Seahawks should give the ball to Rashaad Penny…a lot
The Seahawks might actually have a very favorable matchup in Week 1 as Seattle’s offensive line, though starting two rookies, is potentially very good. Plus, the Broncos pass rush wasn’t very good last season and neither was their run defense. Oh sure, Denver ranked 18th in sacks last year and 13th in yards allowed per carry, but those raw numbers don’t tell the whole story.
Also, it should be noted that Denver didn’t really make its defensive line any better this offseason. Bradley Chubb had zero sacks last year and veteran Randy Gregory seems to get hurt a lot and is currently trying to come back from shoulder surgery.
Last year, the Seahawks offense (yes, this was even with Russell Wilson playing in 14 of 17 games) struggled to stay on the field. This helped lead to the defense being on the field far too much which caused the defense to tire by the second half many times. In 2022, Seattle might score fewer points but they also need to increase their time of possession by at least 4 minutes.
This means running the ball more because Seattle has an excellent running back group. This is led by Rashaad Penny who showed that the more he gets the ball during a game, the better he gets. Penny led the league in yards per carry in 2021. But it was in the second halves of games where he made a tired defense pay. For instance, when Penny ran for 190 yards against the Cardinals in Week 18 last year, many of them were in the second half.
Seattle needs to give the ball to Penny often and stick with it no matter how the game seems to be going. This will help Seattle’s defense and Geno Smith and could easily help Seattle earn a win in Week 1.