Quick Hitter: Sleepless in Seattle

At 2-4 and heading into a matchup with the San Francisco 49ers tonight, the Seattle Seahawks are slowly watching their season slip out of their grasp. By no means is this a terrible team, but something about them is different. It seems too easy to just say that the loss of Dan Quinn is the problem, but shit it might be. We’ll get back to that in a second. Let’s take a look at some of the issues the Monsters of the Pacific Northwest have been dealing with this season:

In each of their 4 losses, the ‘Hawks have blown 4th quarter leads. The once vaunted Legion of Boom has becomes this defense’s weakness. Hell, they aren’t even getting sacks like they were in previous years. But check this out:

  • They are outscoring teams 101-64 in the first 3 quarters combined, but are being outscored 27-71 in the 4th quarter and OT (they’ve been outscored 0-6 in two OT games this season)
  • Defense has allowed 23 pass plays of 20+ yards this season, which ranks 26th in the league. They gave up 32 pass plays of 20+ yards last season and 30 such plays in 2013.
  • On drives that last at least 8 plays, the Seahawks’ opponents have scored touchdowns 56% of the time and haven’t scored 25% of the time.

The middle of Seattle’s pass defense has been shredded the last couple games. Andy Dalton and Cam Newton combined for 28 4th quarter pass attempts against the Seahawks, and 20 of them were thrown between the numbers. Andy and Cam completed 17 passes for 229 yards (11.45 yards per attempt) and 2 touchdowns.

The Seahawks have long been known to run Cover 3 primarily, but the last couple weeks this has been greatly exploited:

Tyler Eifert free up the seam for a touchdown. Marvin Jones and Gio Bernard runs underneath routes that are able to take two Seattle defenders out of the play, including Kam Chancellor who bit on the underneath route, preventing him from carrying Eifert’s route upfield. Cary Williams didn’t stand a chance to make a play

What’s that? Another tight end running freely up the middle of this defense? And I mean freely

  

Seahawks defenders have always been extra sensitive about people blaming a blown coverage on them but from the looks of it, it seems Earl Thomas might be the culprit here. Just a little miscommunication.

Miscommunication?

Miscommunication is something that we rarely hear about in regards to the Legion of Boom, but it seems to be a constant this year. It speaks volumes that the Seahawks were able to maintain their dominance following the exit of former defensive coordinator, now current head coach of the Jaguars Gus Bradley. But once the defense was led by Dan Quinn, they achieved dominance over the last couple years before things finally fell apart during the Super Bowl. Now he’s in Atlanta and this defense is being led by a newer, younger voice. 35 year Kris Richards is now the playcaller for the defense in Seattle after years of coaching the defensive backs. Despite his familiarity with the players and the system, he’s going through growing pains as a playcaller and that should be expected.

You can look at this Seattle team and tell they aren’t a bad group. But you know the saying: “Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me. Fool me 4 times? The hell is going on? I’m slipping!”

I’d hate to say tonight’s matchup against the 49ers is must win game, but it kind of is. At this point, the Seahawks should be in playoff mode since Arizona is a couple wins up on them. 2-4 isn’t a good look.

2-5 doesn’t make you anymore optimistic.

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