What we learned from the Seahawks Week 9 victory over Arizona
By Matthew Holm
Geno Smith isn’t just putting up stats — he’s become a proper captain
Granted, Geno had himself another good day on the stat sheet, putting up 275 yards and a pair of TDs. But it’s becoming clear that his value to the Seahawks’ offense is so much more than just as a passer. He has full command of the offense, gets the team to the line early, diagnoses the play pre-snap, and checks into the proper play to counter with ease.
Against the Cardinals, he put all of those pre-snap skills to use, because Arizona wasn’t coming with some generic 2-high shell look to keep everything in front of them. The Cardinals blitzed Seattle from every angle and every disguise they could come up with, and Smith stood in and delivered time and time again. There were times when I couldn’t help but compare him to some of the great masters of the pre-snap to come through the NFL in recent years, like Matt Hasselbeck, or fittingly enough, Philip Rivers.
Moreover, even with the gaudy efficiency numbers Smith put up, he himself would tell you it wasn’t his best game. Smith did make one blatant mishap during the game, seemingly falling asleep at the wheel when Zaven Collins blitzkrieg’d a screen pass and took it the other way for a third of Arizona’s points on the day. And from then on, Smith was nothing but dead-on, tightening up his reads and leading the Seahawks to three consecutive touchdowns to seal the game away.
Legions of lesser QBs would have been rattled by giving up such a bone-headed pick-six. Even the majority of NFL starters, I would argue, would likely opt to play a safer game than Geno decided to play, maybe taking a drive or two to get their bearings before going back out there and taking shots against Budda Baker and Byron Murphy.
Geno chose to galvanize himself with the mistake instead. Not only did he not let it get to him, but he also used it to shore up the missing aspect of his game, and proceeded to play like a superstar the rest of the way. That is the mark of not only a top-flight NFL QB, that’s the mark of a team leader. If I was Pete Carroll, not only am I asking John Schneider to set aside some big-time cap space for Geno this offseason, I’m getting a fresh “C” patch ready to stitch onto that #7 jersey. And I can’t imagine I’d be the only one.