Grading the Seahawks’ best (and worst) Week 1 performances
There were plenty of notable performances in the Seahawks’ win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, as well as performances worth forgetting. Who among the team resides in either category? 710 ESPN Seattle’s Brock Huard and Mike Salk broke it down.
Top performer, offense
“I think [rookie wide receiver] D.K. Metcalf offensively is probably my pick, mostly because of expectations,” Huard said. “Expectations for a guy that had surgery 19 days ago, that hadn’t played with a snap with Russell Wilson, and for Russell on the opening drive to trust him on the first 3rd down, for Russell to trust him in a one-on-one situation, [and] to trust him over the course of that entire game.”
Metcalf paced the Seahawks’ receiving corps for the day in targets and yards, including a circus-like 42-yard grab late in the 2nd quarter to set up a touchdown catch from running back Chris Carson.
Top performer, defense
On a day when the Seahawks defensive line shined, a pair of players stood out.
“Defensively, it’s either Quinton Jefferson or Jadeveon Clowney — absolute monsters,” Huard said.
In his fifth year as a Seahawk, Jefferson had perhaps the best game of his career, capped off by a pair of sacks and two defended passes. Clowney impressed in his Seattle debut, with a sack of his own, and consistently pressuring Bengals QB Andy Dalton for a better part of Sunday’s game.
Worst performer, offense
While the connection between Russell Wilson and Metcalf was strong all day, not everyone managed to turn in a quality performance.
“[Offensive lineman Justin Britt] had a very, very tough day,” Huard noted. “Over the course of the game, basically every quarter there was a real challenge, or [Bengals defensive tackle] Geno Atkins got underneath him and really forced the issue on Justin throughout.”
Britt wasn’t alone in his struggles, with second-year running back Rashaad Penny failing to impress in limited time on the field.
“Rashaad Penny had some a real disappointed runs where I was just kind of anxious,” Huard said. “His very first run was a toss — he gets outside there, great blocking, and it’s you and a safety. And in this league, it is you and a safety and you’ve got to do something dynamic, and he just stopped his feet, [and] got tackled for four yards.”
Worst performer, defense
When it was all said and done, the Seahawks secondary was as disappointing as the defensive line was impressive. That was abundantly clear after what could have been an interception from safety Tedric Thompson, turned into a touchdown grab from resurgent Bengals wideout (and former Husky) John Ross.
“Lowest grade? Most of the secondary,” Huard described. “Tedric had a really rough day.”
Next up, the Seahawks hit the road to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers, fresh off of a Sunday night loss to the New England Patriots.
Listen to the Brock and Salk Show weekday mornings from 7-10 a.m. on 710 ESPN Seattle. Subscribe to the podcast here.