Seahawks Insiders: Previewing Week 1 at Colts

Seahawks Insiders Jen Mueller and John Boyle preview the 2021 Seahawks and take a look at the Week 1 matchup with the Indianapolis Colts.

The Seahawks Insiders podcast, hosted by sideline reporter Jen Mueller and Seahawks.com reporter John Boyle, provides an in-depth analysis on the previous week's game as well as a preview of the upcoming matchup. Subscribe to the podcast on Spotify, iTunes, Google Podcasts, or wherever else you get your podcasts.

Today's show:

  • Roster breakdown (02:44)
  • The chemistry between Russell and Waldron (12:13)
  • Seahawks defensive backs (17:55)
  • Starting fast on defense (21:57)
  • Two things we need to see (25:39)

The following is a transcription of the show.

Jen Mueller (00:26):

For the first time in the regular season for 2021, it is the Seahawks Insiders podcast. I have been looking forward to this, I don't know that John Boyle has been looking forward to it quite as much.

John Boyle (00:39):

Of course I have, Jen.

Jen Mueller (00:39):

Are you sure?

John Boyle (00:42):

Highlight of my week. Work-wise at least.

Jen Mueller (00:42):

Okay, I'll take your work for it. Work? Word? Apparently this is going to be a challenge today. I will take your word for it today.

John Boyle (00:51):

Like the Seahawks starters, we didn't have a preseason. We have to work out a few kinks.

Jen Mueller (00:54):

You know wha,t that is a good point. I feel like we have to work back into things. The Seahawks are playing the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday, it is the week one matchup, and it is an early kick in Seattle. I know what John and I are going to be doing early on Sunday morning as we get ready for the game, but I do want to put a plug in that if fans have missed getting together and they want a chance to do that at the stadium, there is a chance to be at Lumen Field on Sunday. Fans 21 and over can go and enjoy the kickoff viewing party. The game is on big screens, you've got musical performances, they've got food trucks coming in so you've got plenty of options for food, and you can take your picture with the Seahawks Super Bowl ring and the Lombardi trophy. Seahawks.com/ViewingParty is where you will get all the details and be able to get your tickets for that.

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Jen Mueller (01:44):

So, I expect that there are a lot of fans who are trying to figure out what is going to happen on Sunday, not just with their pregame plans, but for what we expect to see on the field. So, John, here's what I thought we would do. I feel like there are still so many things we don't know about the offense that it's easier to start with what we do know and the guys who made the roster on both sides of the ball, dive into that just a little bit, get an idea of what we might see from the offense, and then we'll look at the Colts.

John Boyle (02:14):

Exactly. Yeah. I mean, I think it was very much by design. Part of the reason we didn't see all those starters out there is it's hard to judge a brand-new offense with a new coordinator when you're not seeing Russell Wilson, you're not seeing DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett and all those guys. So that's going to be, I think to me, the number one storyline with this team, other than obviously the wins and losses, is how does this new offense look? We saw the Seahawks were so good last year for half a season on offense, then they cooled off. They know they need to be more consistent throughout the year and they're hoping Shane Waldron can help them get there.

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2021 Seahawks Roster Breakdown

Jen Mueller (02:45):

Okay. Well here are the pieces that he has to work with on offense. Let's just go by position groups: quarterback, nothing surprises us there, It's Russell Wilson. Geno's the backup. You got a local product, though, as the third string.

John Boyle (02:57):

Yeah, Jake Luton, the Marysville Pilchuck product who came in recently to join the team. And you know, it'll be interesting to see how that develops in terms of do they want to carry three quarterbacks all year? That isn't something they've done in the past, but they saw enough intrigue in Jake Luton to put him on the roster for now and see how that develops.

Jen Mueller (03:16):

Okay, so the wide receivers that the quarterback group will have to throw to: DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett Dee Eskridge. How good was it to see him out in that last preseason game?

John Boyle (03:25):

Exciting player. Even in limited snaps we saw the explosiveness on the end around, we saw the 19-yard catch. He might need to ease in a little bit in terms of playing time because he got in so late in the game, but I think he's a guy who can make an impact even in limited touches right away.

Jen Mueller (03:40):

I mean that speed. Boy, did it jump out. You would never guess that he had been dealing with a toe injury based on how fast he could still get down the field.

John Boyle (03:47):

And it's adding that speed to already an incredibly fast group. There are enough good athletes in the NFL, if a team has one burner, a defense can kind of figure it out. But when you got DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett and Dee Eskridge out there, there's not enough fast guys on any defense to handle that.

Jen Mueller (04:03):

Yeah, corners are not going to be able to handle that. You add a little bit of misdirection, and I cannot wait to see the highlights that group makes. Freddie Swain and Penny Hart. Freddie Swain had a nice preseason, we've seen that from him before though.

John Boyle (04:16):

He was very opportunistic last year. He didn't play a ton, but when he got on the field, he made some plays. He had a couple of touchdowns, and you know, the word opportunistic kind of comes to mind again, where he came into camp, we're kind of thinking the second round pick Dee Eskridge is going to be the number three guy, but he was hurt and Freddie Swain stepped into that role and he had a great camp. He looks really good. He's also most likely going to be returning punts based on what we saw in the preseason game. So, he's going to have a role and he's just a real solid football player. He can do a lot of things.

Jen Mueller (04:47):

I wonder how any of those touches are going to be split with the tight ends, because traditionally in this offense, you do not think about the tight end as being the targets as the past catcher. But Gerald Everett, Will Dissly and Tyler Mabry are in this group. Gerald Everett did not come to Seattle to work with Shane Waldron to not touch the ball this year.

John Boyle (05:08):

Exactly. I mean, we've had this conversation a few times of, you know, who's going to be the number three receiver this year in terms of targets and receiving yards. It could just as easily be Gerald Everett as an actual player listed as a receiver, epecially again, if Eskridge needs to kind of be eased back in, I think we're going to see a ton of Gerald Everett; they'll do a lot of different things with him and we've seen it in practice, we've seen it if you go look at what the Rams did with their tight ends, they use them in a lot of different ways

Jen Mueller (05:36):

Yeah, there are a lot of packages that are tight end heavy, and they run them frequently. This is not just going to be a special one-off. This is going to be a consistent part of the offense.

John Boyle (05:45):

Exactly, that one preseason game that the tight ends all played the first play of the game for the offense Dissly and Everett were both on the field.

Jen Mueller (05:53):

Yeah. There's going to be a lot of 12 personnel in there. We will note that Colby Parkinson begins the season on the injured reserve list. That means that he's got to miss at least three games. Here's the good news: we have seen him without the walking boot and Pete Carroll says that he is running. He is making progress. He's just not going to be ready for week one and I think, John, there was a point in time you weren't sure if he was going to take the field at all this year, this is fairly good news.

John Boyle (06:17):

Yeah. I mean, when he goes down with that foot injury and then you hear Pete Carroll say it's similar to the one from last year, the immediate reaction is, oh no, he's going to miss most, if not all, of the year because that one last year cost him most of the season and he looked so good before that injury in camp. So, to hear that it's not as serious and as you said, he's out there running with the trainers. He's, you know, he looks like he's running well, he's just not quite ready for football. And the thing to remember here for fans is they changed the IR rules this year. So, when you hear a guy going on injured reserve, it's not necessarily as serious as it used to. I mean, a while ago it was the whole season, even before it was six games. Now, you only need to miss three games. So it can be a fairly insignificant injury and the team can still give a guy time to recover while getting that roster spot back.

Jen Mueller (07:01):

You do not have to designate them to return the same way you can get multiple guys back. Okay. Running back/fullback group and I kind of throw in fullback, I honestly don't even know if we have a fullback anymore.

John Boyle (07:11):

I mean, I think he's a full-time linebacker now. He's gone to the other side.

Jen Mueller (07:15):

It would not surprise me. We will get to that in just a second. Zero surprise here though. Chris Carson, Rashaad Penny, Travis Homer, it was nice to see him get some snaps, DeeJay Dallas has looked phenomenal in the preseason. Alex Collins, I got to be honest, I thought he was kind of a placeholder. You know, like when they brought him in last year, I thought, ah, you know, he's a placeholder, he's getting some reps in at camp. He's looked good.

John Boyle (07:38):

Yeah. I mean, you're right. Going into camp, you think, well, if everybody's healthy, do you need him? And they've got all these other guys. They brought them in late last year because of injuries and he did well but he basically played his way to the point of they couldn't cut him because he's just too darn good. So, you know, normally you wouldn't have five running backs necessarily, but when you think of Dallas and Homer in particular, are big special teams contributors that kind of makes it easier to keep them on the roster and then just everything we saw out of Alex Collins made him too hard to get rid of. So, it'll be interesting to see. We know Carson is going to be the guy he'll be the starter, but how do the touches go after that? Who's the third down guy? I'll be curious to see how all that looks.

Jen Mueller (08:17):

What do those plays even look like, right? I don't think just based on what I've seen and what we saw in the preseason, I don't think there's a lot of straight handoffs in this offense.

John Boyle (08:28):

I think this run game might be a little more dynamic, you know, maybe a little more misdirection to it. I remember early on, I can't remember which running back it was, one of them kind of referred to them as being a running back-friendly offense. I don't think that necessarily meant, hey, we're going to get just 40 carries a game between us and pound the ball. I think they meant that it's a kind of offense that's designed to create open lanes for us and make it a little easier on us.

Jen Mueller (08:58):

Well, and we did see some of those open lanes and we have seen some nice runs, but the guy that we were talking about, I don't even know if he belongs in this group anymore, Nick Bellore. He had to step in on defense, though, it is not as odd as you might think. If you have not followed Nick Bellore's career, perhaps you did not realize that he was a linebacker in college. In fact, in 2016, he recorded 83 tackles for San Francisco,

John Boyle (09:22):

Yeah, he started like 10 games that year, I think.

Jen Mueller (09:23):

Yes. Some of that came on special teams. A lot of that came as an inside linebacker. He has been working a lot with the linebackers in practice. I don't know where they're going to use him most, certainly special teams as a captain.

John Boyle (09:34):

Yeah. Yeah. For sure. Special teams is his main role, but it was funny because you go back early in camp, I think it was, uh Rhattigan and Cody Barton both got hurt at the same time. So all of a sudden they were just lacking depth. So, they switched his jersey and put him out there. We've seen that from time to time over the course of the season in practices or maybe scout team because he does have that background, but usually it's been okay, it's a week, they need a body, and then he goes back to fullback. But it's pretty much become a full-time move. I believe we even changed his position on seahawks.com. It was a big moment.

Jen Mueller (10:07):

Well, now that's official.

John Boyle (10:07):

We huddled up and said, should we do it? And got the okay to change him. So, we're, calling him a linebacker now and he's number two on the depth chart behind Bobby Wagner right now, middle linebacker.

Jen Mueller (10:14):

Did you get the okay from Nick Bellore himself?

John Boyle (10:17):

I did not.

Jen Mueller (10:20):

Because you know that could cause a Twitter spat.

John Boyle (10:21):

Well, I'll have to I'll check with him.

Jen Mueller (10:23):

All right. We'll check in with him. Last offensive group before we hear from Pete Carroll on what Russell Wilson and Shane Waldron have been doing together. Offensive line. Look, I am relieved to say Duane Brown with great certainty that he is now playing week one. That was a big question.

John Boyle (10:41):

Yeah. I mean, having him back is just massive. I mean, Russell Wilson kept bringing it up throughout camp of the, oh, you need that guy out there. He's an elite left tackle. I know he's 36 and he's been playing forever, but he last year was still one of the very best in the NFL and he looks great. He said he feels better than he did at this time last year. So that's having him back and seemingly very happy. I know things maybe didn't go exactly how either side wanted. But as Duane brown said yesterday, they reached a compromise and everyone seems happy.

Jen Mueller (11:10):

What we're projecting the offensive line, at least the starting unit to look like, it will be Duane Brown at left tackle, Damien Lewis at left guard, that is a new position for the rookie, center, I believe, is going to be Kyle Fuller

John Boyle (11:20):

I think it's going to be Kyle Fuller. That's how it is on the depth chart right now and based off, you know, Ethan Pocic all the time, he missed and what we're hearing from Pete Carroll it does sound like Fuller, but I'll be curious to how that one plays out. That might be one where they let them kind of continue to compete and maybe, maybe there's a chance for Pocic to win it back at some time during the year, depending on how that goes.

Jen Mueller (11:38):

Gabe Jackson is going to be your right guard and Brandon Shell will be your right tackle. You've got some backups there: Jamarco Jones, Jake Curhan and Stone Forsythe in there. I don't know that there's any surprise. I think it's just nice to be able to say Duane's name in there, but I don't think any of the rest of that is too surprising

John Boyle (11:54):

No. I mean, center was the one that we really were waiting to see how that played out and injuries kind of settled that one, unfortunately instead of an on-field competition.

Jen Mueller (12:03):

We'll see how that plays out. You can never have too many of them as the year goes on. I should say that you always need to have a backup at those positions. Now we've talked about who the Seahawks have on offense. What we can't wait to see is what the offense looks like, and while we're going to get our first look on Sunday, here's what Pete Carroll knows to be true about Russ and Shane Waldron.

See headshots and action shots of the complete Seattle Seahawks 2021 roster.

The chemistry between Russell and Waldron

Pete Carroll (12:28):

What's maybe most special about it is, and I'm hoping it shows, is the relationship between Shane and Russ and what they've been able to do together. And to get to this point, man, the excitement, they both feel, you know, to turn out this offense and maximize all of the strengths of it and all that. And as we learn, as we grow, you know, we'll find out how far along we are, but that's something I'm really excited about because it's been really obvious that there's something going on there. It's good chemistry.

John Boyle (12:56):

To me, that word relationship is the one we've heard the most from Pete Carroll. And I mean, obviously everybody out there is important, but how those two see things eye to eye, how they work together, on game day in the headsets. If those two are clicking, I mean, that's the biggest piece for this offense to work.

Jen Mueller (13:13):

I remember when Shane Waldron was announced and hired, at his opening press conference, he had at least three phrases that we hear regularly in Russell Wilson's press conferences. I don't think that was planted. I don't think it's a coincidence. I think it's intentional that you've got two guys that were on the same page before install ever happened. They've got the same mindset. It will translate on the field.

John Boyle (13:35):

Yeah. I mean, that's Russell Wilson from back when we talked to him as soon as his hire was made, he's been on board the whole time. You know, I don't think he was the one making the hire, but he was involved in the discussions a little bit and I think this is going to be a very good partnership.

Jen Mueller (13:49):

And I tell you what, let's hear just one more thing on Russell Wilson. It is hard to imagine that he could get any better when you look at the body of work over the course of his career. But there is perhaps something a little different about Russ.

Pete Carroll (14:03):

The relationship with what we're doing and how attuned he is to that just generates maybe in another level of excitement from him, you know, for what he's hoping to put out there and through his work and the potential that he can feel, by the way we're interacting and communicating and stuff that can lead us to some really cool stuff and really help our guys maximize what they bring too. So, he's got a little special juice about him and I think that's probably what I mentioned about the chemistry between him and the coordinator.

Jen Mueller (14:37):

We cannot wait to see that on Sunday. And you know what? I'd like the Seahawks defense to give Russ maybe a couple of takeaways, give him a few more opportunities to get down the field. You certainly have a lot of Playmakers in that front seven. How about if we take a look at the defensive line to start, we'll get to the real fun guys at the end. Although I don't know, Carlos Dunlap-

John Boyle (14:55):

Hey, the guys up front are fun, don't sell them short.

Jen Mueller (14:58):

He keeps posting things. No, I know. I know that was poor choice of words. I hope those guys don't hear it. I'm just going to say this: Carlos Dunlap has provided me with so many life mantras and I have known him for less than a year.

John Boyle (15:09):

I saw on Instagram.

Jen Mueller (15:09):

Yeah. I'm all on board with this. He needs to create a line of t-shirts. So, you've got Carlos Dunlap who is back. We acquired Kerry Hyder Jr. on the off season. Darrell Taylor might be the one that intrigues fans most and after what we saw in the preseason, I know why.

John Boyle (15:25):

Yeah, Jen. Darrell Taylor has been a guy that's, I mean, we've been so excited about him just to finally see him. There's this whole year of, you know, will he get back, will he get back? And unfortunately he missed the entire season. The word every teammate has used when you ask about him is explosive and we saw it in the preseason games. He's just so fast flying off the edge and he's going to get a chance to play a lot because it sure sounds like he's going to be in that dual strong side linebacker role and an edge rusher, which is, you know, that the prototype in this defense is Bruce Irvin. I'm not saying he's going to come out and be Bruce Irvin right away, but that's sort of what they're looking to him to be; that guy that can, he can drop in coverage, he can set the edge against the run and then he can get out for the passer.

Jen Mueller (16:03):

That distinction is important when you take a look at the breakdown of this roster, because they've got 10 offensive lineman, you have three linebackers listed on this roster, right? If you just looked at that, you would say, Hey, where's the depth at linebacker. Right. But what you just laid out is an important point for fans to recognize. This is actually a slightly different defense than what we have seen the Seahawks play in the last few years. It is much more of a bare front.

John Boyle (16:28):

Yeah. There's a lot of three, four elements to this defense and it's not just Darrell Taylor; Aldon Robinson we've seen in that role, Benson Mayowa can play that role. So, it is when you talk about the linebackers listed on the roster, you're really talking about the off-ball, the Bobby Wagners, the Cody Bartons, that weak side and strong side guy. And when you add all the edge rushers in plays that strong — I'm sorry I did I say weak side and middle, the strong side guy is almost a defensive end now.

Jen Mueller (16:56):

Yeah. Also on that list of defensive linemen, Poona Ford, Al woods in the middle. It's nice to have the big guy back and you've got Bryan Mone. Those will be your nose tackles.

John Boyle (17:06):

Yep. Poona Ford, I think, is going to be really good this year.

Jen Mueller (17:11):

Are you saying that he wasn't very good?

John Boyle (17:12):

I mean, he's been good. No, I'm saying he's been good. I think he started to show some pass rush as the season went on last year, that would add a whole new dynamic to his game if that improves and I think it will. So I think he could be, you know, all of a sudden a guy who's not just big stout run stopper, but getting after the quarterback quite a bit as well.

Jen Mueller (17:28):

Well, and you know that you could get Jordyn Brooks going after the quarterback, Cody Barton would like that, Bobby probably lobbies for that. That is your line backing core. No surprises there. You got Bobby as the defensive captain.

John Boyle (17:42):

Yeah. When the, when the captains came out this year was not shocking. It was Russell Wilson, Bobby Wagner, and Nick Bellore. That was very predictable.

Seahawks defensive backs

Jen Mueller (17:51):

We like predictable. That's going to be the guys that you see in the middle of the field. Now here are the really interesting positions. And I say this for a couple of reasons, not because of personalities, but look, the Seahawks have made 19 moves at cornerback since August 26. That is a lot of moves.

John Boyle (18:08):

That's a lot of recent, turnover.

Jen Mueller (18:12):

So, what we think we are going to see is Tre Flowers and D.J. Reed.

John Boyle (18:19):

And that's not a big shock. I mean I know they had competition on both sides, but really, to me, it always came down to three guys for two spots. It was Witherspoon, Reed, and Flowers seemed like the most likely three guys battling. It was obviously a little surprising that Witherspoon was traded, he looked like kind of a front runner for that job. But to me, if you told me, the beginning of camp we're going to see D.J. Reed and Flowers as the starters, I'd say, okay, that's not too surprising. Now, if you told me every other cornerback on the roster will have been acquired in like the last week. Okay. That's a little different and that's where you kind of worry a little bit of how ready are they going to be week one? Especially Sidney. All those guys, but especially Sidney Jones, has a ton of upside and could help this defense a lot down the road. But if you need Sidney Jones to play a bunch of this week, we'll have to see how that goes,

Jen Mueller (19:08):

Well, and it might be helpful that it is a relatively inexperienced group of wide receivers for the Colts, right? You don't have T.Y. Hilton in there. And so maybe there's—

John Boyle (19:20):

I'm not going to say that Jen, I don't want to give them any bulletin board material.

Jen Mueller (19:23):

That's true.

John Boyle (19:24):

There are some talent players, a couple of second round picks out there.

Jen Mueller (19:26):

I'm not saying that there's not talented players. I was saying T.Y. Hilton isn't on the field.

John Boyle (19:31):

Fair enough.

Jen Mueller (19:33):

Safeties, no surprise: Jamal Adams, Quandre Diggs, Marquise Blair, Ugo Amadi, Ryan Neal. Here's where the question mark is: what do you do with Marquise Blair and who plays nickel?

John Boyle (19:44):

That's a great question. You know, I would have thought just because Blair won that role last year and looked so good in it before his injury, I would've thought, okay, he comes back and takes it back and that's still very possible and I think maybe long term he does. But Ugo Amadi had a great camp. He played really well in that role last year, but he's come back and looked even better. So, you know, one thing that was interesting, Pete Carroll was asked, does it have to be one of those guys? He said no, that's a good question. Because I think you could see a situation where it might be matchup based of, you know, Blair's more your big nickel. If you look at a match up with tight ends and early downs, if you're looking at just teams with a bigger slot receiver, whereas if it's the team's spreading guys out on third and eight, then maybe it's an Ugo Amadi situation. So, both those guys are too good of players to not be on the field at some point. Just how that kind of breaks down. Is it going to be fun to see.

Jen Mueller (20:34):

We know that Jamal Adams is one of the elite safeties in the NFL and year two should be even better.

Pete Carroll (20:42):

He's in better control of everything that we're asking him. We've expanded the things that we're asking him to do because we've had time to really work it out and get him ready for it and he's playing in a position that a lot of the guys that I've coached over the years would give anything to be able to do the things he's doing. He's got a lot of really cool things that he does in the scheme, and he's going to be called on to excel at them, of course, but we're really counting on his instincts and his awareness and the savvy that he brings to fit in.

John Boyle (21:11):

I love how Pete Carroll talks about a lot of guys would kill to get to be in that role. Because I don't think a lot of players have had quite the freedom in Pete Carroll's defenses that Jamal Adams enjoys. And it's because he's such a unique player, and you also have to give some credit to Quandre Diggs. You can't give that kind of freedom to your strong safety if you're free safety's not a hell of a player.

Jen Mueller (21:29):

Well, and I thought it was interesting Jamal, when he met with the media this week said when he was hurt last year and in the off season, when he had to go and study film, he was able to identify what his teammates were doing around him. And now he knows where to take the chances. It's not just about understanding the defense, it's your teammates.

John Boyle (21:44):

Exactly. It's knowing how the guys around you will react. Because again, if Quandre Diggs, isn't reading it right in the same place and on the same frame of mind, it can be a disaster. But if you guys are on the same page, then great things can happen.

Starting fast on defense

Jen Mueller (21:57):

Well. And what the Seahawks would like to do is see the defense jump out and be that steady force early, not wait till the second half of the season. And there's really only one way to avoid that up and down season on defense.

Pete Carroll (22:10):

A couple of basics would be the consistency, one, and elimination of explosive place, you know, last year was a really unusual year. We were scoring so much in games in early in. We got a head so far that we gave up just extraordinary amount of yards in the fourth quarters. And we'd give up 180 or 200 yards in the fourth quarter and all your numbers look crazy, you know, and we didn't handle that situation well enough. I hope we get ahead again, and we can do all have that same challenge, you know, but the season changed some in the whole and we shifted with it and took advantage of it and, and just got better. As we went along, we were giving away easy stuff, we're giving away catch and run stuff and just weren't as sharp as we needed to be. And when the teams go into that mode and they're in a two minute situation for a quarter, they put up a lot of yards. You don't have to do a whole lot to do that. You just keep dinking the ball around and it works. So, we have to be better in that situation, but we've got to get rid of the explosives and we got to be more consistent.

John Boyle (23:03):

Yeah. I mean, to me, if on offensive, the big storyline, as you know, the new offense and how things look on defense, the big story to me is can this be the second half? Can they pick up where they left in the second half and be that team on defense versus the one in the first eight games of season that was getting gashed quite a bit, as Pete Carroll said, I'd given up a lot of big plays, a lot of yards. And if they can, I mean, I think the sky's the limit for this team, right? They don't even need to be. I mean, they, I think they were tied for the fewest points allowed in the second half of the season. That'd be awesome thing to do that they don't even need to be that good. Not as much firepower as they have on offense, but just, you know, be, be a really strong, solid defense throughout the year. And that's where I think this team can go from being a really good team to a great one.

Jen Mueller (23:43):

We have got to touch on Sunday's match up. We're going to do this in like three minutes, John, ready? When we think about the Colts, here's what we know: Carson Wentz is going to be the quarterback. He reunites with Frank Reich. They worked together in Philadelphia the year the Eagles won the Superbowl.

John Boyle (24:02):

Yeah. And that's when by far Carson wants to look the best was with Frank Reich leading. And that the big question is, you know, how, how ready is he going to be for the season? He's been injured. He's been on the COVID list. He's barely practiced really before this week. So it helps us get to know the offense, but he hasn't really practiced with these teammates a ton. So, it'll be interesting to see how their offense comes out firing.

Jen Mueller (24:23):

Yeah. We've already mentioned that T.Y. Hilton is not going to be playing. What we have not mentioned is the running backs that they have available and if you have not heard of Jonathan Taylor, well, you should probably watch out because he stands out.

Pete Carroll (24:36):

Both those guys, they're just an explosive play waiting to happen. And the speed that they have. So sometimes guys run really good times and you don't notice it. You notice it with these two guys, both these guys have rocket acceleration and they're both strong enough to break tackles and make the most of a play that isn't necessarily a good play. I think, I'm not sure about this, you guys verify this one, but I think Jonathan's got like 600 something yards after contact last season. I mean, that's crazy numbers, that's half of his rushing yards was after he was hitting, and had a chance to get tackled and let it happen. So those are fantastic players.

Jen Mueller (25:11):

In fact, it was 685 yards after contact 35 runs of 10 or more yards. That was the third most in the league. And he forced 41 missed tackles.

John Boyle (25:24):

And it's not just him having Heinz back there is more the, you know, pass catching. He led the team in receptions last year. I mean, that's having that dual threat running back. It's, you know, it's what Pete Carroll always talks about his ideal is. And whether injuries are different things, Seahawks haven't always had that and that's what the Colts have going right now.

Two things we need to see

Jen Mueller (25:40):

All right. Here's what we've got going for us. Hot seat time. Two things that you need to have happen on Sunday for the Seahawks to get a win. Do you want me to go first?

John Boyle (25:51):

You go right ahead, Jen.

Jen Mueller (25:53):

Here's what I'm going to say. I would like to see the Seahawks defense limit Jonathan Taylor's explosive plays. I would ideally like to not see him get a run over 10 yards, but you know what, if he does that twice during the game, I'm probably okay. But limit those overall yards, and the Indianapolis Colts defense made a goal of 40 takeaways this year. I need to see the Seahawks offense take care of the football.

John Boyle (26:24):

Make them get 40 in 16 games instead of 17. All right. Offensively. I want to see maybe no penalties is asking too much, but very few penalties. To me, that's when you're talking about new office and some newness, that's where sometimes things could just, you make it hard on yourself. We've seen it over and over again. You get that false start that hold, just avoid those, you know, make, let's say, keep it under three offensive penalties, give this new offense a chance to function without self-inflicted wounds. Defensively, I want to see the pass rush. We talked about, you know, kind of two different defenses last year, the pass rush getting better was what really helped the turnaround. So, let's see them get after Carson Wentz, get some sacks, get a lot of hits on him. I'll say, give me three or more sacks.

Jen Mueller (27:07):

Okay. That's impressive. I would love to see all of those things happen. We will see how we did, and we will see how the Seahawks do in week one and of course, break that down for you. The next time we are back with you on Seahawks Insiders podcast.

First meeting in 1977, the Seahawks and the Colts have faced one another 12 times in the regular season over the years. They will face off this Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Week 1 of the 2021 season.

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