The Seahawks made their home debut Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers and squeaked out a 12-9 win. How did they grade in key areas of the game?
San Francisco played just its second game under new head coach Kyle Shanahan and made a spirited effort against the Seahawks offense in a 12-9 defeat. In addition to the team implementing a new offense similar to the scheme ran in Atlanta, the 49ers are also adapting to a new 4-3 scheme. The new scheme is similar to what the Seahawks run. They played a lot of Cover 3 and Cover 1, and rely on their front 4 to generate pressure, which worked for all but one drive, when Russell Wilson decided to tuck the ball and run past edge rushers.
While the 49ers are not going to be a serious threat in 2017, this team is not devoid on talent. The defensive line in particular features DeForest Buckner, Solomon Thomas, Arik Armstead and Elvis Dumervil. Which brings us to our first key:
Offensive Line- Pick your Game Up | Grade: D
The Seahawks lost in Week 1, and nobody should carry more blame than the offensive line. Their putrid performance stymied any offensive attack the Seahawks could even dream to muster. Russell Wilson was sacked 3 times and the running backs ran for just 50 yards on 16 carries. 30 of those yards came on one Chris Carson run.
Once again, the Seahawks offensive line looked overmatched at times. They seemed to form more well-structured pockets for Wilson against San Francisco (and Wilson missed throws), and they helped Chris Carson ice the game when Seattle had the ball leading by three on their final series.
However, there were too many times when Wilson had no time to throw. The Seahawks weren’t very effective in the red zone–their first touchdown of the season came on a broken play and a tough catch by Paul Richardson–and Wilson was sacked three times again.
Russell Wilson can make up for poor offensive line play, but he cannot make up for the swinging gate that the O-Line was on Sunday.
Get off the field on 3rd down | Grade: A
The defense was excellent in what was a less than ideal situation in week one. They harrassed Aaron Rodgers in his building, and held the Packers to just 84 yards on 28 rushing attempts. If their was one complaint, it is with the 3rd down defense.
The Seahawks defense allowed Green Bay to convert 9 of 16 third downs. A 56% conversion rate by an opposing offense makes it nearly impossible to win a game.
The key to getting off the field on 3rd down might be to win 2nd down. Hoyer will take what the defense gives him, and there are completions to be had against the Seahawks zone defense. The 49ers will undoubtedly try to get in as many 3rd and 4 or less situations as they can. If San Fran can sustain drives, they can control the clock, and give Seattle a real challenge at home.
the 9ers were able to piece together long runs from Carlos Hyde. The running back scampered 61 yards and added another 30+ yard outburst. But the Seahawks held San Francisco to just two of 12 third-down conversions and only allowed 99 passing yards.
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Where in the world is Jimmy Graham? | Grade: F
Graham had his worst game as a Seahawk on Sunday. He didn’t block well, dropped a beautiful stop-fade throw from Wilson, and did not fight through contact to make a catch on 3rd down. Usually, Seahawks frustrations with Jimmy Graham is that they don’t throw him the ball enough.
Graham was excellent against San Francisco in 2016. In 2 games he caught 10 of 16 targets for 164 yards and a touchdown. The Seahawks will need a better game from Graham if they wish to reach their offensive potential.
Well, Graham caught one pass for exactly one yard against the 49ers. He dropped at least one pass in the rain (and he wasn’t the only one) and was a nonfactor.
The Seahawks travel to Nashville to take on the Titans next.