The Seahawks are looking to start the season 2-0 when they host the Tennesse Titans Sunday afternoon at Lumen Field in front of what they hope will be a raucous sea of 12’s. On the field, the Hawks will need to have some repeat and improved performances from last week’s win over the Indianapolis Colts.
CAN THE DEFENSIVE LINE HAVE A REPEAT PERFORMACE?
Last week against the Colts the Seahawks defensive line surprised everyone but themselves with 10 quarterback hits and three sacks of Colts quarterback Carson Wentz. Rasheem Green, Benson Mayoma, and Darrell Taylor all recorded sacks. Carlos Dunlap, Bryan Mone, Poona Ford, had one each while Taylor, Mayoma, and Green had two apiece. The Seahawks D-line in tandem with the linebackers limited Jason Taylor to just 56 rushing yards on 17 carries. Taylor rushed for 1,169 yards last year good for eight in the NFL
MONUMENTAL TASK AT HAND
If the Seahawks are to win Sunday they will need to stop last year’s top dog in rushing Tennessee running back Derrick Henry. The 6,3 247-pound Henry is a bad man looking for some payback. The Titans were on the short end of a home-opening 38-13 loss to the Arizona Cardinals last week. Henry had just 17 carries for 58 yards. If the Seahawks are to beat the Titans, they need to replicate the Cardinal’s blueprint for success. Jump out to an early lead and make the Titans one-dimensional by having them abandon the run. Once the Titans turn to the passing game to get back in the game blitz quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Jamal Adams and Jordyn Brooks could have big games if this script plays out.
HOW BETTER CAN THE OFFENSE GET
Quarterback Russell Wilson was 23 of 18 for 254 with three touchdowns and posted a nearly perfect quarterback rating of 152.3. Wilson was sacked three times but those can be attributed to coverage sacks. Worth watching on Sunday to see if those numbers go up or down. In the NFL any defense is bound to will win one or two downs in the course of a game.
The result of Wilson slinging the ball around the yard was a big day for receivers Tyler Lockett, D.K. Metcalf tight ends Will Dissly, Gerald Everett, and running back Chris Carson. All of the aforementioned had at least two receptions to show the diversity of the Seahawk’s offense.
WHY WAS THE SEAHAWKS OFFENSE SO DIVERSE?
The Seahawks were able to run the ball early and often with Carson carrying the ball 16 times for 91 yards for an average of 5.7 yards per carry. This was due to the installation of the zone running game a strategy implemented by new offensive coordinator Shane Waldron. Another nuance in the Waldron offense is having the receivers in tight condensed formations. This formation brings D.K. Metcalf closer to the other receivers in pass formations who are all closer to the hash mark.
The tight split forces the defensive corner to playoff Metcalf and into man-to-man coverage. When the ball is snapped Wilson fakes the ball to Carson who runs to the flat forcing the Dline to shift in order to honor the run, Metcalf runs an out pattern, Lockett runs inside the defense and one of the tight ends runs into the space created by Metcalf who is 30 yards down the field being covered by an undersized corner. The result is time for Wilson to look down the field in his drop and find the open receiver or receivers.