The Seahawks need a healthy and experienced offensive line. Against the Raiders the Hawks starting offensive line was LT Stone Forsythe LG Jordan Simmons C Kyle Fuller RG Phil Haynes ad RT Jake Curhan. Forsythe showed he has a long way to go and is not yet a starting left tackle. A missed assignment resulted in the Geno Smith tackle and he was called for holding which negated a 17-yard pass play from McGough to Cody Thompson.
In all fairness others, players on the offensive line struggled. Simmons and Haynes were slow off the blocks on running plays. To add insult to injury Haynes left the game in the fourth quarter with a knee injury. Head coach Pete Carroll said in his post-game press conference that it was just a sore knee and nothing serious.
DEFENSIVE LINE DEPTH
Alton Robinson confirmed what we have been seeing at training camp. The Seahawks have depth and talent on the defensive line. With Poona Ford, Kerry Hyder Jr, and Carlos Dunlap taking the night off Robinson seized the moment recording three tackles and spent his playing time in the Raiders backfield. Robinson played deep into the fourth quarter and finished the game with five tackles and one quarterback hit.
LINEBACKERS GET PLENTY OF WORK
After missing the last several days of practice linebacker Cody Barton Thursday and did not miss a beat. Barton was stellar in special teams and made a case for more playing time by recording two sacks and five tackles. Jordyn Brooks started the game and served as a placeholder with Bobby Wagner resting. Ben Burr-Kirven lead the defense with 12 tackles. Head coach Pete Carroll was not surprised at how well Burr-Kirven played,
“ BB was calling the game and it makes sense he has had a tremendous camp. He is a good football player and it showed tonight.”
DEFENSIVE BACKS TO BE CONTINUED
The much-anticipated debut of cornerbacks Athkello Thompson and Tre Flowers and left and right cornerbacks left much to be desired. Flower’s biggest sin of the night was giving up a 19-yard reception to Vegas wide out D.J. Turner on 3rd and 3 during the Raider’s second offensive possession. Four players later Flowers gave up an eight-yard reception on 2nd and 12 to TE Nick Bowers. Flowers finished the game with four tackles. Witherspoon had a similar average day finishing with two tackles.
MAKING A CASE FOR PLAYING TIME
With Chris Carson, Rashaad Penny all sitting DeeJay Dallas make the most of his opportunity. Alex Collins was given the start and had just two rushing attempts for a grand total of one yard. Dallas started the second half and gained four yards on his first carry. That if you are doing the math doubled the Seahawk’s first-half total. Dallas finished the game with 24 yards on five carries and provided the lone offensive bright spot in the second half. On a 4th and 4 the Seahawks decided to go for it and called a swing pass to Dallas who raced 43 yards for the touchdown.
Dallas’s other reception was for two yards but his versatility in the run and pass game should give him looks next week. With Carson established as the number one Colins and Dallas are battling for the number three and possibly the number two position depending on Penny’s health. Carroll like to have a stable of running backs so Saturday’s performance by Dallas put him in the conversation and he will need to be consistent when his number is called
BIG TAKE AWAY
Saturday was just that a preseason game with a lot of starters sitting on both sides. The first preseason serves as an opportunity for the backups to get into the more playing time conversation. The good performance must be followed up with good practices during the week. Next week will be a big one for the Seahawks as most players return from injury and the starters will get some playing time in game two.