I don’t know if there’s any point in rehashing this one too in depth, so let’s blow through it really quick: the Seahawks lost at home to the Arizona Cardinals. Led by Drew Stanton and his slightly torn ACL (that still left him spry enough to repeatedly run away from Michael Bennett in the open field), the Cards racked up 259 yards en route to a 26-24 victory. Of course, the most mind-boggling thing was their 20-7 halftime lead, but at this point should it even be all that mind-boggling anymore? We suck early in games, period. That only made the inevitable second half comeback all the more painful in the end, as Blair Walsh sailed yet another field goal wide of its target in the closing seconds of the game.
Of course, by that point, it was known that the Panthers – behind garbage-ass Cam Newton’s 3 interceptions – lost to the Falcons, blowing their opportunity to win their division in the process (because, against all odds, the Bucs actually managed to beat the Saints). So, it didn’t really matter what Blair Walsh did, and missing that kick actually made things better for the Seahawks, not just in dropping our draft pick from 20 to 18, but ensuring that there’s no fucking way this front office loses its collective minds and opts to re-sign that good-for-nothing piece of shit kicker. 21 of 29, for the worst season percentage of his career. 3 of those misses were under 40 yards (not counting the extra point he also missed), and 0 of those makes were 50 yards or more. Ostensibly, we brought Walsh in here to be a cheaper alternative to Steven Hauschka, but we also brought him in here because of his big leg. Once it was determined that he couldn’t be trusted, he finished the season with just 1 attempt over 50 yards, so obviously that was a huge embarrassing failure of a signing.
But, you can’t blame the fact that the Seahawks missed out on the playoffs on a terrible kicker like Blair Walsh (though, you can certainly trace at least a couple of these close losses to his missed field goals). There’s plenty of blame to go around for why the Seahawks finished 9-7 and outside of the playoffs. We’ll get into more of that as Seahawks Death Week goes on.
Before we get to that, a few notes on this final game of the season:
Tyler Lockett looked amazing, particularly on his kickoff return for a TD. He’s slowly but surely returning to form after his devastating injury; I would expect great things from him in 2018.
I hope the Seahawks can bring Byron Maxwell back on the cheap. He’d be a nice depth piece to have behind Sherm and Griffin. I would also hope DeShawn Shead can return, but I think that’s less likely. He’s probably looking for more of a starting role, and if he shows out in workouts, could very well command a salary this team has no business matching. Besides, Justin Coleman appears to have that slot corner position on lockdown, so there isn’t a lot of room for more DBs (assuming, of course, that the team goes out in the draft and picks up another one).
I would absolutely love it for Dion Jordan to stay on. I’ll get to where he should play in the coming days (hint: so long, Michael Bennett), but I thought he was clearly the best defensive lineman on the field for the Seahawks in the last couple weeks, and it would’ve been nice to see him at least get more than 50% of the defensive snaps.
I’m less high on Sheldon Richardson returning, but I’d consider it for a couple reasons: I don’t want the Seahawks to waste their time on high-priced free agents from other teams (mostly because I want some good compensatory draft picks for 2019). While he would certainly figure in that equation if he walked away, I just don’t know who you could bring in to fill that spot, unless you’re sure Malik McDowell can come back from whatever stole his rookie season from him. I have my doubts there. Obviously, though, if Richardson is looking for Ndamukong Suh-type money, then let him walk. But, if he can be had at the right price, with an out after 2-3 years, I say jump on it!
Okay, so I’m jumping on some of my future posts, so I’ll wrap it up with this: I think the Seahawks need a lot of work in their receiver corps. Baldwin is a stud, Lockett is criminally under-utilized, but as for the rest … yeesh.