Thursday Round-Up: ESPN NFC West Q&A - Can The Seahawks Make It Back To The Super Bowl?

A daily link round-up of what's "out there" about your Seattle Seahawks


Good morning, 12s.

Here's a look at what's "out there" for today - Thursday, July 9 - about your Seattle Seahawks:

Are The Seahawks Super Bowl Bound Again?

Only two teams in NFL history have reached the Super Bowl in three consecutive seasons - the 1971-73 Miami Dolphins and 1990-94 Buffalo Bills.

The Seahawks, a team that has appeared in the past two Super Bowls - winning one against the Denver Broncos and dropping the other against the New England Patriots, have a chance to become the first team to make three straight Super Bowls in the salary-cap era.

With that thought in mind, ESPN NFL Nation Seahawks writer Terry Blount posed a question to his fellow NFC West writers: Do the Seahawks have what it takes to make it back to the Super Bowl for a third consecutive season?

Here's how each NFL Nation writer from around the division responded:

Josh Weinfuss, Arizona Cardinals: By adding tight end Jimmy Graham, the Seahawks made it awfully tough for an NFC West opponent to stop them. I think the best bet to unseating Seattle this year will again come from Green Bay. It's hard to think that Aaron Rodgers, the defending MVP, won't be on top of his game again and make life miserable for the Seahawks, especially when he had an offseason in which to marinate in the way the Packers lost in the playoffs. Seattle has the offensive talent to steamroll this season. The postseason, however, may be a different story.

Nick Wagoner, St. Louis Rams: The fascinating thing in watching the Seahawks from afar will be how they bounce back from a crushing loss in the Super Bowl. There's no doubting the talent is in place and it would be foolish to write off an organization that has built what they have in Seattle. The NFC West is one of the toughest neighborhoods in the league, but it looks to me like the Seahawks are still the class of the division. Aside from the mental aspect of bouncing back from the loss, it will be interesting to see how that offensive line performs. That group has been better than its individual parts but expecting Marshawn Lynch to do the bulk of the heavy lifting forever is probably asking too much.

Paul Gutierrez, San Francisco 49ers: Let's see. The 1971-73 Miami Dolphins, who were fueled by a no-name defense to win two straight Super Bowls after losing that first game, and the high-octane offense Buffalo Billlls (yes, that's one 'L' for every Super Bowl loss from the 1990 through 1993 seasons). What do these Seahawks have in common with those decidedly old school AFC East powers? Not much, other than chasing history. These Seahawks, though, are built differently. Yes, their defense is the backbone of the team, but with a quick-strike offense that only became better with the addition of Graham at tight end, the Seahawks are a dangerously well-rounded team. Injuries to the defense and a tough early part of the schedule could portend a relatively slow start. But by December, they should be firing on all cylinders ... again. Besides, who is going to challenge them in the NFC? The Green Bay Packers? Been there, done that. The Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles? They'll be busy beating each other up in the NFC East. So yes, the Seahawks can and should join the Dolphins and the Bills in the history books. The question, then, is this: Will the Seahawks dine on turkey again on the Levi's Stadium 50-yard line, to the chagrin of 49ers' fans everywhere?

Marshawn Lynch Lands In Top 10 Of NFL Network's Top 100

Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch was unveiled at No. 9 on NFL Network's countdown of the Top 100 Players of 2015 last night.

Lynch, who appeared at No. 14 on NFL Network's list last year, becomes the League's second-highest rated running back behind the Philadelphia Eagles' DeMarco Murray.

Seattle owns a League-high eight players on the network's Top 100 ranks - Lynch (No. 9), cornerback Richard Sherman (No. 11), free safety Earl Thomas (No. 21), quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 22), tight end Jimmy Graham (No. 31), strong safety Kam Chancellor (No. 41), linebacker Bobby Wagner (No. 69), and defensive end Michael Bennett (No. 90).

Here's 10 takeaways from NFL.com *Around the League *editor Gregg Rosenthal on last night's Top 100 conclusion.

Earl Thomas For 2015 MVP?

Players who have won MVP or who have received MVP votes in the past were excluded from Brinson's ranks. That means Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner, who received a single MVP vote for his play in 2014, wasn't eligible for Brinson's exercise.

But Seattle free safety Earl Thomas was, and Brinson explains why:

Over the past three years the Seahawks have two division titles, two trips to the Super Bowl, one championship and 36 regular season wins. They changed as a franchise once Russell Wilson was acquired. Marshawn Lynch is dominant force in the running game and Richard Sherman grabs all the headlines for being a dominant corner, but anyone who watches the Seahawks defense knows Thomas is the fulcrum of that unit.

It's not like he's underrated insofar as safeties go either — Earl's got three consecutive years of All-Pro nods under his belt. But couldn't you see a fourth consecutive year of dominant defensive play from the Seahawks, followed by Seattle winning 12-14 games, Thomas recording five picks (he's done so twice), a bunch of forced fumbles (four last year), passes defensed (19 the past two seasons) and everyone deciding, in lieu of a truly standout quarterback, it's time Thomas is recognized for putting Seattle's defense over the top? I sure could. Oh, and by the way, he's only 26.

Tweet Of The Day

Today's "Tweet of the Day" comes from The Sea Gals, who are off to Vancouver, B.C. this morning as part of the Seahawks 12 Tour.

More From Around The Web

Here at Seahawks.com, digital media reporter John Boyle continues his 2015 positional preview series with a look at the Seahawks' tight ends. Boyle already has outlined what to expect in training camp from the offensive and defensive lines.

Boyle also shares a soccer-related Q&A with Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka ahead of the July 17 friendly between Manchester United and Club America at Seattle's CenturyLink Field.

Four Seahawks jerseys made it into the Top 25 best-selling jerseys for the month of June.

Bucky Brooks at NFL.com has Marshawn Lynch ranked No. 1 on his list of the League's Top 5 red-zone running backs.

Gregg Bell at the Tacoma News Tribune eyes where the Seahawks stand at running back behind starter Marshawn Lynch.

And Brady Henderson at 710Sports.com recaps Wednesday's edition of Brock Huard's 'Blue 42' discussing where running back Christine Michael and wide receiver Kevin Norwood stand ahead of the 2015 season.

D*id I miss anything you think is worthy of inclusion? Let me know on Twitter *

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