O’Neil: So much for progress from O-line in Seahawks’ loss to Packers
A fresh start and a familiar storyline for the Seahawks, whose offense gained a total of one first down over its first five possessions.
The first thing we learned is that Seattle’s offensive line still has a lot to learn, which starts our list of lessons after Sunday’s season-opening loss to the Packers:
What we learned
1. Seattle’s offensive line is same as it ever was.
So much for progress. Seattle’s offensive line wasn’t any better than it looked last year. It wasn’t just Rees Odhiambo starting at left tackle. It was Luke Joeckel at left guard, too. And Justin Britt at center. And Mark Glowinski at right guard. Each one had a turn with Packers defensive lineman Mike Daniels, who was an absolute menace. Was that the worst performance by a Seahawks offensive line since Tom Cable’s arrival in 2011? It’s a valid question. But when you think about it, that’s kind of like thinking about all the diapers you’ve changed throughout your life to determine which was the absolute poopiest. So instead of parsing through poop, I’ll just say that there’s no reason to think the Seahawks are any better on the offensive line this season than they were a year ago. Seattle’s leading rusher was quarterback Russell Wilson, Eddie Lacy gained a total of 3 yards on his five carries, not to mention the three sacks that were surrendered.
2. Jeremy Lane was unlucky, but he wasn’t innocent.
Jeremy Lane was itching for a fight. And the fact that he was ejected after throwing a phantom punch is unfortunate and it’s unfair and it’s totally not surprising. Lane riled up Green Bay’s receivers the way he riles up a ton of opponents. Sometimes that pays off for the Seahawks like it did when Randall Cobb was penalized for taunting earlier on the first drive. A lot of times it produces tussles in which the players are pulled apart. And this time it resulted in an ejection as officials didn’t see Green Bay receiver Davante Adams pull Lane down by his face mask. Lane then placed his forearm at Adams’ throat and was the one penalized incorrectly. By the letter of the NFL’s law, he should not have been ejected, but the commissioner of common sense would also point out that there’s a much higher probability of being wrongly ejected when you’re always the guy tussling with opponents after – and in this case during – the play.
3. Seattle’s defense is as good as advertised.
The Seahawks sacked Aaron Rodgers four times and while it would be a stretch to think he was rattled, Seattle kept Rodgers from being able to throw the ball downfield for most of the game. Consider how the Packers scored their two touchdowns: The first coming after a fumble recover recovered at the Seattle 6 and the second coming on a quick-snap play in which the Packers caught the Seahawks with 12 men on the field and had a free shot downfield. Seattle’s defense is going to be plenty good this season.