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Seahawks Thrilled About 4-0 Start, But Know There's Still Room For Improvement

The Seahawks improved to 4-0 with Sunday’s win in Miami, but they still don’t feel like they’re playing their best football just yet.

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With the Seahawks clinging to a 2-point lead in the fourth quarter of Sunday's game in Miami, Russell Wilson and the offense took the field looking to add to that lead, or at the very least move the chains and take some time off the clock. 

On the first play of that possession, however, Wilson realized the communications between him and offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer were down. But in a year season where, a quarter of the way through the schedule, so much has gone well for the Seahawks, and for their offense in particular, a lack of functional headsets hardly proved to be problematic. 

Playing the temporary role of offensive coordinator, Wilson completed a pass to Tyler Lockett for 9 yards, then handed off to Chris Carson who gained 8 more. Wilson then hit Lockett for 30 yards, handed off to DeeJay Dallas for 2 more, dumped off a short pass to Dallas for 9 yards, then finished things off with a 17-yard touchdown pass to David Moore.

Six plays, 75 yards in 3 minutes, 7 seconds, and the Seahawks were back in control of a game they would go on to win 31-23. 

That series served as a reminder of just how in control of the offense Wilson is in his ninth year, a season that has seen him establish himself as an early MVP front-runner, and most importantly, another big game from Wilson and the offense helped the Seahawks earn another victory to improve to 4-0 for just the second time in franchise history, joining the Super Bowl-winning 2013 team.

Perhaps most impressive about the 4-0 start is that the Seahawks still see a lot of room for growth in their game, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. Wilson is playing the best football of his career, throwing 16 touchdowns with only two interceptions through four games, and the entire offense is clicking despite scoring "only" 31 points Sunday after averaging 37 per game through the first three weeks. The special teams play has also been great across the board, but what has the Seahawks feeling like they still haven't played their best football yet is the fact that the defense has not yet played up to its potential, though the defense did definitely show signs of improvement against the Dolphins. 

"To get off 4-0, it's a great start for us, and we're thrilled about that," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "It's as good as we could have done. And we still have a lot of good football to get better at—we all know that, and the players know that, and we're still working on improving and getting our game cleaner. One of the things that's been really rock solid has been special teams. You just haven't seen a play there that hasn't been where it's supposed to be, how it's supposed to be played or handled, kicked deep, make our kicks and all of that stuff, it's been a fantastic start. It's a real steady part of our game right now. It's helping us stay consistent. That's important coming out of the first quarter."

Carroll added that "Russ has played spectacular," and it's impossible to separate Wilson's play from the team's hot start. As DK Metcalf dropped into his press conference twice as Wilson's apparent unofficial MVP hype man, Seattle's quarterback has been putting up absurd numbers—his 16 touchdown passes matched Peyton Manning for the most ever through the first four games of a season. For a little perspective on how hot he has been, consider that Wilson's passer rating Sunday of 112.4 was by far his worst of the season, but is still better than his single-season best of 110.9 set in 2018.

"Obviously for us to be 4-0, it's a huge thing," Wilson said. "Just keep winning one game at a time, and that's what's really important to us—making sure that we're staying on schedule, making sure we can keep doing what we're doing. It was a tough day today, it was a battle out there. It was a tough day just because it was so hot out there—we've been up in the Pacific Northwest—but guys just kept battling. We ran the ball really well. We threw the ball well, we had that one funky play but other than that, we were pretty much lights out in all the things that we wanted to do, which is great."

This year's 4-0 start feel so much different than the 2013 one because of the way the two teams have been winning games. The 2013 Seahawks started the year with a 12-7 win and went over 30 points only once in their first four games, while the defense never allowed more than 20 points in that span. This year's team has scored more than 30 in every game, but has also given up 27.3 points per game. For the two holdovers from that historically great 2013 defense, K.J. Wright and Bobby Wagner, those early results are frustrating, but also encouraging from a team perspective because the Seahawks are still unbeaten with so much room for growth on one side of the ball. 

"That was a while ago," Wright said of the 2013 season. "Whenever you win it feels good, and I guess it's kind of been flipped—defense was really balling and shutting teams down (in 2013), and now it's just flipped; the offense is just looking unstoppable. So when we're just able to bring both those together, offense and defense ballin', we're going to be really hard to beat. We've got to take it one game at a time. I know it's early, I know it's fun, but our mission is to still win the West and we haven't played any of those guys yet. Long season, we've got a tough schedule, so we're just going to make sure we take it one game at a time and finish."

The best photos from Week 4's Seahawks-Dolphins game at Hard Rock Stadium. Presented by Nesquik.

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