Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll has indicated that his post-Lynch backfield could be a 1-2 punch led by Thomas Rawls and Christine Michael
The Seattle Seahawks once again enter the season as top contenders for both the NFC title and Lombardi Trophy. They have playmakers on offense and a quarterback that continues to progress by the season. Offensive line and the run game are question marks for Seattle but they addressed each element through the draft. For now it’s just a matter of seeing how quickly these players can adapt to a new system and life in the pros.
LAST YEAR’S RECORD & 2016 NFL FUTURES
Win-Loss: 10-6 SU and 8-7-1 ATS
Over/Under: 7-9 O/U
Noteworthy: The Seahawks have recorded four-straight double-digit win seasons. Only the New England Patriots (13-straight seasons) have a current streak longer than Seattle’s. Since 2011, Seattle has averaged 11.5 wins per regular season.
There was no such thing as a Super Bowl letdown in Seattle following the club’s 2013 season win. Then after losing to New England in 2014, pundits pondered the odds of a Super Bowl Loser’s Curse and sure enough, the Hawks started off 2015 with a few hiccups.
At 2-4 straight-up, no one panicked in the Emerald City and during the eight games that followed, Seattle’s only loss was a shootout to Arizona (Week 10), whom Seattle would get revenge against in Week 17. Before Week 10, Seattle was averaging 20.9 points per game (PPG) but from Week 10 out, the offense generated 32 PPG.
Russell Wilson is now mentioned in conversations with names like Rodgers, Newton, Luck and Brees as one of the premiere quarterbacks in this league. He won’t have Beast Mode any longer but rookie RB Thomas Rawls flashed his talent as the feature back in wins over the Niners, Steelers and Vikings. The Hawks drafted three running backs and retained Christine Michael but the O-Line is under another transition, with new starters projected at all five positions.
Scout the Line: Week’s 1 and 3, Seattle faces a pair of lower-tiered front sevens in the Dolphins and Niners but in Week’s 2 and 4, the Seahawks travel to face two front sevens ranked top 10 by Pro Football Focus (Rams, Jets).
There is no shortage of talent in Seattle’s front seven, led by DE Michael Bennett. Throughout the season, this D allowed just 15 PPG on the road and before their Round 2 loss at Carolina, the Hawks had won six-straight road games by outscoring opponents 25-7 on average. This group doesn’t bend or break, ranking 1st in total yards allowed (286), 7th in stopping third downs and 3rd in red zone scoring.
Richard Sherman and FS Earl Thomas return, Jeremy Lane inked a four-year deal during the off-season and assuming he’s healthy, SS Kam Chancellor will start Week 1. Chancellor missed the first two games of 2015 in a contract holdout and the Hawks went 0-2 at St. Louis and Green Bay.
SEAHAWKS BOTTOM LINE: CASH CONNECTION
Doug Baldwin became a cornerstone of the Seahawks offense in 2015 and the front office rewarded him with a four-year deal worth more than $45 million. Baldwin set career highs in receiving yards (1,069) and TDs (14), and Wilson went after him in the red zone 17 times. When these two connected at least five times the Hawks were 5-4 SU/ATS during the regular season but the real value was