Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Observations after Week Two

Observations after Week Two

Not the start I believe any of us were hoping for or expecting, from the Seahawks this year. After a week one win over the Dolphins, in which the offense looked entirely like a week one team, we had the debacle in Los Angeles. Just going to touch lightly on both here today, as both wounds are still pretty fresh.

Against Miami in week one our defense played pretty stellar football. There was the one scoring drive in the fourth quarter that wasn’t fun to watch, but other than that, we kept the Dolphins right where we wanted them. Our offense had a couple positive looks, but nothing that really stood out. The biggest story to come out of this game was the injury to Russell Wilson’s ankle. Looked terrible when it happened, but they got enough tape on it for Wilson to orchestrate the game winning drive. Facing the Dolphins defensive line, though, is not going to be easy for any team this year. To get out of there with the win was good enough. As they say, even an ugly win still goes in the win column.

Then we got to Los Angeles, to face the newly relocated Rams. What happened in this game is a lot harder to put my finger on. On defense we just seemed a step slow all day. Specifically in the back end (LB’s and DB’s). We gave up way to many yards to a career back up quarterback on short passes over the middle and in the flat. Crossing routes were open all day, and the Rams took full advantage. Being a Jeff Fischer coached team, I’m sure they had their special “playing the Seahawks” offensive scheme ready. Quarterback Keenum never had the ball in his hands very long, taking short three and five step drops and getting rid of the football.

Our defense did keep the highly touted second year running back, Todd Gurley, in check for most of the day. He had a few decent runs in the fourth quarter, finishing with 51 yards on 19 carries. The Rams are still after week two, looking for their first touchdown as the Los Angeles Rams. Kenny Britt finished with 94 receiving yards, many in the short passing game as mentioned above. We got to Keenum for three sacks; two by Frank Clark and one for Michael Bennett. On a side note, I think we’re going to have to find more snaps for Clark; he was only on the field for 56% of the defensive snaps. In my opinion, he is much too important to barely play half the defensive snaps. I realize it’s hard to find time behind Bennett and Cliff Avril, but with the talent Clark has, I believe we need him on the field, not the sidelines.

On offense, we left quite a bit to be desired. I personally believe the ankle injury to Wilson was the biggest hindrance on offense. He just didn’t have the spring in his step that we have come to expect over the last four years. With the way the game was going I would have been happier to let him set out the game, and play the rookie, Trevone Boykin. With our defensive talent, I don’t believe the offense would have, or could have looked worse. Boykin would have at least had mobility in the pocket, which was what I believe hindered the Seahawk offense the most. I don’t believe Russell did any spin moves, as we’ve came to expect, and running the read option was ugly to watch.

In the running game, the return of Thomas Rawls to the starting line up didn’t turn out the way the Seahawks hoped. Rawls finished with seven carries for a negative seven yards. Christine Michael finished with 60 yards on 10 carries. It seemed to me that Rawls kept trying to side step tacklers behind the line of scrimmage, whereas Michael hits the hole quicker. With a defensive front with the talent of Los Angeles’, you need to get by the line as quick as possible. I think if Rawls had just hit the hole, he would have done better. Thomas did suffer another injury, not believed to be terribly serious; it sounded like a bruise to the shin, as I heard it.

Tyler Lockett also left the field for a short time with an injury, but returned in the fourth quarter. He had a 53 yard reception on the final drive, and finished with 99 yards on four receptions. Jimmy Graham, in his first extended playing time of the year, had three receptions for 42 yards. If we can get Graham back into the offensive game plan, it can only help. Doug Baldwin also left the field with an injury. The last I’ve heard is that he “seems to be feeling OK” per Pete Carroll. I just believe that with Russell Wilson’s injury it handcuffed our offense too much. He did have a few scrambles for positive yards, but he didn’t have the normal quickness, which really changes out offense. Additionally, I do strongly believe that if Michael hadn’t fumbled on the last drive, we would have scored a touchdown, and won 10-9. Just my opinion, though. But who really knows?

There is rumor that we may get Germain Ifedi back this week against the San Francisco 49ers. I’m hoping that will help our offense, along with another week for Wilson to get the ankle back to where it should be. After going through nearly all of training camp and preseason with Ifedi in the right guard position, then losing him to injury just before the season opener, has left our line as another patch work piece, as it had the last two years.

I’m still staying positive behind the Seahawks. I believe we’ve went up against two of the best defensive line’s in the NFL in the first two weeks of the season. Additionally I don’t believe the 49ers have nearly as much talent on the defensive line as the Rams and Dolphins. If we can get Ifedi back, and get the offense, which is notoriously slow starting, over the hump, I believe we’ll make quick work of the Niners. Also, I haven’t yet jumped on the ‘Fire Bevell’ bandwagon. We’ve heard it for the last couple of years at 3-3 in 2014 and at 2-4 in 2015 in addition to immediately after Super Bowl 49. I believe our offense will come around. I also believe we have to change things a bit. This is many of the offensive coaches first season without having Marshawn Lynch in the backfield. That I believe is huge. You won’t ever replace Beast Mode with late round, or undrafted free agent, running back. So consequently, the offensive play calling does need to change. Look how the offense played last season after both Marshawn and Thomas Rawls went down with injuries. But theses coaches aren’t dumb. I have faith that with a healthy Russell Wilson, and the offensive line set we had all preseason and camp, our offense will be fine. I would like to see a little more aggressive play calling. It may have been hard considering Wilson’s injury, but it was pretty obvious that the LA Rams couldn’t cover Tyler Lockett on a deep ‘go‘route. So why not send Lockett and the other speedster, Paul Richardson down field? Russell has shown an ability to put a good touch on the long ball. With the speed these two have, and the talent, or lack thereof, in the Rams secondary, I can’t believe we wouldn’t have gotten a few deep receptions, as Tyler had for 53 yards on the last drive.

Regardless, in my opinion, it isn’t time to panic just yet. On a positive, besides the division loss, we are in a four team tie in the NFC West at 1-1. There’s a lot of football left to play. I think we’ll be fine. The Rams were playing with a ton of emotion with the return to Los Angeles coupled with their lackluster showing in week one against the 49ers. As always, both these teams always play their best football against the division heavyweights, Seattle and Arizona. I still believe we will win the division outright, with a #1 or #2 seed going into the playoffs, Call me a cross-eyed optimist, but I know our defense will keep us in games, so long as the offense can get untracked. I mean really, who would have thought the Seahawks would have only scored one touchdown and a total of 15 points after two games? Certainly not this guy.

Another quick note on the Ram game, the officiating was questionable on both sides. Not complaining about getting “homered”, because there were some head scratchers for both teams. I mean really, three offensive pass interference calls against the Seahawks, and I know at least one against the Rams? The second call against Jermaine Kearse was laughable. He no more than touched the defender in the chest, and drew the flag. The Seahawks did have a lot of penalties; 10 for 114 yards, with the Rams having 9 for 78 yards. Too many pre-snap/dead ball penalties on the Seahawks/too. Let’s hope we get a handle on this right away.

So stay positive Seahawk fans. We’ll right the ship this week, barring further injury, and be on the way to another NFC West title! So, until next time (which I promise will be sooner, I’m making terrible use of my time)…………GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Week One--Previewing the Miami Dolphins

Week One--Previewing the Miami Dolphins

Finally time for some games that count! First up, the Miami Dolphins. I don’t believe we’ve faced off against Miami since November of 2012. Which we lost on a last second field goal. It should also be noted that this is Miami coach Adam Gase’s first (regular season) game as a head coach.

This game should be a great test for our reworked offensive line. Hopefully, the loss of guard Germain Ifedi won’t be too much of a problem. Not sure which way the Seahawks are going here, I’ve heard that they have moved Justin Britt over to guard, with rookie Joey Hunt at center. There’s also the possibility of having Rees Odhiambo move into the starting right guard position. Regardless of which way the team goes in replacing Ifedi, this defensive front may be one of the toughest we face all year.

With Ndamukong Suh, Cameron Wake, and Mario Williams, the Dolphins have a top quality defensive line. Williams, in his eleventh year has seen just about every stunt an offensive line can attempt. Suh and Wake have reputations as two of the best linemen in the NFL. Our one saving grace may be to use there aggressiveness against them. The Dolphins back seven, with the exception of Kiko Alonso and Byron Maxwell, don’t have any names that stand out. I’m not saying they’re pushovers; this is the NFL after all. The Dolphins list a rookie, Xavien Howard from Baylor at the cornerback opposite Maxwell, so it would be nice to see Baldwin, Lockett, or Kearse have a big game receiving. Also of note, we are expecting to see some playing time for Jimmy Graham this week, last I heard. Either Graham or Luke Willson needs to have a big game receiving for the Seahawk offense to be affective.

Depending upon the aggressiveness of the defensive line, I’d like to see a lot of read option and draw plays. If our offensive line can play up to par against this formidable defensive line, we should be alright. Just don’t want to see Russell drop back, and then have to scramble without any time to get through his reads.  On a positive note, the Dolphins were tied for 28th last season against the run, and didn’t make many moves in the off-season to address this. Hopefully this will allow a big game for either Christine Michael or Thomas Rawls, or both. Personally, I believe our biggest challenge on offense will be keeping Russell Wilson off his back. A quick start in the running game, or perhaps quick, three step drop passes may be the trick to slowing down this defensive line.

When the Dolphins have the ball, I kind of believe we’ll have the upper hand. With Quarterback Ryan Tannehill not having played in Century Link field before now, he may be in for an eye opening experience. I’m sure a lot of the veterans have told him what to expect, but it’s real hard to imagine. With the talent on the Seahawks defense, and the noise the home crowd will be making, I’ll be surprised if the Dolphins don’t have a few pre-snap penalties. The Dolphins have worked a lot during the preseason on a no huddle offense, which may help them combat some of the noise.

As far as personnel, the Dolphins have a few quality players at the marquee positions. Jarvis Landry is one of the best young receivers in the game today, and Kenny Stills has shown moments. Their other starter at wide receiver, DeVante Parker is nursing an injury, so it’s not certain he will be playing. Arian Foster is expected to be the starting running back, and the Dolphins, like many other teams, don’t carry a fullback on the roster. But they do list five running backs, including Jay Ajayi, so having two in the backfield won’t be a problem. Along the Dolphins offensive line, the starting center, Mike Pouncey is also injured, so I expect our defensive line to be able to get pressure on Tannehill. Surprisingly, the Dolphins depth chart doesn’t list any backups at either tackle position. That would be a little scary to me, as a fan. Not sure what they’ll do in case of an injury, but I’m sure they have a plan.

I believe the Landry vs. Richard Sherman match up could be one of the best we’ll see this week. Landry is an extremely gifted receiver, and we all know what Sherman is capable of. Of concern is the Dolphins tight end, Jordan Cameron. He has always been a quality receiver, and we Seahawk fans know all to well our past problem covering a quality tight end. Just hope the Legion of Boom can keep everything in front of them and Kam can get a couple of ‘enforcer’ type hits early. That always seems to slow down the receivers over the middle, which seems to be an Achilles heel for the Seahawks.

Final word on the game; I’m not looking for a blow out by the Seahawks, as we don’t ever seem to start the year off fast. I’ve seen prognosticators pick everything from 45-10 Seahawks to 23-20 Seahawks. I’m going to go somewhere in between. I expect a big day running the ball, which should open up the passing game. I don’t believe our defense will be too pressed to keep Tannehill & co. in check. Keep everybody healthy, a monster game from Christine Michael, Tyler Lockett, and Russell Wilson on offense. A coming out of sorts for Frank Clark of defense. Solid play from Michael Bennett, Ahtyba Rubin, Cliff Avril, Tony McDaniel, and hopefully, Quinton Jefferson and Jarran Reed, and we can keep the Dolphins out of the end zone. Our back seven should be fine; Landry is going to get his catches, just limit the yards after catch and we’ll be OK.

Final Score Seahawks 30, Dolphins 13  Let’s get this season started!!

Until next time……………………GO HAWKS!!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Looking At the Final Roster and Practice Squad

Looking At the Final Roster and Practice Squad

The Seahawks have announced their final 53 man roster and their practice squad. Here’s a quick run-down. I should mention that this is as of early Tuesday Sept. 6. I say that because the team could make changes as I’m writing this, so…Check Your Programs! Seriously, this time of year roster changes can happen at the blink of an eye; a player we’ve had our eyes on gets released by a team hoping to ‘hide ‘the player for a day, just to be able to resign him. But, enough front office worries, so here you go:


No real surprise here. Russell Wilson and Trevone Boykin. Jake Heaps has been released. Many of the NFL ‘experts’ are pegging Russell to have and MVP type year. With the way he played the second half of last season, it’s not a big stretch. Some seem surprised that we kept undrafted free agent Boykin as the backup. Personally, I can see Trevone becoming a Wilson style quarterback. He is about as close, physical-wise, as you can get to Russell, it’ll just be if he has it ‘between the ears’. Should be a fun project to watch, I just hope we don’t have to call on Trevone during the season, for any extended periods. Wouldn’t surprise me if the Seahawks, at some point, signed a veteran QB to the practice squad.

Running Back

Second year Thomas Rawls should be ready to go this week, with veteran Christine Michael as the back up. With the preseason Michael had, if he can keep it up, may give the Seahawks one of the best one-two punches at running back in the league. Rookie CJ Prosise has been called the third down back, used much like Fred Jackson has been the last couple of seasons. He has looked pretty impressive during limited action in the preseason. The surprise for a lot of fans was the fourth running back. Rookie Alex Collins didn’t have a lot of carries in the preseason, and many thought the team would keep Troymaine Pope, who saw a lot of play in the preseason. Not sure if the team thought they could resign Pope to the practice squad; he is now a New York Jet. Feel pretty confident with Collins myself, as he has shown signs of having a little Marshawn Lynch in him. As always, only time will tell.


This time yesterday we wouldn’t have had a need for this section, but the Seahawks have resigned rookie Tani Topou. I had heard they might resign Will Tukuafu after cutting him on Saturday. Something about his contract not being guaranteed if he’s not on the roster for the first game. Not sure which way we will go here, but I’m assuming we signed Topou instead because he has also played a lot of defensive line, and we’re a little thin in that area.

Wide Receiver

Veterans Doug Baldwin, Jermaine Kearse, Tyler Lockett, and Paul Richardson were locks. The fifth spot went to Tanner McEvoy, a 6-6 rookie out of Wisconsin. McEvoy impressed me during the preseason, knowing how to use his size against smaller defensive backs. Just a side note; they say Tanner used to play safety. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a 6-6 safety. Would be fun to watch, I guess. Additionally, McEvoy has spent a little time at tight end during the preseason, and with Jimmy Graham still being questionable, and rookie Vannett being banged up, it helps to have players capable of filling in at multiple positions.

Tight Ends

Jimmy Graham and Luke Willson are back again, along with rookie Vannett. Also, the team kept Brandon Williams, a fourth year player out of Oregon. I was impressed with Williams play over the last two preseason games, but wasn’t sure if it would be enough to make the team. His pass catching ability along with his blocking apparently was enough to make the team. Injuries to Vannett and the lengthy rehab for Graham may have pushed the team to keep Williams also. I’d like to see him have a good year. I’ always believe our offense moves better with more use of the tight end in the passing game.


Gary Gilliam (R), J’Marcus Webb (R), Bradley Sowell (L) George Fant (L)  Webb is listed on the depth chart as the backup on both sides, with rookie Fant being listed as third team on the left side. With all the OTA and mini camp press about Gilliam moving from right to left, now starting again at right, I’m guessing Sowell impressed the coaching staff enough to leave Gilliam on the right. The tackle play has been pretty good during the preseason. Once again, it’s just going to take time for the offensive line to get used to each other. Just about anything will be an improvement over last year.


Germain Ifedi (R), Mark Glowinski (L), Rees Odhiambo. Rees is listed as backup on both sides. Only having three guards on the active roster seems a little light to me, considering Ifedi and Odhiambo are both rookies. I know a lot of offensive linemen have experience at multiple positions, which helps in the event of an injury. Ifedi has shown to have a bit of a mean streak so lets hope his coaches and teammates can keep him under control.


Justin Britt, Joey Hunt. Britt has made the switch to center, and looks as if he is working out fine. Again, only time against other teams’ starters will be the true test, but he has done a good job in the preseason. Rookie Hunt making the team kind of surprised me. Letting Patrick Lewis go, after numerous starts last year, left me feeling a little shaky, but apparently the coaches saw enough in Hunt to feel safe.

Defensive End

Michael Bennett (L) Quinton Jefferson (L) Cliff Avril (R), Frank Clark (R) I put right and left in here, but these guys move around a lot, so it may be a moot point. Rookie Jefferson is the only question mark I see here, as we’ve seen enough of the other three to know what they’re capable of. Many, me included, expect big things from this group, Clark in particular. With some of the flashes we saw during his rookie year, I think that he may become one of the special players on this defense.

Defensive Tackle

Ahtyba Rubin (L) Garrison Smith (L) Tony McDaniel (R) Jarran Reed (R). These positions are the same as the defensive ends, as they move around a lot. These positions have also changed quite a bit over the last 24 hours. We just claimed Smith from the 49ers yesterday. Before getting Smith, McDaniel was listed as the backup at the left end, with Reed the starter on the right. Putting Smith as the backup on the left moved McDaniel to the starter on the right, with rookie Reed as the backup. McDaniel’s familiarity in the system may have something to do with this. I know the team expects big things from Reed this season, hope we see them. The team had room for Smith after safety L.J. McCray, acquired in a trade Saturday, failed the team physical.

Outside Linebacker

Mike Morgan, Cassius Marsh, K.J. Wright, Kevin Pierre-Louis. Morgan has won the job replacing Bruce Irvin at SAM linebacker, with Marsh making the switch from defensive end to be the backup. Morgan has a ton of experience with Pete’s system, having played for him at USC, and K.J. is as steady as they come. Dewey McDonald, acquired in a trade with Oakland Saturday, is now listed as the third team linebacker behind Wright and Pierre-Louis on the depth chart, though on the roster he is listed as a defensive back. Once again, versatility helps!

Middle Linebacker

Bobby Wagner, Brock Coyle. No surprises at this position. I think Wagner is as good as there is in the game today. As long as we can stay healthy, this position will be fine.


Richard Sherman (L), Tharold Simon (L), Jeremy Lane (R), DeShawn Shead (R), DeAndre Elliott (R). Only news here is who made the fifth position. With a lot of players in camp, I’m sure it was a tough call for the coaching staff. I hadn’t seed much of Elliott until the final preseason game, but he looked impressive there. Apparently the coaches agreed, cutting Tye Smith and Marcus Burley on Saturday. I’m guessing Elliott may have shown more consistency on special teams, which helps when there are a lot of players for just a couple of roster spots.

Strong Safety

Kam Chancellor, Kelcie McCray. Feeling pretty positive with the players here, also. Kam is, well, Kam, and we all know what he brings to the field. McCray, now in his fifth year, has a full season under his belt in the Seahawk system, starting three games last year. He may not be the enforcer that Kam is (who is?) but he has great ball skills, and familiarity with the players around him.

Free Safety

Earl Thomas, Steven Terrell, Tyvis Powell. Thomas and Terrell were expected, Powell is a little surprising, to me anyway. I really thought the team was leaning towards Keenan Lambert, if we kept a third player here at all. Perhaps Powell impressed enough on special teams to warrant keeping him on the active roster. I’ll admit he did look good covering kicks during the second or third game, I just wasn’t sure it was enough. Regardless, with All World Earl and Terrell ahead of him, he may not see many snaps, other than special teams.

Special Teams

Punter-Jon Ryan----All World, if he keeps kicking like he did in preseason, they’re going to suspect PED’s

Kicker Steven Hauschka---Mr. Reliable, Steady Eddy

Long Snapper Nolan Frese, Bradley Sowell. Frese was a little shaky at times during preseason. Let’s hope it was just the nagging injury we heard about.

Kickoff & Punt Return Tyler Lockett Mr. Excitement. Nothing better than watching him field a kick with a full head of steam.

Practice Squad

As of …..NOW, no….NOW..

This group can change quickly, so hold on!

Tylor Harris-Undrafted Free Agent (UFA) 2016-Wake Forest-Defensive End

Kenny Lawler-7th Rd 2016-California-Wide Receiver

Marcus Lucas-UFA 2014-Missouri-Tight End

Kache Palacio-UFA 2016-Washington State-Linebacker

Will Pericak-UFA 2013-Colorado-Guard/Center

Rodney Smith-UFA 2013-Florida St.-Wide Receiver

Jordan Tripp-5th Rd 2014-Montana-Linebacker

Kasen Williams-UFA 2015-Washington-Wide Receiver

So that’s where we stand roster-wise as of today, Tuesday Sept. 6, 2016. Not saying it hasn’t changed since I started typing, and if it has, sorry. Looking forward to week one game against the Dolphins, as we haven’t played them much as of late. I’m really expecting/hoping for big things from the team. Should be exciting; surprisingly a total of 15 rookies on the roster today. 28% of the roster is rookies. Another twelve with only one or two year’s experience. So 27 players, over 50%, were not on the Super Bowl 48 winning team. Why not let these players know what it feels like? Ok, that’s enough.  Until next time……………..Go Hawks!!!

NOTE: See? Soon as I was done publishing the Seahawks signed the final two players to the practice squad. Just to mess with me. They are as follows:

Tacoby Cofield-UFA 2015 –Duke-Tackle

Justin Hamilton-UFA 2015-Louisiana-Lafeyette Defensive Tackle
   *Hamilton was cut by the Seahawks when they signed Garrison Smith on Monday.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Down to 75 & Almost Time for Some Real Football

Down to 75 & Almost Time for Some Real Football

Ok, sorry so it’s been a few days since our last post. Things been happening, and the day just doesn’t seem long enough to get it all done. Additionally, it’s still preseason, so it’s kind of like hurry up and wait. There’s always a few good series per game, but there’s normally at least a half game of non-starters, and a good 10 minutes of guys who will soon be on a practice squad, or worse, on the payroll of an athletic department somewhere (out of league).


We now stand at what has become the least important preseason game; game 4. Very little chance of seeing very many starters, if so they most likely won’t play more than a series or two. Going into the game with 75 players and having to cut to the final 53 only two days later, it’ll give the coaches a good chance to judge what, for the Seahawks anyway, has to be some tough decisions. Going into Oakland for our last game on Thursday night gives us a few extra days rest before the Dolphins come to town in week 1.

Getting back to the player cuts going on now, I have to say I was kind of surprised with the ones they’ve made already. I heard Brandon Browner wasn’t having a great camp, and we didn’t see him on the field much during the first three games. So that means the ‘hybrid safety’ experiment is over. Too bad, Browner has always fit well with the current Legion of Boom, as he was an original member. I just believe he was caught in a numbers game. The Seahawks are real full in the defensive backfield, and a lot of the players are pretty young. Brandon’s age may have just caught with him, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him sign on with another team. I just hope it isn’t a team in the NFC West.

The first round of cuts became public Monday the 29th. These included FB Kyle Coleman, WR Montario Hunter, and DE DeAngelo Tyson. Additionally WR Deshon Foxx was put on the waived/injured list, and DT Sealver Siliga was placed on injured reserve. The team also terminated the veteran contract of Browner. On Tuesday the 30th RB Zac Brooks, LB Quayshawn Nealy, LB Pete Robertson, G Kristjan Sokoli, and C Patrick Lewis were waived. Also RB George Farmer, CB Trovon Reed, DE Josh Shirley, and WR Kevin Smith were put on the waived/injured list. The only real surprise for me here would be C Lewis, as he started a few games for the Seahawks last season. Apparently rookie Joey Hunt has looked pretty good, so the team thought Lewis was expendable.

Among the current 75 man roster there are six cornerbacks (also DeShawn Shead listed as a defensive back), eight defensive tackles, eight linebackers, six (?) tight ends, and ten wide receivers. I expect these last two; TE and WR will lose some big numbers come Saturday, when the final cut down to 53 must be done. I’m assuming three maybe four tight ends and five wide receivers will remain with the team. The tight end decision will be a tough one; with Jimmy Graham and Luke Willson being veterans with the team, and Nick Vannett having a good camp. I have also been surprised with the play of Brandon Williams. Seems like a good enough receiver, not sure of his blocking ability though. Thankfully, this isn’t my decision to make, and that’s why the coaches get the big money.

Overall I’d probably give the team a grade of B for the previous preseason games. There have been some good points and some not so good. It’s always hard to judge a preseason, because you can never be quite sure of how much a team is really showing. Coupled with the injuries from last year (Graham and Rawls) we have yet to see the full starting units together. With preseason week 4 being what it is, or has become, I seriously doubt we will until week one, against the Dolphins. Christine Michael has, to me anyway, been the biggest surprise of the games so far. If he can keep it up, we should have a decent one-two punch at running back, if Rawls can come back and show some of the magic from last season.

Just going to touch quickly on what I’ve seen from the rest of the league in this preseason. Dallas seems to have a budding superstar who is now going to find himself thrust into the bright lights. Dak Prescott has been very impressive so far. I wonder if the LA Rams and Philadelphia Eagles are a little uneasy about their top two picks, Goff and Wentz. I’m not saying these two aren’t quality quarterbacks, but Prescott has so far shown a skill set that fits well in the Dallas system. I believe if the Cowboys are smart they will do as the Seahawks did with Russell Wilson during his rookie year; simplify the offense. Don’t ask the rookie to do too much. Dak should be fine behind the offensive line the Cowboys have, but they thought Romo would be, and look how that turned out.

I heard the Minnesota Vikings lost their young quarterback, Teddy Bridgewater, for the season yesterday. Apparently some freak accident during a non-contact drill tore his ACL and dislocated his knee. That’s really too bad for the team and Teddy. I believe he is one of the future stars of the league. They have said he should be able to make a full recovery. The Vikings seem to have all the pieces in place, so let’s hope they’re right.

In the rest of the NFC Green Bay looks to be tough again as does Arizona and Carolina. Tampa Bay has shown a lot of improvement also. The NFC East seems, again, to be a pick ‘em division. All four teams here don’t seem to put as much emphasis on the defensive side of the ball. Not sure why I feel this way, but having rookie coaches in New York and Philadelphia may show us something different. Still believe Seattle, Carolina, and Arizona are the big three in the conference, with Green Bay having the ability to surprise.

In the AFC I still believe, unfortunately, that it’s the Patriots, then everybody else. Not sure any other teams can dethrone them, though we should have a good comeback year from Indianapolis and Andrew Luck. Also the Pittsburg Steelers should be a tough team, as long as they can keep Big Ben healthy. My dark horse in the AFC would have to be the Oakland Raiders. Quarterback Derek Carr has another year under his belt, as does WR Amari Cooper. With Michael Crabtree at the other receiver, they should have a decent passing game. As with last year though, they need to find a running game to complement it and keep defenses honest. Have also heard a lot of rumor of the Raiders moving to Las Vegas. Big money there, but some of these young stars with all that money sounds like trouble to me. We’ll just have to wait it out.

The Seahawks finish the preseason tomorrow night in Oakland, playing on the baseball field. Should be an interesting game as both teams will have two more days to cut an additional 22 players from the roster. As I said, I don’t believe we will see many starters playing, or playing very long, as roster spots 1-40 (or so) are pretty much set. It’s the players on the bubble that will see the field more, as the coaches have some tough decisions to make.

So until next time……..GO HAWKS!!