Preseason Game 1: Who Own the Chiefs?
by fellow 12 @ClintonBon
How sweet it is to be loved by you, by you, by you !!! That’s how the ending of this game felt. Heroics, a Hail Mary, and a halfback dancing in for 2 and capturing the W.
Ahhhhh do us ‘Hawks fans care it was the preseason?… Yes! Because we care all the time and as our good buddies from the pod put it:
We won! And I'm happy. #BecauseWinningIsBetterThanLosing
— Sea Hawkers Podcast (@SeaHawkersPod) August 13, 2016
Let's quickly re-live, re-hash some of the top and bottom moments of our 17 – 16 dubya v. the Chiefs, and then get re-focused on the Blair Walsh led Vikings. So let’s hustle like Russell and dive right in… to our first out!
OUT – Seems Like Old Times
Let’s face it. We are spoiled rotten when it comes to defensive dominance. Our ‘Hawks have allowed the fewest points in the league in each of the last 4 seasons. However, the opening drive by the Chiefs re-opened a wound for me personally that just hasn’t quite healed yet.
Take the vanilla defense packages you see in the pre-season, take the fact Bam Bam Kam wasn’t out there, and even take the Chiefs starting field position – about mid-field after the facemask penalty – and throw it all aside for just a moment.
The opening drive by the Chiefs gashed us… and that not quite healed flesh wound I’m referring to? That would be the feeling I had cheering on our beloved ‘Hawks at Carlow East in Manhattan for the Divisional round lumping we took at the hands of the Camthers.
BTW any Tri-Stater, Carlow East is a GREAT place to watch a Seahawks game with some amazingly passionate 12s !!!
The Chiefs blew us off the line, got to the 2nd level repeatedly, and only had to convert one 3rd down during their opening drive. True, Maclin was OB on that 3rd down conversion that set up the 1-yard Spencer Ware scamper for 6. So even with all the bad that had me glumming, the reality is that drive would have ended in 3 during the regular season.
With that, it all just reminded me of the Carolina game and as they say, an end can be a beginning. It was just unfortunate that this one felt like déjà vu all over again.
IN – P-P-P-Push it Real Good
Hey, Brandan and Adam spent a good deal of time on this topic on this week’s pod which has suddenly appeared below for you!!!
But let’s recap some of what we saw and felt watching our newly revamped 1st unit O-Line do their thang for the first time in this early season.
Bottom line, they outperformed. As Brandan eventually comes around to in the linked pod just above… wait for it… they were good! And as Adam so eloquently reminded us all, “Well that’s good… ‘cause good is good.”
Here’s what some of you had to say about showing the Chiefs our O-Face early:
Britt with a very nice 2nd level block on the LB with sustain on the long 16 yard run by C Mike up the middle #Seahawks
— DAVIS HSU (@DavisHsuSeattle) August 14, 2016
That's a bad pick obviously, but a really promising first drive from the O line.
— 12th Dan (@SeahawksForever) August 13, 2016
From 12th Man Rising author Keith Myers:
Wilson's 2nd pass today. Look at that pocket! since when does Seattle have a line that can pass block? pic.twitter.com/RAqjTs1H3O
— Keith Myers (@MyersNFL) August 14, 2016
And finally a true-fact from Gregg Bell:
And, hey, #Seahawks starting offensive line did not allow a sack in 9 pass plays. So there's that.
— Gregg Bell (@gbellseattle) August 13, 2016
A boy named Christine found some holes and did well, but the big IN has got to be awarded to how this first unit offensive line performed. Now do it again 🙂
OUT – Lost in Spaaaaaaaaaaaace
We talked about that opening drive by the Chiefs as our first OUT and though the sample size to dissect the first team defense is stupid small, well, we gots a job to do here!
This may be wholly unfair, but hey, in this dojo the pen is mightier than the sword… so let’s sweep the leg and slap an OUT on strong-side linebacker Mike Morgan. In what is an admitted too tiny sample size, I just didn’t think Morgan looked all that good in space. The issue is, this is kinda the knock on Morgan heading into the season and on a few pass plays, he looked caught mid-decision, resulting in a Chiefs reception and decent yards after the catch.
Am I worried about this position? Not really. Morgan has experience, has proven he can be service-able in this role in the past and due to the way the Seahawks scheme and rotate out defenders, others like Cassius Marsh will get plenty of opportunities to make plays in passing situations.
I think Adam said it best on this week’s pod… Bruce Irvin is a special athlete and it will take 2 players to replace what Irvin was able to do in both running and passing scenarios. Between Morgan, Cassius, and Pinkins, we’re probably A OK.
IN – Pow, Pow, Powell !!!
THE former Ohio State Buckeye was THE standout performer of the day. This has been well documented throughout the week, but let's give Tyvis 3 INs in 1 as he made a trifecta of big plays!
The block, the bat, and the pick:
The block, see below:
Tyvis Powell laying the wood ? pic.twitter.com/QnL2lz7kvl
— BuckeyesNews (@BuckeyesNews) August 13, 2016
The bat: He nearly pinned the Chiefs at their 2-yard line after batting the ball back from the endzone on a great punt from Ryan. Much like Smokey, he was over the line by a smidge, but the hustle and athleticism were on display!
The pick: A timely interception!
Powell came up with a nice pick helping to spark the Seahawks comeback. Hey rook, watch out for that turf monster though… he'll get ya!!!
Powell's trINity was most impressive, well done man!!!
OUT – Turn Around Bright Eyes
Beyond the first-team OL … well, there was, shall we say, a dip in play.
Jahri Evans didn’t look ready. For a 10-year vet to look out of place is a bit disconcerting. Sure, he might be out of game shape and attempting to get acclimated to a new blocking scheme, we get that. But there were several times where he looked like he forgot he possessed arms. Not great!!!
Jahri Evans opens his hips early instead of moving his feet, and finally gets beat. pic.twitter.com/gI9eQBGZeo
— Ethan Young (@NFLDrafter) August 13, 2016
Others like Odihambo also visited Strug City a few times. But again, in this way too small sample size, it’s about the feelings we got from these 2nd stringers to which we say… How ‘bout that first-team OL !!!
IN – Isn't that Special!?
Under the Carroll era, Special Teams has been treated as an equal branch of government. Starters are routinely asked to also cover kicks, return punts, and the like. It’s led to Seattle being one of the most consistently solid STs units in the game.
This IN is NOT dedicated to 2nd and 3rd stringers who flatly weren’t good. Dropping kicks, bobbling punts and re-affirming to us all why Carroll institutes such a policy in the first place!
But our starters… well they were Hausch $$$.
- I routinely ripped on Jon Ryan last year – as discussed on Sea Hawkers Podcast episode 118 – but on Sunday Ryan was ridiculous. Booming kicks, pinned opponents, and about ½ inch away on the Tyvis Powell attempt we discussed earlier to down the Chiefs at about the 2 yard line.
- Hauschka nailed it. We’ve come so accustomed to it that it’s near expected, yet it doesn’t take away from executing your first 3 FGs of the year from distances of 52, 49, and 50! If he misses any of them, we don’t win and as discussed, winning is better than losing.
- Lockett did Lockett things on a punt return up the sideline, gaining 17 yards, and setting up our first points of the day! (With a nice assist by @1Tyvis !!!)
So many teams are on the Struggle Bus when it comes to Special Team’s play… we are not, well done gents.
This is kinda like Lunchables, some extra goodness and observations on bite-sized crackers.
- Boykin balled and Heaps was good – In terms of solidifying a cheap back-up QB for this season, I think we’re feeling great! Also did anyone else notice Jake Heaps moved and threw like Chad Pennington? That’s a good thing people!!!
- Frank Clark was on it. He played a lot. He disrupted a lot. He landed on Nick Foles’ shoulder a lot. I like this guy, big time!
1,2,3… What's Next!?
Blair Walsh and the Vikes head to the CLINK where it will be about 81° and sunny at kickoff.
What do we want to see this time around?
- More gelling from the O-Line
- A better pass-rush effort than we saw against the Chiefs
- A Russell Carrington Wilson Touchdown
Have an IN or OUT you’d want featured? Don’t be shy! Tweet @seahawkerspod and tag your observation #3i3o and you’ll be entered to win fabulous prizes**
** no such prizes exist, but we'll probably show ya some love!
Till next time ye faithful 12s… #GoHawks !!!