Tough challenge for Seahawks vs Bengals presents opportunity


“We’re on to Cincinnati” the famous quote Bill Belichick used after the media was bombarding him after the Patriots got embarrassed vs the Chiefs. One of those questions even included asking Belichick if he would evaluate the QB position.

While under slightly different circumstances, “We’re on to Cincinnati” is a good mantra for the Seahawks to have after their “controversial” win against the Lions.

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Last year during week 5, the Patriots were wounded and incomplete and playing the undefeated Bengals. It was the Patriots get right game. This year during week 5, The Seahawks are wounded and incomplete and play the undefeated Bengals. They are looking to use this game the same way the Patriots used it last year. The tombstones were out and ready for the Patriots until they dominated the Bengals.

The Patriots used that opportunity last year to embarrass the Bengals and shut everyone up. It was the game that got the Patriots right before they would go all the way to Super Bowl 49 and win it. All it would take from the Seahawks is a solid 7-14 point win @ Cincinnati to quiet down haters saying this team isn’t going to be able to make a deep playoff run like the past couple years.

The Patriots were in rougher shape last year than the Seahawks are at this point. Someone legitimately asked Belichick if Tom Brady is going to get benched before the Bengals game. Many skeptics and experts claimed the Patriots dynasty was over, that Belichick and Brady had run their course, and that mediocrity was upcoming for them.

The Bengals present an interesting set of matchups that other times aren’t attempting against Seattle. Dalton is throwing the deep ball at a high level, something teams aren’t attempting to do against the Seahawks defense.

The Seahawks defense has yet to get an interception after 25% of the regular season has completed. Teams are dinking and dunking and trying to get the ball out quick to avoid the Seahawks pass rush and to protect the ball.

It is unlikely the Bengals will turn away from what has gotten Dalton playing at potentially the highest level of his career. This will either be a very good thing or very bad thing for the Seahawks.

They might finally get some interceptions with a team willing to throw it deep on them, or Dalton will continue his high level of play with a talented group of receivers and torch the Seahawks deep. Who would have thought that the Red Rifle against the Legion of Boom would be an exciting matchup, but here we are.

It is no secret the Seahawks offensive line is struggling. The job doesn’t get any easier going up to Cincinnati where Geno Atkins looks to be in All-Pro form again after finally recovering from his 2013 knee injury.

While the Seahawks offensive line often presents the illusion that all defenders are unblocked, this will be Aaron Donald levels of destruction up front if Seattle’s offensive line doesn’t improve.

The Seahawks should get back Marshawn Lynch, which is a positive sign for the Seahawks. Thomas Rawls has promise, but Marshawn Lynch is one of the best RB’s in the NFL. The Seahawks need to establish their Seahawk brand of football, and a big part of that is having a consistently successful run game.

The Seahawks are racking up decent rushing yardage, but it’s deceptive because it’s coming almost exclusively from explosive runs. Russell Wilson is the Seahawks current leading rusher.

The good thing for the Seahawks is Russell Wilson is throwing the ball better than he ever has. He went 20 of 26 for 287 yards and 1 TD with 40 yards rushing added despite an utterly disastrous game from the offensive line.

Russell Wilson has a season completion percentage of 71.7%, well above his career average of 64.2%. This includes a 7 YPA, which makes it more impressive. Wilson has done this while getting little production from Lynch and inconsistent run support. No need to say again that it’s despite a severely struggling offensive line.

If the Seahawks offensive line can get consistency heading into Cincinnati, they could be poised to steal a 10 AM PST start game vs an undefeated team. The Seahawks are that close from blowing teams out.

Their QB is playing the best he’s ever played, the skill position players, especially the receivers, are doing everything they are supposed to. If they could get the fundamentals down and make their blocks up front, look out. Because what looks like trouble in Cincinnati Sunday morning could be opportunity.

Next: Seahawks vs Lions grades

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