STACY ROST

Rost: Why 2 NFL experts feel criticism of Seahawks’ Geno Smith is unwarranted

Sep 9, 2022, 11:47 AM | Updated: Sep 11, 2022, 1:19 pm
Seahawks Geno Smith...
Seahawks QB Geno Smith gestures as he heads off the field after Sunday's win over the Jaguars. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

I found them. Two proud, card-carrying members of Geno Nation. Jokes aside, the truth is that Pete Carroll’s decision to roll with Geno Smith as the Seahawks’ starting quarterback starter is one that’s fallen under scrutiny.

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It was inevitable for any player following Russell Wilson’s decade in Seattle, but was especially true for Smith, a veteran who fell out of favor as a young player in New York and spent the last several years as a backup.

He won the job this year with his grasp of the Seahawks playbook, but also with a more reserved style of play that is, admittedly, less exciting than his counterpart Drew Lock. Enter more scrutiny.

But two NFL experts feel some of that criticism of Smith is unwarranted. So, why not drop into all of that scrutiny against Geno two arguments claiming that Smith is better than you think.

‘I will not go so far as to say Geno Smith is a good quarterback. But I will say this: he’s not a bad one’

The Ringer’s Steven Ruiz ranked Smith 22 on his ranking of the 32 starting quarterbacks (for those wondering, Wilson came in at No. 6). The list will be updated every week.

“I will not go as far as to say that Geno Smith is a good quarterback,” Ruiz writes, “but I will say this: He’s not a bad one.”

Ruiz joined Bump and Stacy Thursday to elaborate on his breakdown of Seattle’s new full-time starter.

“I think there’s a misperception of what Geno was during the end of his Jets career just because it didn’t last that long,” Ruiz said. “He had two years as a starter with a terrible supporting cast and then we didn’t hear from him again until now and it’s been almost a decade. But there have been spot stars here and there and whenever you watch him you’re like, ‘OK, this looks like a quarterback who has talent around him.’ He’s not going to carry an offense to a top-10 ranking or to the playoffs, but if you put good talent around him – and I think Seattle has put at least good skill players around him — he’s going to produce. Because he can read a defense, he can stick in the pocket and make throws downfield. I don’t know if he’s going to do it consistently or be accurate enough, but he’s got the skills.”

“I don’t think Geno has (league MVP) in the future, but it’s not unreasonable to think he could throw 24 touchdowns and maybe 12 interceptions. That’s good output.”

‘There’s this idea that he has no ceiling and yet the things I see on the field show some really respectable next-level thinking’

NFL Network writer and Around the NFL host Gregg Rosenthal says Smith has shown in his relief appearances and in the preseason that he’s capable of being a mid-level starter.

“The way he finished the 2013 or 2014 season with the Jets was impressive,” Rosenthal said, “I think he does some stuff you look for in a young quarterback, and that’s back when he was young. And then of course the IK Enemkpali punch happened, and he never really got a chance. The few times we’ve seen him since, I thought he looked pretty good for a backup, including last year in Seattle. And there’s this idea that he has no ceiling and yet the things I see on the field, I think we saw some of it in the preseason, I think show some really respectable next-level quarterback thinking that you would want out of guy that won’t make many mistakes and can just be a mid-level starter for the Seahawks.

Seahawks on the radio

Catch the Seahawks’ season opener Monday night against Russell Wilson and the Broncos on Seattle Sports 710 AM and streaming at SeattleSports.com, on the Seahawks app and the Seattle Sports app. Coverage begins at 2 p.m. with the pregame show, followed by kickoff at 5:15 p.m. and the postgame show, which airs for roughly two hours after the end of the contest.

Note: Due to NFL restrictions, Seahawks games are available to stream from Seattle Sports only if you are within 75 miles of Seattle. There are several Seahawks Radio Network affiliates throughout the Pacific Northwest. Find your nearest affiliate at this link. If you are outside of the Pacific Northwest and want to stream Seahawks radio broadcasts, the NFL offers a subscription streaming service. For details, click here.

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Rost: Why 2 NFL experts feel criticism of Seahawks’ Geno Smith is unwarranted