka mess with our cap too much?

    • Phil says:

      I noticed the same thing with Tate. He looked dazed.

    • Rob Staton says:

      It really depends what he wants. They can make it relatively long term and cost effective. It’s a funny one though. Because generally I think it’s a position you never over pay on. Seattle found Hauschka when Mare walked and people said, “who?”. I’d rather have to replace the kicker than pay him $2.5m a year personally.

      But then you look at the issues San Fran had last year, that New Orleans had this year, that Green Bay have had for a while. And you want to avoid that if possible.

      It’s a great debating point. Hopefully they come to a deal that suits both parties and doesn’t break the bank.

    • David M says:

      i agree with tate, Baldwin also took a head shot and laid there for a bit. i honestly think both those 2 were concussed a bit..

  35. JeffS says:

    The hawks have been working on that big receiver all through this era. They spent the big money on Rice.
    They tried to recycle veterans like Mike Williams,Braylon Edwards and etc. They drafted Durham and then Harper. They went out of their way to sign the most recent Williams who looked so good in pre-season.

    So they have been working on it and have failed to succeed.

    This suggests that there is a rare weakness somewhere in their scouting/coaching/play calling. They very likely need somone new in the front office or coaching ranks who has a knack for spotting or developing the big receiver.

    • CC says:

      But I think you also have to give them credit with the 2 UDFA in Baldwin and Kearse. Lockette is another guy who might surprise us. Everyone says that WR in the NFL takes a couple of years to figure out – even Cris Carter had a tough start – so let’s not come down too hard on them yet. It is a process and I expect we’ll find the right guy soon.

      • AlaskaHawk says:

        We have done okay finding #2 or #3 players. Draftwise we haven’t drafted higher than a second round, and usually drafted in the 4 through UDFA, Other teams have made more of an investment in the first round.

  36. kevin mullen says:

    Hey, if we are targeting another 4th Rd receiver, I would suggest Paul Richardson of Colorado. Not a true #1, but a solid possession receiver with good hands, sneaky speed after the catch too. Reminds me of TY Hilton.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8SKKj1OCZk

    • House says:

      Paul Richardson is being looked at as a possible 2nd rd pick. If he made it to the 4th, he’d be a steal

  37. Attyla the Hawk says:

    I don’t know if big WR is necessarily the way to go. We definitely need a chain mover. Seattle has had significant issues stringing together first downs. This game, we secured only 9 of them, 2 by penalty. We had 11 drives, and had one or fewer first downs on 8 of them.

    Seattle needs a security blanket player. That could be a big WR. It could be a TE. I do not agree at all that we need a dynamic player any longer. This is a team that needs to convert first downs. Doing so helps to establish the run and wear down teams. Our TOP should be decidedly in our favor. Both for the type of team we are, and the fact we have the #1 defense in the league. The fact that we are losing that (and we lost that yesterday too), should be an alpha indicator that this offense is not producing what we want.

    We’ve talked about getting O Line help. Honestly, while I think we could afford to upgrade talent there, I also really like the value we have been getting late in the draft. I would just as soon we keep culling talent there because it means allocating early picks elsewhere.

    But the reason for the O line chatter is really a means to increase our ability to sustain drives. Ultimately we can get there via alternate means.

    I actually do not think a big WR is going to help us in that regard. Rice was that kind of receiver and actually pretty good in that regard. But Wilson rarely took advantage of that. Other than back shoulder throws, he doesn’t act like a big WR would be an effective security blanket option.

    Seattle is just simply putrid at threatening the middle. And I’ve seen now how teams cheat the middle and spy the edges with little fear that Seattle will make them pay for it. Part of it is how Wilson deals with pressure. But it also appears to be a component that is missing from our play selection.

    I’d rather have a reliable phone booth TE who can threaten the middle and force teams to play our offense honestly. A threat that will force LBs to honor the middle and not be able to leave the middle for the edge expecting Wilson to flee prematurely. How many times has 3rd and 4 felt like 3rd and 10? Too many times.

    Not to say we couldn’t acquire both. But I’d value a TE who can make conversions reliably even when covered as opposed to a dynamic YAC possibility. I’d pass on Amaro. I’d pass on ASJ. We have enough route combinations where everyone is going for 10-15 yard patterns on 3rd and short. I would rather have a guy you can get 5 when you need 4 even if he never gets a yard after the catch.

    We need a player(s) who Wilson will trust. A guy to move the chains and result in more carries for Lynch.

    • AlaskaHawk says:

      I agree with most of what you have said. I would really appreciate seeing some quick passes to our tight ends. I am not sure bringing in another tight end will help when we hardly pass to the ones we have.

      I do want a big wide receiver, but I see the same problem that we don’t pass enough to make it worth while. It seems like we were passing a lot more last year then we are this year. I know losing Rice is a big deal, but surely others would have stepped up if we aired the ball out more.

      The other thing about passing is to learn to accept that there will be more interceptions, but also more touchdowns. Watching the Panthers try and fail to run the ball in from the one yard line yesterday (twice), reminded me of what happens when you ignore the quick pass.

  38. Rock says:

    The bottom line is Seattle scored the same points (23) that the Niners did. The Niners had perfect weather and all their WR’s Seattle is down their top two WR’s. When Kap was missing Crabtree and Boldin their offense did not look good, either. You cannot put this on Russell. Rather, he deserves credit for not turning the ball over like Andrew Luck. Do we need Harvin to get on the field and a #1 WR? Sure, especially if Rice’s contract is too much. The cupboard is hardly bare, however.

  39. CC says:

    SF v SEA part 3 – this is going to be another slug fest! Bevell, it is time to open up the play book and do what SF isn’t expecting. Russell, you are going to have to make throws, make plays, and make first downs with your legs as well.

  40. Austin says:

    Any idea of if Harvin is playing or not? I think I read that its a 6 day protocol so he should be fine assuming its not a severe one and it didnt look like it since he was screaming to get back in.

    The offense was much better when he was in the game. As Sando pointed out we were much better before getting ultra conservative late in the game. I think the offense surprises this week and does enough to win.