As the Seahawks were preparing for their preseason opener against the Broncos in Denver last week, we asked coordinators Darrell Bevell and Dan Quinn what they would be looking for at Sports Authority Stadium on Thursday night.
As the defending Super Bowl champions prepare for their preseason home opener against the San Diego Chargers at CenturyLink Field on Friday night, here’s a look back at how the elements went that Bevell and Quinn were looking at:
Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn
What he saw: The tackling, especially by the No. 1 unit, was spot on. “I was really fired up that the defensive, in that we didn’t play as well as we’d like to, but we tackled really well,” coach Pete Carroll said Sunday after reviewing the video of the 21-16 loss to the Broncos. “We got off to a good start in that regard.”
What needs to be better against the Chargers: The No. 1 defense, minus middle linebacker and leading tackler
Broncos QB Peyton Manning went to Pro Bowl wide receiver Demaryius Thomas three times on the pivotal down and converted each – a 9-yarder on third-and-4; a 7-yarder on third-and-7; and a 9-yarder on third-and-7. But then Thomas did have 92 receptions and 14 touchdowns during the 2013 regular season and another 13 in the Seahawks’ 43-8 romp over the Broncos in the Super Bowl. Oh, and Ronnie Hillman’s 1-yard scoring run came on third-and-goal from the 1. The Broncos converted eight of 12 third-down situations in the game, or 67 percent.
In 2010, Carroll’s first season, the Seahawks allowed opponents to convert 39.5 percent on third downs (94 of 238), which ranked 24th in the league. In 2011, it was 34.8 percent (77 of 221), which ranked ninth in the league. In 2012, it was 38.4 percent (76 of 198), which ranked 17th in the league. Last season, when the Seahawks led the NFL in average points, yards and passing yards allowed, it was 35.2 percent (76 of 216), which was 10th in the league.
As good as the Seahawks defense was last season, it can be even better this season. And getting off the field on third downs is a good place to start, even if it is only the preseason.
Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell
What he needed to see: “I need to see us be efficient,” he said. “Obviously for the first game, I want to make sure that procedurally we handle everything the way we need to – making sure we’re staying on side, substitutions. Those kinds of things, because those are some of the things you worry about.”
What he saw: A lack of one leading to a lack of the other.
The Seahawks did have a 14-play, 90-yard drive, but it resulted in their only touchdown – a 1-yard run by
As for the pass protection, the No. 1 line had only right guard
“We’re just surviving right now,” Carroll said after the game. “We had guys playing the second team that have only been here three, four days. We’re not very sharp right now. It all showed.”
As for the penalties, the Seahawks had 13 for 131 yards. The offense was flagged for five of them – two false starts, an illegal snap, holding and a chop block.
“We had a lot of penalties and a lot of problems getting any kind of continuity moving the football,” Carroll said Sunday.
“We will build on this thing,” Carroll said in looking back at the opener, “and get ready for the next ball game.”