Found August 08, 2013 on Fox Sports:
The 2013 NFL regular season is right around the corner. With that being said, it's time to launch our team previews. contributor Taylor Jones will answer important questions for every franchise. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 2012 Record: 11-5. Eliminated in the divisional round by Atlanta. What is the position battle to watch? After trading for Percy Harvin, the Seahawks released 2012 Pro Bowl kick returner Leon Washington. No big deal. Harvin has returned at least one kickoff for a touchdown in each of his first four seasons in the NFL. But after missing the last seven games in 2012 with an ankle injury, Harvin is to miss at least the first three months of the season as he recovers from a slightly torn labrum. His return is likely sometime in December. That leaves a major void in the battle for field position. For a team that loves to run the ball and play great defense, field position becomes that much more important. While this may not seem like a sexy position battle, I promise you it is one that Pete Carroll and the rest of the coaching staff will be watching closely. What is the team's biggest obstacle? Injuries and suspensions. Injuries seem to be hitting every training camp particularly hard this preseason, but the Seahawks lost their prized offseason acquisition in Harvin and are still waiting for their best defensive lineman Chris Clemons to recover from knee surgery. Bruce Irvin will serve a four-game suspension for violating the league policy against performance enhancing drugs which means Seattle could be without three key players to start the season. Irvin and Clemons had a combined 19 1/2 sacks last season, while Harvin has averaged 70 catches a season in his four-year career. That is a lot of missing productivity for a team that has a ton of expectations. What is the team's biggest asset? Seattle relies on its running game more than any other team in the NFL. The Seahawks ran the ball 55 percent of the time lat season and relied on Marshawn Lynch to do the heavy lifting. Lynch had 315 carries and was still able to average five yards per carry. That is an astonishing number when you look at the two stats consecutively. Everyone Seahawks' opponent knew they were going to run the ball, yet no one could stop them. Five yards a pop against seven- and eight-man boxes is incredible. The Seahawks will look to continue this trend. Their first pick of the 2013 NFL Draft was brought in to help take some of the load off of Lynch. Christine Michael has proven to be more than just a change of pace back during the preseason and some reports suggest he could supplant Robert Turbin as the backup altogether. Even with Lynch averaging nearly 20 carries per game, Seattle's backup running backs combined to carry the ball for just over 100 attempts last season. I don't think they will want to rely on Lynch to carry the ball more than 300 times again this season, so finding a substantial No. 2 is a top priority. The frequency in which the Seahawks run the ball also plays an important part in the team's passing game. Besides the Redskins last year, I can't think of a team that had a more impressive play action game than Seattle. Because defenses will put an extra man, or sometimes, two in the box, receivers have a chance to win one-on-one matchups down the field with very little help over the top. That more than anything was the biggest factor in Russell Wilson's success last season. Which rookie stands the best chance to succeed? The Seahawks got two value picks at the defensive tackle position. Jordan Hill in the third round and Jesse Williams in the fifth round will each help provide a more balanced defensive front. The Seahawks were great off the edges in 2012, but struggled to get any penetration in the middle of the front. Hill and Williams will help do that on first and second down and force the offense into more third-and-long attempts in which the Seahawks can play their sub package that includes all the phenomenal pass rushers I will discuss below. What is the team's biggest addition/loss from the previous season? The rich got richer with the additions of defensive ends Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett, who both led their 2012 teams in sacks last season. Avril and Bennett bring a combined 18 1/2 sacks to the No. 1 scoring defense from a season ago. Now, this defensive line is not only ripe with talent, but it is also is one of the deepest units in the NFL. Bennett and Avril may not even become full-time starters on a defensive line that already includes Clemons and Red Bryant as the defensive ends, but all four could be on the field at once in their sub package. The added depth will also allow the Seahawks to move Irvin to linebacker, a position that is more suited for his skinny frame. Irvin was a skilled situational pass rusher at the beginning of 2012, but as injuries forced him to play a more prominent role on all three downs, he became a liability on the edge in the running game. Now, after serving his four-game suspension, Irvin can play linebacker which will allow him to use even more of his explosive speed off the edge.

UDFAs shine for Seahawks in preseason opener

Seahawks rookie running back Christine Michael got plenty of opportunity, carrying the ball 16 times for 89 yards as well as returning kickoffs. Rookie tight end Luke Willson got his fair share of reps playing with the first team offense. Other drafted rookies Ty Powell, Spencer Ware, and Michael Bowie also got significant playing time. But while all of these players were drafted...

Seahawks put RB Christine Michael to the test in preseason opener, passes with flying colors

Seattle Seahawks RB Christine Michaels has been making a lot of noise at training camp, and coach Pete Carroll and his staff wanted to put him to the test. Michael got his share of touches in Seattle’s 31-10 win over the San Diego Chargers.

Early Doucet released by Seahawks after one practice

The Seattle Seahawks have released wide receiver Early Doucet after he struggled with an injury in his first practice with the team, according to Darin Gantt of NBC Sports. The team stated that their reason for releasing Doucet so soon after acquiring him is because he “failed to disclose a physical injury” prior to signing his contract. It is currently unknown what that injury...

Seahawks wide receivers 2013 stat line projections

The Glory Hogs Yada Yada Percy Harvin‘s hurt yada yada. Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, where was I? Ah yes, the Seattle Seahawks wide receivers that will be healthy from week 1 forward and their projected stats lines. They may not have the flashy big play ability of Harvin for the majority of the season (and potentially longer), but there are no shortage of stars in...

Seattle's revamped D-line ready for preseason

On a team that counts continuity among its greatest strengths, the Seattle Seahawks are hoping that change can be a good thing for the defensive line. Veterans Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett and Tony McDaniel were brought in to add depth and their value could become even greater while Bruce Irvin serves a four-game suspension and Chris Clemons recovers from knee surgery that has his...

Three impressionable Seahawks in Week 1 of the preseason

Let There be Depth! I don’t care that for the most part I was watching second and third string players. I don’t care that this game meant absolutely nothing. It was Seattle Seahawks football, and for the first time in over six months it graced the screen of my dirty, dust-covered television. Life’s good. The Seahawks kicked off their preseason last night with a week 1 romping...

Seattle Seahawks week 1 preseason preview: Backup QB’s

Fight To The Death Going into the week one preseason match up between the Seattle Seahawks and the San Diego Chargers, an important position battle is on the line that has gotten very little media play. What happens if Russell Wilson goes down? For a team with Super Bowl aspirations, and an offensive attack that can lead to a few hits on the franchise quarterback, the need to have...

Seahawks Rookie RB Christine Michael Impresses In Preseason Debut

A nice showing from Seahawks No. 3 running back, rookie Christine Michael, in the preseason opener - 16 carries for 89 yards.Fantasy Spin:Unless Marshawn Lynch gets hurt or has more legal issues, Michael shouldn't have much fantasy value this season, but keeper league owners should keep an eye on him and he could give backup Robert Turbin a run for his money.

Seahawks beat Chargers in preseason opener 31-10

The Seattle Seahawks have beat the San Diego Chargers 31-10 in their first preseason game. In a game that ultimately means nothing at the end of the season, there was some good things to take away from this game. Philip Rivers finally looked comfortable in an improved offensive line. Unfortunately for the Chargers, there isn’t much depth behind the starting five offensive linemen...

Seattle Seahawks at San Diego Chargers: Line, spread, over/under and kickoff info

getty images The Seattle Seahawks will visit the San Diego Chargers in each teams first preseason football game of the season. Ah. Preseason. Where the games do not matter but the roster spots do. If nothing else it will be interesting to see how San Diego plays under first year coach Mike McCoy. Kickoff for this game is set at 10:00 pm ET. The spread favors the Seahawks by 2.5 points...

Guest: Could the New York Jets be 2013’s version of the '12 Seattle Seahawks?

Guest posting from our friend, Carlos Sardinas of the great C&C Football Factory show on BlogTalk Radio. The title of this article may seem ludicrous to some of you, but hang in there and let me explain the eerie similarities between the two clubs. Image: USATSI Seattle turned heads in 2012, posting 11 wins and challenging the dominant San Francisco 49ers for the division...
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