We saw why I had five questions going into the Cardinals game Friday night and I gave you my early questions for the San Francisco 49ers game, but what about the other two NFC West teams?
Let’s take a look at the NFC West Week 2 Preview Part 2 (Pre season) and the five questions I have for week 2 of the pre season.
1) Is there a quarterback controversy?
I spoke about this in my Seahawks season preview and in my week 1 wrap, but the Seahawks have a bit of a conundrum brewing.
I don’t think there is any doubt that Matt Flynn is the starter, and honestly that isn’t what the controversy is about.
The controversy is whether or not Tarvaris Jackson will make it out of the pre season still on the Seahawks roster.
Why, well because Russell Wilson has emerged as not just a viable back up option, but a potential starter in the league.
How do the Seahawks continue to bring along Wilson, and was game one a fluke? Can he show that he is ready?
2) Can Robert Turbin continue to grow?
I am having my doubts that Marshawn Lynch gets suspended, but that won’t matter, you need two backs to carry the load in the current NFL.
Turbin showed flashes in a couple of his runs, but didn’t look as outstanding as I had hoped.
He should see a little more time in this weeks game against the first defensive unit and I think we can start to get a better indication about how much of an impact he can make in the league this year.
3) Bruce Irvin gets to the quarterback.
I don’t care if he has zero sacks, I just want to see him get after the quarterback and get a couple of hurries or even better some knock downs.
Irvin showed the elite speed that got him drafted 15th overall, but the concerns about his pass rushing move sets and ability to set up those moves is legitimate.
4) How good is the secondary?
They have looked elite, but going against Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos offense should give Seahawks fans a good idea how they will fair against Dallas, Green Bay, Carolina, New England and Detroit this season, you know 5 of the top 13 passing offenses in the league.
We talked about the importance of the pass rush, but the secondary can help out the pass rush if they can force the Broncos WRs to work deeper into their routes and Manning to hold onto the ball longer.
The test obviously will be that there isn’t many better at seeing the openings a secondary allows, and Manning can make even the best look silly.
It is absolutely one of the best tests this Seahawks defense can face in the pre season.
5) Is the TO show ready to go?
Flynn threw 13 passes in week 1, and only had 72 yards to show for it. While a 5.5 yards per attempt average isn’t terrible, it definitely doesn’t evoke thoughts of a dominant air attack.
Insert Terrel Owens. Can he be a legitimate target for Flynn in the season, or are the Seahawks stuck working with a decently talented, yet ultimately bland group of receivers.
They need Owens to have something left, and while it is the pre season, it is important to see a sign or two.
St. Louis Rams-
1) Please protect Sam Bradford.
I am not a huge fan of Bradford, I didn’t think it was the right selection at the time, and I don’t think he is a franchise quarterback, but I do feel bad for the guy.
The Rams offensive line was just ok in game one against a benign Colts defense, and going against a Chiefs team that registered seven sacks in last weeks game against the Cardinals.
I’m not brazen enough to say the Rams offensive line is worse than the Cardinals, but I do believe this could be a bad week for the Rams young quarterback.
The Rams have to give him some time and allow him to prove me right that he isn’t a franchise quarterback, or else it just isn’t fair.
2) Isaiah Pead please hold onto the ball.
You won’t find many evaluators who raved about Pead as much as me, but the kid with the unlimited ceiling, needs to hold onto the football if he even wants to approach that potential.
With 10 carries on the game for only 33 yards, he didn’t have anywhere near the impact I had hoped he would, even worse his first six carries resulted in only 13 yards.
He has to learn to find the seam in the offense and go, but his running style is only east and west right now, and that has to change.
3) Who is the top WR?
I am thinking that Austin Pettis is going into the season as the top option, but he doesn’t have what it takes to be the best receiver on the team.
He is a nice second option, and would probably work best as a third option, but I am not seeing a player that screams number one receiver.
The thing is, I don’t see one on the roster at this time and I want to see who else steps up and shows what they can do.
Brian Quick looked ok last week, but he is the definition of raw and it was painfully obvious that no one else on the roster at this time looks ready.
4) What about the defense?
The Rams run defense actually looked very good in week 1 of the pre season against the Colts, while the pass defense was, well abysmal.
I am interested to see how that changes this week with a well oiled machine that is the Chiefs running game.
The Chiefs have so many weapons at the running back position, and will bring them for even longer than they did against the Cardinals last week.
If that happens, it will be a true test for a team that will have to face what I am expecting to be three very good rushing teams in the NFL this season six times in the West.
While the Chiefs rushing attack may be better than that of the Cardinals, 49ers and Seahawks, it will be, much like the Broncos passing game against the Seahawks, the perfect opportunity to work against an elite unit in a game situation, when it doesn’t really matter the outcome.
5) What does Janoris Jenkins do for an encore?
There is no doubt that Jenkins looked like a special talent coming out in this years draft, but there were a ton of questions, even if they weren’t all legitimate, whether or not he could utilize those talents because of off the field problems.
Well, even if it was the pre season, he started off fantastic.
This week, he gets the inviable task of going against a Chiefs offense that is missing, even though Dwayne Bowe has recently signed, it’s best WR in Bowe.
That should allow Jenkins to show off just a little more if his ball skills, while working against the likes of Jonathan Baldwin and Steve Breaston.