Finally, it’s Miller time for Seahawks offense
By Bill Swartz
When Seattle shelled out $34 million over five years for tight end Zach Miller, many Seahawks fans thought he would be a primary target in the passing offense. We’re finally starting to get a glimpse of the receiving talents that made Miller a Pro Bowler in Oakland.
Zach Miller had his best receiving game as a Seahawk last week, catching three passes for 59 yards. (AP photo)
Last week against Carolina, Miller caught three passes for 59 yards – the most he’s had in any of his 20 games with Seattle. He’s also the team’s second-leading receiver with 12 catches for 150 yards.
You can credit the improved Seahawks offensive line for allowing Miller to do less blocking and more catching.
“We had so many injuries last season, and that hasn’t happened so far this year,” Miller said. “They’ve been together a little bit longer, and the way they’ve been playing has allowed me to get out a little bit more.”
Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell wants to get Miller more involved in the pass attack, but he’s a big part of Seattle’s rushing success.
“He does such a great job for us in our blocking and being a major part of our run game,” Bevell said. “You can’t have him in there running and then take him out. He’s caught a couple big seam routes in the last game, which was huge for him. He’ll continue to be a part of it.”
Miller said he admires the creative ways the Patriots use their tight ends, Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez.
“The way Hernandez plays in their offense, it’s not just as a tight end. They have a whole stable there with extreme depth at tight end, too,” he said. “They’re definitely one of the offenses that knows how to use the tight end well.”
With wind and rain in Sunday’s Seattle forecast, Miller could spend more time in his run-blocking mode. He also knows time-consuming Seattle scoring drives will be essential to upending the Patriots.
“Any time you go against a no-huddle, you want to make sure they’re not grinding your defense down,” he said. “We’ve got to have long, sustained drives, and keep Tom Brady off the field. It’s going to be a big part of this game.”