Former Seahawks linebacker Dave Wyman takes over this week's #HawksMailbag, answering your questions about the club.
Wyman, a native of San Diego, Calif. who played his college ball at Stanford University - where he earned a degree in communications, was drafted by the Seahawks in the second round (45th overall) of the 1987 NFL draft. He spent six seasons in Seattle (1987-92), racking up 364 tackles in 61 games.
Wyman now co-hosts 710 ESPN Seattle's "Wyman, Mike and Moore" and Seahawks pre- and postgame shows. Look for more of Wyman's contributions to Seahawks.com throughout the season.
In the NFL, you almost expect adversity. Players get hurt, traded or cut all the time. There’s no room to mourn the loss of a player for whatever reason. I learned that my rookie year when the Seahawks traded Dave Brown (Ring of Honor member) to the Packers. This was a guy who was with the Seahawks from the very beginning, had 50 interceptions as a Seahawk, and one day was gone. I remember the effect it had on the locker room, but I also remember that by the next day, everyone had moved on. Careers are short in the NFL and you just get used to it and learn to forge on with the guys that you do have. As head coach Pete Carroll always emphasizes, it’s about the guys that are playing. Sounds cold, but it’s a fact in a game where the average career lasts just over three years. When the news hits you, it’s shocking. But once you get back to work, its business as usual.
#HawksMailbag What do you think about bye weeks? I feel they are needed for rest but we need to put more emphasis on acting responsible.— Rodney Lindbeck (@ATCsandiego) November 26, 2013
As far as I know, the bad news that has hurt the Hawks during the past couple of years has come down on or around the bye week, but the problems didn’t occur during the bye week.
The bye week is there when you don’t need it, and isn’t there when you do need it. It did not come at the best time this year because the Hawks got key players like
In light of this bad news I’ve chosen to focus on two things:
1) The tremendous opportunity in front of cornerbacks
2) A few of the extraordinary men that are leaders on this team. Quarterback
The NFL is a game of matchups and New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham is a matchup problem. He’s more athletic than most linebackers and safeties and bigger than most cornerbacks. I’d say that you probably won’t be able to shut him down but rather limit the damage he can do. The other thing is that you’d be surprised how little teams focus on just one player. I remember preparing for the 49ers and Jerry Rice. We knew where the best receiver in NFL history was on every play, but it wasn’t like we were committing two or three guys to stop him every play. That leaves other professional football players open! Remember, the Saints have Pierre Thomas, Darren Sproles and Marques Colston that can burn you if you focus too much on Graham. I don’t have an answer for that one, but I’ll bet defensive coordinator Dan Quinn does. We’ll see if it works.
@Seahawks Can the Seahawks D stop Drew Brees?— Austin Bearden (@AustinSquallaB) November 25, 2013
See Jimmy Graham answer, but I will say this: Drew Brees is not the same quarterback on the road that he is at home. Check out Brees’ stats home vs. away:
|Drew Brees: Home vs. Away|
Maybe that’s not fair because almost every QB in the NFL is better at home, but check out Russell Wilson’s numbers in those same categories:
|Russell Wilson: Home vs. Away|
As you can see, Wilson’s numbers aren’t as gaudy as Brees’ numbers, but that’s primarily because the Saints throw the ball 40 times per game while the Seahawks only throw it 25 times per game. Regardless, Wilson’s numbers are more consistent on the road vs. home.
The Seahawks improved pass rush and the 12th Man should perpetuate Brees’ road woes.
I would think the advantage would be with the Seahawks. With the 12th Man, there’s always an added advantage for the Hawks D-Line to get off on the snap before the opposing O-line does. Furthermore, the Hawks have Breno Giacomini and Russell Okung back, so that should mean less sacks for the Saints. I must say Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan has done a masterful job with the N.O. defense this year. He has taken them from dead last in 2012, to No. 4 in less than a year. But the Hawks are on pace for close to 50 sacks this season. Advantage Seahawks.
@Seahawks as a Seahawks fan in the Midwest, things can get pretty tough. Any advice on how to deal with the haters?— Wil Butler (@WilB_xc) November 26, 2013
I’d say be humble and modest and let the standings do the talking. Here in Issaquah, Wash. there’s a bar where Kansas City Chiefs fans gather every Sunday. If there’s a Chiefs bar in the Seattle area, there HAS to be a Seahawks bar somewhere close by, right? That way you can watch the game with NORMAL people…you know, stable, well-adjusted, intelligent fans who know their football. Ha, but that’s just my opinion.