Knee-jerk reaction 3: The Seahawks need to replace Geno Smith with Drew Lock
Geno Smith has been asked to do a couple of important things in his first season as the starter. One is don’t turn the ball over. Two is don’t turn the ball over. Seattle appears to trust Smith about as much as they did last year when he started three games for the Seahawks. In other words, not much at all. Throw the ball deep down field? Forget it.
And that’s a big problem. DK Metcalf is one of the best receivers in the league in creating splash plays deep. Tyler Lockett can use quickness and route running to get open deep as well. While Russell Wilson was great at throwing the ball long, he also used the receivers he had to be successful at it. Seattle seems to forget that part of the offense exists.
Not throwing the ball downfield also means that defenses can play closer to the line in anticipation that Seattle will want to run the ball. This is borne out in the fact that through the first two games Seattle averages just 3.4 yards a carry – 30th in the NFL. In Week 2, Seattle also threw too many passes in the flat and they basically worked as a run play that the 49ers immediately smothered. For instance, tight ends Will Dissly and Noah Fant had a combined 4 catches on 4 targets but for only 11 yards.
So while Drew Lock might be the unsafe bet compared to Smith when it comes to running the offense efficiently, Lock also has the more electric arm and can definitely throw the ball down the field with ease and challenge defensive backs more than Smith. Plus, there’s the thing that an offense led by Geno Smith has not scored in the last six quarters. Maybe Smith isn’t the major issue but at some point, a team has to try something else.