10-1 or 9-2?
Not too shabby, eh?
Well, at that same time, I also said the Seahawks would suffer their second loss of the year in Atlanta last week. Woops, but I don’t think anyone was thinking Atlanta was going to be this bad when the year first started.
The problem is that after 10 weeks, I now have to tell you what I expect after being wrong the for the first time! I have no more road map to follow, and quite frankly, I don’t know which Seahawks team is going to show up to face the Minnesota Vikings.
Will it be the team that narrowly defeated Tampa Bay at home thanks to a plethora of turnovers? Or will it be that decisive team that beat Atlanta on the road so convincingly last Sunday? Here are the things I’m looking for to tell the tale when the Seahawks take the field Sunday against the Vikings.
The first 10 weeks have been like having a Bentley in the garage but having your mechanic tell you can’t take it out for a drive just yet. I think everyone is looking for Percy Harvin to get on the field in some fashion this week.
I look for the Seahawks to give Harvin some playing time, but in minimalist fashion. Harvin is going to be on the field for about six plays. On half of them he won’t even touch the ball.
Just his presence on the field will be good enough to help the team though.
In case you haven’t heard, Adrian Peterson is a pretty good running back. Here’s a prime example of the Jekyll vs. Hyde Seahawks.
Which run defense is going to show up for Seattle? Is it the one that allowed Tampa Bay and St. Louis to run for more than 200 yards per game, or will it be the one that held Atlanta to 64 yards of rushing as a team?
Brandon Browner Out
This marks the first time I’ve had the least bit of doubt about the Seattle secondary known as the Legion of Boom. Brandon Browner is likely out for a while. Richard Sherman did not practice Wednesday with a hip issue. Kam Chancellor only practiced a limited amount with his own hip issue.
I’m pretty confident that Seattle can live without Browner for a few weeks, as they have a very solid backup in Walter Thurmond who is proving to the rest of the league that he’s healthy and capable.
If any of the other three members of the secondary have to sit, though, that takes Seattle out of their usual defensive game plan.
Seattle likes to stuff the run, force their opponents to throw into that vicious secondary while being rushed by their closet full of pass rushers. I’m not sure that game plan will work if half of the secondary is on the bench.
It’s hard to believe he’s only a sophomore, although hidden between all the greatness, Russell Wilson has made a few rookie-esque mistakes as of late.
Side-arm throws in the red zone that get intercepted and taking sacks when he really needs to just throw the ball away are things that have crept up on Wilson the past few games.
Wilson did play much better against Atlanta. I only saw one mistake like the type I just mentioned when he for some reason ran out of a well-protected pocket to buy time he already had.
Once out of the pocket, he just stood there and took the sack which cost Seattle a field-goal try.
Avoiding these mistakes against a good running team like Minnesota is going to be important, because if they can run the ball, it’s going to limit Seattle’s number of possessions.
Wilson will need to make every possession count.
One of things I noted in Seattle’s two recent near losses was the lack of creativity on offense. Darrell Bevell has never been my favorite play caller, but I thought he was especially unimaginative in those two close games.
Bevell busted out a flea-flicker in the first half of the Atlanta game. It was nice change of pace to see something a little less conventional from Bevell.
He needs to work in a play or two like that into every game to keep the opponent’s defense off-balance.
I’ll stand by my original: Seahawks win 27-10.