The ugly: Lackluster run defense
In the NFL, addressing weaknesses from the previous season is a crucial part of a team's offseason strategy. For the Seattle Seahawks, the focus last year was on shoring up their pass defense, a notable vulnerability. Fast forward to this season, and the team finds itself grappling with a new adversary—the inability to contain opponents' running games. Despite efforts to fortify the secondary in the offseason, the Seahawks' defensive struggles took an unexpected turn, raising concerns about the team's overall defensive prowess.
The Achilles heel of the Seahawks in the previous season was their vulnerability to the passing game. Recognizing this deficiency, the team took decisive action in the offseason, particularly during the rookie draft. The 5th overall pick was used to bring in promising cornerback Devon Witherspoon with the hope that his presence would plug the leaks in the secondary and provide a boost to the pass defense.
With the acquisition of Witherspoon and other strategic moves, optimism surrounded the Seahawks as they entered the new season. The expectation was that the revamped secondary would bring about a defensive resurgence, allowing the team to compete more effectively in a league dominated by high-powered passing offenses.
The Week 18 showdown against the Arizona Cardinals was a microcosm of the Seahawks' season-long struggle against the run. Facing running back James Conner, the Seahawks' defense faltered, allowing him to rush for a staggering 150 yards and score a pivotal touchdown. In a must-win game, the inability to stop the opposing team's running game proved costly and highlighted a glaring weakness in the defensive unit.
As the Seahawks head into the offseason, questions abound regarding how to address this newfound vulnerability. The coaching staff must conduct a thorough assessment of defensive schemes, player performance, and potential personnel adjustments to create a more robust defensive strategy. Whether through strategic acquisitions in the upcoming draft, free agency moves, or internal development, finding a solution to the running game woes is paramount for the Seahawks' success in future campaigns.