Curtis Allen’s questions for Seattle’s offense

This is a guest post from Curtis Allen…

What does the offense look like without Russell Wilson?

The long-brewing divorce is officially complete and the Seahawks and Russ have gone their separate ways. Now everybody gets to experience the next phase: Living with the decision to move on.

One of the biggest storylines in the NFL this year will be covering how the Seahawks cope with trading their franchise quarterback.

Gone is the NFL’s most gorgeous deep ball, the Houdini-like ability to escape free rushers and the ironclad belief that the Seahawks can recover from three quarters of poor play with a dazzling fourth quarter flourish.

Also gone are the drive-killing sacks, the inability to use the middle of the field and the constant fake plastic happy denials that there are philosophical problems behind closed doors.

How do the Seahawks adjust? It is far more than just plugging in a quarterback as they did last year when Russ got hurt. If they are really intent on moving on, the coaching staff will need to truly adjust to the skills of the quarterbacks and players on the roster.

Do not get fooled by what you see in the preseason. They have hidden their offensive intentions well in recent preseason games.

Or even in Week One. The Seahawks have developed a habit of coming out of the gate extremely well the last two years, and then slowly sliding back to a blandly obvious strategy on offense as the season wore on.

Will the absence of Russell Wilson force them to rely more on the running game? To use the tight ends more and employ more short passing and fly sweep type options that work well with a reformed offensive line?

Being forced into these postures might actually be a good thing, a true ‘necessity is the mother of invention’ moment for the team. As well, with the team free of a quarterback with very strong views about how the offense is run, it might actually help them move away from their ‘all or nothing’ identity on offense (see question 3 below).

Time will tell.

Can the Seahawks finally solve the Tight End riddle?

For years the Seahawks have invested in the tight end position, only to get very little in return. The players they have spent most of their money on at the position are more suited to being pass-catchers than effective blockers in the run game. And yet, their production in traditional counting stats like targets, catches and touchdowns as a team has not paid off to a commensurate degree:

-In 2020 they were 8th highest in the NFL in cap spending on the tight end position and that yielded team production of about the 20th best in the NFL.

-2021 saw their spending drop – they were 26th in cap spending on tight ends (well, actually 17th if you count the void-year money they gave Gerald Everett that hits the 2022 cap) and once again as a team found themselves at about 20th in the NFL in production.

The cost/benefit ratio has for too long been stuck on the wrong side of the ledger. The Seahawks desperately need to get more bang for the buck from this position group. Particularly when you consider how much they have on the books in 2022 and the coming years:

-For 2022 their cap spending is about 12th with the bulk of the offseason activity completed.

-At this moment their 2023 cap spending at the position is very aggressive: they stand at 6th highest in the NFL.

-2024 spending is currently 12th with Will Dissly as the only tight end under contract

Has the lack of tight end use all these years been specifically due to Russell Wilson and his tendency to not regularly throw over the middle? Could a big glaring issue have that direct of a solution, simply changing quarterbacks?

We are about to find out.

With their investments the Seahawks are loaded with possibilities to utilize the position to ignite their offense. A regular “12 personnel” grouping with two tight ends, two wide receivers and a running back could open up some very interesting options. It certainly would disguise their run/pass intentions pre-snap very well, and they could also use that to their advantage in personnel matchups, keeping tired defenders on the field and exploiting mismatches on nearly every single play.

How about a red zone package with all three tight ends, a running back and a wide receiver?

They could have a Two Twin Towers-type package, with 6’4” players Dissly, Metcalf and Fant and the 6’7” Colby Parkinson ready to out-position, outreach and out-jump defenders.

Lining up Metcalf in the slot in this formation would be particularly advantageous. Imagine them breaking the huddle and lining up Colby Parkinson and Noah Fant wide, Will Dissly inline and Metcalf in the slot and watch the linebackers flail their arms at each other while trying to adjust, and they end up putting a short safety or a slower linebacker on DK. In the past, nearly every single time the Seahawks have put Metcalf in the slot, something good has happened.

Or how about instead of Metcalf, bringing in Eskridge and have him fly sweep to either take the run or draw defenders and get the inline TE to leak to the opposite side to get him all alone? Or send two of them towards the end zone and have the quarterback pick one to throw a jump ball to?

Their spending creates a lot of options there. The only limit is their creativity.

Tight ends are known for moving the chains and giving the offense options. The Seahawk crew will need to live up to that description if they are to improve the offensive output as a whole and support their defense better this year…

Can the offense hold their end of the bargain up?

As noted in the piece on the defense, the offense ran the fewest number of plays in the NFL last year. 954 plays adjusted for a 16-game schedule puts them in historic company.

In the last 20 years, only 4 teams ran fewer offensive plays than the Seahawks.

Put another way, of the 640 team-seasons in the past 20 years, the 2021 Seattle Seahawk Offense placed 636th in number of offensive plays ran.

The team recorded 83 punts, good for second most in the NFL.

Why was how poor the 2021 offense was not gain more attention nationally? Answer: They were 4th in the NFL in Explosive Play Rate, generating 109 explosive plays, balanced nicely between 56 passes and 53 rushes. That contributed to a ‘feast or famine’ outcome for the offense last year and kept them from being a complete and utter disaster.

There are several obvious reasons for the poor performance by the offense. Russell Wilson getting hurt and struggling to recover, Geno Smith being Geno Smith, Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny missing large stretches of games to injury, and some curious game-planning and in-game decisions that they struggled to justify.

The offense’s inability to regularly sustain drives put an enormous burden on the defense, one that they struggled to bear at times.

Just one example: Week 16 against Chicago.

The Bears have put together a 15-play 71-yard drive that consumes over 8 minutes of game time. The defense stiffens in the red zone and the Bears decide to go for it on fourth down instead of taking the points. The defense stops them at the 2-yard line and they turn the ball over on downs.

Allowing a monster drive like that is nothing to be proud of on the defensive side. But still, the defense justifiably exits the field celebrating. There is now a golden opportunity to swing the momentum back to the Seahawks.

The offense fails miserably. They three-and-out, netting zero yards and Michael Dickson has to punt from his own end zone. The defense gets about 2 minutes of rest plus a TV timeout for the quarter end. That is not enough. Chicago scores a touchdown six plays later to tie the game.

In the second half, the Bears take the kickoff, get one first down and are forced to punt due to a tackle for loss by Darrell Taylor and a Rasheem Green sack. The Seahawks have nullified the kickoff advantage, get the ball and have a 17-7 lead. Time to step on the accelerator and put this game on ice.

The offense three-and-outs, again conceding all the momentum. The defense wearily returns to the field and concedes a 10-play 82-yard drive for a touchdown.

Predictably, at the end of the game, an exhausted defense cannot make a 7-point lead hold up at the Chicago 20-yard line with 2:56 to play. They concede a game-winning 80-yard touchdown drive and two-point conversion for a disastrous loss.

The 2021 Seahawk defense was nothing to write home about. But they were tasked with carrying this team without enough support from the offense far too many times, and it hurt the team badly.

There are many times in the NFL where an offense’s primary mandate is not necessarily to score, but to protect a lead. The defense had an unusually heavy burden placed upon them last year by the offense. The Seahawks cannot afford a repeat of that performance in 2022.

The defense features a new coaching staff, a change to more of a 3-4 look and will be integrating several young players into the mix. Coming right out of the gate and getting very little support from the offense might be a bridge too far and dig this team into a hole it cannot get out of.

The offense must provide more sustainable drives this year. One way they can do that is by regularly running the ball well…

What will the running game look like?

Having a thriving running game might be the single biggest factor to get this team moving in the right direction. It reduces pressure on the quarterbacks, gives the reshuffled offensive line some great forward momentum and enables the defense to stay fresh.

The stars might have aligned in a way to make that happen – there is an intriguing scheduling opportunity for the running game to take a nice step forward in 2022.

Last year, the Seahawks played 9 of their 17 games against the top rushing defenses. That is some tough sledding.

This year, they are only scheduled to play six games against the 2021 top rushing defenses, and two of them are against a team the Seahawks seem to be able to handle regularly (San Francisco).

Furthermore, ten of their games are against teams that were in the bottom half of the league in defending the run last year. There may be a positive progression coming in their running attack this year simply from which opponents they are scheduled to play.

Rashaad Penny ate poor rushing defenses for lunch down the stretch in 2021. Four of the team’s last five games saw Penny running at a blistering pace, earning a nice $5 million contract for 2022 that for all intents and purposes, is fully guaranteed.

So the opportunity is there. But as is the custom, the position group will have major injury and use questions entering the season.

Chris Carson has suffered a devastating neck injury. He has had treatment and can work out, but Pete Carroll has said the team will not know anything about whether he can play until he gets into camp and starts getting some physical practices to gauge the injury’s reaction to live tackling. From everything we are hearing, it seems unwise to count on Carson ever playing again. They might have to cut him with an injury settlement.

No one needs to be told how precarious Rashaad Penny’s health is. After recovering in 2020 from a major knee injury, last year saw him go on Injured Reserve for a stretch and be unavailable with lower-body strains and pulls for other stretches.

Slightly lost in the relief and excitement of Penny’s incredible finish to the season last year was the fact that he had a grand total of 78 rushing yards through Week 13. Eighteen of those yards were in one incredible burst Week 11 against the Cardinals, only to be followed by a visit to the blue tent and being shut down for the day. At that point, nobody could foresee anything but the Seahawks letting Penny walk in free agency and chalking up his Seahawks career as a top draft pick that could not deliver on his promise. He justifiably changed that conversation dramatically, but still…13 weeks of barely any contribution is concerning.

There is also a secondary concern about Penny that is rarely talked about. Does he have the motivation and desire to achieve greatness? His amazing burst last year was frequently chalked up by the team to Adrian Peterson arriving on campus and setting a tone for him. What did Peterson do that other teammates and the coaching staff could not in three seasons? Peterson is not in the building this year. Can somebody else light that kind of fire under him this year? Could he motivate himself to achieve that same level of greatness?

Given the state of their top two running backs, the Seahawks wisely selected Kenneth Walker III early in the second round and appear to be thrilled with the pick thus far.

They also have Deejay Dallas and Travis Homer returning to the roster.

So what does this all look like?

It would appear the most optimistic option with Carson is to be eased into the season, maybe placing him on the PUP list or Injured Reserve and re-evaluating his progress at regular intervals. That means Penny is the obvious first option, with Walker getting some carries and Dallas and Homer returning to their depth and special teams roles.

Can Penny actually put a full season of good play together? Between his injuries and his desire, it seems a very low percentage play to count on him being able to do so.

So there is uncertainty about the running game. But let’s focus on the aspects that the team can control for a moment. There are two significant areas that the team can address.

First, how do they integrate Walker into the offense? He is a high draft pick on a rookie contract with incredible ability. He needs NFL reps as soon as possible and, in many ways, seems as ready as any rookie to get some at this point.

Can Pete Carroll work with Walker’s integration into the NFL game and while giving him regular meaningful snaps? Or will we hear week after week after week that Walker is ‘fighting and competing in practice’ but come Sunday is nowhere to be found?

A scenario could easily be envisioned where Penny is hurt and Carroll turns to comfort-backs Dallas and Homer for most of the snaps, reasoning that they can pick up blitzes and help out the young tackles with blown blocks and missed assignments, and let their electric draft pick cool his heels on the sidelines, while the running game only nets 3 yards per rush and the offense fails to pick up any momentum.

Can the Seahawks step out of their comfort zone just a little and marry their investment of a high draft pick with actual playing time and live with any NFL growing pains, with a view to setting up the offense for success in 2023? Will they?

And second, can they rely on their running game in strategic planning? Penny’s excellent stretch last year featured a speed bump – Week 15 in Los Angeles. They only gave Penny 11 carries and he netted only 39 yards for them in a ten-point loss. Deejay Dallas also got 8 carries for 41 yards and a touchdown. Nineteen carries are not enough to establish an effective running game.

We have outlined what the Seahawks need to do in order to be effective against the Rams. Running the ball keeps that explosive offense on the sidelines and gives the quarterbacks cover against their dangerous pass rush. Nineteen carries will not cut it.

Will the Seahawks – with more uncertainty than ever at the quarterback position – be able to actively use their assets in the running game in an effective way? Can they get creative in the run game and be able to be more sustainably effective than they have in recent seasons?

This is a bigger issue than a black and white “run vs pass” debate over style of play. If they run well, third downs are easier to convert. The offense stays on the field and the pass catchers get more targets. It is very possible that due to a more effective running game, players like D.K. Metcalf, Tyler Lockett and the tight ends can actually get more targets than they have in recent seasons, since the offence is generating more first downs, and from first downs more plays.

Can the Seahawks develop this offensive line for 2023 and beyond?

A best-case scenario is the Seahawks enter 2023 with about 4/5 of their offensive line coming off a confidence-building season and are ready to really solidify the offense for years to come. They only would need a top-flight center that can be acquired either through the draft or in free agency.

While it is laudable to want success as a team in 2022, every move they make this year on the offensive line should be done with a strong focus toward 2023 and beyond.

The Seahawks had a smashing draft this year, coming away with bookend tackles whose profiles read like players that could have 10-year careers for the team as cornerstones. Can they live up to their promise? Can Shane Waldron, Andy Dickerson and Pete Carroll develop these players during the live fire exercise of real NFL games and keep their confidence intact?

Both Cross and Lucas have great pass blocking bona fides, but their run blocking skills are a bit of a question mark – Cross far more than Lucas due to the offense he ran in college.

Pete Carroll shrugged off Charles Cross’ lack of NFL-style run blocking experience at Mississippi State in Mike Leach’s Air Raid offense:

He can run block too. He can really move his feet and he can get off the ball and do the cutoff blocks from the backside and the frontside stuff. He can get on the second level and stay on his feet and be agile about all of that. He’s an excellent prospect to be a left tackle.

When you think left tackle, you think pass protection. That’s really the first thought. He had as much work as you can in Mike’s system. He is stout enough, and he runs really well.

The running game will be something we’ll focus…he’s worked on three-point stance in high school. It won’t be a big transition for him, he’s too athletic. We don’t have any concern about that. It’s just gonna be the process of getting him ready and adapting him to our game.

With a new quarterback, a high draft pick at running back and a stated desire to really emphasize the running game, it is absolutely worth monitoring Cross’ adaptation to this particular aspect of the NFL game.

Abraham Lucas on the other side was graded a brilliant 91 by PFF for his pass blocking – the best in the PAC-12 last season:

He has seen far more snaps in the running game than Cross (do not let anyone tell you Washington State still runs the Air Raid offense – they ran the ball 44% of the time the last two seasons). PFF had him graded at a 68.3 in run blocking. Not spectacular but also not awful. For a gauge, Brandon Shell typically graded out at 70-73 in run blocking for the Seahawks. That is not to say Lucas will step in Week One and be a 68 graded run blocker, but barring a massive struggle to adapt, there is plenty to work with and the Seahawks are happy they were able to land him in the third round.

What about Damien Lewis? He also tracked to be a long-term offensive line cornerstone type player right out of the gate. Then, for reasons passing understanding, the Seahawks moved him from Right Guard to Left Guard in order to accommodate Gabe Jackson in Lewis’ second NFL season. He struggled to adapt and Jackson did nothing to make that decision seem wise or necessary, clocking an overall 63.6 PFF grade last year at Right Guard.

Will Lewis stay at Left Guard this year? Or will the Seahawks restore him to the right side and either bench Jackson, move on from him or put him in the mix for the Left Guard spot?

This is a critical season for Lewis. What seemed like a slam-dunk “we’re set at Right Guard for the next 10 years” career track now carries as many question marks as answers. Can he earn that level of confidence at Left Guard? Or has that move stunted his development too much?

What about Phil Haynes? Is he the offensive line’s version of Rashaad Penny – talented and frequently injured but ready to make his mark on the NFL? The Seahawks tendered him this offseason at $2.5 million, but none of that is guaranteed.

Would they negotiate him down to about half that on 53-man roster cutdown day like they did with David Moore a couple years ago? You could argue the Seahawks have shown an extreme amount of good faith in keeping him around. Can he reward that faith with a starting spot and some effective play on the interior this year? Does he still fit what the Seahawks want in an interior lineman?

Do Jake Curhan and Stone Forsythe have a future at a starting spot on this line? Or should they start working on their versatility to solidify roles as injury fill in swing type players?

The offensive line’s development in 2022 is absolutely critical. The likelihood they will be starting a new quarterback in 2023 is high. If they can offer him a rising young line to ease his transition – look out. He will have time to throw to Metcalf, Lockett, Eskridge, Dissly, Fant and Parkinson, and Walker to regularly hand the ball to. By the midpoint of 2023, this would be an offense that no one wants to line up against.


  1. cha

    Adam Schefter
    49ers officially have given Jimmy Garoppolo’s agents Don Yee and Carter Chow permission to seek a trade, sources said. Garoppolo has been cleared to start practicing, per team source; 49ers still are expected to exercise caution with him this summer.
    12:32 PM · Jul 20, 2022

    • Rob Staton

      Something’s got to give here, so will be interesting to see how it plays out

  2. AlaskaHawk

    Very well written, Cha. Thanks.

    I think the running game will be much better this year and will be the key to offensive success and more breaks for the defense. I’m going to guess that two or three healthy running backs and a backup quarterback are better than an elite injured quarterback and injured running back. So enjoy the show.

    And who knows, maybe with a more conventional quarterback the tight ends will start to shine.

  3. BC_Hawk

    Great article Cha, and extremely well placed. As I read the “look out” Will Levis from the previous article popped up on the bottom of my screen!

    So many questions, but I think the one that is most burning; will whomever is QB in Seattle this year actually be tasked with using the middle of the field? Its a question that has been burning for 6-7 years.

  4. Bankhawk

    Great one, Cha. Good to see you gearing up to contribute your also customary awesome content as well!
    If I were a betting man, I would say that motivation will be key for R Penny this year. If he reports in top shape, it will help him stay healthy, which will help him shine, and get him paid in the next negotiation (with whomever).
    But if he take the low road and is lazy (or worse still-like L. Fornette doing his Eddie Lacey impression of the Whataburger NFL back of the year🍔🍟-well, we’ve still got Walker! 😁

  5. clbradley17

    Excellent review Cha, and interview with Levis recently Rob. In a dream draft 2023, both us and Denver will have growing pains, injuries and all losses in the close games, and have 2 top 5 picks, with which we get Will Anderson and either Levis or TVD.

  6. Sea Mode

    Off topic continued from last thread.

    Now that I’m thinking about it, why don’t NFL teams produce a new uniform variation for each season (or two) like many soccer clubs do? Is there some league rule against it or has it just not become tradition in the sport? It creates a bunch of off-season hype and marketing opportunities.

    From a business perspective, seems like a lot of potential money left on the table. From a fans’ perspective, sure you get some duds, but at least they only last for one season and you also get a bunch of absolute gems.

    I like our current uniforms probably more than many other fans do, but they feel outdated simply because we’ve been using them for 10 years now.

    • ukalex6674

      not all soccer fans like the fact kits are changed so often. The cost alone is astronomical.

      I do think we need a fresher look though for sure.

      • Rob Staton

        Agreed, it’s a disgrace that teams over here now change their shirt every year

        I hope the NFL stays as it is. But there are some teams who have iconic uniforms that shouldn’t ever change. And there are some teams, such as Seattle, where I think a 10 year run seems about right.

        We are going into a new era of Seahawks football now. I’d be comfortable with a fresh look

  7. Old but Slow

    The stat about the number of snaps over the last 20 years is a stunner. It reflects the difficulties the defense has been laden with. It means falling behind in time of possession, and requires the defense to carry the load.

  8. Big Mike

    Outstanding stuff as always cha. Much appreciate the effort.
    The fear of giving Walker the Alton Robinson treatment is one of my biggest concerns for th coming season. He reminds me a great deal of prime Curt Warner and I’d hate to see that kind of talent wasted. At the very least I want to see him splitting carries with Penny. If this is a “retooling” year, why not live with the occasional glitch in his pass pro if that is the case? A year like this is the chance for him to learn that aspect of being an NFL RB.

    • McZ

      Did Walker III even sign his rookie contract yet? What is holding him back? The prospect of a severe injury until bye week, because of the unimaginative play calling and bad run blocking?

      What about Metcalf? He wants to get paid. There is a major decision to make. Lockett IMO will be a trade target at the deadline.

      How can this team replace the explosive deep ball TDs courtesy of RW3? Is Will Levis capable of those deep throws, without his top WR?

      Finally, I fully expect McDaniel turning the Fins around. The question of “what if” will loom over the season. But that’s okay, if the M’s roast the cheaters this weekend.

      • cha

        Nothing has been reported for Walker or Boye Mafe.

        We don’t know what the snag is, but Houston gave their 2 second round picks more guaranteed money than is traditionally slotted for those spots. It’s reasonable to think that the Seahawks’ two picks are asking for the same accommodation and the Seahawks are hesistant.

        • McZ

          So, the Seahawks are finally in the class of franchises, that need to extra cash their players? Guess that tells us something.

  9. Big Boi

    Any word or sense about a Geno Smith suspension? If we really want to win games, it would behoove us to identify the QB1 as early as possible and concentrate on starter reps the last week or two before week 1. Last thing we need is a QB comp going down to the wire, but second to last thing we need is for Geno to be named the starter, get starter reps, and find out Sept 10 that he’s gonna be chilling at home for the month of September. I think one thing we learned last year is that Lock is not at his best at a backup and if Smith is gonna be suspended, the sooner we find out, the better.

    • cha

      One of the beat reporters got a hold of King Cty and reported they said it might take up to 10 months to get results from the blood sample they took. So that’s about October. Then you add in the time for the court system to act if they decide they want to pursue charges. If I had to guess I’d say Geno is clear for 2022.

  10. Scott

    A lot of the problems on defense were self inflicted. They could not get off the field, even early game. That didn’t allow the offense to get on the field. That didn’t combine well with the boom or bust offense.
    It will be interesting to see if the defense improves this season.

    • 12th chuck

      To be honest, it couldn’t get much worse, it’s possible. The offense having a sustained drive will help the d take a breather

  11. Bread Wetter

    Great article.

    My only qualm is that it suggests possible motivation issues for Penny, and then immediately seems to treat that as a fact. He’s been in shape for the last few years if I recall correctly, just had the injury bug. I don’t think we have good reason to assume motivation is a big question mark, especially considering how soon he’ll be in the market for a new contract.

    What we’re going to do at guard is low key one of the most interesting question marks for this season. Will Pete stick to his ways and play an underperforming, expensive vet at the expense of the future? It’s kind of a microcosm of the whole problem with PC, along with a golden opportunity to show he can still evolve his ways.

    • Hawk Finn

      I mean, he said it himself, so…

      • Bread Wetter

        Who said what?

          • TomLPDX

            I remember that, it was from 2019. Rashaad has made a lot of positive moves since then. How long do you plan to hold this kind of shit against him?

            • Hawk Finn

              Holding nothing against him. I hope he does well. Bread took issue with the article questioning his motivation. I said he admitted having motivation problems. 2019 or otherwise, it’s still relevant. He also admitted that critics got in his head and affected his play. Of course, that was way back in late 2021 so let’s not hold this against him. 🙄

              • Bread Wetter

                Yeah I remember that now. That was coming back from his first (I think) major injury and, like I said, the last few seasons he has been in good shape. So I believe he deserves the benefit of the doubt, rather than us acting like it’s a chronic problem. Especially with a contract coming up.

                If nothing else, motivation questions pale in comparison to his injury risk.

                In any event, we obviously needed a contingency plan and, fortunately, we went out invested in one.

                • Hawk Finn

                  Fair enough.

  12. Joshua Smith

    Just saw a picture of the Seahawks 3 QBs. I always overlook Eason but Lock/Smith aren’t being handed anything. How unlikely is it that Jacob Eason matches his “good enough” athletic tools & strong arm with learning to how to better progress through his reads and improving accuracy to be more consistent?
    I think of him as lesser than Drew Lock but that might not be entirely fair.
    Could he surprise us? No one really expected Wilson to beat out Flynn and Jackson…

  13. Starhawk29

    There is a Fieldgulls article today (yes I occasionally read that drek) talking about “coming to grips” with the Seahawks QB situation, and they are finally realizing what Rob knew back in March: we aren’t going to splash out for another QB in 2022. Just wanted to show some appreciation for the guy that’s always well ahead of the curve on this stuff, Rob’s not perfect, but I’ll take his work over anyone else’s on the web. Thanks again for all your hard work!

  14. cha

    Ian Rapoport
    It’s a 5-year extension worth $230.5M with $160M in guarantees.
    Quote Tweet
    Ian Rapoport
    · 44m
    The #AZCardinals and two-time Pro Bowl QB Kyler Murray are working to close a monster extension that will make Murray one of the NFL’s highest-paid players, sources tell me and @TomPelissero.

    After an offseason of drama, Murray could be locked in as AZ’s QB for years to come.

    There’s a piece of the puzzle. $160m guaranteed slightly tops Josh Allen and Aaron Rodgers but well below the Deshaun Debacle.

    • DC

      An overpay but thats the price of having a quality NFL starter. Denver should have extended Wilson when they had the chance.

    • Gaux Hawks

      RW3: 5Y $250M with $200M guaranteed…

  15. Blitzy the Clown

    Reading this got me jōnzing for the season cha 🤤

    This may sound odd, but I think I’m most looking forward to the growing pains on the OL – to watching the two new OTs (assuming Cross and Lucas both earn starting roles) make those inevitable rookie mistakes, but bounce back on the next play (or later in the game) and nail their assignment and plant the defender like a can of corn. And to watch that progression over the course of the season, both individually and the OL as a unit. I want them to be the positive story in Seattle this year. Along with Walker and Penny.

    I’m also excited to see what motivational magic Carroll has left. Seattle is a much younger team compared to last year and there isn’t a better motivational leader of young football players than Pete Carroll. Even if it lasts only a couple of seasons last time in 2012-2013.

    • ukalex6674

      I’m with you on this Blitzy. Watching the o-line is going to be actually quite interesting.

    • AlaskaHawk

      Watching the offensive line. Seeing what plays are called and percentage of runs vs passes. Watching a two headed monster of running back performance. Seeing if they will pass more to the tight ends. Lots of fun things to watch!

      Mostly I’m just glad that I feel they have gotten past the dip and are building toward something better.

  16. bv eburg

    Thanks cha for another good read.

  17. Sea Mode

    I shed a tear every time…

    • Group Captain Mandrake

      That is mind bogglingly strong. Makes my back hurt just watching it.

  18. Sea Mode

    I could get behind something like this uniform concept:

  19. jed

    great stuff again cha, thanks.

    It’s the questions, both on offense and defense, that make the season exciting to me. What is going to happen with all these new players & coaches? Are they good? Can we, as fans, see progress over the season? Can this team set the foundation of a legit playoff team in 2023 & potential championship team in 2024?

    It’s so much more interesting than the past 3, 4, 5 years with one question – can Russ carry an average, at best, team to a deep playoff run?

  20. no frickin clue

    A comment on offensive philosophy.

    For most of the last 10 years, Pete has had the comfort of knowing that if he played it fairly conservative on offense with the occasional explosive passing play, kept it close, Russ could work his magic in the 4th quarter and pull out a victory. At least this was the preferred style until the D fell apart and they needed to air it more just to stay in the game.

    Unless Pete also has immense faith in the Lock/Smith combo, that comfort level is gone.

    Without that comfort level, Pete and Shane will likely spend more time and effort on getting the running game right – to avoid situations where we are dependent on Lock or Smith to save the day.

    I will look at this optimistically and say that even though their new bookend tackles were more focused on the passing game than on the running game in college, that both of them are going to show themselves to be assets in the running game.

    My concern is the interior of the line. Gabe Jackson does nothing for us and center remains a mystery. If Lewis struggles at LG again and they for whatever reason won’t move him back to RG, then I think they are going to make a hash of it this year.

    Not taking Creed Humphrey last year was such a missed opportunity.

    • Elmer

      I worry about situations where the running game is ineffective on first and second down, and we end up with a situation on third down where we need 7 or 8 yards for a first down.

      Will the passing game have an answer for that? Or will the offense be putting Dickson and the defense in bad field position situations all too often?

      • Rob Staton

        Do you not equally worry about putting the game in the hands of Lock or Geno and hoping they’ll move the ball on first and second down?

        • Elmer

          Yes, equally if not more so. As you have said, it might get ugly this year. I am hoping that they find a way to have some success this year and am trying to focus on the positive steps they are taking to build for the future.

  21. steele

    Jimmy G has officially asked for and has been cleared by 49ers to seek a trade. With that news, sports fake news is of course blaring ‘JIMMY TO THE SEAHAWKS!!” “He’s better than Drew Lock!” etc.

    I sincerely hope the Hawks stay the course and NOT bother with Jittery G and his panic set shots and frisbee tosses in important games. Let Lock prove himself and look seriously at next offseason for the future star, if Lock doesn’t deliver.

    • Big Mike

      My opinion is that you need not worry. I strongly believe that Pete wants to prove to the world that he can filed a team as good without Wilson as he did with Wilson and will start Geno as a result. And if he doesn’t succeed, the upside is a better draft pick.
      Yes, I do believe he’s that petty.

      • Henry Taylor

        I think thats an extremely uncharitable way to characterise the smart long term team building strategy the team is currently employing at the QB position.

        Couldnt it just be they moved on from Wilson and think this is the better long term play?

        • Big Mike

          Possible. Quite possible it’s both too.
          Just my opinion.

        • no frickin clue

          I think it became clear that Russ was not going to sign an extension. His current contract runs through the 2023 season. So if you’re Pete/John, you had the following options:

          1. Trade him before the 2022 season, where his new team gets him for 2 seasons at a minimum.
          2. Trade him before the 2023 season, where his new team gets him for 1 season at a minimum.
          3. Lose him in free agency before the 2024 season, in which case the Hawks would almost certainly get a 3rd-round pick for him.
          4. Slap the franchise tag on him in 2024, assuming that he would agree to sign the tag. You keep him for one season at a super-high price, and if you decide to re-do it in 2025, the price goes up 20%.
          5. Slap the transition tag on him in 2024 and watch the Vikings make him a fakakta offer we couldn’t afford to match. 🙂

          They also probably assumed that the more time left on the current deal, the greater the haul in return. And so if you’re certain he ain’t coming back, trade him now. Doing so before a 2022 draft with a mediocre set of QB draft prospects was an added bonus since it probably added to the interest in a proven QB, given the alternatives.

          The downside of course was putting up with a terrible, horrible, no-good very-bad 2022 season.

          I also don’t think you judge this season by wins and losses really. I’m looking at how they compete.
          – are they starting younger players to help them get experience, even if it means growing pains?
          – is the offensive line beginning to jell, maybe even put defensive lines on their heels by the 2nd half of the season?
          – are we playing hard even in games that start out like blowout losses?

          This is going to be a fascinating season, I just hope that a 70-year-old coach has the patience for a rebuild even if he’ll never publicly admit that it’s a rebuild.

  22. Gross MaToast

    You know how when your girlfriend gets really dressy in a LBD and heels and says that she’s “just going out with her friends for drinks” and then she doesn’t come back for three days and when she does she’s wearing old yellow sweat pants that you’ve never seen before with a much too large, super ratty Cal Poly rugby t-shirt and Walgreen’s $1.00 flip flops and tells you in passing that she was visiting her sister for the past couple of days and forgot to call as she goes straight to bed at 10:30 AM and you never look up from your bowl of Captain Crunch and sports page because you realized at some point over the past couple of days that maybe this isn’t the healthiest relationship you’re capable of having and any effort you expend toward an attempted resuscitation is better spent on literally any other pursuit and then you leave for a day of golf, return home later with some Mexican takeout and watch Shawshank alone for the 114th time and when you wake up the next morning, there she is all cute and flirty and no further explanations and how can you stay mad and she made waffles, the only thing she knows how to make, and this might really work out because it was so magical once, don’t you remember, and you agree to a trip to Bed, Bath and Beyond for new pillows and plan a little getaway to the coast next weekend and you choose to ignore the little voice screaming at you from the depths of your soul that this is nuts, you’re nuts, there’s simply no possibility that this works and you just say to yourself, yeah, probably not, but, you know, the coast, man?

    That’s the way I feel about the Seahawks with Pete Carroll right now. We know it’s not going to work out, we can almost plot out Pete’s season on graph paper now – the calls, the level of involvement, the quotes, the decisions – but, what if it does? You know, the coast, man. Wouldn’t it be cool if it did?

    So, here we go again.

    Great write up, cha.

    • Huso Liszt

      Funny, that’s how I felt about Russell Wilson.

    • no frickin clue

      That’s the greatest stream of consciousness I’ve seen in a long time. Well done sir.

  23. Bankhawk

    Gross Ma Toast;
    All I can say to that is 😅😂🤣……..
    Nice one, mate!

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