Thoughts About the Seattle Seahawks Tough Season Opener Win Against the Mighty Bengals

Well, that was interesting.

Honestly though, Seattle fans. Were you really expecting a Pete Carroll Seattle Seahawk season opener to be any different?

And while we on the subject of asking questions, I got another one for you.

What is a good win?

My answer is that any win is a good win, especially in the NFL. If that doesn’t make you feel any better, that’s okay. It makes me feel better, and frankly, I care more about how I feel than how you do, if we are being perfectly honest.

So, good win today, Seattle.

The Good.

The Seattle defensive line had an awesome game today. Defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson has kind of become the forgotten man on a line that now features Jadeveon Clowney, Ziggy Ansah, Poona Ford, Jarran Reed, and Al Woods. Quinton Jefferson was arguably the Player of the Game being a constant disruptive force getting, two sacks, and a constant barrage of quarterback¬† pressures. Rasheem Green had the game saving play getting a strip sack in the closing seconds. Poona Ford and Al Woods made plays at defensive tackle, and Clowney got a key sack. This unit played great ball without Ansah and Reed available. That’s a big positive.

Rookie wide receiver DK Metcalf had a sensational rookie debut. His big play abilities in the passing game kept Seattle’s struggling offense alive in this one. The impromptu scramble pass play the gained a key first down, I thought was the offensive play of the game, and it’s exciting to think about his chemistry growing with Russell Wilson.

Chris Carson made some timely plays running the ball and pass catching against a defensive front seven that was doing everything to take him out of the game. He and Metcalf are the two superhuman talents on offense to go along with Russell. Seattle needs one more person to step up and make defensive coordinators think.

The play action deep touchdown pass from Russell Wilson to Tyler Lockett was as pretty and timely as they come in football.

I thought Russell Wilson played well under limited opportunities and a lot of duress.

The Bad

For as good has Seattle’s defensive front was pressuring Dalton and taking away the Bengal run game, Seattle’s pass defense was really poor throughout most of the game. Apparently, Seattle felt the need to stay in their base defense, keeping three linebackers in the game against the Bengals three receiver sets. Was Seattle not comfortable about their nickel corner situation? Did they think Cincy was going to run more out of those formations? There are things to monitor here.

I’ve been a staunch Brian Schottenhiemer defender, but I wasn’t in love with a lot of the play calling today. It felt like the Bengal defenders were in the playbook of a lot of the run plays, and there were too many times where I thought Schotty was calling a “play it safe” style against Bengal team that they needed to generate points to beat. Russell Wilson never seemed to be turned loose in this one, and kind of had to make the most of his limited passing opportunities. Fortunately, Wilson delivered.

The Ugly

I hate calling out players, but Tedric Thompson could not make a play on the ball in coverage to save his life. It feels like his time as a starter might be nearing an end. Seattle did not draft Marquise Blair high in the second round to be a backup. Tedric might be a smart player, but he is a limited athlete. Today he felt exposed.

And for as dynamic of the player receiver Tyler Lockett is, he dropped an easy completion in the fourth quarter of the game that could have easily helped Seattle ice it against Cincy sooner. He’s got to make that catch when the offense is struggling. He has to haul in that ball.

Closing Thoughts

This probably wasn’t the win Seattle fans would have liked to have seen, but they were playing a Bengals team that had a new head coach that has never been a head coach before. Thus, there wasn’t a lot to scout about this group, and Seattle had to feel it out. They did make enough adjustments to pull out the win. So credit Seattle for that.

However, Seattle clearly had issues with their pass defense, and they are going to be facing some quality passers over the next few weeks. They have got to fix the leaks. Does Pete Carroll consider replacing Tedric Thompson at free safety? Are they going to settle on a nickle corner? Do they look outside to add here?

Offensively, I think they will get better as the season goes on. Under Carroll, Seattle has historically struggled on offense early in the season only to settle in and fix as they go. With DK Metcalf, Chris Carson, Tyler Lockett, and Will Dissly, they got some nice pieces to work with. Part of me wonders if they don’t look to add another veteran receiver in the coming weeks. We shall see.

Good win today, though. I will give them that, even if you won’t.

Go Hawks.






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