Seattle Seahawks

WATCH: Relive the highlights from the Seattle Seahawks 23-15 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers

WATCH: Relive the highlights from the Seattle Seahawks 23-15 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers

A Rashaad Penny touchdown on fourth-and-1, a rare C.J. Prosise score, and a 58-yard kick from Jason Myers.

And that was only the first half.

Seattle’s third preseason game against the Chargers in Los Angeles had no shortage of game-changing moments and physical plays. Let’s take a look at the best highlights from the Seahawks 23-15 win over the Chargers. You can also catch Seahawks Insider Joe Fann's three takeaways here

Next up, the Seahawks head home to close out the preseason. They host the Oakland Raiders on Thursday, Aug. 29 at 7:00 p.m. 

5 Seahawks players to watch in Week 3 against the Saints

5 Seahawks players to watch in Week 3 against the Saints

All that stands between the Seattle Seahawks (2-0) and a 3-0 start is a home victory against the Drew Brees-less New Orleans Saints (1-1). Similar to Week 1, when the Cincinnati Bengals came to town without A.J. Green and Cordy Glenn, this is somewhat of a must-win for Seattle.

The NFC West is setting up to be incredibly competitive with three teams sitting at 2-0, and Seattle needs to take advantage of the break they’ve gotten by missing Brees. Sean Payton has been mum on who will start under center for the Saints, but I’d be shocked if it wasn’t Teddy Bridgewater. New Orleans made him the highest paid backup in the league this offseason. Taysom Hill will be sprinkled in as well.

Here are five Seahawks players who might make or break Seattle’s chances of winning.

1. Ziggy Ansah

Ansah’s long-awaited Seahawks debut is finally here. The Seahawks opted to give Ansah’s shoulder a few extra weeks. H should be good to go without being on any snap count because of that patience. Unlike Jadeveon Clowney, Ansah spent the entire offseason in Seattle which should help from a mental standpoint. That pass rush tandem should improve as the season goes on, but nobody would argue with getting the instant gratification of seeing them terrorize the Saints offensive line on Sunday.  

2. David Moore

Moore gives Brian Schottenheimer another deep threat to deploy. Jaron Brown’s reps are likely to be diminished with Moore’s return from a shoulder injury. Brown is yet to see an official target through two games despite playing 99 snaps. Moore, and maybe even Malik Turner, should see snaps ahead of Brown in three- and four-receiver sets.

3. Poona Ford

Seattle will be thrilled to get Ford back into the lineup after he missed one game with a calf strain. He’ll be crucial in the Seahawks efforts against Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray. With Ford and Ansah active in Week 3, don’t be surprised to see L.J. Collier as a healthy scratch on Sunday.

4. D.J. Fluker

Fluker missed 20 snaps in Week 2 after suffering an ankle injury before returning and finishing the game. Not only do the Seahawks need him to be healthy, but they need him to improve as well. Fluker gave up two sacks in the first quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers. It’s imperative that the offensive live takes a step forward against the Saints pass rush that leads the NFL with nine sacks.

5. Akeem King/Jamar Taylor

Tre Flowers is questionable to play with an ankle injury. I’m of the belief that Flowers won’t play against the Saints, which means either Akeem King or Jamar Taylor will be starting in his place. Given that the Seahawks don’t have their corners shadow receivers (ie. Shaquill Griffin following Michael Thomas), New Orleans may decide to attack King/Taylor’s side of the field with Thomas. Will they be up to the task?

David Moore’s return means Seahawks can resume creative touchdown celebrations

David Moore’s return means Seahawks can resume creative touchdown celebrations

The Seattle Seahawks are 2-0 and have put up 49 points in the process. But for all the scoring, Seattle’s end zone celebrations have left much to be desired. The Seahawks – their wide receivers in particular – built a reputation in 2018 for having some of the NFL’s most creative group displays.

There was the Nolan Ryan bean ball, the “Drumline” reenactment and then this dance sequence that earned the league’s celebration of the year honors.

So what gives? Where’s the creativity? Tyler Lockett explained after the win in Pittsburgh that the celebrations were on hiatus until David Moore returns from his shoulder injury. Luckily for us, it appears that Moore will be back in the lineup this weekend against the New Orleans Saints. He was left off of Friday’s injury report completely.

“I’m ready for the celebrations,” Moore said on Thursday. “I can’t wait for those. I’m ready to go out there and feel the energy from everybody and know that I’m out there contributing with them.

“It’s a group effort. It’s a team thing. We’re together in this. Celebrations aren’t just for one person, it’s for all of us. If one (of us) is down, we can’t go that week.”

Moore, a 2017 seventh-round pick, appeared in one game as a rookie after spending most of the year on the practice squad. He played in all 16 games (seven starts) last season and posted 26 receptions on 53 targets for 445 yards and five touchdowns.

Moore had a few notable performances including a two-touchdown game against the Los Angeles Rams and his first career 100-yard game against the Carolina Panthers. He did go quiet over the final five weeks of 2018, though, catching just four combined passes for 32 yards.

He seemed destined for Injured Reserve immediately following his shoulder injury during training camp. The Seahawks later received good news that Moore’s hairline fracture to his humerus wouldn’t require surgery. Moore continued to work diligently to get back into the lineup ahead of schedule.

“He’s been working his tail off to get back,” Russell Wilson said. “He was a big-time player for us last year. … He just brings great enthusiasm, too. He really is a guy we love playing with and I know I love playing with.”

Brian Schottenheimer now has another piece to deploy in the passing game to go along with Tyler Lockett, DK Metcalf and Will Dissly.

“He’s a vertical threat,” Schottenheimer said of Moore. “We’ve obviously been able to move him around a lot more this year. He looks really good – just the big play capability. We’ve always talked a little bit about just his size and speed and strength to the ball and things like that. It’ll be fun to have him back out there again.”

Seattle is thrilled about its 2-0 start, but the receivers wouldn’t argue with some added showmanship. Lockett said on Friday that the group is going to work through a few celebration ideas on Saturday leading up to their contest against the Saints.

The creativity will undoubtedly be there, and it’s up to the offense to continue to find the end zone.

“We’re doing real good,” Moore said of the offense through two weeks. “The deep ball is still there. The run game is still there. Everything is back where we left off – actually even better. Hopefully we can keep it going and get better as weeks go by.”

Week 3 Injury Report: Tre Flowers questionable to play vs. Saints

Week 3 Injury Report: Tre Flowers questionable to play vs. Saints

Tre Flowers (ankle) was a late addition to the Seattle Seahawks injury report, but now it appears that he may not play against the New Orleans Saints in Week 3. Flowers is officially listed as questionable.

If Flowers is unable to go, Jamar Taylor or Akeem King would start. Taylor would be the likely choice given his 41 career starts compared to King's one career start. That option becomes even more viable with how little Seattle has utilized it's nickle defense through two games. Taylor is the Seahawks nickel corner but played just 19 snaps in Week 2 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

If this ends up being how things play out, there remains the question of who would play nickel. There are three options: They could move Taylor to nickel and play King on the outside in those situations; they could keep Taylor outside for the entire game and play Ugo Amadi at nickel; Seattle also may also bring up Parry Nickerson from the practice squad to play nickel if they feel like he's got a firm grasp of the defense.

Tedric Thompson (hamstring) is also questionable to play. He missed last week's contest against the Steelers. Ethan Pocic (neck) and Neiko Thorpe (hamstring) are listed as doubtful.

Four notable omissions were Ziggy Ansah (shoulder), D.J. Fluker (ankle), David Moore (shoulder) and Poona Ford (calf), meaning all four will play against the Saints. Joey Hunt (ankle) will also be active for the first time all season which is notable given Pocic is likely out. That means he'll be the team's backup at center and both guard spots on Sunday.

UPDATE: Rashaad Penny (hamstring) was added to the injury report following Friday's practice. If he is unable to go, C.J. Prosise would be in line for a bigger workload.

A healthy Will Dissly adds a vital layer to Seahawks offense

A healthy Will Dissly adds a vital layer to Seahawks offense

Will Dissly admitted there were moments when he questioned whether or not he’d make a full recovery. The history of players suffering a torn patellar tendon wasn’t necessarily on his side.

Many players are able to return from the devastating knee injury, but very few are able to be the same players they once were. Jimmy Graham, Victor Cruz and Cadillac Williams are three notable names who struggled to regain form after tearing their patellar tendon.

But Dissly was determined to keep the negative thoughts from derailing his rehab.

“My mindset was: ‘OK I have to attack this.’ Once you get injured, you can’t get uninjured,” he said matter-of-factly.

The Seahawks second-year tight end referred to the grind of his recovery process as “groundhog day.” Now nearly a full year removed from the injury, Dissly is remarkably back to his old self. He’s showing he’s a capable weapon for Russell Wilson, just as he was the first few weeks of his rookie season.

Wilson found Dissly in the end zone twice last Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers. One score came up the right seam and the other up the left.

“Having that moment – getting in the end zone, kind of being back and winning games is the best feeling ever,” Dissly said. “I just love the game of football so much, and I worked so hard to get back, so when positive things happen it’s definitely nice.”

Dissly recalled a day during the offseason program in the spring. He’d been doing straight-line running for a while, but Seattle’s training staff now wanted to see him move laterally. They told him to run straight and then make a 90-degree cut. Dissly did so without any pain, which helped him clear a huge mental hurdle.

“It was just like, alright let’s get bigger, stronger, faster at that point,” he said.

He continued to make steady progress, so much so that he was ready for the start of training camp. Seattle limited his reps in the early going purely on a precautionary basis.

Dissly has been able to find the silver lining in his injury. He told reporters that he had to relearn how to run and cut while he made baby steps toward his return.

“I almost feel like I’m more efficient in my cuts than I was prior to injury,” he said. “That was kind of a positive that I took out of it.”

A healthy Dissly adds an extra element to Seattle’s offense, evidenced by his production in Week 2. He was Wilson’s go-to target in the red zone, and he caught back-to-back passes on Seattle’s game-clinching drive to close out the fourth quarter against the Steelers. He caught all five of his targets for 50 yards and the two scores.

”It’s a testament to the athleticism that he has,” Wilson said on Thursday. “He can do everything. He can really catch. His timing is remarkable. His catch radius is really special.”

Dissly now has four touchdowns in just six career games. He’ll look to add to that total in Week 3 agains the New Orleans Saints.

How concerned should you be about the Seahawks offensive line?

How concerned should you be about the Seahawks offensive line?

We heard throughout training camp that the Seattle Seahawks felt more confident than ever in their offensive line. Seattle returned four starters and added four-time Pro Bowler Mike Iupati at left guard. The Seahawks envisioned that group setting the tone for their physical, ground-and-pound identity on offense.

However, those expectations haven’t been met through two games.

The Seahawks have allowed eight sacks, tied for fourth-most in the NFL. The run blocking hasn’t been much better as Seattle is averaging just 3.8 yards per carry. If you take away Rashaad Penny’s 37-yard touchdown run against the Steelers, that number nosedives to 3.26.

Seattle often gets criticized for running the ball too often on early downs, but that hasn’t been the problem. On 1st-and-10, the Seahawks have passed the ball 26 times and ran the ball 25 times. The issue is that they’ve only gained 24 yards on those 25 rush attempts.

“Not quite up to our standard at all,” Duane Brown said on Wednesday. “We ran the ball decent last game, but we can be more consistent. Pass protection hasn’t been up to par. We have stuff to clean up but we’ll get there.”

Pete Carroll did his best to put an optimistic spin on the o-line’s early struggles.

“Yeah, we’re concerned,” Carroll said. “I like what we did in the second half last week. We really caught up with the rhythm and the style. (Russell Wilson) was phenomenal, but he worked together with his guys up front in really good fashion.”

Seattle didn’t allow a sack over the final two quarters against Pittsburgh in Week 2 after giving up four in the first half. The quick passing attack kept the Steelers pass rush in check. Wilson got rid of the ball in 1.89 seconds on average per pass attempt, the quickest of any NFL quarterback in a game since 2016. So how much credit does the offensive line deserve for the Seahawks second-half improvements? It’s hard to tell given just how quick Wilson was getting rid of the football.

Pro Football Focus has Seattle ranked dead last in pass protection. In addition, just one member of the offensive line has an overall grade over 60 per PFF (Brown – 60.8).

“We take pride in pass protection,” Brown said. “We have an incredible quarterback, and we’ve got to keep him upright. We have to get the job done … and we will.”

Brown reiterated that preparation hasn’t been the issue, merely the execution. It’s been a mix of losing 1-on-1s, miscommunications on stunts and allowing blitzes to get through. That comes down to fundamentals and technique, offensive line coach Mike Solari said on Wednesday.

Penalties have been a pain point as well. Seattle’s offensive line has been flagged 11 times (eight enforced) through two games. Sacks and penalties have put the Seahawks consistently behind the sticks.

“Any time you get those calls, it sets you up for failure,” Brown said. “When you’re in 2nd-and-15, 2nd-and-20, it’s so hard to dial up the plays you want to have. Defenses know you have to pass it, and so they’re pinning their ears back.”

There’s a sense of urgency to take a big step forward in Week 3 with the New Orleans Saints coming to town. The Saints pass rush, led by four-time Pro Bowler Cameron Jordan, leads the NFL with nine sacks.

Carroll is banking on continuity – namely Mike Iupati and George Fant settling in – as the primary reason why the offensive line will improve as the season goes on.

“We’re kind of counting on it as we stay together and keep making progress,” Carroll said.

And he needs to be right. Barring a blockbuster trade, there are no reinforcements on the horizon. Seattle will have to make do with what they’ve got.

Explaining the importance of Tyler Lockett’s 10-catch game in Week 2

Explaining the importance of Tyler Lockett’s 10-catch game in Week 2

Tyler Lockett is one of the better deep threats in the NFL. We’ve known this for years now, and his downfield ability is illustrated by his 16.9 yards per reception in 2018. But in Week 2, he showcased another element of his game that had yet to be seen – his ability to do all the dirty work underneath.

Lockett caught a career high 10 passes against the Pittsburgh Steelers for 79 yards. All of that production came within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage. Lockett was Russell Wilson’s go-to guy as the Seattle Seahawks deployed a quick passing game to negate Pittsburgh’s heavy blitz packages. Wilson identified where pressure was coming from at the line of scrimmage and made checks accordingly. Lockett caught 10-of-12 targets (should have been 11 as he had one drop) as the primary beneficiary of those checks.

“Tyler can do everything,” Pete Carroll said on Wednesday. “He can run every route, and he has great feel and sense on everything. He’ll do whatever he’s asked of. It fit the game plan really well and really, Russ and Schotty (Brian Schottenheimer) and Tyler worked together really well to make it come to life.”

Lockett became the first Seahawks wide receiver to catch double digit passes in a game since Doug Baldwin in Week 3 of 2017 against the Tennessee Titans. For comparison’s sake, let’s take a look at both player’s charts from their respective 10-catch performances.

There’s an obvious difference in the routes. Baldwin’s game was so notable because he had Allen Iverson-like creativity whereas Lockett is a master in efficiency. And that’s OK. Nobody is expecting Lockett to be Baldwin, he just needs to be as productive.

Apart from the one explosive for Baldwin down the left sideline, the other 19 receptions in the charts above came within 10 yards. That wasn’t necessarily the norm for Baldwin and it won’t be for Lockett, either. Seattle will continue to utilize Lockett’s ability to take the top off of a defense. But in games like last Sunday, when pass protection was porous against a blitz-happy defense, it was important to see that Lockett can carry the quick passing game.

On a random but significant note, Lockett swapped jerseys postgame with Steelers star wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster. The pair of up-and-coming receivers each wrote a message on their own jersey to give to the other.

Smith-Schuster kept his message straight to the point: "Keep Ballin! Be Great! Stay Litty!"

Pete Carroll ‘surprised’ by California law that would allow college athletes to make money off likeness

Pete Carroll ‘surprised’ by California law that would allow college athletes to make money off likeness

The debate over whether or not collegiate athletes should be paid has been ongoing for years, but it recently took an interesting turn.

California’s state legislature has passed a bill that would allow college athletes to make money off of their likeness via endorsements, autograph signings, etc. Several professional athletes have given their endorsement for the bill that is on its way to California governor Gavin Newsom.

Unsurprisingly, the NCAA is working to combat the law. The organization has reportedly sent a letter to Newsom to express its extreme concern on the matter.

Pete Carroll was asked for his thoughts on the bill on Wednesday. Carroll’s tenure as college coach was headlined by his time as USC’s head coach from 2001-09 where he won two national championships.

“I don’t know the real depth to (the law). I’ve never been the guy that feels players needed to be paid to play," Carroll said. "I’ve felt like their scholarship and all the advantages that the guys got was always a pretty darn good deal. To me that sounds like it’s an adult situation trying to make sense of a kid’s experience, and so they’ve justified it. I don’t know that it’s wrong, good for the kids and all, and if it’s the right thing then maybe the rest of the country adopts it. I never thought that it was necessary. Even though there’s times that are tough for kids who don’t have a lot of money to take as incidental spending and stuff like that, when a kid’s on scholarship, he’s taken care of pretty well. They can make it. To start that, I’m surprised it happened. We’ll see what happens.”

If passed, the law would be an unprecedented shakeup to the traditional norms of collegiate sports. The important distinction is that it wouldn’t allow programs to pay athletes, but merely to allow those athletes to make money off of their own fame.

Fann Mail: Is the NFC West the best division in football?

Fann Mail: Is the NFC West the best division in football?

Although the Seattle Seahawks are 2-0, there are still plenty of question marks surrounding the team. I’m of the belief that we still don’t know for sure who the Seahawks are going to be in 2019, and we may not learn much more in Week 3 against the Drew Brees-less New Orleans Saints.

Here’s a look at what’s gone right and what’s gone wrong thus far in this week’s mailbag. Thanks to those who sent in questions!

Jaron Brown has been quiet – so quiet that he hasn’t registered an official target in his 99 snaps through two weeks. He also had a pair of costly penalties against the Steelers. It’s conceivable that he moves down the depth chart or is cut all together. However, I don’t see those reps going to John Ursua or Gary Jennings. David Moore has a good shot to return against the Saints, and he’s the one who would assume Brown’s workload.

This, to me, is the Seahawks biggest concern at this point. Protection has been an issue in both games as Seattle has allowed eight total sacks so far. The quick passing game provided a remedy against the Steelers, but that doesn’t seem feasible as a long-term solution. The run blocking hasn’t been great either. The Seahawks averaged just 2.9 yards per carry in Week 1, and although they averaged 4.6 in Week 2, that number dips to 3.56 if you take out Rashaad Penny’s 37-yard touchdown run.

There aren’t any reinforcements coming so Seattle is going to have to figure it out and make it work with that they’ve got. The most troubling part of it all is that the o-line was supposed to be one of the team’s biggest strengths going into the season, and that simply hasn’t been the case through two weeks. D.J. Fluker missing time due to an ankle injury could make things worse before they get better. And make no mistake, they have to get better if Seattle is going to be a real contender in 2019.

You never want to overreact too much from one game, but Lano Hill showed that he deserves to be in the lineup. His interception on Pittsburgh’s two-point try was one of the biggest plays of the game. It will be interesting to see what happens when Tedric Thompson’s hamstring gets healthy because Seattle will have some decisions to make. Hill fared better than Thompson in their respective starts, but I’m curious to see if the Seahawks feel comfortable leaving Bradley McDougald at free safety all season. In my opinion, he’s better suited at strong.

As for Marquise Blair, I think he’ll continue to be the odd man out barring injury. I think people have rookie bias when it comes to Blair. He’s an enticing player and made a few big hits in the preseason, but he also had a few egregious errors as well. I don’t believe Pete Carroll trusts him yet, and the Seahawks have enough depth at safety to be patient and let Blair develop on the practice field.

I tried to tell people during the preseason that the NFC West was going to be way more competitive than many believed. There are three teams at 2-0 and the Arizona Cardinals have shown that they’re not going to be a cakewalk, either. The Rams are what they are. It’s still their division to lose. San Francisco finally has legitimate talent up and down the roster for the first time in years. The Cardinals offense already appears to be clicking with Kyler Murray and Kliff Kingsbury.

The one caveat is that, similar to my earlier sentiments on the Seahawks, we don’t know exactly who the 49ers are yet. They’ve played a poor Buccaneers team and then walloped the Bengals. But both wins came on the road which is impressive. The Seahawks road game against the 49ers on “Monday Night Football” is the matchup I’m looking forward to most in 2019.

So, yes, I do think the NFC West is the best division in football. The NFC North is a close runner-up.

Everyone is thrilled to be 2-0 knowing full well that the team hasn’t played its best football yet. Not even close, for that matter. It’s always easier to review the tape and make corrections on things after a win. Seattle has caught some major breaks thus far and will again in Week 3 with avoiding Brees. That’s big for a team that’s a notoriously slow starter.

By the numbers: Defining stats from Seahawks 28-26 win over Steelers

By the numbers: Defining stats from Seahawks 28-26 win over Steelers

The Seattle Seahawks won ugly for the second straight week, but Sunday’s victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers looked much different than the Week 1 win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Contrary to the opener, Seattle dominated Pittsburgh from a statistical standpoint. This time, it was the Seahawks who committed turnovers to keep the Steelers in the game. Here are the notable statistics and milestones from Seattle’s Week 2 win.

1 – sack for the Seahawks. A lack of a consistent pass rush is something Seattle expects to improve with Ziggy Ansah hopeful to play in Week 3.

1.89 – seconds from snap to release on average for Russell Wilson's pass attempts, per NextGen Stats. That's the quickest of any QB in a game since 2016.

2 – touchdowns for Will Dissly. He now has four scores in six career games. He doesn’t look like a guy coming off a gruesome knee injury, which is huge for Seattle’s offense.

2 – fumbles lost by Seattle. Chris Carson has now lost a fumble in both games to open the year.

3 – Seahawks touchdown drives of at least 75 yards.

5:34 – burned off the clock at the end of the fourth quarter on Seattle’s game-clinching 12-play drive.

10 – receptions for Tyler Lockett, his first game with double-digit receptions and the first such game for any Seahawks receiver since Doug Baldwin in 2017.

10 – Seahawks penalties for 93 yards. There were plenty more that weren’t enforced.

28 – yard touchdown for DK Metcalf, the first of his career. Metcalf is on pace for 56 receptions for 1,200 yards and eight touchdowns.

35:46 – time of possession for Seattle, a vast improvement from the team’s 24:10 TOP in Week 1.

54 – yards for Malik Turner on three receptions. Both numbers were career highs.

75 – yards for Ben Roethlisberger in the first half before leaving with an elbow injury, illustrating the fantastic start for Seattle’s defense.

84 – yards for JuJu Smith Schuster, 45 of which came on a flea flicker. That’s a job well done by the Seahawks secondary.

100 – wins for Pete Carroll as Seattle’s head coach.

100 – percent in the red zone for the second consecutive game. Seattle was  2-2 on Sunday and is now 4-4 through two weeks.

131 – passer rating for Wilson, his second straight game with a passer rating of at least 130 to open the season.

200 – career passing touchdowns for Wilson. Wilson became the fifth-fastest quarterback in NFL history to reach the milestone. He’s also the first player to ever throw for 200 touchdowns (201) and run for 15 touchdowns (16) in his first eight seasons.

261 – total yards allowed, a vast improvement from the 429 yards allowed to Cincinnati.

425 – total yards gained, a vast improvement from the 232 yards gained against Cincinnati.