The Seattle Seahawks have quickly established a formula that they are relying on for success. The team is built on an active defense and a bruising running game. Quarterback play is also important, but so far Russell Wilson has not put up big numbers through the air.
It appears that Pete Carroll does not necessarily expect the passing game to be a dominant part of the offense. Is that the long-term plan, or will we see more from Wilson at some point?
As much as I like Marshawn Lynch, I worry about relying too much on the running game. What happens if the Hawks get behind and Wilson has to air it out?
We have seen a couple of last-second drives that have had some success, but it is not clear if Wilson is ready to handle a more pass-oriented offense.
Should we put a lot of stock in statistics? Wilson's numbers are not necessarily that impressive from a volume standpoint. Against the Packers, he only completed 10 passes for 130 yards. The key is that he stayed out of major trouble. A problem is that he could not seem to move the offense in the second half.
Wilson had no picks, no fumbles and only one sack in the Green Bay game. You can partially credit the offensive line, but you can also point to Russell's ability to abandon the pocket and trust his feet when there is defensive penetration.
There have obviously been some barriers to Wilson throwing for 300 yards in a game.
Part of the problem has been an inconsistent group of receivers. The absence of Braylon Edwards and Doug Baldwin left Seattle with fewer options against Green Bay, though Wilson has yet to establish any sort of rapport with Baldwin.
I would like to see Wilson throw a bit more against the Rams. Based on numbers, St. Louis has an average pass defense, as they rank 16th in the league. If you are Pete Carroll, you may be more likely to stick with the running attack, given that the Rams rank 21st in that category.
There are certainly times when Wilson is able to get out of the pocket and use his athleticism to make something happen. It does seem like the coaching staff is still keeping him on a leash, but perhaps that is wise from a confidence standpoint.
You have the feeling that game plan against the Rams is probably pretty simple. Get Marshawn 100 yards, and do not turn the ball over. That is a fairly solid strategy.
Still, I would like to see Wilson be given a little more freedom on offense. I think he has the potential to put up some bigger numbers and help create a more balanced offense that may be needed later in the season.
Maybe we will see more passing against the Rams.