It was an up-and-down season for the Seattle Seahawks, and the curler coaster ended up veering off of the rails and into the timber, the place it is now seemingly one telephone name away from bursting into flames.
At one level, Russell Wilson was proudly owning the league and there was speak of him lastly touchdown his first NFL MVP honor. That was tabled when he and the Seahawks started to battle earlier than they’d lastly get issues going once more to finish the yr with the NFC West crown. And so the stage was set, the Seahawks dealing with the Los Angeles Rams for a 3rd time, on NFL Tremendous Wild-Card Weekend and solely days after dropping to them within the regular-season finale.
It was a matchup perennial All-Professional defensive deal with Aaron Donald “wished” desperately, and the world rapidly came upon why.
Donald led a defensive effort that suffocated Wilson and Co., a lot in order that the quandary at quarterback largely proved of no consequence. John Wolford was compelled out of the sport within the first quarter and an injured Jared Goff entered, the latter having to do nothing greater than keep away from pricey errors whereas delivering well timed throws. He did each of these issues en path to eliminating the Seahawks from the playoffs, and questions relating to what went fallacious in Seattle are actually entrance and middle. Wilson is not shy about admitting the first situation, and just lately famous he “needs to be concerned” in roster choices going ahead — feedback that come within the midst of groups calling the Seahawks to see in the event that they’d be open to buying and selling their franchise quarterback, based on Jason La Canfora.
In dissecting 5 methods the Seahawks can return to glory, none of them contain sending away the very best participant on the staff.
Step 1: Shield Russ, lastly
Blaming Wilson for Seattle’s failure is low-hanging fruit.
The All-Professional was taking part in at an MVP-caliber stage early within the season, spawning a motion outlined by the “Let Russ Cook dinner” mantra and was the principle purpose Seattle was seen as a Tremendous Bowl contender. And prepare dinner he did, till he started to stumble within the kitchen, largely because of an absence of constant safety and a defensive unit that was one of many worst within the NFL — permitting opponents to attain at will. We’ll get to the latter level in a second, however the Seahawks’ lack of ability to place a wall in entrance of Wilson for one more consecutive season noticed him in the end bullied into submission by the Rams (the newest to take action). He was sacked 5 instances on the day and also you did not even discover Aaron Donald left the sport with a rib harm, to not return, as a result of the assault on Wilson by no means relented. So till Seattle lastly fixes the O-line situation, Wilson will eternally be tasked with being a superhero to a level that’s flat out unsustainable — with play and/or sturdiness.
Step 2: Rebuild the move rush
When the staff’s sack chief security Jamal Adams, you might need an issue up entrance.
There was a purpose the Seahawks tried to re-sign Jadeveon Clowney in 2020, and whereas it was smart to not cave to his asking worth, the thought behind it was indicative of a staff desperately making an attempt to get after the opposing quarterback after struggling in that respect the earlier season. There’s promise on this regard, by means of Jarran Reed, however Reed’s sack whole (6.5) got here from the inside, and which means neither of the top-two within the class have been on the sting of the line of defense. Kudos to Benson Mayowa for including six sacks to the tally, however there is not a terrifying presence on both edge and that was on full show towards the Rams. Carlos Dunlap would possibly turn out to be that in 2021, however even when he does, who’s the complementary piece reverse him — for now and, extra importantly, the long run? With free company and the NFL Draft now on the menu, it is paramount the Seahawks discover themselves a deadly edge rusher who can sack a Wolford and injured Goff combo greater than 3 times in 4 quarters of a house playoff recreation.
Step 3: Degree up the secondary
One of many two issues has to enhance instantly, if not each.
That’s to say, you’ll be able to’t lack a dominant move rush and be absent a dominant secondary, and but that is the present scenario in Seattle. The Seahawks protection allowed probably the most passing yards in NFL historical past over their first 9 video games of the season, and that was regardless of having made the blockbuster commerce for Adams. And whereas Adams proved he was well worth the transfer, he additionally handled sturdiness points that noticed him miss a number of video games and can now power him into present process a number of surgical procedures this offseason. Moreover, whereas Adams is locked in for 2021, he is a free agent thereafter — one thing to regulate when making an attempt to find out how the Seahawks secondary will search for the foreseeable future. You need to love what Quandre Diggs brings to the desk on the again finish, however the cornerback lot leaves a lot to be desired. An instance can be Shaquill Griffin, who grabbed three INTs in 2020 however allowed a 62.1 p.c completion charge when focused and gave up a career-worst six touchdowns, in addition. The Seahawks want one, or two, shutdown corners and so they want it yesterday.
Step 4: Improve the TE place
In case your reply for TE1 was Greg Olsen, you by no means really had a solution.
Olsen had lengthy been battling sturdiness points earlier than his eventual parting of the way from the Carolina Panthers, so it felt inevitable that will once more be a difficulty with the Seahawks, and it was. He was obtainable for 11 video games however logged simply eight begins, ending the yr on injured reserve with one more foot harm, after grabbing solely 239 receiving yards and one landing in roughly half a season, numbers that have been nonetheless practically higher than Will Dissly’s (who had 4 extra begins). It’s incumbent upon the Seahawks to improve this place and in two elements. On one hand, they want an athletic starter who can complement the likes of DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, additionally permitting for the exploitation of linebackers and nickel corners. Then again, they’d ideally like him to not less than be strong at blocking, or they will have to raised determine a TE2 who can deal with that job — a nod to level No. 1 on this checklist. Nevertheless you slice the bread, although, it is nonetheless bread, and if the Seahawks need their typically prolific passing offense to supply up extra of a problem than their two star receivers, they higher begin baking with high quality dough at TE.
Step 5: Add gunpowder at RB
Chris Carson performed in 15 video games this season, and that is an incredible signal.
Having battled by harm heading into the 2020 season, Carson did miss 4 video games however remains to be a greater than succesful beginning working again within the NFL. That stated, it wasn’t a banner yr for Carson with 681 dashing yards, though he did add 287 receiving yards and 9 whole touchdowns to this backside line, so the Seahawks are high-quality there. The issue is, there isn’t any one-two punch within the RB room, which is what Carlos Hyde was purported to resolve. Hyde did not play horribly in 2020, but it surely felt like he and DeeJay Dallas have been always preventing to turn out to be the Robin to Carson’s Batman — in futility. Regardless of an enormous beatdown by the Rams protection, Carson fell solely 23 yards shy of a 100-yard outing, however Wilson had the second-most dashing yards within the recreation (50). It is well-known that Wilson is a menace on the bottom in addition to within the air, however his main job is not to be an incredible working again within the league. Lastly, quiet because it’s stored, Carson is a free agent in 2021, which brings us full circle to why the Seahawks have loads to determine on the place.