What happened to the running game (again)? The offensive line struggled (again), but Shaquill Griffin came to play in the Seahawks' Monday night loss at Chicago.
A new week brought many of the same problems for the Seahawks.
Here are three impressions from Seattle’s 24-17 loss to the Chicago Bears on Monday night.
Offensive line issues continue
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson was sacked six times on Monday. The Seattle offensive line has allowed 12 sacks through two games, which ranks dead last in the NFL.
It hasn’t helped, of course, that the Seahawks faced two of the NFL’s top pass-rushers — Von Miller and Khalil Mack — in the first two weeks of the season. They won’t get relief any time soon, either, as the Seahawks host Demarcus Lawrence and a Dallas Cowboys defense that ranks first in the NFL with nine sacks next Sunday.
The Seattle offense was a disaster through the first three quarters on Monday, and that started up front.
The offensive imbalance also continues
When he met the media on Friday, first-year Seahawks offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said, “Obviously, I need to do a better job of mixing (in) the run.” That was after his offense ran the ball 16 times, as opposed to 33 passes, in the season-opening loss at Denver.
And yet, there was even more of a disparity (at least through the first three quarters) on Monday. In the third quarter, the Seattle offense ran just six plays … and all of them were passes. The Seahawks finished the game with 36 passes and 22 runs.
It’s difficult to understand, in a game where the Chicago pass rush was dominant early and the Seahawks were within one score for the first three quarters, why there wasn’t more of an emphasis on the running game. Consider also that the team has repeatedly emphasized the need to establish the run and has two promising running backs in Chris Carson and first-round pick Rashaad Penny.
The Seahawks appeared to turn to the running game with Penny for their first two drives of the fourth quarter. But a Wilson pick-six and lost fumble effectively sealed the defeat. Though there wasn’t an apparent injury, it’s also unclear why Carson received just six carries and wasn’t used in the fourth quarter. Penny, Mike Davis and C.J. Prosise were all on the field in the final 15 minutes.
Shaquill Griffin steps up
The Seahawks entered Monday’s game with a dicey situation at cornerback, where second-year standout Shaquill Griffin was listed as questionable with a thigh injury and rookie Trey Flowers — who made his first career start against Denver — was ruled out with a hamstring issue. Akeem King started in Flowers’ place.
Griffin did manage to play, however, and he made an immediate impact. The 6-0, 198-pound corner made two acrobatic interceptions of Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky in the first half.
Though the Seattle defense has been both banged up and erratic through the first two games, its secondary has nabbed five interceptions, which is tied for the most in the NFL.