2009 Seattle Seahawks Season Preview
By Wilson of Predictem.com
2008 Record: 4-12, ATS 7-8-1 (3rd in NFC West)
Stadium: Quest Field; Seattle, Washington
Head Coach: Jim Mora; first season with Seattle
2010 Superbowl Odds: 50-1
Training Camp Site: Virginia Mason Athletic Center, Renton, Washington
Training Camp Dates: August 3-20 (two open practices at University of Washington 8/7, 8/18)
The Seattle Seahawks are in need of some new life this season and perhaps new head coach, Jim Mora, will be the much anticipated lifeline. After a disappointing 2008 season it will be interesting to see how the Seahawks rebound under new leadership as Mike Holmgren is now out of the picture. Seattle fans have been spoiled as of late with their first ever superbowl appearance a couple of years back as they lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Now the Emerald City faithful are expecting coach Mora and his staff to return the team to the playoffs. With some off-season moves and a healed quarterback maybe Seattle is once again ready to make a push for post season play in 2010.
Roster Changes, Free Agents, Injuries
Whos New? WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh, DT Colin Cole, CB Ken Lucas, DT Cory Redding, LB Aaron Curry, OT Max Unger.
Whos Gone? LB Julian Peterson, DT Rocky Bernard, WR Bobby Engram, RB Maurice Morris.
Offense: The Seahawks offense looks to recover after last seasons 4-12 effort. The big key to the Hawks offensive charge will be the health and play of veteran quarterback Matt Hasselbeck. Hasselbeck appeared to be in solid shape both physically and mentally during a Seahawks spring mini-camp. With Hasselbecks back problems apparently out of sight he must now adjust to the new offensive strategy that is actually geared toward his strengths. Many fans expected the Hawks to take USCs Mark Sanchez in the fourth round but the plan was for Hasselbeck to make a comeback thus leaving Seneca Wallace as the no. 2 guy along with Rutgers rookie Mike Teel and Jeff Rowe to battle it out for the no.3 position.
The Offensive line for Seattle will definitely have to prove they are healthy after nearly all of them fell to injury last season. However, the outlook is positive, especially with the addition of former University of Oregon center, Max Unger, who will make the move to left guard. The coaching staff has hinted that it will be tough for Unger not to crack the starting lineup. Also, the return of a rehabilitated future Hall of Famer Walter Jones surely will spark the O-line. The Hawks may not be able to run as well as they did a few years back when Alexander rushed for 28 TDs but they might just move the ball on the ground better than expected.
Greg Knapp, the new offensive coordinator for the Seahawks, is known for his ability to establish the running game. Knapps rushing attacks led the NFL in 2004, 2005, and 2006. Now Knapps efforts will be joined once again with fullback Justin Griffith. Griffith played for Knapp in Oakland, and now joins the Seahawks as a welcomed supporter of Knapps offensive schemes. Knapp is no stranger to Mora as they both worked as assistants in San Francisco. I anticipate the running game to resurface in Seattle. The receiving crew in Seattle should be a force this season especially with the return of a healthy Hasselbeck. But more importantly the receivers need to stay off of the IR as they combined to miss more than 50 games between them last season. T.J. Houshmandzadeh is a welcome weapon on offense as well as rookie draft pick Deon Butler.
Defense: The Seahawks defensive line has been labeled under-sized as they have sacrificed for speed in the past but now they may be able to push and shove with the best in the business. Brandon Mebane is continuing to impress the staff as he is big and fast. Last Mebane tallied five and half sacks to go along with 18 quarterback hurries. Colin Cole was picked up in the off season to play the nose tackle position, and Rocky Bernard was let go in the transition. Overall, the O-line is bigger, faster, and younger.
Former Washington State Cougar, Marcus Trufant leads the defensive secondary for the Seahawks. Trufant, a 2007 Pro Bowl corner will be flagged once again by Deon grant, Brian Russell, and new addition Ken Lucas. The entire defense should be stronger with the young blood added during the off season.
Special Teams: Seattles special teams remain a mystery. The Seahawks really didnt go after much improvement in this area as they had to decide between strengthening the defense and offense or the special teams. Only time will tell if the Hawks manage to dial in on and fine tune their special team efforts.
September 13 – St. Louis Rams
September 20 – at San Francisco 49ers
September 27 – Chicago Bears
October 4 – at Indianapolis Colts
October 11 – Jacksonville Jaguars
October 18 – Arizona Cardinals
November 1 – at Dallas Cowboys
November 8 – Detroit Lions
November 15 – at Arizona Cardinals
November 22 – at Minnesota Vikings
November 29 – at St. Louis Rams
December 6 – San Francisco 49ers
December 13 – at Houston Texans
December 20 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
December 27 – at Green Bay Packers
January 3 -Tennessee Titans
Betting Odds and Projections
The Seahawks are a bit of a long shot to win the superbowl this season at 50-1 odds. However, with the addition of new head coach Jim Mora and staff the Hawks look to revive from their weak record of last year.
With a healthy Matt Hasselbeck the Hawks actually have a chance make a run for the playoffs this season. If they can win at home early against the Rams, 49ers, and Bears they put themselves in the drivers seat as they head on the road to Indy. Really, the Seahawks only have a couple of tough road trips in Indy and Dallas then a late season battle in Green Bay. We might see the Hawks deep into January, and you never know maybe even the big-game. Luck to ya.