Monday, August 15, 2016

Impressions of Week 1 Pre-season

Impressions of Week 1 Pre-season

Seahawks 17  Kansas City Chiefs 16

First of all, preseason week 1 is normally just a sleeper, and this game wasn’t much different.  Till there was about a minute left in the game, and these Seahawks decided to make it fun! With the normal week one game, we didn’t see a lot of either teams elite players play at all, or more than a half a quarter.

No different with the Seahawks. Most of the key offensive players were in for one or two series. Wilson, Baldwin, Kearse and Lockett, I believe, only played the first series. Back up running back Christine Michael played a couple series, and the offensive line played for the first three series with the starters, and then shuffled positions, or let the second or third string play.  One of the big question marks to begin this year, the offensive line, overall, played a pretty decent game, as far as this writer could tell; A couple of penalties, but really no big hits on Russell.

The offensive and defensive #1’s were both a little ragged looking while they were in. Wilson and wide receiver Doug Baldwin hooked up two times on the first series and that combination looks as good as they did last year. Tyler Lockett only had one reception, and Jermaine Kearse didn’t have any. Wilson finished 3-6, with the one interception to end the first drive at the goal line. Russell admitted to throwing the ball late to Kearse. Perhaps the most promising performance on the offense, besides the line play, was the play of Christine Michael. Starting in place of Thomas Rawls, Michael ended with 44 yards on 7 carries. He had a couple impressive runs with the starters on the first series. And looked like a different player than what the Seahawks have seen in the past. If he can keep it up through the regular season, him and Rawls could make an impressive one two punch. Tight end Jimmy Graham didn’t play either. Rookie tight end Nick Vannett played quite a bit, finishing with two catches for 22 yards. Kind of believe the Seahawks will keep three tight ends on the roster this year. Rookie Tanner McEvoy was the leading receiver, with three catches for 77 yards, including the game winner with no time on the clock.

Rookie quarterback Trevone Boykin looked pretty good also. Besides throwing the game winner touchdown, he finished 16-26 for 188 yards. He seemed to have a decent understanding of the offense, and didn’t get rattled, like you would expect from a rookie. The more he can study under Wilson, the better he should be. These next two preseason games should tell us a lot about the offense, and get those coming off injuries back on the field.  Overall I would probably grade the offensive showing at a B- or C+. Could have shown more, but one drive doesn’t show us much.

Our defense looked decent enough, for the first game. Gave up the opening drive, which wasn’t impressive, but we have time to work out the small bugs.

Neither Kam Chancellor nor Michael Bennett suited up for the game. Besides the pass Kansas City quarterback Alex Smith completed on a third and nine to the two yard line, the defense didn’t look terrible. We seemed to have a soft spot over the middle, for the short pass, which caused problems last year. Kam not playing may have had a lot to do with that.

The defensive line played pretty good. Second year player Frank Clark seemed to play like we’d expect. He had a penalty or two, one in particular for roughing the passer, but you have to like the heart he plays with. The entire front seven had a decent game, other than the above mentioned completions over the middle. The linebacker trio just needs to play together a bit more, the strong side position still being sorted out. Eric Pinkins, Kevin Pierre-Louis and Mike Morgan all saw time on the field. As long as we give one the consistent snaps, we should be good.

In the defensive backfield, Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas both held their positions down as we’ve came to expect. I’m not sure who got more snaps at the other corner; Jeremy Lane, Deshawn Shead or Tharold Simon.  Same thing here, just name somebody as the #1 and give them the next two weeks to get accustomed to playing as a unit with Richard, Earl and Kam. They play with a lot of non-verbal communication, which comes from familiarity. The defense as a whole would probably also get a B- or C+, but I would have to grade them a little higher than the offense. Other than the third and nine conversion by Kansas City, we seemed to play good.

Maybe the most impressive thing about the entire game was the attitude of the Seahawks. With most of the starters sitting from half-way through the first quarter, their cheerleading from the sidelines during the game winning drive was something special. Not many teams starters are all going to be standing there, rooting on the second, third or fourth stringers in the last two minutes. The explosion from the sidelines with the last second touchdown was impressive. There just seems to be a different attitude with this team, than any other team in the league. They seem to play as a family or with the team first attitude from game one of preseason. I’m thinking this may come from the demeanor of head Coach Pete Carroll. For the oldest coach in the NFL, he really has instilled a group effort attitude among the team.

That’s all for today, first game of preseason shouldn’t raise my blood pressure like this one did, but that’s always seemed to be the Seahawks way of doing things. Really looking forward to these next two weeks, so, until next time…………………Go Hawks!!

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