Seahawks 22 Broncos 14: Winners and Losers

The Seattle Seahawks got off to a winning start in the 2019 NFL preseason, and even though the game results themselves don’t matter, try telling that to Pete Carroll. And besides, who doesn’t like the sound of “Seahawks win” ?

It’s getting late here and the flags (yellow and red) mean you’ll get a somewhat truncated version of Winners and Losers, so let’s get to it!

Winners

Jazz Ferguson

A great showing by the UDFA. He had a nice 21-yard contested grab to start the 2nd half and a back-shoulder throw touchdown catch later on in the game. Overall, he had 4 catches for 54 yards and a score. This is purely cliche but he looks the part of a WR who belongs on a 53-man roster. I really want to see how he fares if/when he gets some live game action with Russell Wilson.

Paxton Lynch

Didn’t think I envisioned putting him on here at any point this preseason, but he was efficient and much more composed than Geno Smith (more on him later). Lynch threw for a touchdown to Ferguson, and rushed for a TD on a 3rd and short when no one was open. Yes it was against Denver’s third-string rotation but I don’t really care all that much. He wanted to show up against his former team and shine and by preseason standards, he did just that.

Austin Calitro

Calitro was a bit of a preseason warrior last year and continued to play that part on Thursday, recording six tackles and breaking up a 4th down pass for Theo Riddick. Good night at the office for him.

Cody Barton

Barton did get washed out on Royce Freeman’s big run, but outside of that I was impressed with his pursuit and tackling skills. He has a nose for the ball and great instincts. Seattle badly needs linebacker depth and I think Barton could be more than that when

Ugo Amadi

Not only was Amadi close to a pick-six on defense but he looked the part of a special teams returnman. His footwork is smooth and he was fast on a blitz, forcing Drew Lock into a bad throw. and based on training camp reports and that preseason debut, he looks like he has a place on the roster.

DeShawn Shead

Welcome back to Seattle! Nothing like a sack for a safety to essentially turn the game firmly in Seattle’s favor for good.

Ken Norton Jr’s DB blitzes

Those extra men on the rush in the form of Akeem King, Ugo Amadi, Marquise Blair, and DeShawn Shead rattled the likes of Drew Lock and Kevin Hogan. Knowing the Seahawks were largely depleted on the defensive line, Norton found different ways to generate pressure, and did so with great success.

Jacob Martin

Martin may not be big enough at the moment to threaten anyone with his bull rush, but his speed off the edge is undeniably dangerous. He picked up a sack, hurried Lock several times over, and drew holding penalties. I could see Martin as a substantial contributor in his second season.

John Ursua

Officially he had just 1 catch for 23 yards, but it was… dare I say, Doug Baldwin-like? Lynch hit him in stride for a third-down conversion, and he had a catch that was called incomplete late in the game, but I swear he had his hands underneath the ball.

Special Teams coverage

Ignore the penalties and appreciate the coverage units, which were much-maligned last year. Shaquem Griffin forced a fumble on opening kickoff, Neiko Thorpe was as good as ever as a gunner, and the rookies were active and swarming.

Losers

Geno Smith

Smith was hesitant, panicky (especially on that second sack), and fortunate not to have been intercepted at least once. Apparently he has a cyst in his knee so he might not play next week, and that might give Lynch another chance to pull ahead in the back-up competition.

Offensive Line discipline

Just way too many penalties even by preseason standards. They must have had at least seven of the 14.

Rasheem Green

Gotta be more disciplined when defending the read-option, even if it’s Drew Lock at quarterback. He did a great job of tackling the running back who didn’t have the ball, but it’s his responsibility to defend read-options and he failed his assignment. He also had a couple of spotty moments in run defense early on. It wasn’t all bad as he did have a tackle for a loss.

Other Notes

  • DK Metcalf was a mixed bag. He had one catch for 8 yards, another catch taken away on a (bullshit) David Moore penalty, and then two deep balls he was so close to getting but no cigar. One was overthrown by Geno Smith, another one should’ve been caught. Don’t get too concerned because presumably we’ll see him with Russell Wilson next week.
  • Marquise Blair was also a mixed bag. I am impressed with his speed, range, and versatility but he did err on a busted coverage by blitzing instead of staying on his assignment. His personal foul penalty was harsh but (at least to me) correct based on letter of the law. There’s a lot to like about his potential.
  • Rashaad Penny was more decisive and quick out there, and I liked his 27-yard dash on the screen pass. He only had 15 yards on 6 carries, which I can attribute to him being behind that makeshift offensive line.
  • Props to Xavier Turner for a respectable 42 yards on 13 carries, having just been signed on Wednesday. There’s no way he’s making the team but thanks to a lack of available RBs, he made the most of his unexpected extended playing time.
  • I am so glad football is back. Can’t wait for the real season to start.

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Mookie Alexander
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