Passing grade: Seahawks new offense looks great in opener
RENTON (Wash.) — Despite all the uncertainty surrounding the Seattle Seahawks, the most significant unknown was still unanswered up to Week 1.
What would the new offense with Russell Wilson as its leader look like?
For one week, and against a pretty good opponent, that new offense looked dangerous with Wilson posting one of the most efficient games of his career, throwing four touchdowns in the 28-16 win over Indianapolis.
” “I think we were really sharp the first time out,” Pete Carroll, Seattle coach, said. “There were many guys involved and there are more. It was a really efficient, good first ballgame.”
Wilson was great, completing 18 of 23 passes with a mix of big plays and smart, short throws that highlighted the versatility of Waldron’s new system. But it was not easy to overlook a defense that seems to have picked up from last season. The Seahawks prevented Jonathan Taylor from running in the running game by holding him to 56 yards for 17 runs. When Carson Wentz returned to throw, they were able create pressure without resorting to risky blitzes.
The Seahawks had three sacks and 10 quarterback hits, all of them coming from defensive linemen or edge rushers.
WHAT’S WORKING A constant image throughout Wilson’s career was the quarterback spinning away from pressure and making a desperate throw that somehow lands in his target’s hands. That didn’t happen in his opener.
Wilson appeared completely in control. He seemed to have easy throws and was able to hit receivers crossing routes or check down to running backs from the backfield. He was able to quickly get the ball and Seattle’s offensive lines did a good job giving Wilson time to develop routes.
” There’s so much we can do. Wilson stated that there is a lot more we can do to make sure we do everything we wanted. Wilson said that the guys hit all of their details. We were focusing on the details. Guys really taking the coaching points and kind of feeling what I’m seeing, and this is why we have to do it this way right here because it’s going to, boom, there it is.”
WHAT NEEDS HELP
There wasn’t much to nitpick from the opener, but Indianapolis did have a nearly 11-minute advantage in time of possession. Seattle punted on four of the six second-half possessions, while Indianapolis fumbled on one.
STOCK-UP The defensive line was the most important area for the Seahawks heading into the season. It performed well against the Colts. Nearly everyone from the line contributed to Seattle, including tackle Bryan Mone (5 tackles), defensive end RasheemGreen (2 pass breakups), and pass rushers Benson Mayowa (1 sack, 2 pass breaksups), as well as Darrell Taylor (1 sack, 2 QB hits).
Seven different linemen took snaps in the opening, with Green leading with 53 defensive plays.
At some stage, Rashaad Penny, the running back, must show that he can stay healthy. After a strong preseason by Alex Collins, Penny’s status was in doubt as the backup to Chris Carson. Penny was still the No. Penny remained the No. 2 option, but this is still unknown as Penny suffered a calf injury during Sunday’s first half.
This is Penny’s contract year and it’s not a good idea to start with another injury.
Along with Penny’s calf injury, the Seahawks saw wide receivers Penny Hart and Dee Eskridge leave with concussions and offensive lineman Ethan Pocic suffer a sprained knee. The injury report for Seattle was flawless last week. This won’t be true this week.
19-0 — Wilson posted a 152.3 passer rating in the opener, the second highest of his career. In Wilson’s career, the Seahawks were 19-0 in regular season games. He had a passer rating 133 and higher.
NEXT STEPS The conversation about Seattle’s cornerbacks is set to intensify this week, as a larger test in the passing game with Tennessee will be taking place. Seattle allowed just 10 of 25 completions by Wentz to wide receivers. A.J. A.J.
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