Bumpus: The new dynamic Seahawks’ offense will show

Jun 5, 2023, 1:42 PM | Updated: 3:55 pm

Seattle Seahawks Shane Waldron...

Seahawks offensive coordinator Shane Waldron during a game on Sept. 25, 2022. (Photo by Jane Gershovich/Getty Images)

(Photo by Jane Gershovich/Getty Images)

Considering all of the changes and surprise successes for the Seattle Seahawks in the past couple years, it’s easy to forget something about their offense.

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The 2023 season will be the third under offensive coordinator Shane Waldron, and Seattle has more to tap into when it comes to the offense he brought over from his time with the Los Angeles Rams.

That’s especially true when you factor in the class of rookies the Seahawks added in the 2023 NFL Draft, which Seattle Sports’ Michael Bumpus believes is going to unlock a new dynamic for Waldron and head coach Pete Carroll.

Why will the Seattle Seahawks’ offense look different?

Bumpus, a former NFL wide receiver and current Pac-12 Network college football analyst, said on Monday’s edition of Seattle Sports’ Bump and Stacy that there are “several ways” the Seahawks’ rookies are going to help open up the offense.

First up, there’s what the Hawks can do if they play running backs Kenneth Walker III and Zach Charbonnet at the same time. Walker, a second-round pick in 2022, was a finalist for NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, while Charbonnet was another second-rounder taken this year by Seattle out of UCLA.

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“Last year, when you went with two-back sets, it was either (fullback) Nick Bellore back there, who you know is just gonna block, or they put a tight end back there who you also knew was just going to block,” Bumpus said. “With two-back sets, if they use Zach Charbonnet and Ken Walker, now (opponents) are in a bind because you know both of these guys can get the football. What you can do, you can overload one side, shift them back to the other side – so many things you can do with two running backs in the backfield. It’s not going to be their base offense but I know we’re gonna see some of that.”

Next, first-round selection Jaxon Smith-Njigba out of Ohio State could add a different element out of the wide receiver spot, whether it’s on jet sweeps or screen passes.

“Last year they tried to do this a bit with with Tyler Lockett with the motioning, going back and forth, but I think Lockett is best when he’s just lined up, able to look at that defense and get after it,” Bumpus said. “So now you have Jaxon Smith-Njigba, I think he’s gonna be that jet sweep guy, I think he can be a screen guy because he has good vision. Not the fastest straight-line guy, but fast enough and quick enough to make some plays.”

Finally, Bumpus expects those two things to create more opportunities for Seattle’s tight ends, in particular Noah Fant, who was a first-round pick by the Broncos in 2019 and played his first season with the Seahawks last year.

“That’s one position that’s been steady in my opinion – you got Noah Fant, you got Will Dissly, you got Colby Parkinson,” he said. “I think Noah Fant wasn’t even unlocked last year. He’s a guy, I’ll talk about explosive tight ends, he could be that guy. I’m not saying he’s (49ers star) George Kittle and all that stuff, but he’s got some run after the catch. And then Colby Parkinson has gotten better every single year, I think he takes another step.”

Oh, and there’s a bonus in Seattle’s seventh-round pick in 2023: Kenny McIntosh, a running back from Georgia who is adept at catching the ball out of the backfield.

“We ain’t even talked about Kenny McIntosh and how he fits into this offense, man,” Bumpus said. “There are a lot of weapons out there. This offense is going to look a lot more explosive. … I think the shifts and the motions and the two backs are going to open up this offense a bit and allow Shane Waldron to get creative.”

Bump and Stacy airs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. each weekday on Seattle Sports. Catch the Four-Down Territory segment, where Bumpus answers four football questions, at 11:15 a.m. daily, and click here for podcasts for the show.

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