Saturday, August 13, 2011

NFL 32 in 32: Seattle Seahawks

Last year's Seahawks could have been the most successful bad team in the history of sports. A 7-9 season is a bad season in the NFL under most regards, but the Seahawks made it to the divisional round of the playoffs, thanks to a weak division, and a run that will never ever be forgotten. Now, the NFC West may be a competitive division, and will the Seahawks be able to keep up?

What's New: Plenty. It all starts with the departure of a Seahawks staple, Matt Hasselbeck. To replace him, the Seahawks picked up Tarvaris Jackson from Minnesota. There are plenty of questions about him, and his competitor Charlie Whitehurst, which many wonder whether can be answered in time for the start of the regular season. There are an abundance of weapons for whoever is going to start though. Sidney Rice also made the westward trek from Minnesota, and TE Zach Miller made a northern journey from Oakland. This no doubt gives the Seahawks a potent offense, if the QB can get it down the field. The defense was also updated, in the form of Jimmy Wilkerson and Alan Branch, plus the offensive line got a refresh with addition of Robert Gallery.

Biggest Strength: The WR and TE groups are about as good as they come. Sidney Rice and Mike Williams have become a great 1-2 combo that can match any other in the NFL, and John Carlson and Zach Miller are a great TE combo too.  Pete Carroll can develop talent like few other coaches can, and this group of receivers is evidence of that. Marshawn Lynch also had his revival in the playoffs too, and a formidable running game plus this receiving corps has created a great offensive unit.

Biggest Weakness: The QB position of course is a major question mark, and with a QB battle like this the repetition between the QB and wideout is lost. It also doesn't help that the offensive line isn't very good either. Injuries and lack of talent reaching their full potential have contributed to this problem, and it doesn't look like it will be getting much better soon. The defense was also one of the worst in the NFL last year, and not much was done to address this. And, the defense lost its heart and soul in Lofa Tatupu as well.

Outlook: Despite the abundance of offensive weapons, there are too many questions about this team overall to really make them a playoff contender, especially in a tighter NFC West than usual. The negatives outweigh the positives, and unless a stroke of luck befalls this team again, it's hard to see them making a playoff run.

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