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NFL Draft

Is This The Seahawks Offense We Should Get Used to?

  • The Draft Network
  • September 21, 2020
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No other team counts on their home crowd more than the Seattle Seahawks, but this season, as most NFL teams are playing in empty stadiums amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Seahawks had to create their own game-changing energy.

They did that twice. Once, early in the game, it wasn’t in their favor. After a quick first down against 2019’s No. 1 defense, quarterback Russell Wilson threw a pick-six. It effectively deterred Seattle from continuing to pass early and they pushed the ball down the field using the run until Wilson made another one of his mind-boggling plays, creating time for himself and finding a heavily covered Tyler Lockett in the end zone.  

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Exhale. While it wasn’t pretty getting there, the Seahawks threw in the red zone against the Patriots and it didn’t result in an interception. While the anxiety-inducing play call didn’t have the same high stakes as Super Bowl 49, the rest of the game was just as unnerving.

But somehow, as they often do, the Seahawks pulled off the win. With only seconds remaining and New England now on the goalline, Newton tried to run in what would have been the game-winning touchdown. It was an ironic twist of fate where once again, the team that made the better final play won. This time, it was the Seahawks, 35-30.

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We effectively entered the game knowing we would learn more about this Seahawks team than the Patriots. Seattle went off-script in Week 1 and let Wilson cook. He had one of the most effective games of his career, and all eyes were going to be on the play-calling against New England during Sunday Night Football. The Patriots boasted a new quarterback with Cam Newton returning to the Pacific Northwest in a different uniform and a defense missing the core of what made the unit so potent last season due to opt-outs and free agency. The Seahawks would be facing the NFL's reigning Defensive Player of the Year, cornerback Stephon Gilmore, and we were going to see just how much control Wilson would get. 

It turns out, he got an even share, and this Seattle offense is what we could be seeing more of in the future. The Seahawks finished the game with a 30:29 run-pass ratio. Wilson was cooking and the running game was still being established; it was too much to think head coach Pete Carroll and offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer would stray too far away from their philosophies for a second consecutive week. Wilson was still extremely effective. He completed 21 of his 28 passes for 288 yards, five touchdowns and one interception. His five touchdowns were to five different receivers, and Wilson ended the night with a 132.3 passer rating; in comparison, Newton was 30-of-44 passing for 397 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Every time Wilson made a play, Newton answered until Seattle’s defense helped in a big way.

This game, however, was more of how the coaching staff and Wilson would respond to the Week 1 praise. The chefs were in the kitchen and cooked up another unforgettable meal. While Wilson could still pass early—because who doesn’t want to see more of his long ball or drop backs on highlight reels—and more often, this new, more balanced blend of play-calling can be utilized against the Seahawks’ next couple opponents.

Seattle will face the Dallas Cowboys, Miami Dolphins, and Minnesota Vikings before its bye. The Seahawks put up 429 yards against one of the more dominant units with this mix of play-calling. Carroll and Co. have always stuck to what’s worked, this certainly seems to be working.

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