Monday notes: Wilson’s future, K.J. Wright & Jordyn Brooks

Thoughts on Russell Wilson’s form

I’m not going to rehash everything I wrote a few days ago about Wilson and the Seahawks but I think that article is worth another viewing prior to the playoffs.

It was put to Pete Carroll after the 49ers game whether he’s asked Wilson and Brian Schottenheimer to take more ‘calculated risks’, since a flurry of turnovers at mid-season:

“I don’t want to comment too much about that at this point because everybody’s going to try and figure out how to beat us”

So basically, yes. And it’s clear. They are taking fewer shots. The deep-ball to D.K. Metcalf has virtually disappeared. Wilson scored 28 passing touchdowns in the first half of the season compared to 12 in the second half.

They are much more conservative. Carroll believes winning the turnover battle is going to be critical to the success of the team. He can point to the stats to back that up. In games with multiple turnovers this season, the Seahawks are 0-4. They’ve won every game they’ve played with one turnover or no turnovers.

The problem is, you can’t be conservative if the other team doesn’t allow it to happen. If you get behind against a high-powered offense, as we saw in Green Bay last season, you have to chase the game.

That’s not an environment conducive with protecting the football.

So while the idea makes sense — the Seahawks are now playing a brand of ball where they need a certain type of game to happen. It might be harder to have that type of game against Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees or Tom Brady compared to C.J. Beathard, Jared Goff, Sam Darnold, Dwayne Haskins and Colt McCoy.

I stand by what I wrote in the piece last week. I think the way these playoffs play out will very likely have an impact on the relationship between the team and quarterback.

I think Carroll has really reigned in Wilson. He was turning the ball over too much. I suspect Carroll associates that with ‘cooking’ and there won’t be a return to the style of play that saw Wilson put up MVP caliber numbers to start the season.

Pete-ball, it seems, is here to stay.

I think Wilson is rolling with it because he’s a pro and they’re in the playoffs now. They’ve won their last four. If Carroll is right and this brand of football delivers a serious Super Bowl push, he will be validated.

If they lose in the wildcard or divisional around again playing this way and suffer a defeat ala Dallas in 2018, I’m not convinced Wilson will be content. I think that could create an issue. Because while it’s certainly true that Wilson needs to play better — I also think his poor play in recent weeks is indicative of a cautious, perhaps even shackled player who does not look comfortable.

And unless they’re winning titles, I don’t see this brand of football chiming with the brand that is Wilson. Eventually there will come a point where the team and the player view things too differently.

It will pain Wilson to see analysis like this, where he is compared to Baker Mayfield rather than the two names at the top of the list. He wants to be talked about in the same breath as Rodgers, Mahomes and Watson. He wants to be a serious MVP candidate. He wants to play with the freedom those players are offered.

If he’s not getting that — winning is the ultimate and only consolation prize.

So I think the playoffs are big — for Wilson, the Seahawks and their future relationship.

And while I pointed out in my previous piece how a trade in 2021 was most unlikely due to cost — we’re also entering a period in NFL history when who the hell knows what’s going on with the cap? The Saints are a projected $99m over the cap for 2021. The Eagles are $71m over and they’re supposedly going to trade Carson Wentz, taking on a dead cap hit worth tens of millions.

It’s almost as if Covid-19 has broken the salary cap and the league is going to have to come up with solutions to avoid the situation becoming a shambles.

If that shambles remains, however, teams might just do what they want. After all — if the Saints can be $99m over the cap, why can’t every other team? What are the consequences for New Orleans?

It feels like we’re entering an off-season like no other — in more ways than one.

I’m also happy to admit to the speculative nature of both this piece and the previous article. I think the other piece highlights why I think it’s a worthy topic of discussion. I don’t intend to make this a weekly feature of the blog but I do think it’s a conversation point nobody else is really talking about.

Linebackers deserve praise

There are a lot of legendary players from this era of Seahawks football. We’ll all remember Russell Wilson, Marshawn Lynch, Kam Chancellor, Richard Sherman, Doug Baldwin, Bobby Wagner, Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett, Earl Thomas and others.

As mentioned in the podcast yesterday (see below) — I hope K.J. Wright is as fondly remembered as anyone.

He is football perfection. Physical, tough, assignment sound, he makes plays, he leads, he has tremendous character, he’s humble. As a fan he is everything you want in a player.

I can’t imagine a better representation of an organisation. A superior role model.

K.J. Wright has been a fantastic player, a brilliant success story for the Seahawks and he deserves to be remembered as one of the greats.

They might’ve drafted Jordyn Brooks with the intention of potentially replacing Wright next year, given he’s out of contract. I think he needs to be kept. He’s been too good this season. The switch to SAM has been a revelation. He’s achieved a status where he deserves to play for the Seahawks for as long as he wants.

I really hope there’s a deal to be done there. Wright is the third best performer on the defense according to PFF. He’s playing too well to move on.

Equally I think it’s time to acknowledge the progress Jordyn Brooks is making. The typical rookie errors are lessening and the physicality is blossoming — as we saw with his tremendous hit on George Kittle (who was blocking) before making a tackle on Sunday.

Brooks led the team in tackles against the Niners — that’s the second game in a row. He is showing a lot of potential.

I’m still not 100% sure a first round pick on a linebacker of the future was completely the best use of Seattle’s top resource in 2020 — especially with the holes they’re going to need to fill coming up. That shouldn’t reflect on how he is playing though. He’s showing big steps forward and he looks like a player with a bright future.

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  1. Hoggs41

    As I said I believe they are going to have to find a way to have common ground between letting Russ cook and Pete ball. I also dont mind if they want to take less risks down field but Russ constantly is looking down field. If you watch the all-22 video he looks deep frequently. If he can just take that read from being his first one to maybe his fourth one and get the ball out quickly I think we would be better off. If your not going to throw it deep stop looking deep is what I am trying to say. Very much agree with you on KJ and Brooks.

    • GerryG

      There is a massive identity crisis, which is pretty scary because Pete said knowing/understanding who you are and having confidence is the most important factor for being successful in the playoffs this morning on his radio interview.

      There has clearly been a concerted effort to limit the turnovers, yet they 1) still have a massive advantage in pass/run ratio on neutral script plays, 2) still have Russ dropping back and looking deep, with deep routes a lot, teams are just taking it away. So they dont want to be crazy deep ball passing game, yet have only showed a short pass game plan in a few games, and still attempt to pass a lot.

      For year we could always say this team knew what it wanted to be, and had a plan. They even made clutch half time tweaks and were often the 2nd half (including 3rd qtr) team. None of that is true anymore.

    • sgtPeppy

      Watching the Packers and Saints play this weekend made me a little jealous. There are parts of Rodgers’ and Brees’ games that Russ simply doesn’t have. I think the biggest missing piece is simply diagnosing the defense and getting free money when it’s available. This offense has never looked easy, even when it’s going well.

      Exhibit 1: Q2 8:31, 3rd and 4, CHI 10/GB 7. Bear show a cover 0 blitz on 3rd and short, the kind we’ve seen Russell get sacked on time and again. Rodgers is calm. Knows where he’s going before the ball’s even snapped. Backpedals away from the blitz and finds MVS 1v1 on a LB, floats it for an easy 72 yard TD. Easy money.

      Exhibit 2: Q2 2:00, 1st and 10, NO 16/CAR 7. Brees running the two minute drill is a thing of beauty. Carolina sits in a soft zone. Brees takes it and finds Sanders for 9, Cook for 8, Cook for 10. Field goal range with a few shots left to take before half. Automatic points. What stands out about these throws is that they are timing throws to soft spots in the D. It’s the perfect short/intermediate game with a short QB. How many times have we seen Russell squeeze one into Hollister or Olsen this year? Russ is so good when he finds the checkdown consistently against zone, or scrambles against man (like the MIN game). But it seems like our entire short game consists of slants to DK, bubbles to Moore, and outs to the TE. Everyone’s ready for it.

      Don’t get me wrong, Russ is our guy and when he’s on, he can make magic like no one else in the league. But to be consistent, at the level of Brees or Rodgers…it’s year 10 and he just hasn’t shown it. He has no audible game – every time he counts a light box and audibles to a run, the whole D knows what’s happening and stuffs it. He tried to copy Rodgers’ hard count and gets more false starts than free plays.

      Let’s just hope Russ gets hot for 4 more games and we have a shot. If not, it’s not just on Pete, it’s on Russ too.

      • Jonathan Evison

        . . . agree with all of this . . . that said, russ is not gonna learn to diagnose defenses much better between now and saturday, so at the very least i hope schotty can give him a chance by moving the pocket and utilizing more play action. etc . . . it seems like until the play breaks down and russ is playing off the cuff he has already made his mind up where he’s going before the snap . . . it is pretty evident that mike iupati is key to our run game, so let’s hope his return allows us to get a little push and start running between the tackles . . .

  2. pdway

    “Because while it’s certainly true that Wilson needs to play better — I also think his poor play in recent weeks is indicative of a cautious, perhaps even shackled player who does not look comfortable.”

    I see this sentiment from some comments on your last post – and here’s my issue with it. On the one hand, the argument is that RW has so much leverage that he is going to demand a trade this off-season, that he has the stature to demand superstars (and AB), and that he is going to continue to negotiate through media figures, etc – but then at the same time, he is too feeble to make non-conservative throws?

    And this is an all of a sudden occurrence in his 10th year as the starter and the undisputed face of the franchise? It’s not like PC is going to bench Russell Wilson for throwing a pick. I just don’t think it’s the answer, and I think it goes a little too far in finding some external cause for RW’s poor play.

    I don’t claim to have the exact answer either – I do think he has become more tentative since the flurry of INT’s early in the season – but you would think he’d get past that. He’s Russell Wilson for crying out loud – you can’t find five guys in the league who are more established and secure in their role.

    So – I think it’s some combo of being spooked by some bad throws that have led to a loss of confidence, an internal acknowledgement that he has to be more aware of the pass rush b/c his escapability is a level down from previous years, and maybe (b/c it’s tough to see on TV) that the receivers are finding the separation we think they are.

    Anyway, if we were running on 1st and 2nd down all the time – or running against stacked fronts, etc. – then I’d fully buy in, but I just haven’t seen that. What I’ve seen is the most reliable element of our team, in a slump, I don’t have a better word for it.

    • Dani

      Spot on comment. While I am leaning towards while Russ might want a change in HC, it’s more so because of going with an offensive minded HC so they can lead with offense instead of Defense, be more aggressive on downs and going for it. It has less to do with what’s going on this season. If anything, Russ’s play last few weeks has got nothing to do with Pete’s philosophy. They are passing more and Russ is just not comfortable in the short and intermediate passing game. That’s the truth.

  3. rowlandice

    I’d like to see a compromise between Pete Ball and Let Russ Cook. I remember back in the 80’s the 49ers would always script their first 15 plays. They would want to get Rice involved and would run a reverse and a slant or post pass to get him involved early and running hot for the game. I’d like to see the Hawks do the same with Metcalf. ALWAYS get a couple plays to him early in the game including a deep shot or two. The idea would be both to get ahead earlier in the game and to get the opposing defense off the line of scrimmage to allow better running lanes. Use Russ and our receivers to get ahead early the close it out with the running backs. Force the opponent to play catch up then rush the passer and force mistakes/interceptions.

    • Elmer

      … and call it Let Pete Cook. I

  4. AlaskaHawk

    I’m happy that Brooks is starting and performing well. Finally a first round pick we can be proud of. As far as defensive importance as measured by tackling, usually the linebackers and safeties have the most tackles. So I don’t mind a linebacker or any other key player (including cornerback), as long as they perform to their potential.

    As far as the let Russ cook goes, it was during a phase when the defense was porous to say the least. The only reason Pete was able to go conservative is that the defense started to perform better. And so we go back to Pete ball, the offensive non-performance for 2 or 3 quarters where there only goal seems to be wear down the defense and suck up time. Of course that requires some brilliant playing in the 4th quarter, but they been doing that for years now. I see no reason why they can’t string it out at least two more years. Who cares what Russ wants when he is a hired hand? The only way he will get out of it is to force the Seahawks to trade him, or play Pete ball for 2 more years. And since he is making a boat load of money, he will probably play out his contract.

    I noted today a message from Donald about how much the Rams look forward to playing the Seahawks. They even have a shiny new quarterback to play with. Somehow I doubt the Seahawks look on the Rams game as being pleasurable.

    • Mick

      There’s also a video of Chase Young singing he wants Tom Brady. I think this kind of cocky attitude comes back to bite you. I can very well see Brady throwing 4 TDs and I can also very well see the Hawks burn the Rams again.

      I’d say also D.Lewis played above his pick this year, close to first round level. We need more such finds, I don’t know if this one should go to JS. And also Bobby rounds our linebackers to the best ones in the league (I don’t have numbers, just visual impression).

      • AlaskaHawk

        I think offensive guards and centers are there for the picking in the late second round through the fourth. Just need to find one that can stay healthy. Back a few years ago they were trying to find offensive tackles in that range without a lot of luck.

        • Alex H

          Historically, top tier guards can be found in the 3rd-4th round. Top LTs are found in the top 10 of the 1st round. RTs are seemingly now found late 1st. Good offensive linemen generally require a higher pick.

          • Lewis

            Feels like we are also seeing more centers go in round 1 in recent years. Perhaps because teams want an OL upgrade of some kind and the best guards/RTs are going sooner.

  5. Kurt ZUMDIECK


    Super stuff.

    I agree on a LB being a tough sell for a first round draft pick, but the class as a whole is turning out to be one of the most productive and deep the ‘Hawks have had in at least five years.

    I think other things happened that reigned in the Russ Cooks regime. TOs happened because defenses adjusted to the deep ball by keeping a second safety back. Then they even started bracketing DK. Russ had talked about making history with DK and still stares his big target down too many times.

    PC likes going deep, but you have to pound the rock to set it up. He was never really on board with Russ Cooks in the first place – (didn’t really go out and get RW any big weapons, in the draft or FA) but he was willing to lose some early campaign games cuz he sees the NFL season as a war/campaign with each game as a battle, that you can afford to lose early on, as long as you are going the right way at the end of the campaign.

    Basically what happened is that he gave RW enough rope to hang himself, the TOs came, as did the losses: PCs point was made and RW got reeled in.

    PC is a defensive coach who is going to play close game with a ball-control offense. He really wants to line up in the I-formation with two tight ends on first and second down, then run a USC student body right on third down. Then punt. He really wants to win 19-10 or some such low score.

    I agree that things have changed with the great QBs in the league. All the rules and money are spent on these guys

    What the real question is now, since his defense started playing up to snuff, is it enough to actually be a SB quality team?

  6. Lewis

    While I agree the offensively looks tentative, frustratingly so, I feel like you might be reading a bit too much into Pete’s remarks. I don’t think it is the case he has told them not to throw downfield, which you seem to imply here. Pete loves explosive plays. He just wants them to be smart about it. I think they need to scheme a bit more to try and get DK into one on one matchups or otherwise create mismatches. OTOH, if DK wants to be Calvin Johnson great, he’s going to have to learn to beat double teams.

    One thing Russ has done really well in his career is place long balls where defenders can’t reach them. I’d like to see him get back to doing that.

    On a positive note, I think Russ did a much better job of sensing pressure yesterday than he recently had. The sacks were blocking breakdowns he couldn’t have avoided.

    • pdway

      “On a positive note, I think Russ did a much better job of sensing pressure yesterday than he recently had. The sacks were blocking breakdowns he couldn’t have avoided.”

      Noticed that too – his scrambling seemed better/more decisive than in the past few weeks. That was a welcome sight.

    • James Z

      It’s true that Pete loves the explosive plays that come with an Air Coryell type of offense, but if the throws aren’t there primarily because most teams play 2 high safeties now against the S.H.’s and probably will in the playoffs, where’s the intermediate game? Why not more plays that R.W. feels confident and comfortable with? Where are more outside zone runs to widen the field of play?

  7. Chris Wood


    With the recent news now that Schottenheimer is receiving interest from the Jets to be their new HC could it be more probable now that Russ may want to go with him? Russell knows his coaching style, he could perhaps bend schotty to be more pass friendly than run heavy since this may be his 1st time as a HC. It’ll be fun to try to read the tea leaves this off season.

    • Hawkdawg

      Uh, no. Russ doesn’t want to be the QB for a team that will be starting at the bottom.

      • Chris Wood

        I can imagine IF he were traded and IF he did push the Jets to the playoffs, New York City would idolize maybe even more than Seahawk fans, maybe.
        He could finally be “the guy” not someone playing “Pete Ball”. If he had some control over Schotty, I think that could really intrigue him.

        Again these are all hypotheticals, its just interesting that JS was interesting in drafting previous QB’s and he may look at this years as well.

      • Elmer

        Russ to the Jets? Don’t think so. If Schotty goes let’s bring in a really top OC and give them the authority to make the offense into a well-oiled machine.

        • Chris Wood

          So your saying Pete Carroll, the head coach of over 10 years, is going to give a brand new OC control over the offense?

          • Rob Staton

            One thing is for sure, Pete-ball is here to stay.

            • Matt

              If anything, PC is going to double down. He has 4-5 years left – a small reset with a dramatic infusion of draft capital by trading a franchise QB to pick up a younger, cheaper option…can’t tell me that wouldn’t appeal to PC.

              I get frustrated with Pete…but he’s not dumb. He knows the limitations of having a $35M QB when you want to play a certain way.

              • Chris Wood

                Pete isn’t dumb and neither is JS. I’m sure they look at the Patriots on exactly not what to do. Bill Belichick is going to be hurting for a while unless he can grab one of these vet QB’s this offseason.

          • Elmer

            No. I was trying to say what some others are saying using different words – that even within the general framework of what PC wants the offense to be, there must be a middle ground where the offense doesn’t look so ugly and ineffective.

      • Rob Staton

        I wouldn’t rule anything out.

        New York is New York.

        Plus they have a ton of cap room.

        • Matt

          Instantly makes the job much more appealing for a good HC candidate as well. Not to mention, the Jets do have some nice young pieces in critical areas (DL, OL).

          I think people are really underestimating RW’s desire to be historically great. He’s capable of being a “good guy” while absolutely doing whatever he needs to do for himself/his family.

          • Chris Wood

            That’s why I think it’s interesting that Schotty maybe linked to the Jets. He has rapport with Wilson and may do what Wilson wants to get a HC job.

      • Thisthat

        Jets have some young talent and LOTS of draft capital thanks to the Adams trade. Add Russ, draft Najee Harris or Travis Etienne, a top OT or DE end of R1 or couple their 2nd Rounder w our 1st rounder and move up again into the top 15 and get a playmaker for Russ or a running mate on D for Q williams and all the sudden this team has a chance to be competitive maybe? If you think you’re worth a shit as a coach this would be a very enticing job to take. And to Chris Woods comment, NY would love him and his superstar wife like crazy in the Big Apple. Talk about finally being in the elite convo, endorsements, media praise etc and it’s not a crazy job to take at all.

        • Spectator

          in order to get russ, they would have to give up those first round picks…

    • BobbyK

      The Jets aren’t as bad moving forward as people think. I think Becton is going to be the best LT in the NFL in the near future. That’s a nice building block. Aside from the Seahawks game and yesterday, they were quite competitive the last few months of the season. And if you want to improve, the best way to do that is via the draft. Thanks to the Seahawks the Jets have an upcoming draft that looks like this in the first two days:


      They also have the Seahawks #1 pick in 2022.

      That’s what you want/need to get good in a hurry. The cap space they have is nice and could be huge if this off-season becomes as crazy as we think it could. Having that cap space may net them some good players who would normally get a lot more somewhere else with teams having more cap space.

      So as much as people make fun of the Jets – if they hire a decent coaching staff, they could be well on their way to competing more than people think.

      • Rob Staton

        Plus let’s just run with this and speculate that the Jets trade three R1’s to the Seahawks for Wilson, including the #2 pick this year.

        They would still have the following this year:

        R2 (right at the start of R2)

        And next year:


        So they’d be acquiring an elite QB, with picks and massive cap space to spend.

        • Chris Wood

          And trade Sam Darnold to either the Colts or Steelers who really need a younger QB. They could get a High Rd 2 if there was a bidding war.

          • TomLPDX

            Why not include Darnold in the trade for Russ. He might be the perfect Pete-baller for all we know.

            • Chris Wood

              I did think of that and maybe they do.

              But if they keep Jamal , will he want to play behind Darnold again?

            • Rob Staton

              Too many turnovers.

              • Chris Wood

                That’s what I thought.
                Trade Darnold to the Steelers, Colts, Saints and he can sit behind a Vet for one year and hopefully learn.

                He’s still really cheap and has a 5th year option on the table too.

          • Rob Staton

            Good point — so another pick to throw into the mix.

          • Elmer

            Do you feel that Darnold would be a significant upgrade from Mason Rudolph in Pittsburgh? Darnold has more experience because he was thrown into the fire but I don’t know enough about either one to judge upside.

            • Chris Wood

              Neither do I, but as an armchair GM I would say he has a higher ceiling being a 1st round talent. It’s obvious he’s not playing to any of those standards though. That could be a product of his environment or could be his skillset shining through. I do know he had turn over issues in college and they seem to have followed him to the pro’s.

              Regardless, Rudolph was benched for Delvin Hodges last year. That doesn’t speak very well of Rudolph either. And the Stealers may want to move away from Rudolph after the Myles Garrett incident. Both parties seemed to have moved past it with them shaking hands after their previous game but it’ll always be in the back of their minds.

        • John_s

          In this hypothetical, if I can get the #2 plus two more firsts and get 4 years of low cost Zach Wilson, sign me up.

          I would hate to lose the greatest QB in Seattle history, but if RW hypothetically is not happy with the direction of the offense well Zach Wilson could set you up for the next 8-10 years.

          Then with the second first rd pick you can either pick your LT of the future, DL or trade down for more picks.

          • Chris Wood

            You’d have to pick Wilson at #2. There’s so many teams that may pick him if the Seahawks pass him up. Unless you knew 100% that trading down a few spots would still guarantee him.

        • BobbyK

          If the Seahawks got 3 1st rounders from the Jets (including #2) this year, I would do that trade in a heartbeat. And the Seahawks would still start a Wilson at QB next year. And actually have draft picks to build a team.

          • Donovan

            I do this only if Schneider/Pete believe internally that RW will not resign. In that scenario, you make best out of a bad situation. Absent that, you keep RW and fix your other tram issues – which are all solvable, mind you.

            I believe 75% of games come down to better QB/HC combo in a matchup. RW gives you a shot every time out. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

            If he truly wants out, then it’s broke and salvage what you can.

            • GoHawksDani

              But it’s broken. Not RW, but RW+Schotty/PC and this roster.
              They don’t have money or picks for the following 2 years (at least for picks, they’ll have money after next season).
              D. Brown won’t play for much longer. LT is a crucial spot on any team and it’s hard to get a good one.
              They might lose Bobby after 2 years, you’ll have to get a new MLB.
              They don’t have any good proven CBs. Reed seems like the best but he has limitations and he only played a couple of games for them.
              Not sure about Simmons so LG also might be a question mark. Not sure about Pocic so C might also be an issue.
              Shell is OK, but dunno about Ogbuehi so we might need a starter or at least depth.
              Our RBs are a big mystery. What happens with CC? Is Penny our future? Can any of them stay healthy?
              Do we need better TEs or just better playcalling for TEs?
              We’ll likely need a good WR3 (although they love Moore, but for me he’s more of a WR4-5)
              DT depth is awful, and I like Poona, and Reed is OK, and Mone is not awful either none of them is a superstar. We could use a punisher DT like Fletcher Cox and some depth also.
              DEs are what they are. We have depth but aside from Dunlap I don’t see a starter. Mayowa is a nice rotational piece, so is Robinson. Green and Collier can work as depth but I don’t have a ton of trust on Taylor starting anytime soon, so we would need some talent there also.
              LB depth is not great and we might lose KJ in the offseason.
              I like Neal as big nickel or SS depth but don’t know who’d step up if something would happen with Diggs. Blair is not bad but he was hurt multiple times.

              Most of these can be answered in later rounds or with some cheap vets….but this team could use 8 picks between #15 and #45 (1 LT early, 2 CBs in late R1/early R2, 1 MLB in early R2, 1 DT in late R1, 1 TE in late R1/early R2, 1 FS in mid R2, 1 DE in mid/late R1).
              And they’ll likely have ZERO picks in that range in the next two years.
              And they cannot even shop everyone in FA as they have really limited CAP in this offseason and while they have solid CAP for the year after that, they’ll have burning holes too that won’t be filled by the draft as we don’t have any picks…

              So…this team won’t sink in the future. Their roster is too OK for that. But unless Schneider makes some absolutely crazy magic, or they get a defensive and/or offensive guru who makes wonders with little I don’t see any SB win for the next 4-5 years.

              So yeah…for #2 and 2 R1 picks I’d make a gamble…boom or bust, SB or suck for 3-4-5 years. But teams usually suck for a long time because hard to find the next Brees/Brady/Manning. With PeteBall you don’t need guys like these, you just need an OK QB, a badass defense and RB, so striking out first on QB might means 3-5 years of 4-12 and 6-10 seasons but I doubt with this philosophy it’d mean more

              • Duceyq

                Interesting thoughts but what did “Peteball” look like before Russell?

                The Tavaris Jackson’s of the world didn’t do much with a budding elite defense either. Considering how Pete stalked Peyton Manning and overpaid for Flynn I think Pete values the QB position more than you think.

                First off, I think Russ had his flaws but I also think there is a happy medium between let Russ cook or let Russ heat up leftovers. Finding that balance can still happen.

                Seattle was down 16-6 in the 4th and then Seattle went hurry up and in a blink of an eye it was 26-16. I think coming out aggressive with the hurry up or more uptempo like they did early in the season would help.

                They actually now have a good enough defense to absorb a turnover or two if they can get out of the gates fast and put scoreboard pressure on teams.

                • Rob Staton

                  1. They signed Tarvaris Jackson weeks before the season when the lockout ended, with very few realistic alternatives. Having picked late in round one in April, there were barely any options. So they signed a stopgap who was familiar with new offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. Let’s not make out that year-two of a major rebuild, and the performance of Tarvaris Jackson, is indicative of what life has to look like without Russell Wilson.

                  2. I know a lot of people like to say Pete ‘stalked’ Peyton Manning. I used to have a fantastic source and everything he said came true. He said they were never that into Manning. And I believe him 100%. Paying Matt Flynn is barely indicative of any QB value. Seattle took a shot on a free agent QB. Meh. They hardly broke the bank.

                  3. They may well have a good enough defense to absorb a turnover or two but Pete isn’t taking that chance. He spelled it out yesterday — he named the exact stat about their record with multiple turnovers this year. He’s playing not to turn the ball over. And we’ve seen how that has worked in the past.

  8. 12th chuck

    letting russ cook success, is dependent on the run game. early in the season, we had a run game to open up the pass. now, the o is struggling to get the run going, which makes the passing less effective. to be fair, it doesnt help the metcalf has had some ill-timed drops .brown is all but absent the last month or so with a few crucial catches. add the fact that wilson is also struggling as well. if the hawks manage to get by the rams, I dont see them going any further in the playoffs without the ability to establishing the run

    • James Kupihea

      I honestly don’t believe your assessment of the run game early in the season is true. Below is the first 10 weeks. Guess what, the next seven weeks don’t look any better. You got three decent weeks out of rushing attack. Otherwise…pedestrian, basic, decidedly non-BAMF. We need to be critical of this because the priority was first in 2017 to fix the rush, then to fix the pass rush in subsequent seasons. I don’t see that they “fixed” either.

      Week 1: Russ 3-29, Hyde 7-23, Carson 6-21, Homer 3(-1).
      Week 2: Russ 5-39, Carson 17-72, Hyde 5-22
      Week 3: Russ 6-22, Carson 14-64, Hyde 4-14, Homer 2-19
      Week 4: Russ 4-5, Carson 16,80, Dallas 2-8, Homer 4-5
      Week 5: Russ 5-58, Carson 8-52, Homer 3-14
      Week 7: Russ 6-84, Hyde 15-68, Carson 5-34
      Week 8: Russ 6-23, Dallas 18-41
      Week 9: Russ 2-5, Dallas 7-31, Homer 6-16, Collins 2-5
      Week 10: Russ 8-60, Collins 11-43, Dallas 2-8.

      Chris Carson deserves all the respect in the world, but he’s given us 3, 14, 15, and 12 games respectively over the years. His 2018 and 2019 seasons were great, but we had literally no depth, and when Carson went down we exited the playoffs early both years. In short, CC32 can’t do it all by himself, and our run blockers were/are old guys banged up (Fluker and Iupati). I agree with everyone here that says the rushing attack needs fixing up. Pete ball or not, this isn’t going to cut it.

  9. Uncle Bob

    On the matter of the future for RW, there’s another factor (not the only, another) that is in play. Upper level QBs, as Russ undoubtedly is despite some poor play recently, watch what happens elsewhere. It’s much like players at any position seeing the pay scale move significantly for a player they see themselves as the equal of. Next contract they, and their agents, go hard for the big money or demand a trade to where they think their odds are better. Sometimes it works, sometimes not, but each of those guys thinks they’ll win………’s part of their psyche. For QBs this season it’s; “How’s this going to work for Tom?” It was a pretty bold, and not very often occurrence where a OB still playing well moves on by his own choice. If he ends up deep into the playoff cycle, maybe even to the SB, that will embolden other top level QBs and their agents, as well as their “crew” around them. You know they all believe in themselves, and believe they will know how to best choose the team and coaching staff will pave their road to glory…………….they don’t consider being wrong. Not believable? In many other aspects of this game we easily refer to it as a “copycat league”. This isn’t any different.

  10. Mick

    Seems JS is not going anywhere. Thank God.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s too early to say that, IMO.

      Nothing has even been ruled out.

      • Elmer

        Agree, it’s very early days.

        Been wondering if the Hawks will consider giving JS broader personnel authority in order to retain him.

        • Rob Staton

          I don’t think so. I think that is Pete’s treasured aspect of this project.

          But if the Seahawks want JS they could pay him top dollar for a GM. Reportedly they currently aren’t.

          • TomLPDX

            My personal view is that is what is at the root of this. JS wants to be paid while he and Pete are still running the show. Once the team sells, things will change again.

    • dcd2

      I really would like to know who exactly is responsible for which aspects of roster construction. Did John insist on not going over market for Clowney? Was Pete the one who planted his flag and said “Darrell Taylor is the LEO we need, medicals be damned.” Who threw caution and valuation to the wind in getting Adams?

      Some of these moves, I feel like we can tell. Adams has Pete’s fingerprints all over it. John was probably throwing up in his mouth as he got taken behind the woodshed on that deal. The Dunlap deal (and Diggs last year) feels like it was all John to me. It feels like if John can get a deal done for someone at a day 3 pick or later price, he doesn’t need to clear it with Pete. Maybe Jimmy Graham and Percy Harvin were mostly John’s idea and now he’s relegated to the smaller deals and haggling over price once Pete decides who he wants?

      I’m sure there is discussion, back and forth etc. I just wonder how many decisions get incorrectly credited or blamed on either Pete or John without us ever knowing.

      For example, I credit John with getting would-be castoff’s (Lane, Hollister, Diggs, Dunbar, Dunlap, Reed etc.) for almost nothing. I also think he is very good at working trade downs on draft day and acquiring more picks. On the other hand, he seems to be out of touch with what constitutes a 1st round talent, and most (all?) of the draft day misses of the last half decade, I put on him.

  11. Big Mike

    Great stuff re: KJ Rob. I believe he’s our LB that should’ve been named to the Pro Bowl. Bobby’s been fine but KJ’s been outstanding. He was never a burner and has always had some difficulties in coverage but kudos to the coaching staff for moving him and reshaping his role. What just totally jumps out to me is his anticipation of what the offense is doing. He’s made plays numerous times this year because either through film study, experience or more likely the combo of the two he was on a guy as they were catching the ball or he was in the passing lane knocking down a throw or etc. To me he’s become the wily old vet that is just always in the right place at the right time making a play. He may be the guy we least could afford to lose on the D. No jinx!

    • pdway

      He’s really been great. totally agree w your take above.

    • TomLPDX

      I also agree with you Big Mike. Moving KJ to SAM has been a rebirth for him this year. He doesn’t have to be the fastest LB on the field and instead needs to diagnose and attack based on his instincts, which, in KJ’s case, are superb! I have really enjoyed watching KJ this entire season and hope they offer him another 2 yr contract at the appropriate salary to keep him here and not playing for anyone else. He definitely make Bobby look good too!!! 🙂

  12. Gohawks5151

    I’ve seen some more of the Russ being shackled is affecting his play talk and I’m just not sure I buy it. He has been in this scheme long enough that he knows where he can take his shots to be successful. Just last year he had a low key MVP year with about the same yards, less touchdowns better on the picks. He faded as the season went along last year too. I think that he may have more freedom than he uses at the line but doesn’t use it. He has Aaron Rodgers-like sway if he chooses to use it, but may not want to deal with the consequences.

    I think that the offense has less an identity crisis and more of a lack of adaptability. This offense can do it all but the timing and savvy to change the game plan and flow is not there. The Giants game was the perfect example. They said we thought we could get over the top of them but when the Giants came out looking to take that away they just kept chucking it deep anyways. Where’s the run or short passing game? Russ is part of the problem too here. He should know that those deep shots need to be set up with the run or quick pass game. Got too greedy.

  13. Ryan Purcell

    We have not really been able to make teams sell out to stop the run. That seems to be the biggest problem. Early in the season teams played us like we were going to run the ball all the time and that’s when Russell was killing it. They dropped their safeties deep and we have not been able to make teams pay with a dominate run game. And show me a quarterback that doesn’t need a run game. I’m hoping it is because of the fronts we have been facing and the fact that we are down 2 starters.

  14. Simon McInnes

    I have sort of resigned myself to losing two or three players who we would rather keep for for football reasons but salary cap needs prevail, unless there is a mass contract do-over with the highest earners. KJ Wright and Jarran Reed are pair that spring to mind. And maybe Geno Smith if the FO can find a rookie QB they trust to be back-up. Interested to hear if anyone has any rationale that points to different players.

  15. Big Mike

    Elway kicking himself upstairs and hiring a GM to take over day to day roster building, etc.

    • cha

      I think that’s what is called in the corporate world as “failing upward.”

      • Big Mike

        Oh yeah. 😀
        I believe the ownership situation is still in flux and he’s running the show. I do believe he has the best interest of the team in his heart but he’s definitely struggled filling the QB position since Peyton retired. Moving himself up likely takes most of heat off himself when new ownership is in place and probably keeps him employed longer.

  16. icb12

    If Russ wanted to keep cooking, then he should have stopped burning the food.

    Petes right. You cannot win in this league consistently if you turn the ball over too often. It’s not possible, will not happen. Winning the turnover battle is as big an indicator of wins as anything else out there.

    Obviously it’s not ALL on Russ’ shoulders. But he’s the head cook. Credit when the food is stellar, blame when it’s awful. It’s pretty simple to me, when you tell your boss that you want to change his burger truck into an ice cream truck specializing in baked alaska– and then you can’t consistently make baked alaska.. well the boss is going to tell you to go back to flipping burgers.

    I’m sure theres some middle ground to be had. For sure the pendulum may have swung too far back. Deep fried ice cream sandwiches or something.

    I’m hungry.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s undoubtedly true that Wilson played poorly mid-season.

      But you could also argue he was under intense pressure to deliver points. The defense was on a historically bad pace. The running game collapsed when the two main RB’s got hurt.

      He was unquestionably pressing. The insane pick against LA being a classic example.

      The Seahawks were a 53 man roster relying on one man.

      That’s not conducive to success, however you want to play.

      • BruceN

        Spot on. With no D an no running game he was pressing and took too many chances. May be Pete reined him in or maybe his confidence took a hit. Or both. The final outcome is he’s become risk averse and is throwing without his usual confidence (doesn’t see the field well, misses open receivers and is off on his throws). Let’s hope he snaps out of it in time..

  17. BobbyK

    I was upset when the Seahawks passed on Jonathan Taylor for Brooks. While I would still have rather drafted Taylor, I can’t complain about the Brooks pick.

    Brooks looks to be blossoming with a bright career in front of him. I never felt this good about Penny, Ifedi, Carpenter, or Collier at this stage in their rookie years as I do with Brooks. Bottom line for me is getting a good football player and it appears Brooks is just that.

    • Gohawks5151

      Thank god Brooks is good. We don’t need another, “Should have drafted Watt” situation. 😉

      • BobbyK

        Trust me… I don’t want anymore Watt misses either! That sucks! Never would have needed a bum like Collier or even have been forced to go for Darrell Taylor this past year. The trickle down of the Malik McDowell disaster was and continues to be terrible for this team.

  18. Roger Davis

    Rob, and Friends

    In the previous thread I took notice of DangeRuss’ recent inaccuracies when firing the long bomb.

    However, there may be a dog chases tail, tail chases dog element to this story that I underestimated. Early in the season the skies opened and Russ unleashed the Kraken. With success. Over time his interceptions began to climb alarmingly. Over time, the Kraken became more kitten like. Pete put the dog and ponies in the barn and went back to Pete Ball. Russ had little evidence to persuade Pete otherwise.

    In the game Sunday Russ fired (perhaps even more than) several long(ish) bombs, none of which found the the target. Several of which missed embarrassingly. A long, off distance and off line throw, when Lockett was open springs to mind.

    IM(H)O had Russ been more accurate this game may have been a win by a reasonable amount.

    My conclusion going forward; assuming the defense continues to play like every second is a championship second, I hereby predict that Russ will find the range and the Rams will be carved up and served on shish ke.bab forks. Although, as I’m sure most of you know, the “fork” was redundant because that’s what shish means…

    • Volume12

      Would be nice if he could consistently get to the top of his drops.

    • AlaskaHawk

      Donald is planning on giving Russ a personal greeting and many huge hugs. Good luck waiting for the long route to open up.

      • Gohawks5151

        Gotta move the pocket. Rollouts, Boots etc. Screens too

        • Big Mike

          Did Seattle throw a single damned screen vs. SF?

          • neil

            As I see it, the Hawks never run a traditional screen pass. Where the guards don’t block they pull and get out in front of the ball carrier. The Hawks always count on tight ends and receivers to black. Probably because our linemen are too slow to get out there.

  19. Lewis

    Thoughts on bringing in Anthony Lynn as OC/assistant HC if he doesn’t immediately get another HC opportunity?

    • Rob Staton

      It seems Lynn is universally liked and seen as one of the good guys in the league.

      I’m just not sure if that means he’s necessarily worthy of an OC/AHC role. What exactly have we seen in his LA stint to think that would be a great move?

      • Lewis

        I don’t know much specific about his tenure there, but we have talked about wanting to have someone on the staff that would bring a different voice to the table. There are many, many coaches that didn’t do so hot in their first HC stint, Pete included. I was thinking that having the head coaching experience might be valuable as someone Pete could lean on a little. Likewise it could be beneficial for Lynn to work under someone that has been so successful. Likewise, I thought his background as a running back and running game coordinator would be a positive.

    • Chris Wood

      He’s kind of like KNJ and what Rob referenced. It’s great to be liked and respected but you have to offer something to the table too. I don’t think he has much to offer, but then again I don’t watch any Charger games so I may be ignorant.

    • Rohan Raman

      He’s overseen some damn good run games as an OC and has led some explosive Bills and Chargers passing games. He is also a great guy. But, IMO, his overall style of offense isn’t really condusive as he is at his best with good running games. Look at the teams running through the league now. Outside of Baltimore, Tennessee (and to a much lesser extent, Cleveland), the league is relying on innovation through the air with the run as a complement. And Tennesee and Cleveland are somewhat hamstrung by the fact that they cannot punish good defenses through the air. I think the right move for the hawks would be to actually try an offense that matches and complements their elite QB’s overall level of play.

      Personally, my dream hire for OC would be Mike Kafka (Chiefs QB coach). Andy Reid disciple, made Mahomes an elite QB and has experiencing leading a pass-first offense that the Seahawks could use while being able to draw upon Pete’s experience in facilitating a good ground game. Not sure you can ask for much more.

      • Lewis

        That’s certainly an offense that knows how to incorporate a variety of different weapons effectively.

        • Rohan Raman

          They do seem to be above average at it, yeah 🙂

          • Lewis

            Ofc, it is likely that the Chiefs are going to need a new OC, since Eric “sleeping with” Bieniemy is interviewing for at least three HC jobs. If he does get an HC job, there’s every chance Kafka gets promoted with the chiefs to maintain some continuity.

  20. Alexander Higgins

    Rob: thank you for writing a great tribute to one of the unsung heroes of the Hawks, KJ Wright. As for the RW situation, I’d like to see Russ take a few more chances this week. See if DK can make a play on a 50/50 ball downfield. I don’t see the Hawks beating the Saints or Packers by scoring 24 points. We’re going to need to score 30. Our defense is better, but it still isn’t great.

  21. Sean

    I am not sure I buy the idea that the biggest problem with Wilson is that he is somehow playing overly safe, conservative football. He has been truly outstanding over his career at deep ball accuracy. The last couple months, his deep balls seem really poorly thrown, but they don’t seem to me to be safer throws, just inaccurate ones. Just plain misses.

    Throwing deep less often or only throwing to wide open guys are signs of being very conservative. But deciding to throw deep and just missing (not necessarily missing in a safer direction) seems different. Niggling injury? Am I totally off base here?

    • Rob Staton

      I am not sure I buy the idea that the biggest problem with Wilson is that he is somehow playing overly safe, conservative football.

      I think Pete Carroll has reigned the offense in overall and is making a big point on not turning the ball over. That is creating a conservative element to the offense.

      He has been truly outstanding over his career at deep ball accuracy. The last couple months, his deep balls seem really poorly thrown, but they don’t seem to me to be safer throws, just inaccurate ones. Just plain misses.

      This is true. But I also wonder how much this is because he’s somewhat shackled playing within an offense where the main mantra is don’t turn the ball over. That surely impacts your accuracy if you’re throwing deep and trying not to make an interception.

      Throwing deep less often or only throwing to wide open guys are signs of being very conservative. But deciding to throw deep and just missing (not necessarily missing in a safer direction) seems different. Niggling injury? Am I totally off base here?

      I haven’t seen any numbers but my sense is that they have thrown deep less it’s just we’re noticing the misses because the explosive plays just aren’t really there at the moment. Certainly they’re not putting the ball in harms way much at all.

      • Sean Gross

        I think you are right that they are throwing deep less often now than during the first part of the season when the Cooking was going on, or the subsequent few weeks when cooking turned bad. What has really caught my attention is that when Russel does throw deep, it just doesn’t look less likely to be intercepted…it just looks really inaccurate. He has missed some wide open receivers deep in a few games, which seemed extremely rare before this recent downturn. (Although I agree that in general, there have not been a lot of open receivers deep as defenses have adjusted.)

        I think in earlier years Russell has shown a tendency only to target receivers that are pretty open (I think the stat is the average separation distance from the nearest defender)…he has had a career of making pretty conservative choices who to target AND being accurate when he does, so that he has been able to throw deep safely…he has not been a ‘gunslinger’ like Fitzmagic, Winston, or Favre that would throw a lot of long interceptions mixed in with their spectacular TDs. So I think that until this bad run in the middle of this year, his deep passing has not been a big turnover risk.

        It seems to me that if the defense continues to play decently, and the offensive playcalling was essentially the same as the last month, but Russell was hitting his deep passes at the same rate he has over his career (pre-2020 cooking), even if he took very few deep passes, then we’d be plenty competitive in the playoffs. I think that would be something like Pete-ball but a more effective version of it than we’ve seen the last month. I am NOT saying that the playcalling is great right now, but that if Russell hit a few deep balls a game, the team could be good enough to go to the SB.

  22. Ashish

    Pete owns the offense after series of turn over after Bills game. Scotty and Russ lost their freedom once turn over number were unacceptable.
    The part i don’t undertstand is you can always try short/medium throws why always shoot for the Moon. Now defense know what you are looking for and have plan to cover. Why don’t try run game and short throws to setup big one.

    • Tree

      KJ’s move to SLB have been so good for him and the team. To me he was a weakness last year and early this on certain plays where speed was required but I was dead wrong to think we should move on in the off-season for pass rush (if we signed Clowney we may have had to). Brooks and Jamal are the type of fast and physical run defenders you need to win the run-oriented NFC west.

  23. Beastmode602

    Rob imho, you by far have the best Seahawks blog around. I have never missed an article it seems a decade. You keep it real, ask the real questions, and you don’t back down from anybody. Respect to your time and efforts! You truly are a blessing to the Seahawks community. I can’t wait till draft season, and I’m sure I will be sharing your thoughts and opinions with my family and friends as usual. #goseahawksdraftblog!

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks 👍🏻

  24. Denver Hawker

    In all 4 losses this year, the Hawks lost the turnover margin. This is clearly the emphasis of Pete-ball.

    I used to think it was about controlling time of possession, sustain long drives to limit opponent possessions, give up the underneath stuff, etc. Hawks only won TOP in 9 games this year. In fact, they lost TOP in the last 3 straight games, but won the turnover margin in each of those.

    They’ve been lucky to play a slog of bad QBs down the final stretch, will need more luck to get past Brees and Rodgers who don’t turn the ball over as easily.

  25. charlietheunicorn

    NFCE Hate is Real

    “Joe Judge reacts to Philadelphia Eagles’ effort on SNF, says New York Giants will never ‘disrespect the game’ ”

    Oh this will be fun to watch in the 2021 Season.

    • TomLPDX

      I used to hate the Eagles when Buddy Ryan was the coach. Those were the days!!! 😉

      • charlietheunicorn

        Ron Rivera on beating Nate Sudfeld-led Eagles: ‘I’m not apologizing for winning’

        • TomLPDX

          I love Ron. I envision him coming to coach the Seahawks when Pete is done…would love that. Dude is a class act from top to bottom.

          • charlietheunicorn

            Ron’s last gig will be in Washington. He is already turning them around and won’t leave for at least 7 years… and perhaps 1 SB win.

  26. charlietheunicorn

    How about the Seahawks offense playing possum? Acting like they are out of sorts and unable to put major points up on teams….. but they then will unleash the beast in the playoffs… take the handcuffs off… return closer to the week1-5 offense and not the 14-16 offense.

    Ok, I know, not likely, but fun to think about. 🙂

  27. charlietheunicorn

    There was a joke on the radio about how the cardboard cutouts in the stands were equipped to boo the home team when they made mistakes… they also had “objects” on mini catapults to toss objects onto the field.

    • charlietheunicorn

      typical eagles love for the home team 😀

    • TomLPDX

      That’s too funny. I can see it actually! Remote-control catapults

  28. TomLPDX

    Interesting…Chargers want to talk to Jason Garrett

    I personally like Jason and think he is a good coach…(ducks head to avoid rotten fruit and veggies thrown in my general direction)

    • Rohan Raman

      I am genuinely confused. Do the Chargers think that the Cowboys collapsing was because Garrett left? Their 2020 season is really more indicative of McCarthy’s “coaching” than Garrett’s “offensive genius”.

  29. Denver Hawker

    Damien Lewis on PFF All-Rookie team:

    Other blog favorites and a few I didn’t recognize. Tampa hit nicely on Wirfs and Winfield.

    • Rob Staton

      Lots of players we talked an awful lot about there…

    • BobbyK

      If there was a redraft, I would take Becton with the 3rd overall pick and yet he didn’t make the all-rookie team.

      • Denver Hawker

        Beckon looks good, Wirfs played better this year. Wirfs played over 1000 snaps (300 more than Becton) and only gave up one sack. He’s a beast.

  30. John

    Interesting tweet…

    • John

      So I think he’s referring to Omar Khan being the runner up to John Schneider in 2010 for.

  31. charlietheunicorn

    The Lions were linked to JS….. here is what Judy Battista ( called the situation:

    “This is not a shot at the Lions, because if they get the right people — they need a general manager and a coach — and they win, they will probably get statues next to the fist that is the monument to Joe Louis in Motown.”



    Rob, I listen to your podcast more for the aphorisms. For example: “Adams sat there with a face like a wet weekend for the rest of the game.” I almost fell off the couch. I am totally stealing that – too funny!

    • Rob Staton


  33. McZ

    Agree on reducing turnovers, but… watching this very last Niners game, the “reigned-in” Wilson offense played like crap for the better part of three quarters. The two game-changing TDs were “cooking” Russ, plain and simple.

    I think, the problem we are chasing is a lack of analysis, required to create a proper game plan, and preparation.

  34. GoHawksDani

    For Russ: I think he thinks too highly of himself. He wasn’t shackled when he made a ton of errors. He just has limitations. Limitations in the quick middle passing game. In reading defenses, blitzes, etc. Bad thinking process about wanting to throw the deep ball (maybe that’s also on PC+Schotty). Cooking can only happen when the short and middle passing game is equally great. It can only happen with a good OC who can scheme WRs open quick. With great TEs and catching RBs.
    Not sure Russ could cook for a long time in most organizations. He’d need either an OC who can roll it like a college coach (ton of movement in the backfield before and after snap to eliminate pressure, and be really creative) or an A+++ OL with great supporting cast (RB, TE, FB, WR).
    Mahomes can cook because Reid is amazing. He has Kelce, Hill, CEH, and rest of the WR group is also pretty good and their OL is solid also.
    Brady was able to cook because good offensive playcall and ton of short routes, checkdowns. Brees almost always played with a top3 WR with ton of outlets like Kamara, or his TEs. They also pushed running (with Ingram, Kamara, etc).
    As it seems hard for Russ to do the quick, short passing game (at least middle of the field), he’d need a really good OC and some changes for the roster (better OL, TEs, catching RB, maybe a lightning quick WR for screens, sweeps, quick dumpoffs that can turn into 8-15 yard gains).
    So I’m not sure Russ will ever succeed as a cooking QB anywhere. But I also think he’ll wanna do that.
    And that is bad.
    I have huge doubts about SEA winning SB this year. If they lose in the PO somewhere doing PeteBall, and Russ becomes salty I’m afraid PC will feel he obliged doing the cooking for Russ. And it won’t work long term. Not unless they change a ton of things (FO, roster-wise, mentality) and I feel they won’t be able to do that.

  35. Sea Mode

    Mike Tannenbaum

    Here is a current summary of the NFL teams with a head coaching vacancy, their approx. 2021 cap and their upcoming draft picks:

  36. Sea Mode

    Could one dare to think that PC/JS made the Adams trade to go all in this year knowing that they plan to trade RW to the Jets and recoup picks, including a year where the #2 pick would allow you to get a talented, mobile QB like Zach Wilson or Justin Fields?

    And to further push the theory, is this why the Jets management allowed their team to win and fail to lock up the #1 pick?

    And now the Jets are linked to Schotty after seeing what he and Russ can do together in the first half of the season…?

    I mean, they have always been one for bold trades but dang, actually planning that out and going through with it would take some balls.

    • GoHawksDani

      I’d be pretty mad if they had that deal in the down low and they won those games robbing #1 pick from the Hawks lol.
      Feels a bit like conspiracy theory to me, and I know it would be crazy risky, but maaaaaan I’d be excited to see what happens next (unlike nowadays, I feel I shouldn’t even watch Hawks games to know that either offense or the D will struggle badly, and the other unit will just bail out the team enough to win an unnecessarily close game against a mediocre team, and nonetheless I’ll be disappointed in them as they didn’t play with energy, heart and soul…and as for the seasons usually between 10-6 and 12-4 with zero or one playoff wins…it’s just too predictable to be interesting :-/)
      So yeah…as for an excitement/being interested in the game standpoint I really root for this to happen. If we get burnt then it is what it is, but you have to risk it to get the biscuit

  37. GoHawksDani

    As for the LBs…
    I love that KJ is proving me wrong. I liked him in the LoB era. After that, I heavily criticised him a lot. He was totally lost in coverage, almost chasing guys, missing some tackles. And while I wouldn’t dare give him 1 on 1 coverage duty against anyone, he’s an amazing zone read-n-react guy. He’s probably the best in the league against screens, and he played superbly. If I could choose to keep him or Bobby for the same price I’d keep KJ. He turned the corner, and plays amazing, so kudos to him.
    As for Jordyn. I still hate the draft move to pick him. They could’ve picked a solid LB probably in the year before or this year around round 2-3 (yeah they picked Cody 😀 but that doesn’t count). BUT he plays like a star. He sniffed that 4th and goal and hit the guy, he made plays against the niners too. He’ll be a quality starter. So I love that he is on the team…but I’d be much happier if he’d be a 2nd or 3rd round pick (or if they managed to offseason better so we wouldn’t have other major holes).

    And Bobby…oh man…I love the guy, he was THE best MLB. He is still mostly OK, sometimes amazing, a few times awful. He might do too much, might try too hard…don’t know. But he is not worth his salary. I hope they either try to extend him to make his contract more team friendly (17m and 20m is absolutely ridiculous. Maybe a +3 year deal that could look either like: 10m (10m gtd) – 14m (7m gtd) – 18m (2,5m gtd) – 22m (2m gtd) – 24m (0 gtd) or 10m (10gtd) – 12m (7m gtd) – 14m (6m gtd) – 16m (5m gtd) – 18m (5m gtd). So a solid apy with out after 4 years and low gtd in the last 3 or take an APY paycut but get good gtds
    Or I’d be OK trying to trade him if we can get an R1 for him. That would be +10m for the cap if I understand correctly and a much needed round 1 pick.

    Honorary mention: Cody Barton. He is definitely a bust for an R3 LB, but he’s balling on ST. I feel like 50-60% of the tackles with kickoffs/punts done by him. And he hits hard. So while not sure he can ever be a starter or at least rotational piece for the LBs he contribute in some ways which is good

    • Big Mike

      Barton appears to be our best ST guy but a 3rd rounder for that is way too rich especially iirc we traded up to make the pick. If he were a 5th rounder you’d be pleased as punch.

  38. Sea Mode

    I think PC is convinced to the death of his 12-0 record when winning the turnover battle and 0-4 when losing it. (that’s accurate this season, right?)

    He also seems to be convinced that the only time to attack is when the opposing defense is “tired” in the 4th quarter. (Funnily enough, our offense hasn’t even stayed on the field long enough the past few weeks to really make this a factor IMO)

    The way he’s mocking media members for showing concern and asking fair questions about our lethargic offense during the first three quarters is worrisome.

    He appears to be ready to take his philosophy to the grave with him. If we as fans are concerned about this, imagine what JS, RW, or Schotty think about it.

    IMO, PC is running a serious risk of being left high and dry by everyone unless he agrees to give up some power and adapt a bit. Especially if, as Rob has been saying, this strategy gets exposed against better offenses/QBs in the playoffs.

    • Big Mike

      Classic case of someone with absolute power being pissed off because someone dared to question their decision making. “Worrisome” indeed.
      It would/will be interesting how Pete does if Wilson forces his way out of Seattle.

    • Matt

      I trust Pete’s hubris regarding his defense.
      I have ZERO trust in Pete’s hubris regarding his offense. None.

      I think Pete falls for correlation over causation way too much. He’s not wrong about the turnover battle. The problem is, it’s like he’s willing to sacrifice all offensive output in the name of never turning the ball over.

      I’ve said it before, the #1 goal of a coaching staff should be maximizing the margin of error in which a team can operate. Pete does not believe in that at all. I admire his conviction, but at some point conviction becomes delusion. He desperately wants to coach as if he has the LOB, not the team he actually has.

    • dcd2

      Well said. The game plan as it seems to stand is, don’t blow the game for 2-3 quarters and then evaluate what level of risk to take in the 4th.

      This is part of why we never put anyone away. We take the bare minimum amount of risk, especially with a lead. 3rd and 3 with a 6 point lead in the 4th quarter? Run. 4th and inches on opponent 45, next play? Try hard count to draw them offside, then punt.

      The counter of course, is that it has been working. As much as I loathe the approach at times, I like it more than losing games.

  39. Chase

    Anyone have a link to the Brooks hit on Kittle Rob mentioned?

      • Henry Taylor

        I love that

      • Mick

        That’s the kind of move Kam would have made.

      • Ashish

        Watch end zone view, wow.

    • Gary

      I found it interesting to note that Brooks lined up as the MLB, and Bobby was lined up outside to his right. What a play though!

  40. Matty

    Luv this article and the comments.
    It’s fired me up about the hypothetical s in the playoffs and off-season/draft regards Wilson / Adams / Kj etc

  41. L80

    I called for Seattle to draft a speedy LB to combat our NFCW rivals, who like to get to the edge in a hurry. Brooks has mostly provided that and is now becoming a pro. It’s a joy to watch and I wouldn’t trade that pick for any other at this point. His ceiling is huge.

    KJ has been a steady pro from Day one. That hit he put on the FB was a thing of beauty.

  42. UkAlex6674

    Even though Russ has clearly been reigned in by PC, I think that flurry of offense – and in particular that superb Lockett TD in the corner – served as a timely reminder that he does have the skills to win tight games.

    • Rob Staton

      He certainly has the skills to win tight games.

      But Russell isn’t playing very well at the moment, some might say that’s an understatement, and the style of offense is increasingly opposed to the style he reported demanded the team play via ultimatum before the season began.

      So there’s an interesting dynamic going on here.

      • Ashish

        Atleast we have all ingredients in kitchen for good offense. Sorry not interested in cooking stuff.

        Good game planning will do the trick on offense. I don’t like when hawks comes out with plan A and stick to it for 3 and 1/2 quarters even if does not work. I think they should watch first 5 games. Short pass, intermediate pass, screen, run game and this all will give you opportunity for deep ball. Just don’t get hang on to deep ball.
        Ability to understand something is not working in offense soon and then move to plan B, C will be critical. So hawks fans we have seen this for long time. Remember the play off game against Panther we were like 3 or 4 score down at half time we storm back in second half just to be short. Please work on this PC/Scothy/Russel

  43. Denver Hawker

    Question for the blog community: is this season a success?

    If the answer is not yet, what would they need to do in the playoffs to get to yes.

    For me, it’s making the NFC championship game. Losing at GB would still be respectable this year.

    • Rob Staton

      Making the NFC Championship game would progress and therefore success IMO.

      • Big Mike


    • Sea Mode

      Honestly, as long we put up a good fight, I don’t care if we get out-played by a good team, or the ball just doesn’t bounce our way. As long as we don’t out-play ourselves (possibly with some blatant help from the refs at crucial times), I’d be happy.

      I feel that’s a lot to ask for at this point given our recent offensive “performances”. Sure hope they were just “guarding the playbook” for the playoffs, but it seems like pretty wishful thinking at this point given the recent PC pressers.

      • Lewis

        > Honestly, as long we put up a good fight, I don’t care if we get out-played by a good team

        Exactly how I feel. I don’t mind losing if they play well in the process and just get beat by a better team vs wasting their potential.

    • Sean

      NFC championship game would be a success.

      I might also feel like it was a moderate success if we get to round 2 and played well but lost to a high performing Saints or Bucs team. In that scenario, we’d have won the division, beat the Rams twice, and been competitive with a very good team led by a HOF QB. I would not consider it a success to beat the Rams and then play poorly and lose in round 2.

      To me it is not quite as important to me how far we go in the playoffs, but that we compete like a smart team that gets the most out of its players talents. That means not losing because we have been outschemed, made bad time management decisions, committed a ton of penalties, or asked our players to play to their weaknesses instead of strengths.

  44. Hawks_Gui

    The runner-up for the Jets’ and Seahawks’ GM jobs, one of Pittsburgh‘s top execs would be a win for the Texans. From Adam Schefter

    The Tweet is about Omar Khan interview with the Texans

    A little strange including the Seahawks on this….

    • Rohan Raman

      Khan was interviewed during the 2010 szn, when Caroll came in and they needed a new GM.

  45. Big Mike

    One benefit of playing on Saturday instead of Sunday is that there’s only a 20% chance of rain Saturday in Seattle and “showers at times” on Sunday.

  46. Happy Hawk

    Just from a dollars and cents point of view why would ownership want to devalue the worth of the franchise by trading its best player before consummating a purchase of the Seahawks? Just doesn’t make sense to me. In addition why would a potential buyer be interested in a “lesser” team? I am obviously no expert but people with a lot of money like to make more money not less.

    • cha

      Frees up payroll and cash flow. Which some owners consider very important. Not all, but some.

      When a player signs a contract, the guaranteed portion has to be put into some kind of escrow account to assure they get paid. So these mega contracts tie up a lot of working capital for teams.

      Also gives them more operational control, as they’re not tied to huge contracts and can shape the team the way they want.

      • Big Mike

        Kevin Stefanski head coach of the Browns and all pro right guard Joel Bitonio (a guy Rob loved when he was drafted btw) are out for Cleveland this weekend because of Covid 19. Get to your nearest wagering function and put money on the stealers now before the line moves.

    • Rob Staton

      I’m pretty sure the ‘value’ of the franchise is not going to shrink simply because Russell Wilson isn’t on the team any more.

  47. Big Mike

    Sorry, dropped in wrong thread.

  48. Sea Mode

    I know things can change quickly on the business side in the NFL, but one factor we may not have asked regarding a hypothetical Russ trade to the Jets since he has the veto power in his contract: sure, the NYC spotlight would be great and all, but would he really sign off on that trade and swap tossing to DK and Tyler, whom he called “arguably two of the best receivers in the game” for starting from page 1 with [checks notes] Mims and Perriman?

    Sure, saying he wants to be the greatest QB/WR duo ever with DK and that he shares mind-meld with Tyler is just something one can say and doesn’t necessarily mean anything, but still, that’s quite a downgrade for his career aspirations.

  49. drrew76

    Final DVOA numbers are out:

    For all the hand wringing, Seahawks come in at 5th.

    Offensive rank is 6th. Defensive rank is 16th. Special Teams is 3rd.

    • Rob Staton

      I think it’s pretty lame to reduce the relevant and valid points people have made, often fleshed out with decent evidence, to ‘hand wringing’.

      I’d also argue that while that DVOA mark looks good, the defense certainly wasn’t playing at a #16 level in the first half of the season and I would argue the offense is nowhere near the #6 best in the league currently.

      • millhouse-serbia

        From week 10-17 both, defense and offense, are 10th in DVOA.

        • Rob Staton

          I don’t feel like I’ve watched anything close to a top-10 offense.

          • OP_Chillin

            The reason the DVOA for the offense is so high this stretch is because they faced a slate of tough DVOA defenses.

            • Rob Staton

              Which kind of speaks to the lack of nuance sometimes with these things.

              I’m a big fan of DVOA. But I refuse to accept that Seattle’s actually played at a top-10 level of offense for the last few weeks, they’ve just faced a bunch of great defenses.

              They’ve been poor. Wilson has been especially poor. They’ve not adjusted in certain games (Giants) and they’ve gone into big slumps (Washington, Niners). They looked downright awful for three quarters on Sunday.

      • drrew76

        The site has leaned negative the entire year – which is your right, as it’s your website, and you can write about whatever you feel like.

        I didn’t take any direct shots at anyone, I just pointed out that in this one specific value stat, despite the overall negative tone, the Seahawks did pretty well. Not perfect, and the season isn’t over, but pretty damn well.

        The DVOA numbers match up with the empirical evidence of a division championship and #3 seed.

        • Rob Staton

          You specifically referenced hand-wringing and I took issue with that. It’s not hand-wringing to discuss in detail the clear and obvious issues the defense faced early in the season or the recent offensive struggles. That’s simply discussing what has happened.

          And whatever the final DVOA numbers say — legitimate concerns have been raised at various points in the season (and during the last off-season).

          This site has not ‘leaned negative’ either. I’ve offered my opinion and whenever I’ve criticised anything, I’ve always backed up my arguments in depth. You or others don’t have to agree but every point was fair to be made. When you use words like ‘hand-wringing’ and ‘lean negative’ you’re basically just finding a new way to avoid having to address the points by undermining. But by now I’m not surprised. I’ve seen too much of it to be surprised.

          It’s easy to imply deliberate negativity as a means to dismiss. It’s much harder to actually address the points and engage.

          I think this video from Jordan Peterson kind of sums it up, albeit on a much, much smaller scale. It’s easier to insult and undermine so that none of your arguments ever have to be taken seriously.

  50. cha

    Question: Can anyone recall the Seahwaks running that jumbo 3 TE package this season even once? The one with Fant that gave them a lot of creative options?

    I can’t.

    I know Ogbuehi is no Fant but I thought that was an effective package to run at times.

    • Chris Wood

      That’s why I thought they brought in Ogbuehi initially. I thought I read he was used that way in Jacksonville and I figured that’s why they acquired him. Maybe with him starting off injured that derailed the plans a little bit.

  51. cha

    This is why I’m fascinated by the salary cap but I’d never ever style myself as an expert. Good grief.

  52. Jonathan Evison

    . . .KJ is my all-time favorite seahawk for all the reasons you mentioned, plus, i just love his personality; he is so chill, and humble, but you can also see that competitive edge in that smile (which lights up a room) . . . hard to imagine a better teammate . . .

  53. millhouse-serbia

    One question for all…

    Would you give Russ for Jets no2 pick + 2022 1st round pick (take back from Adams trade)?

    Last year i would say no, because i didnt think Pete will be here much longer… But now… Pete has 4,5 years more, i agree with Rob, he will never let Russ cook again, and i think he is close to build top 3-5 defense again…with solid and cheap QB on rookie deal… Hmmm…

    I didnt look at Russel dead money so this is more hypotetical question…

    • Scot04

      I believe the hypothetical proposal was the jets two 1sts this year and their 1st next year for Russell. If it seems he’s not happy u definitely do that trade & draft the other Wilson.

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