Huard: Seahawks’ offense getting on track more critical now than defense
The Seahawks’ offense had its worst showing of the season and the defense looked lost at times in a 28-12 loss to the Los Angeles Rams Sunday night.
The Seattle offense entered the game as the third-best in the NFL and the defense, which is still near the bottom of the league statistically, has played much better since Week 10 against the San Francisco 49ers.
After a loss where both phases got beaten by the Rams, what’s more important for the rest of the season – the Seahawks’ offense or defense?
710 ESPN Seattle’s Brock Huard joined Danny and Gallant Tuesday morning and said he thinks it’s important for the offense to be elite the rest of the way.
“Moving forward to beat the San Francisco 49ers (in Week 17), you’re going to be good offensively,” Huard said in the Blue 42 segment. “Moving forward, your offense has got to get back on track to what they were in the first half of the season. You’ve got to be dynamic.”
Quarterback Russell Wilson was playing like the league’s MVP the first nine weeks of the season. He had 22 touchdown passes and just one interception. Since then, he has four touchdowns and four interceptions. Additionally, No. 1 receiver Tyler Lockett suffered a shin injury Week 10 and has been slowed down. He has just 107 yards and no touchdowns since Week 10.
Huard thinks those two need to regain their first half form over the rest of the season
“Tyler Lockett has got to be a major factor and Russell has got to be comfortable in the pocket,” Huard said.
A reason for optimism is that Huard thinks the Rams are the one team Wilson has shown repeated struggles against.
“The only team that really affects him mentally where there is significant scar tissue is the team he played Sunday night,” Huard said. “That is the one matchup where he looks at (two-time defending NFL Defensive Player of the Year) Aaron Donald and he hears Aaron Donald breathing and he listens to those guys and the confidence with which those guys have to take apart no matter who and what is on his offensive line. That is the only team I think of the 31 others where he has legitimate scar tissue because he gets beaten down by them. He’s lost just as many as he’s won against those guys.”
Unless the teams meet in the playoffs, Wilson and the Seahawks have seen the last of the Rams this season. They finish up their road slate with the Carolina Panthers (5-8) this Sunday before closing out the regular season with home games against the Arizona Cardinals (3-9-1) and the 49ers, who currently own the No. 1 seed in the NFC and lead Seattle in the NFC West standings. That Week 17 showdown could determine the NFC West crown as well as the conference’s No. 1 or 2 seed, which come with first-round playoff byes.
“(Now you face) a Carolina team that (Wilson) has had success against, an Arizona team that he has had success against and ultimately the 49ers in what should shape up to be the game of the season in the NFL in the final week,” Huard said. “So the offense has to emerge. That is where your experience is, that’s where I think there’s a lot of confidence in guys who have been there and done it – (running back Chris) Carson and Lockett and (offensive tackle) Duane Brown and Russell. And then hopefully (tight end) Luke Willson comes back (from a hamstring injury) and hopefully (rookie receiver) DK (Metcalf) keeps growing and hopefully the other supporting cast plays a lot better than they did Sunday because they struggled in LA.”
Part of the reason Huard thinks the offense is more important down the stretch is because there’s so many good players on that side of the ball.
“The margin is not as thin (as with the defense),” Huard said. “You’ve got seven or eight linemen you can play, you have seen Wilson elevate receivers and tight ends around him and those guys have played great this year. … I think there’s a lot more to work with, a lot more clay to mold offensively.”
Listen to the discussion at this link or in the player below.
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