Good afternoon, 12s.
Here's a look at what's "out there" for today - Monday, March 21 - about your Seattle Seahawks:
Clayton: Seahawks Still Division Favorites
In a feature at ESPN.com, senior writer John Clayton examines the budding rivalry between the Seahawks and Cardinals. He recaps a few of the big moves Arizona has made this offseason, moves Clayton thinks make a case for the club to challenge Seattle as NFC West favorites in 2016, comparing the talent acquisition competition between the two teams to the NFC West tug-of-war that existed not long ago between the Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers.
But despite the Cardinals' recent additions and the fact that the club advanced to the NFC Championship this past year after winning the division with a 13-3 regular-season record, Clayton says the Seahawks still have the upper hand, pointing to Seattle's history of finishing seasons strong under head coach Pete Carroll. Clayton writes:
Where the Seahawks still have the edge over the Cardinals is their consistency. In each of the past four years, the Seahawks have allowed the fewest points. The defense has allowed Wilson and the offense to grow. Only giving up 17 to 19 points a game has allowed Wilson to keep the score close and make plays in the fourth quarter to win.
Both teams learned something last season.
The Seahawks learned that a slow start could leave them in the wild-card round of the playoffs instead of having home-field advantage. Because the NFC is loaded with teams with great quarterbacks and excellent defenses, it's hard to think a wild-card team can win three games on the road, particularly in places such as Green Bay, Minnesota, Carolina and Arizona.
The Cardinals learned that winning the division with a 13-win season is great, but it takes more concentration and focus to win in the playoffs. The Seahawks got over that hump with their win in Super Bowl XLVIII. The Cardinals are still trying.
In the big picture, both teams seem to be set to return to the playoffs. The team that wins the division and earns home-field advantage has the better chance of going to the Super Bowl. Still, the Seahawks are a team with a history of being dangerous.
Tweet Of The Day
Today's "Tweet of the Day" comes from @NFLprguy Brian McCarthy, who shares a photo of NFL head coaches gathered Monday morning at the NFL Annual Meeting in Boca Raton, Fla.
Seattle coach Pete Carroll is seated in the second row, second from the left, next to Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn, who worked as the Seahawks' defensive coordinator from 2013-14. Gus Bradley, Seattle's defensive coordinator from 2009-12 and the current head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars, is pictured in the third row, third from the right.
More From Around The Web
Here at Seahawks.com, digital media reporter John Boyle updates his 2016 free-agency tracker after the team brought back running back Christine Michael and linebacker Mike Morgan and saw left tackle Russell Okung sign with the Denver Broncos last week. Boyle also has a look at the free-agent happenings around the rest of the NFC West.
At NFL.com, Dave Dameshek puts Seattle's Russell Wilson on his list of Top 10 Super Bowl quarterbacks for the next 10 years.
Chris Wesseling at NFL.com doles out free-agency grades for each team in the NFC West.
Adam Schein at NFL.com sees the NFC West differently than John Clayton does above, labeling the Seahawks as the top challenger to the division favorite Cardinals.
Bob Condotta at the Seattle Times outlines five things to watch this week at the NFL Annual Meeting.
Bill Barnwell at ESPN.com looks at which teams have been smart to sit out free agency's spending spree.
And Sheil Kapadia at ESPN.com wonders what moves are left for the Seahawks to make in free agency.
Check out which Seahawks players have a rooting interest in this year's March Madness NCAA men's basketball tournament.