Well, I did say that Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil needed to be contained for the Seahawks to have a chance against the Broncos. The two combined for 3.5 sacks and hit Seahawk quarterbacks (Tarvaris Jackson played all but the very end of the game) 6 times. It was the same old story for the Hawks, as Tarvaris Jackson was hassled by heavy pressure from the opening kickoff until he was taken out of the game. To put Miller and Dumervil’s presence into perspective, Sports Nation (an ESPN talk show) posted the following headline: ”It was just a bad night all around.”- Tom Brady after 2 sacks, 5 knockdowns & INT vs Lions. Do you LIKE seeing Brady get beat up?
Despite their porous blocking, the Seahawks tied the game at 20 with under a minute and a half left in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, they promptly up a game-winning field goal as time expired.
The Seahawks started the game well, taking a 3-0 lead when Jeff Reed nailed a 52 yard field goal. The lead didn’t last long, and the Broncos took the lead in the second quarter when Willis McGahee scored on a two yard touchdown run and kicker Matt Prater crushed a 57 yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Broncos capped off a nice drive when quarterback Kyle Orton hit Eric Decker on a six yard touchdown pass. With the way the Seahawk offense was playing, the game looked as good as over. Finally though, the Seahawks responded. The first string offense scored its first touchdown of the season on an impressive 9 play, 83 yard drive. Tarvaris Jackson completed all five passes he attempted on the drive including a one yard touchdown to Dominique Byrd, and Jackson and receiver Sidney Rice also drew an 18 yard pass interference penalty. It was the first look Seahawks fans have had at what Jackson can do when he gets time to pass.
The Broncos added a field goal to extend the lead to 20-10, but rookie wide receiver Doug Baldwin ran back the kickoff for an incredible 105 yard touchdown.
After exchanging a couple of punts, Charlie Whitehurst got the Seahawks into field goal range, and Jeff Reed drilled a 53 yarder to tie the game with just over a minute left. Seahawk fans watching the game can be excused for thinking the game would go into overtime, but Tim Tebow lead the Broncos on their ensuing drive far enough to give backup kicker Steven Haushka a chance at a 51 yard field goal. He won the game for them as time expired.
The Seahawk offense didn’t look very good for a third straight game, and it has become clear that pass protection is the biggest area of concern for the club. In his postgame press conference, Pete Carroll alluded to the fact that he and the coaching staff will be spending the week working heavily on improving the team’s pass protection. He also thought the clinical touchdown drive Tarvaris Jackson lead is what the offense is capable of on a regular basis – provided Jackson has time to throw.
I think it is clear that Pete Carroll plans on sticking with Jackson for the foreseeable future at quarterback. Charlie Whitehurst was given very little playing time last night, with the priority seeming to be giving Jackson more practice at running the offense. Whitehurst has had a good preseason, but I just don’t see him getting much real playing time until Carroll completely gives up on Jackson.
Marshawn Lynch’s absence from the backfield (he was sitting out with a minor ankle injury) was noticeable, as the Seahawks were unable to get much of a power running game going. I expect the Seahawks to have a better running game this season than we’ve seen in the preseason, but like the success of the offense as a whole, this will depend heavily on the play of the Seahawk offensive line.
The loss in Denver was the second disappointing loss in a row for the Hawks, but this is just the preseason. There is still time right the ship before the games actually count for something. The Raiders come to town next week for the Seahawks’ final preseason game. Hopefully the Hawks get a good week of practice in and can end the preseason on a positive note.
About the Author
Written by Erik Olsoy
Erik was born in Columbus, Ohio during the only Ohio State football victory over Michigan in the 1980s, but moved to Washington state and grew up there. His loyalty to Ohio State remains strong, but his strongest allegiances developed toward Seattle sports. Though he recently graduated from Boston College, he has not yet been converted to the ways of New England Sportsdom, and only roots for the Red Sox against the Yankees because the Yankees are the root of all evil.