What will it take for the Seattle Seahawks to return to Super Bowl form?
Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman (25) celebrates with free safety Earl Thomas (29) after blocking a pass during the second half at the Edward Jones Dome. St. Louis defeated Seattle 28-26. (Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports)
(C+P) — Pete Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks are experiencing what many Super Bowl Champions have gone through in the past: a hangover season. It is hard enough for teams to win one NFL championship, much less back-to-back titles. Things have not been easy this year for the Seahawks.
Marshawn Lynch had a contract dispute that got settled right before the regular season began; and just days ago, offensive juggernaut Percy Harvin was sent packing to the lowly Jets. The glue that seems to be holding Seattle together is Russell Wilson. The third-year quarterback is being leaned on heavily by the coaching staff as the team tries to stay above .500.
The Seahawks sit at 4-3 after their latest win over Carolina. The defense is certainly good again this year, but it just doesn’t have the same feel as last year’s squad. If the Seahawks are to make another run at the Super Bowl, it will be due to Wilson’s play. Pete Carroll is putting more of the offense on his young QB’s shoulders each week.
Wilson has lead his team in rushing in two of the seven games this year. That is not a good sign for a team’s rushing game. It is a positive to have a guy that can throw and also run when needed, but eventually that will come back to bite the team. The NFL is hard on running quarterbacks, even with the new safety rules in place. Wilson has taken more shots already in 2014 than he did all of last year.
With Percy Harvin gone, Seattle will continue to struggle for big plays on offense. Harvin may have been a locker room distraction but he could score from anywhere on the field as a receiver, running back, or a return man. That kind of weapon is very valuable and not easily replaced. The Seahawks are going to need their receiving corp step it up. If they were getting open, Wilson would not have to scramble out of the pocket every few plays. Some of his runs are designed plays, but too many are a result of no open guys to throw to. A running Wilson is a dangerous weapon for the champs. However, a running Wilson is a danger to himself as well.