Huard: What Seahawks’ Geno Smith can, can’t carry over from Week 1

Sep 15, 2022, 12:01 PM | Updated: 12:03 pm

Seahawks Geno Smith...

Seahawks QB Geno Smith celebrates a touchdown against the Broncos on Sept. 12, 2022. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Week 1 went pretty darn well for the Seahawks and new starting quarterback Geno Smith.

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Not only did the Seahawks come away with a 17-16 win to open the season, but they did so at the expense of former quarterback Russell Wilson and his new team, the Denver Broncos.

For Smith, the game started about as perfect as can be, with him completing 17 of 18 passes in the first half for 164 yards and two touchdowns as Seattle jumped out to a 17-13 lead at halftime.

But Smith and the Seahawks struggled offensively in the second half, with Smith completing 6 of 10 passes for just 31 yards in three possessions, none of which resulted in points scored.

So looking back on Smith’s start, what is and isn’t sustainable for No. 7 as he heads into a Week 2 clash on the road with the San Francisco 49ers? Former NFL quarterback Brock Huard broke it down Thursday on Seattle Sports 710 AM’s Brock and Salk.

“Getting the ball out of his hands is sustainable. We saw this last year with him,” Huard said.

The Seahawks didn’t rack up a ton of yards through the air in Week 1, or in the three starts Smith had last season while Wilson was hurt, but they were efficient largely because of the quick passing game. That was obviously different than the way Seattle’s offense operated with Wilson under center.

“That was always one of the questions was, ‘Gosh, is Russell taking all of these sacks because no one is open and he’s trying to just extend the play? Can he get the ball out of his hands in a hurry?’ That is sustainable,” Huard said. “And when (Smith) was sharp in that first half, that ball came out in a hurry, right? Yes, (offensive coordinator) Shane Waldron put guys in a great positions – his first read was open quite often – but his ability to see at 6 foot 3 and get the ball out of his hands, that is sustainable.”

But what can’t Smith carry over from Week 1 to Week 2?

“He can’t get tight,” Huard said. “Only three possessions in that second half, so it wasn’t like he had a huge volume. He didn’t even make a mistake, but you could get a sense like, ‘Oh, we’re in this game. Oh, we’ve got the lead. Oh, I can’t screw this up.’ First half, he wouldn’t play in that way at all. First half, he was like, ‘I’ll step up (in the pocket), I’ll make this play, I’ll throw this over his head.’ Second half, you get a little bit of a lead, ‘Let’s kind of sit on it, let’s run the clock, let’s just get a first down, let me count on somebody else.’

“No … You’ve got to let it rip from beginning to end, especially with this team who’s going to be in close games galore. They’re not going to blow anybody out. Their roster, you can’t put it on a field against many other rosters and go, ‘Yeah man, we just show up and we blow anybody out.’ That doesn’t happen in the NFL largely anyway.”

Listen to the entire second hour of Thursday’s Brock and Salk at this link or in the player below.

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