It was clear within the aftermath of the Seahawks’ disappointing 7-10 end in 2021 that adjustments would have to be made.
This felt like a workforce missing id and cohesion. That being mentioned, nobody anticipated a blockbuster commerce of franchise quarterback Russell Wilson and a parting of the way with defensive captain Bobby Wagner, all inside in a 24-hour interval.
The Seahawks didn’t cease there. Offensive line coach Mike Solari was fired, with run sport coordinator Andy Dickerson being promoted into that position. The workforce additionally parted methods with defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr., elevating defensive position coach Clint Hurtt to that title, whereas additionally bringing Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Sean Desai in as an affiliate head coach/defensive assistant and Minnesota Vikings defensive backs coach Karl Scott as secondary coach/passing sport coordinator.
The Seahawks have executed fairly the overhaul this offseason, however what’s the imaginative and prescient behind it?
Legendary Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck defined what he thinks head coach Pete Carroll is making an attempt to ascertain when he joined Seattle Sports Station’s Mike Salk Show in February.
“San Francisco is interesting because it’s not like they’re getting elite quarterback play out of their quarterback,” Hasselbeck mentioned. “They’re getting good quarterback play, but really where they’re unbelievable is what they’ve done recently on defense, their special teams are great and they run the heck out of the ball. They have Deebo Samuel who’s a playmaker, George Kittle who’s a playmaker. When I think about what Pete Carroll is always saying he wants to be as a team, he’s really describing what the San Francisco 49ers have done here as of late, in terms of sort of finding ways to dominate.”
If the 49ers are considerably of a blueprint for the fashion of soccer Carroll needs to play, how does this Seahawks workforce examine? Michael Bumpus and Mike Salk mentioned that on The Mike Salk Show Tuesday.
“Offensively, they have the personnel to do a lot of the things the Niners do,” Bumpus mentioned. “When you think of the Niners, the first person I think of is Deebo Samuel. I think of Deebo and I think of George Kittle. Who is George Kittle? A guy who’s going to block the heck out of you but can still run routes, inside, outside and get yards after the catch. Noah Fant can do his best George Kittle impersonation. I don’t know how that will go, but he has those capabilities. They have a good run game and we’ve seen Rashaad Penny emerge. Jimmy Garoppolo completed 68% of his passes last year, threw 20 touchdowns, and had 12 interceptions. If Drew Lock can hover around 66% passing, 18 touchdowns, and eight or nine picks with a great defense, who knows? But it’s all about the design of the offense, getting your best players the ball and letting them do the work for you and that’s what the Niners do best.”
The numbers Bump laid out are affordable, however could be profession highs for Lock. His greatest completion share was a 64.1 his rookie season in 2019 over a five-game stretch. In 2020, he threw for 16 touchdowns over a 13-game span, so Bumpus’ 18-touchdown objective appears solely achievable. The single-digit interception mark would be the more durable feat for Lock to realize, as he virtually matched his landing whole in 2020 with 15 interceptions.
When it involves the remainder of the offense, the Seahawks stack up fairly effectively.
As Bumpus talked about, there are excessive hopes for tight finish Noah Fant who got here to Seattle within the Russell Wilson commerce. He is a former first-round decide that’s nonetheless solely 24 years outdated and needed to take care of catching passes from six completely different quarterbacks throughout his three seasons with the Broncos.
At broad receiver, the Seahawks have among the best duos within the league with Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf. Their mixed manufacturing final season wasn’t far off from that of George Kittle and Deebo Samuel, with simply 173 fewer receiving yards and eight extra touchdowns scored than San Francisco’s two greatest stars.
The Seahawks additionally really feel fairly good about their dashing assault coming off of the five-game stretch Rashaad Penny needed to finish the 2021 season the place he broke out for 671 dashing yards. They bolstered that unit within the draft as effectively with the collection of arguably the very best working again within the 2022 class, Kenneth Walker III, and two huge, athletic tackles in Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas.
When it comes as to if the Seahawks’ protection resembles something near the 49ers, there are much more unknowns. Mike Salk isn’t satisfied that the Seahawks’ adjustments on the defensive aspect of the ball are sufficient to rise to the extent of a 49ers protection that was ranked third within the NFL in 2021 and has licensed stars reminiscent of linebacker Fred Warner and defensive finish Nick Bosa.
“You could make me an argument that the drop-off from Jimmy Garoppolo last year to Drew Lock is not that significant and that you could make up for that elsewhere.” Salk mentioned. “Where I think you’d have a hard time convincing me is that this defense is ready to take off to that level. We just haven’t seen it in so long.”
It has been a really very long time since this protection has been dominant. You need to go all the way in which again to 2016 to discover a Seahawks protection that completed within the high 10 general. But change has to begin someplace.
The Seahawks are making a dedication to a elementary change on protection. Even although they’ve careworn that they may nonetheless be a hybrid protection that options some 4-3, they are going to be working out of a 3-4 base protection in 2022. Defensive coordinator Clint Hurtt says the 3-4 permits them to be extra balanced and work out of a number of seems to be to have an effect on the quarterback as a lot as doable.
Beyond Quandre Diggs and Jamal Adams there are loads of new faces and guys with minimal begins underneath their belts moving into bigger roles this season. Who will step up and thrive on this new protection?
“That’s the question,” Bumpus mentioned. “I mean, who are your corners? You’ve got Tre Brown, you’ve got Coby Bryant, we’ll see what happens there. You know your safeties are good, you feel like your linebackers are good. You’ve got Jordyn Brooks, Darrell Taylor, you’ve got Uchenna (Nwosu) over there from the Chargers. You don’t look at that group and say ‘OK, we’re solid.’ You still have to wait and see what’s going to happen there. On the defensive line, you’ve got some new guys coming in, you still have to see what happens there. I look at these guys and I’m saying, there’s a lot of talent there. There’s potential, I’m feeling the direction they’re going but you still have to go out there and prove it.”