Stop the presses! News Flash! The Seattle Seahawks will shock a lot of disbelievers this year! The Seahawks are a very well rounded team with the right seasoning at key positions to take the NFC by storm.
The Seahawks were decimated by injuries last year, something that many critics are willing to quickly glance over when discussing the future fate of the Seahawks.
A closer look shows that nearly every position suffered severely from long-term injury problems last season. On the offensive side, quarterback and wide receiver stand out, but more importantly, the entire offensive line was plagued with injuries.
Every starting offensive lineman missed a number of games due to injuries and when they were playing, they were banged up.
In a west coast offense—or just about any other offense for that matter—that spells D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R.
So the naysayers will say that the Seahawks lack depth…well show me another team that had so many injuries and came out on top.
It just doesn’t happen, a team can survive losing a key person, but losing multiple key personnel and the season becomes something like what the ‘Hawks went through last year—painful.
Defensively, the Seahawks will put a lot more pressure on opposing teams. A healthy Patrick Kerney, along with an improved Darryl Tapp, will bring pressure from the ends while Brandon Mebane, Colin Cole, and Cory Redding will clog the middle.
The linebacker corps is the best that the Seahawks have ever put on any field. Leroy Hill, Aaron Curry, and Lofa Tatupu will all push for Pro Bowl nominations.
This dynamic trio all have great mobility, exceptional speed, and acute awareness to be used in many different defensive schemes—truly a nightmare for opposing offensive coordinators.
The corner situation should be improved with the resigning of Ken Lucas; he is bigger and stronger than Kelly Jennings and Josh Wilson.
Jennings and Wilson should be able to slide over and succeed in nickel packages. Marcus Trufant needs a return back to his Pro Bowl form to truly strengthen the corner situation.
The safeties will continue to be a weak spot on the Seahawk defense. Deon Grant and Brian Russell need to impose their presence early in the season or it will be a long season for them with offensive coordinators focusing on exploiting their weaknesses.
On the offensive side of the ball, all is good. The Seahawks running backs, Julius Jones in particular, should benefit from the new zone blocking scheme brought in by offensive line coach Mike Solari. The zone blocking will let Jones pick a hole and hit it hard to produce positive yards on every touch.
Walter Jones is still a Pro Bowl caliber talent and Sean Locklear on the opposite side has made great strides towards becoming a force in the NFL.
Mike Wahle is exceptional when he is healthy and rookie Max Unger will find his way into the starting lineup either at center or guard. Chris Spencer has yet to live up to his huge potential, but this may be his year.
Head coach Jim Mora’s focus will more than likely be similar to the philosophy that he used in Atlanta—run, run and throw for big gains.
A healthy Matt Hasselbeck will have TJ Houshmandzadeh to be a consistent target, along with the reliable sophomore tight end, John Carlson.
Hopefully, Deion Branch will bounce back from injury to his Super Bowl MVP form and finally pay some dividends for the ‘Hawks.
The Seahawks definitely have all the tools to make a big push deep into the playoffs (think Super Bowl), but the mainstream sports bobble heads will never see it coming. The Seahawks will quietly storm their way through the NFC.