A few more Seahawks questions answered in our latest Twitter mailbag.
Attacking a few more questions about the Seahawk received via Twitter. Let’s get to it.
Q: @gwgross asks: What specifically was the mistake Pete (Carroll) said led to the big run?
A: This is a reference to the 61-yard run by San Francisco’s Carlos Hyde in the second quarter Sunday that set up one of the the 49ers’ three field goals.
The play came on a second-and-four at the 17.
Here’s what Carroll said: “(It) was just a real big mistake on our part. We rarely hit plays like that where we didn’t fall back the way we needed to and we didn’t see it the way we needed to and all that. It was good execution by them and then we got into a big chase (with cornerback Jeremy Lane eventually making the tackle).’’
The run was actually the longest allowed by the Seahawks since 2012.
As the answer above shows, Carroll did not specifically cite the mistake that was made (he also gave a vague answer about a big mistake following the game Sunday, as well).
But one obvious thought is that he may be referring to David Bass, who was the end on the play and got swept inside quickly allowing for a big hole for Hyde to run through. Lane also got blocked at the point of attack and Seattle’s linebackers also appeared to get caught a step to the left with Hyde cutting to the right. Linebacker K.J. Wright — who was among the Seattle defenders who went initially with the play to the left and then couldn’t get back in time to make the play as Hyrde cut back — later said he screwed up on the play. So there was apparently plenty of blame to go around.
Bass was waived this week making way on the roster for tackle Garrison Smith and the Seahawks undoubtedly made the move to buff up the run defense as they play a Tennessee team whose rushing attack includes 247-pound Derrick Henry.
Q: @Kinghornville asks: Is the receiving corps missing (Jermaine) Kearse that much? Seems they can’t create separation for Wilson and making the OLine issues look worse
A: As much as Kearse struggled last season, and as much as I doubt anyone questions Seattle trading him to get Sheldon Richardson given all the value he figures to add to the defense this year, it will be interesting to watch how the receiving corps fills the gap left by Kearse.
Two games remains a small sample size for addressing broad questions such as this, and I think everyone would also agree the biggest issue for the offense remains the line.
But it’s hard not to notice that Kearse has 11 receptions on 15 targets for 123 yards and two touchdowns (on pace for 88, 984 and 16) numbers that would all be the best on the Seahawks (and sure, he’s playing for the Jets. But that’s always been the point made by the Seattle receivers that if you take them out of the Seattle offense their production would increase markedly, meaning what you see with them in Seattle might not be all there is to get).
And the departure of Kearse, even if celebrated in many quarters, unquestionably created a void in experience, at the least, and in production that will have to be replaced largely by an increase from Paul Richardson — whose role probably most noticeably changes with Kearse gone — as well as contributions from Tanner McEvoy and Amara Darboh (Darboh specifically appears being groomed for the fourth WR role and to play every receiver position, Seattle hoping for the same kind of versatility that made Kearse valuable).
The Seahawks have also been counting on the tight end corps and running back C.J Prosise to add lots of receiver snaps, depth that made Seattle feel it could easily trade Kearse.
Doug Baldwin, who has played 94 percent of snaps so far this year compared to 84 last season — too early to know if that’s due to Kearse being gone but maybe it could be — had some interesting comments when asked about the trade of Kearse.
“Yeah, so there is a big hole to fill with Jermaine gone, not only on the field, but also in that locker room,’’ Baldwin said. “Jermaine was a strong leader in our locker room for the team as a whole but also, very specifically, for our receivers group. I think a lot of people would look at me and said I was the rah-rah guy and I’m kind like more vocal, more out front, but Jermaine was the guy that was making sure all the holes are filled. That there was nobody falling through the cracks. He was the servant leader that we all aspire to be like and there is a big hole now because he’s not there. We are trying our best to fill it.
“Specifically on the football field, just the intricacies that he did in our offense, guys aren’t used to doing it, they didn’t have to do them, because Jermaine was so willing and able to do it, now guys are being called to do those things and that is another challenge for us. But again we have a lot of guys in our locker room, in our receivers’ room who are up for that challenge and are willing to put themselves on the line to do that for the betterment of our team. We will do the best that we can.”
The only fair answer is that it’s too early to give an answer on something like this specifically. But it’s certainly fair to wonder.