Ah, The Sweet Joy Of Winning Comfortably: A Seahawks Versus Colts 28-16 Victory Review

Let Darrell Taylor cook

The Indianapolis Colts are a good team.

They have strong offensive and defensive lines, and that is a huge advantage in the NFL. They also have talent at running back, linebacker, tight end, safety, and say what you will about Carson Wentz, I believe he’s still a very capable quarterback who’s experienced at guiding teams to playoffs.

Yes, they are thin at receiver, and suspect at corner. Most teams have their warts, even the good ones, but I believe that the Colts are built to contend for their division.

That makes this comfortable road win for the Seahawks over them all the more satisfying. I expected Seattle to win this game going in, they have had great success against Wentz in the past when he was in Philadelphia, but I expected a much closer score, and I expected the Colts to have more success on offense.

So, what a delight this game proved to be for the Seahawk defense. Let’s dig into it a bit.

The Good

After giving up an easy drive field goal scoring drive to Indy’s offense, Seattle defensive coordinator Ken Norton Junior apparently made some pretty good adjustments to what Frank Reich’s offense was wanting to do because the Seattle defenders largely stymied the Colts offense the rest of the way. What was most interesting to me is that the Seahawk defense played better when they didn’t send blitzes and just rushed four. It seemed like the Colts where ready for Jamal Adams to blitz a lot and their game plan involved a lot of screens and other plays to use against Seattle’s aggression. Whenever Seattle stopped doing that, the Colts seemed to have problems.

Seattle’s defensive line deserves all the credit in this one. That opening drive against the Colt offense had me nervous that the lack of depth at defensive tackle was going to get exposed, and Russell Wilson would be forced to win yet another shootout on the road, but my goodness, did Seattle’s front four ever settle down, and disrupt a very good Colts offensive line. As it stands right now, it appears like Seattle has a deep bag of riches at the edge rusher position, and this is a very exciting thing moving forward.

For me, the absolute star of this game was fourth year defensive end Rasheem Green. He was everywhere on the field. His explosive solo sack on Wentz was one of the prettiest rushes that I’ve seen from a Seahawk defender in the while, and he constantly in the Indianapolis backfield. When he wasn’t, he was chasing plays down field, and hustling his ass off in other ways.

Green wasn’t the only Seahawk pas rusher to shine. Second year DE/LB Darrell Taylor played his very first meaningful NFL game. Not only that, he started, and wasted zero time showing the world why Seattle traded up for him in the second round over a year ago. His second half sack on Wentz might have be just as impressive as Green’s first half sack, and to my eyes, he seemed to handle containment against the run pretty reliably, as well.

On a side note, I’ve noticed a bit of an unfair narrative with some Seahawk followers comparing Darrell Taylor to former Seahawk high draft pick Malik McDowell in that Taylor might not ever play a meaningful down for the Seattle defense because of the serious leg injury he sustained in college. I’m going to say that Taylor, if anything, has proved why one might not want to push send on the comment boards available on the internet. That was obviously a hyperbolic narrative that flowed. As it stands, if Seattle gets a healthy season out of Taylor, this defense probably has the makings of being something pretty special this year. I’m pretty excited about this dude.

Linebackers Bobby Wagner and Jordyn Brooks proved crazy productive in the tackling department, and safeties Jamal Adams and Quandre Diggs played fierce. I really like the strength down the middle for Seattle’s defense, and I see a lot of special there.

Offensively, what more can be said for them?

Russell Wilson played superbly in leading Shane Waldron’s new offense. Sure, there’s probably a few kinks that need working out, but Wilson showed yet again just how special he is at playing efficiently when he’s in an offense that can marry the run with the pass in a balanced way. He just gives defenses nightmares when they have to be thinking about the run, and pass, and the threat of him as a runner, especially whenever the tempo is picked up. It’s too much on a linebacker or a DB’s plate for four quarters, and he made a very good Indy defense look silly, at times.

Russell had a lot of help in this. The offensive line ran block pretty well against one of the better defensive front sevens in the league, and held their own in pass pro. Chris Carson ran and caught the ball very well. Tyler Lockett had a big game at receiver, and DK Metcalf picked his game up in the second half. Seattle’s tight ends were productive throughout. Rookie receiver Dee Eskridge flashed. For my money, first year play caller Shane Waldron put together a very nice game plan and was on it.

There is every reason for Seahawk fans to be excited about this Waldron offense, and I suspect that we just got a sliver of a glimpse of it. There’s many more wrinkles to come as it becomes more second nature to the starters. That’s very exciting.

The Bad

Not gonna lie to you, I still got major concerns with the center spot on the O line. I think maybe Kyle Fuller played okay going against one of the top defensive tackle tandems in the league. I’m not totally sure, but it seemed like Ethan Pocic struggled more when he was in, and I think it was he who gave up a brutal third down sack on an inside blitz in the second half. At any rate, it seemed like, as the team went on, Indy felt intent at sending extra inside. My guess is that they sensed the weakness there, and went after it. Seattle probably needs to figure out a good counter to that moving forward.

As good as the defense played, I still worry about their corner situation some. They weren’t matched against a particularly great set of Indy receivers, and they held on okay. Tre Flowers gave up a garbage time touchdown in man coverage and he was beaten easily on an inside slant. DJ Reed had to hold on what looked like an outside corner route and gave up a first down. I’m not panicked, but given the fact that each team in the NFC West has good to great talent at receiver, I would strongly continue to encourage John Schneider to have Richard Sherman’s phone number on speed dial. I might even call him today just to check in.

Watching Poona Ford rolling around on the turf in pain during the second of the game, freaked me the F out about Seattle’s lack of depth at defensive tackle. They absolutely need to add one more legitimate piece inside. Signing Geno Atkins to rotate in at defensive tackle with Ford just makes too much sense not to do it. You can never have enough defensive linemen, and it’s borderline reckless for Seattle not to be carrying four true interior defensive linemen. I hope that by this time next week, I will be writing about how smart it was that Schneider finally signed Atkins. Bring that big fella in, Schneider! Do it!

The Ugly

Watching all those Indy fans in the stands unmasked with the delta variant of Covid on the rise throughout the land. I’m not sure what their mask/vaccine policy is out that way, but I’m going to guess that it’s the one area of politicalization that is “pro choice” for their masses. I couldn’t help but feel absolutely geeked out by seeing those cutaway shots to the stands. Felt too much like a super spreader event. I’ll just leave it at that.

Moving forward

Seahawks come home and play the Tennessee Titans in front of a house full for Twelves for the first time since 2019. It’s poised to be a great day.

If I’m Seattle, I’m not sleeping on the Titans after they got embarrassed by the Cardinals like they did. That’s a proud veteran team that has made the playoffs two years in a row, and they got a lot of talent on their offense, and they got some dangerous pieces on their defense. Seattle cannot take this team lightly.

I don’t think they will. Too much is riding on Seattle making their star quarterback happy this season, and really going for it all. Plus, all of the teams in the NFC West won handsomely yesterday. There’s an arms race out here West. I think Seattle knows it. They won’t take any game lightly this year. Thus, I think next Sunday should be a lot of fun for a lot of excited fans in the stands in the 206.

I also suspect that this is the week we will see them add more to the defensive line with Atkins. The Titans love to run the ball. Bringing Atkins in right now just makes too much sense. So, do it, John Schneider! Bring that bad boy in.

Go Hawks!


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