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Monday Round-Up: Sports Illustrated Ranks NFC West As NFL's Toughest Division 

The NFC West will continue its reign as the NFL’s toughest division in 2021, Sports Illustrated’s Conor Orr believes.

2021-05-10_RoundUp

Good morning, 12s. Here's a look at what's happening today – Monday, May 10 – for your Seattle Seahawks.

NFC West Is NFL's Toughest Division, Sports Illustrated Says

The Seahawks took the NFC West crown in 2020, but it certainly wasn't easy. Three teams in the NFC West finished at .500 or better, as the Rams joined Seattle in the postseason. The Cardinals missed the playoffs due to a tiebreaker with the Bears, and the 49ers were two games out at 6-10 after making the Super Bowl the year prior.

This offseason, it appears the NFC West has only gotten stronger. Seattle added help to its O-line (Gabe Jackson) and D-line (Kerry Hyder Jr.) while also re-signing Chris Carson and Carlos Dunlap II. Los Angeles has a new quarterback in Matthew Stafford. Ditto for the 49ers, who drafted Trey Lance third overall and will bring back Nick Bosa, Dee Ford and Jimmy Garoppolo from injuries. The Cardinals continued to build up their roster, signing J.J. Watt, A.J. Green and James Connor. It's clear that all four teams in the division are trying to win in 2021, and there are no rebuilding projects underway.

Last week, Sports Illustrated writer Conor Orr ranked the NFL's toughest divisions following the draft. Here's why he believes the NFC West stands tall above the other seven divisions:

"Every team in this division has a premier quarterback," Orr wrote. "The NFC West produced 15 Pro Bowl players last year and each team (save for Seattle's behavior of late) seems to understand the impending squeeze and is loading up on a talent arms race. Of course, injuries will run their course and some of these teams will finish with middling records. However, if placed in some of our lower-tiered divisions (the NFC East, for example), any of these teams would almost certainly be the favorite to win it.

"Ranking the NFC West this high carries some built-in assumptions. We're assuming the Rams will be better with Matthew Stafford but are taking into account the very significant loss of defensive coordinator Brandon Staley. We're assuming the Seahawks are going to be better offensively with the addition of Sean McVay disciple Shane Waldron but acknowledge they did little to bolster positions of need this offseason. We're assuming Trey Lance will take the baton at some point earlier than expected (Kyle Shanahan had the luxury of positioning Lance with former pupil and good friend John Beck throughout the draft process) and take the 49ers' offense in a different direction. We're assuming the Cardinals won't plunge their offense into an unsatisfying amalgam of Air Raid and traditional NFL brick-a-brack, and that a Chandler Jones–J.J. Watt combination still has some juice left.

"That's a lot of assumptions, but less so than we'll make about the other divisions here. It is the only division where we could envision each of the four teams with a realistic path to the playoffs and, for the moment, Vegas seems to agree. Of the 10 teams with the best odds to win the Super Bowl right now, according to William Hill, three of them are in the NFC West."

Tacoma Girls NFL Flag Football Club Holds Jamboree

The Tacoma Girls NFL Flag Football Club hosted its jamboree to kick off the season on Saturday, May 8. The new girls flag football league features teams from 10 Pierce County high schools.

Last month, the Seattle Seahawks donated a $50,000 grant to support flag football participation for Washington youth. In partnership with the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association, Nike and NFL Flag, half of that donation went to Tacoma Public Schools to launch the Tacoma Girls NFL Flag Football Club.

Saturday's jamboree was a way for players and coaches to begin their season. At the event, teams went to various stations for different football drills, including passing, a 40-yard dash and more. The jamboree concluded with scrimmages between the teams.

Seahawks Legend Marcus Trufant, Blitz and the Seahawks Dancers were in attendance to speak, help out and perform at the event.

The Tacoma Girls NFL Flag Football Club kicked off their inaugural season with a jamboree on Saturday, May 8. Seahawks Legend Marcus Trufant, Blitz and the Seahawks Dancers were in attendance to speak, help out and perform at the event. The new girls flag football league features teams from 10 Pierce County high schools.

Seahawks' 2021 Schedule To Be Released This Wednesday

With free agency and the draft in the rearview, the next event of the NFL offseason is the 2021 schedule release. We already know who the Seahawks will face, but the game order and times will be released this Wednesday, May 12, at 5 p.m. PT. on NFL Network.

Here's a look at who the Seahawks will face this year for the first 17-game regular season in league history:

Home opponents: Arizona Cardinals, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Los Angeles Rams, New Orleans Saints, San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans

Road opponents: Arizona Cardinals, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Rams, Minnesota Vikings, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers, Washington Football Team

You can fill out this form to be alerted when the schedule is released and single-game tickets go on sale.

Social Post Of The Day

DK Metcalf ran an incredible 10.37-second 100 meter dash on Sunday. What he said afterward was perhaps the highlight of the day, though:

More From Around The Web

Nathan Rauschenberg of Seahawks.com with a look at how NFL Twitter reacted to DK Metcalf's unbelievable run on Sunday.

Gregg Bell of the Tacoma News Tribune with a full story on Metcalf's performance.

Take a look at the Seahawks 2021 Draft Class in the Seahawks blue and green. Uniform numbers are unofficial and subject to change.

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