Bumpus: The adjustment Seahawks DC Clint Hurtt must make vs 49ers

Sep 17, 2022, 12:10 PM
Seahawks Clint Hurtt...
Seahawks assistant coach Clint Hurtt watches from the sidelines during a game against Houston. (John Rivera/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(John Rivera/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Week 1 was not just a clash between the Seahawks and former quarterback Russell Wilson’s Denver Broncos. It was also the debut of Clint Hurtt as Seattle’s defensive coordinator.

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Hurtt, who has been with the Seahawks organization since 2017, started his play-calling career on a high note, holding the Broncos to 16 points and just one touchdown, with his defense forcing two turnovers at the goal line. But the Seahawks did allow 433 total yards on defense, with Wilson throwing for 340.

Now the Seahawks face a very different type of offense in Week 2 when they travel south to play the San Francisco 49ers and their ground-heavy attack.

So what adjustment does Hurtt need to make this week? Former NFL receiver Michael Bumpus explained during Friday’s Bump and Stacy on Seattle Sports 710 AM.

“Here’s the thing – with the Denver Broncos, that 3-4 (defense) was perfect going into the game because you felt like Russell’s gonna throw the ball, you’ve got more guys on a second level, you didn’t think they’re going to run that ball a lot,” he said. “When you play (against) this 3-4, you should be able to run the ball effectively against the 3-4. So I’m expecting Clint Hurtt to make an adjustment.”

That adjustment?

“I think we see a bit more 4-3 this week,” Bumpus said. “I think that we see those edge rushers playing more on the line of scrimmage than we did last week. I think we see more single-high safety and bringing that other safety in the box. You need more guys in the box that clutter the run game up. I think that’s the adjustment that Clint Hurtt should and is going to make. I don’t think he’s gonna have guys just dropping into space like we’re playing a spread team or a Russell Wilson.”

The 49ers have always had a run-heavy offense with head coach Kyle Shanahan running the show, and that figures to be especially true this year with young dual-threat quarterback Trey Lance now the starter.

So if the Seahawks do in fact clutter the box and show more of a 4-3 look, what does that mean the defense needs to keep an eye on in the passing game?

“No matter what you do, (49ers receiver) Deebo (Samuel) is going to be a threat, whether it’s in the running game or the pass game,” Bumpus said. ” … When I watched film on the 49ers, there are a lot of two-man concepts. That means two receivers getting down the field. And if you don’t have (star tight end) George Kittle, you’re more likely to keep (backup tight end Ross) Dwelley in there to help block and protect. That means (receiver Jauan) Jennings comes into play more, (receiver) Brandon Aiyuk comes into play more.

“That means on the outside, (Seahawks cornerback) Tariq Woolen is going to have to have a good day. I think he learned a lot that first game. He didn’t allow any receptions. And I think that (cornerback) Mike Jackson is gonna have to have a good day play. It puts pressure on those guys on the outside, but I think they can handle it.”

Listen to the full second hour of Friday’s Bump and Stacy at this link or in the player below.

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