Monday, June 18, 2007

Springtime for Seahawks

So here it is, June 18. The NFL season is a mere, uh, three months away. Thus I'm sure loyal TPVers are wondering: what's happening with the Seattle Seahawks?

I'm glad you asked. Here's a collection of my impressions, gleaned from reading Mike Sando's blog and the stories posted on "Hawks News Daily."

1. The defense is looking tiiiiiiight (that's good). In the offseason, we ditched Ken Hammer Hamlin for Deon Grant and Brian Russell, two field generals who will do a better job providing coverage in the secondary. Brandon Mebane, our third-round pick, looks big and strong and fast. But the best news out of camp is that Marcus Tubbs, our huge playmaker at DT, is showing all the signs of a complete recovery. Two years ago, you could not run on the Hawks, and that was largely if not entirely due to the play of Tubbs. Last year, his injury opened up a gaping hole on the d-line that Frank Gore, Stephen Jackson and virtually everyone else ran straight through. If he's back and can stay healthy -- a big if -- we will be dominant.

(Note I didn't even mention our high-priced free agent acquisition, DE Patrick Kerney? He's still rehabbing his torn pecs but he'll be another weapon too. Thinking about this defense, I start to get...giddy.)

2. The wide receiver situation is not as bad as I feared. Do I still hate the Darrell Jackson trade? Yes, but he's already missing minicamps with the Niners because of his toe. Meanwhile, D.J. Hackett is making play after play in camp. The loss of Jackson may end up being one of those "addition by substraction" situations, where losing him so as to open up playing time for Hackett will improve our offense. [But couldn't you just have Jackson coming off the bench, or as insurance? Sssshhhhhhh.]

3. Shaun Alexander is going to have a bounceback year. It's no secret that I don't love Shaun's worth ethic or style of running. But he came into camp looking slim and motivated, and here's the reality: the guy can score touchdowns. We need him healthy if we're going to compete, because he forces d-coordinators to play against the run. So far, so good.

4. Marcus Pollard will be a serviceable corpse this year. Coach Holmgren says he thinks Pollard can catch 40 - 50 balls. He won't come anywhere near that, but he'll be able to block and score the odd touchdown. If there's an injury, however, we're screwed.

5. "Questions remain" on offensive line. First, the good news: backup Ray Wills is looking like a quality lineman we can plug it on the right side of the line, probably at guard. Now, the bad news: our center, Chris Spence, has been unable to practice because of a lingering injury; Pork Chop Womack is still on the team, and practiced for all of two minutes before injuring himself; Sean Locklear is apparently troubling the coaches; Chris Gray, at age 37, may end up starting. In other words, the situation is not good.

5. Wither Matt Hasselbeck? The big, unanswerable question is whether we will have 2005 Pro Bowl Matt Hasselbeck or 2006 Replacement-level Matt Hasselbeck. This is the larger issue that swallows all the other subissues (I use that line in my legal briefs with alarming frequency.)


Blogger John said...

Hasselback and Alexander are only as good as the O-line allows them to be. Talking about how healthy or how fast or how efficient those skill guys are is all moot if they're not getting excellent protection. In other words: Matt and Sean will NOT repeat their 2005 performance unless the offensive lines repeats theirs.

10:15 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home