I’m not gonna lie to you, this is something of an underlying fear of mine that I don’t think enough people are talking about.
We all know the formula by now. You start by taking what you can get from your running game. Some days are better than others for teams trying to rush on us; hell, some DRIVES are better than others. Sometimes you get stuffed, sometimes you bust into the secondary with ease; a.k.a. you take what you can get. In the passing game, it’s short, quick passes. Don’t give our speedy pass rush an opportunity to get home, and neutralize the speed in our linebacking corps by getting the ball out into the open spots of the zone before they have a chance to read your eyes and react.
What you absolutely DON’T want to motherfucking do is pull out the 7-step drops and try to throw on us deep. That wack shit won’t hunt.
It requires an over-abundance of patience, especially because all that work tends to get washed away in the red zone and you’re generally stuck settling for field goals. Bend/Don’t Break. That shit’s etched into our very being.
The Seahawks take so much away that other teams like to do, that you HAVE to settle for the scraps if you want to get by. Yes, the Seahawks love to slow it down on offense, run the ball a lot, reduce the number of overall possessions, and “shorten the game” as the coaches like to say. On the flip, you have to understand that the Seahawks’ defense is the exact opposite: they want to end your drive on FIRST down if they can! They can’t handle it when the tables are turned and other teams shorten the game. The longer they’re on the field, the less effective they become; you make them tired and they’re unable to rely on the one thing they rely upon the most: their speed. Now, obviously, you can say that about ALL defenses, and I’ll still take my chances with what the Seahawks have to offer. I’m just saying, that’s what you have to do.
Like I said before, you can’t get frustrated. When you get frustrated, you start taking chances you shouldn’t be taking against a defense of this calibre. Likewise, the longer the Seahawks’ D is on the field, the MORE frustrated they’re going to get. Which, if they’re not careful, will lead to assignments being missed, guys trying to do too much, and ultimately some moderately big plays for the offense if they’re not careful.
That’s it. That’s how you beat the Seahawks’ defense. So, if it’s so easy, why doesn’t EVERYONE do it? There’s your $64,000 question, my friend. EVERYONE … CAN’T do it. It takes a special kind of offense which is just a really nice way to say it takes a special kind of quarterback: comfortable in a swarming pocket, quick release, and above all accurate. Who shredded the Seahawks the most last year? Philip Rivers, Tony Romo, and Tom Brady. One might not normally lump Romo in with those other two, but behind that O-Line he might as well be Joe Montana.
So, in 2015, who are some of the better quarterbacks out there that might achieve such a feat, that the Seahawks also happen to have on the schedule? Aaron Rodgers, Matthew Stafford, Tony Romo again, Ben Roethlisberger, and Joe Flacco just to name a few. I’m less-inclined to call Flacco a patient, accurate passer like some of those other guys, but that’s a road game, so he’s getting lumped in.
Obviously, the Seahawks aren’t going to lose to ALL of those teams. Just like they’re not going to beat ALL the teams I didn’t list. But, they just have to lose ENOUGH to get to the point where – should they make the playoffs – they’ll have to head out on the road. It wouldn’t be impossible for this team to win a playoff game or two on the road, but obvs you like your chances more with the 12th Man at your back.
I know I said this last year, but I was still entranced by the seductive power of a healthy Percy Harvin being added to the 2013 offense that just won a Super Bowl almost entirely without him. A prior MVP candidate, with this quarterback and this running game, should’ve made for tidings of GREAT joy. Anyway, I said last year that 2014 might be the season where the offense out-plays the defense. I said that coming from a place where I believed the D would be just as good as 2013, but the Harvin-full offense would be on another level entirely. Of course, I was wrong as SHIT, and the offense actually sort of took a step back in a lot of ways.
But, this year, not only do I believe it will finally happen, I think it HAS to happen for this team to consider a third crack at the Super Bowl in as many years. Unlike Harvin, Jimmy Graham is a positive influence in the lockerroom and in the community. Unlike Harvin, Graham helps us in the area we need the MOST help: the red zone. I mean, when you think about it, the best version of Percy Harvin is a nice idea between the 20s; but what in the merciless fuck is a bloody pipsqueak like Harvin going to do for you in the endzone? Get knocked down by the multitude of bigger defenders, followed immediately by pulling himself out of the game for no reason (the reason is: because he’s a P-U-S-S-Y and would be better-served playing a game like youth soccer instead of American Football).
Why do I think the offense needs to be better than the defense this year? Because I have a strong conviction that this is the year we finally stop leading the league in fewest points allowed. The more I look at this defense, picture this secondary without some key players, and worry about Richard Sherman’s reportedly “minor hip issue” that could just as easily be “future hip surgery” with the definition of the word “future” being “within the next three months, weeks, or days”, the more I believe the Seahawks won’t even be in the top 10 in points allowed. And, if that’s the case, we’re in for a lot of long drives by opposing teams, followed by our own offense needing to throw its way back into games.
I think they can do it, don’t get me wrong. I’m glad to have Graham here. I’m glad Baldwin and Kearse are another year stronger and experienced. I’m glad we drafted Tyler Lockett. I’m even glad Ricardo Lockette will likely be around to atone for the play that which we do not speak its name. And, should Chris Matthews return from injury, and should Luke Willson figure out his drops issue, and should Marshawn Lynch play like we’ve come to know and love these last few years, I’ll sit here and tell you that this offense has the potential to REALLY make a charge into the top half of the league. And that everything will be all right and we’ll still find a way to get by with a lesser defense.
In the end, it’ll make for more exciting football, but I gotta tell ya, it’ll be less-enjoyable for me. I LIKE having the best defense in the game! I like being the team that slogs out 19-3 victories. I like completely imposing our will on opposing offenses, in a league where all the rules are tilted that way and the bulk of the talent tilts that way. I think those days – for the most part – will be in the past. Now’s when we find out if this team can overcome and still be as great as ever.
Underworld – Always Loved A Film