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2011 Record: 7-9 (third place in NFC West)
Key Free-Agent Signings: Matt Flynn, Jason Jones, Barrett Ruud, Deuce Lutui
Key Losses: Atari Bigby, John Carlson, David Hawthorne, Robert Gallery
Key Draft Picks: Bruce Irvin, Bobby Wagner, Russell Wilson, Robert Turbin
After a 2-6 start to last season, the Seahawks won five out of six games at one point and were contending for a playoff spot. They also had solid wins over teams like Baltimore, Philadelphia and Chicago.
Pete Carroll will be entering his third season as Seahawks head coach where he has posted back-to-back 7-9 seasons, one in which they actually won the division.
This will be a key season for him and his team as they look to break .500 and get into the playoffs.
The big splash the Seahawks made in the offseason was to bring in free-agent quarterback Matt Flynn, who came over from Green Bay for three years and $26 million.
But, the team also drafted Russell Wilson, and there's said to be a quarterback race between the two of them and Tarvaris Jackson. I don't think the Seahawks brought Flynn in to be a backup, and we should see him under center in Week 1.
They have a very good, bruising runner in Marshawn Lynch, who is coming off an excellent season in which he ran for over 1,200 yards with 12 TDs.
They have a solid nucleus of receivers that includes Sidney Rice, Mike Williams, Golden Tate, Doug Baldwin and Ben Obomanu.
Their defense was also solid in 2011, ranking ninth in the league.
The pieces are there for the Seahawks to make a run. They'll rely heavily on Lynch, but Matt Flynn will need to prove he was worth all the hype this offseason. Mike Williams really needs to bounce back from an awful 18-catch campaign as well and prove he's a solid No. 1 or No. 2 receiver.
The 49ers are still the class of the division, but the Seahawks can definitely contend for a wild card.