Good Morning. Here are five things the Seattle Seahawks need to do to make sure they don’t get caught sleeping against a 1-10 Carolina Panthers’ team that is better than their record indicates.
Run to win: The Seahawks are averaging a league-low 78 yards per contest. They were in a similar position last season, but averaged 120 yards a contest in the final six games. Of course, they lost four straight to end the season and Jim Mora got fired. Maybe running the ball isn’t that important after all.
Wrap-up: The tackling overall has been atrocious the last, two games. It appears that defensive coordinator Gus Bradley is getting his guys in the right position, but defenders are not making plays at the point of attack. That needs to change today against a pretty good running team in Carolina, led by a physical runner in Jonathan Stewart, who will be motivated playing at home in front of family and friends for the first time as a pro.
Be physical: Mora said it plainly last season – the Seahawks have a reputation around the league as being one of those West Coast finesse teams, and of late they have certainly done nothing to persuade anyone otherwise. This team needs to be physical and dominate at the line of scrimmage after being manhandled against Kansas City last week.
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Be smart: Instead of forcing the action against a team like Carolina that is likely to make several mistakes on their own, let the game come to you. Fourth and 1 from midfield? How about punting and creating some good field position. And let’s keep the trick plays in the bag for another week. Just be crisp and fundamentally sound and you’ll get a win here Seattle.
Jump on them early: The more a team like Carolina stays in the game, the more the Panthers’ confidence will grow, and they believe they can get their first road victory this season. So the Seahawks need to squash those thoughts by jumping on Carolina early.
My story this morning focuses on Seattle’s run game, which is on pace to set a franchise low for rushing yards in a season.
Clare Farnsworth of Seahawks.com discusses the impact receiver Mike Williams will make if he can play today.
Doug Farrar of Sportspressnw.com breaks down the game here.
Danny O’Neil of the Seattle Times calls this game a measuring stick for Seattle, a contest they must win if they want to continue to believe they can win the NFC West.
John Boyle of the Everett Herald writes that the Seahawks are struggling to run the ball, and defend the run on defense.
Pat Kirwan of CBS Sports previews the game in the video below.
Clark Judge of CBS Sports anoints the Seahawks-Panthers’ contest his crummy game of the week.
Dan Pompei of the National Football Post explains why holding calls are on the rise – the move of the umpire from behind the defense to the offensive backfield.
Dom Bonvissuto of Sports Illustrated projects Seattle to win the NFC West.
John Lopez of Sports Illustrated says with a win over Arizona, the NFC West will go through St. Louis.
Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer profiles former Seattle Seahawks and current Carolina Panthers’ kicker John Kasay.