DANNY ONEIL

O’Neil’s 3 Things: Seahawks’ offense might not be so bad

Oct 23, 2017, 2:50 PM
The Seahawks have made a habit of shaking off slow starts with big second halves. (AP)...
The Seahawks have made a habit of shaking off slow starts with big second halves. (AP)
(AP)

Well, 4-2 isn’t such a slow start. Especially when you consider that four of those six games were played on the road.

And as the Seahawks prepare for a more forgiving stretch of schedule with three of their next four games at home, it’s time to pause to take a look at what we learned during Seattle’s 24-7 victory over the New York Giants.

Three things we learned

1. Seattle’s offense might not be so bad.

The Seahawks are decidedly mediocre when it comes to total offense this season, and while that might sound like a problem, it’s actually better than most people would expect for Seattle’s offense. Average would be a welcome alternative to a team that sleep-walks through the first half. Drops haven’t helped the team this season. Seattle has dropped three touchdown passes on three different drives this season. Penalties have certainly stung Seattle, too, but after the Seahawks spend the first half shooting themselves in the foot, they actually tend to get things sorted out. Their 425 yards of total offense at New York was downright respectable, and they’re No. 13 in the league in total offense, which isn’t as bad as you might expect. How’s that for a back-handed compliment.

2. Seattle’s defense might be really, really good.

It didn’t necessarily seem that way entering the game as the Seahawks ranked in the middle third of the NFL in yardage allowed. Seattle is allowing the fewest points in the league after Sunday’s games, and while some of that is due to an incredibly stingy red-zone defense, a good portion of that is due to the steel-toed defense we’ve come to expect from Seattle. In other words: Don’t let the number of yards allowed fool you. “We’ve had like three bad plays this year,” Pete Carroll said. “Really. There’s like three terrible plays that are worth about 200 yards that make us look entirely different than what we are. And we know that.” OK. So let’s take those three plays out: the 61-yard by San Francisco’s Carlos Hyde in Week 2, the 55-yard touchdown catch by the Titans’ Rishard Mathews in Week 3, and the 75-yard touchdown run by Derrick Henry in that same game. Eliminate those three plays and Seattle would go from eighth in total defense (304.5 yards of total defense) to fourth (272.7).

3. The Seahawks have a keeper in Ethan Pocic.

He started the game at left guard, and while he alternated with Mark Glowinski over the course of the game, you can expect the rookie from LSU to start getting more of the playing time going forward. He even mixed in half a dozen or so snaps at center while Justin Britt was getting checked out. Pocic is tough. He’s not the most talkative guy. He has a mean streak that spans the width of the hashmarks. Any concern that he hadn’t gotten playing time sooner should be answered by the way he played Sunday in his first NFL start. It would be a surprise if he’s not in the starting lineup for the Seahawks for the remainder of the season.

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