After an 11-5 season and a dominant road playoff win, the Seattle Seahawks turned heads in the 2012 season and made themselves known as a serious championship contender for next season.
They were not a perfect team by any means, but had found plenty of success with the growth of rookie Russell Wilson, especially during the second half of the season.
Now if the Seahawks can maintain the offensive momentum that started Dec. 2 in Chicago and through the playoffs, Seattle could be a favorite to compete for the Super Bowl next season.
In the first four games, Wilson completed 60 percent of his passes for 594 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions as the team went 2-2.
But Seattle began to open up the playbook and allow Wilson to throw down the field more as he was 16-of-27 for 293 yards and three touchdowns in a 24-23 win over the New England Patriots.
During Seattle's five-game winning streak that Seattle ended its regular season with, Wilson threw for 1,067 yards, nine touchdowns and one interception. The Seahawks also averaged 38.6 points per game, including the 58-0 win over the Arizona Cardinals and a 50-17 victory against the Buffalo Bills in Toronto.
He also had his best game when the Seahawks focused on the passing attack while trailing 27-7 heading into the fourth quarter against the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC divisional playoffs. In that 30-28 loss, Wilson threw for 387 yards and led a 21-point run in the final quarter.
If there is one thing fans learned this past season it's that the Seahawks may have an elite quarterback. In his rookie season, he made the most of his pass attempts throughout the year.
There are plenty of weapons surrounding the young star quarterback with Sidney Rice, Golden Tate, Doug Baldwin and Zach Miller. Maybe another deep-threat wide receiver to add to that group of players could give the Seahawks that push to a championship level.
That’s not to say they should forget about the run. Marshawn Lynch is possibly the most efficient power runner in football today. His backup, Robert Turbin, seems to be developing into a dependable running back as well to give Seattle a very effective one-two punch behind Wilson.
But even with the success the team had in 2012, it's clear the team can be better than 27th-ranked in passing yards per game. Opening up the passing playbook will help them accomplish this.