San Diego at Seattle: Seahawks Week 2 Preseason Game Preview
The Seattle Seahawks got off to a poor start last week with a lackluster performance against the Denver Broncos. This Week 2 matchup against the San Diego Chargers offers an opportunity for redemption.
The Chargers passing offense was clicking on all cylinders against the Dallas Cowboys and racked up three sacks on the defensive side of the ball.
The Chargers offense should prove to be a quality test for the stalwart Seahawks defense, but the team's quarterbacks will likely be on the run again if the offensive line doesn't shape up.
James Carpenter, Russell Okung and Max Unger returned to full-participation practices and should be active for Friday's game. Their returns should give the offensive line a boost, but how much?
Seattle Seahawks Week 1 Preseason Recap
The Seahawks have some fixes to make from Week 1 to Week 2. The game against the Denver Broncos was highlighted by 25 penalties and nonexistent offensive line play.
Russell Wilson was sacked twice and pressured throughout his time on the field. The Broncos picked up three sacks in the game and pressured Tarvaris Jackson and Terrelle Pryor on several snaps as well.
The Seahawks had just one starter from the 2013 season start against the Broncos but will back at full health this week.
Despite the Seahawks racking up 13 penalties in Denver, Seattle led the league last year with 152 penalties and still managed to win the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
Though 13 penalties a game would give the team 208 through a 16-game season, I'm of the opinion that it'll get things settled down as the regular season draws nearer.
News and Notes
Marshawn Lynch Cleared of Charges
When news came out Monday that running back Marshawn Lynch was being investigated for alleged assault and personal property damage, some would have expected a bit of fear from Seattle's front office.
Instead the Seahawks responded swiftly by calling the claims "bogus."
On Wednesday the police cleared Lynch of any wrongdoing, ending any type of media circus over the issue.
Pete Carroll Quote (via The Seattle Times)
[Malcolm Smith, Bobby Wagner and Korey Toomer] Malcolm is a little bit ahead. He’s had a couple good days but for our guys recovering they have really hard days and we try to see if they can come back and have another one, and then we see if we can come back and get another one. So we’re trying to pile these days up. Malcolm has done pretty well. Toomer is still another week or so away, probably a little bit behind Bobby. Bobby’s getting real close.
|Jesse Williams||DT||Injured Reserve|
|Anthony McCoy||TE||Injured Reserve|
|Garrett Scott||OT||Injured Reserve|
|Jared Smith||OG||Injured Reserve|
* All injury information gathered from Rotoworld.com.
None of the latter injuries will have a major affect on the Seahawks for now. The team would like to have Kevin Norwood back to gain a better understanding of his abilities, and having Bruce Irvin back in the mix wouldn't hurt.
The Seahawks are pretty deep at both positions, however, and should be OK regardless.
X-Factors and Matchups to Watch
Philip Rivers vs. The Legion of Boom
Philip Rivers had a bit of a resurgence season last year, passing for 4,478 yards and 32 touchdowns. With the Seahawks secondary being the top pass defense in the league last season, facing a topnotch quarterback like Rivers should prove to be a good battle.
Seahawks Offensive Line vs. Chargers Front Seven
With the Seahawks starters back healthy on the offensive line, there should be some visible improvement in pass and run blocking. Russell Wilson had a hard go of things against the Broncos pass-rushers. With the starters in place, Wilson should be able to stay upright, but the Chargers showed a strong pass rush in their first preseason game.
Seahawks X-Factor of the Week
The pursuit of a top punt returner continues with Earl Thomas getting another opportunity to grab hold of the role. On Thomas' sole opportunity to make a return he had to fair catch it. Hopefully he gets a few more chances on Friday to get an idea of his ability.
The Seahawks have a chance to right a lot of wrongs from last week. Marshawn Lynch's conditioning has improved significantly, the offensive line is getting healthy and Kam Chancellor is set to make a return.
I'm expecting a far better performance from the starting unit, which should open up a big a enough lead to last the rest of the game.
The defense performed well against the Broncos and should be even better against a lesser offense. With that said, I'm not predicting a blowout of any kind, but the Seahawks should be able to just slip by with a win.
Prediction: Seahawks win 27-20
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