Seahawks Insider

Morning links: 5 keys to Hawks vs. Bears

Post by Eric Williams on Dec. 2, 2012 at 6:06 am with 29 Comments »
December 2, 2012 6:09 am
Seattle Seahawks Bruce Irvin (51) and Chris Clemons in action against the New York Jets in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Good morning. It’s going to be a balmy 61 degrees here in Chicago at game time, so weather should not be a factor today, as the Seahawks catch a break in December.

I’ll be headed over to Soldier Field shortly. Here’s five keys for the Seattle Seahawks as they try to improve to 7-5 on the year.

Pressure Cutler: The Seahawks have done a good job of generating pressure in the team’s last, two appearances in the regular season at Soldier Field, with a total of 10 sacks. And Seattle’s front four is playing against a makeshift Chicago offensive line that has given up 35 sacks this season. Jay Cutler is a mobile, strong-armed quarterback, and if the Seahawks let him get comfortable in the pocket, he’ll make them pay with big plays down the field. Bruce Irvin, Chris Clemons, Jason Jones and Brandon Mebane need to be on their “A” game today. The Seahawks have generated 12 of the team’s 29 sacks away from CenturyLink Field.

Protect the ball: The Bears are one of the best teams in the league at stripping the ball and creating turnovers, so it’s critical that Seattle win the turnover battle in order to have a chance today. Seattle’s offense has not turned the ball over the last three games, so let’s see if the Seahawks can make it four. And defensively, the Seahawks need to create some big plays by turning Chicago over.

Feed the Beast: Marshawn Lynch has not rushed for 100 yards in his last three games against Chicago, but he’s churned out some tough yards and added balance to Seattle’s offense. Lynch needs to do the same thing today against one of the better run defenses in the league, helping the Seahawks control the tempo of the game, and keeping Chicago’s offense off the field.

Own the line of scrimmage: Last week at Miami, the Seahawks surprisingly got pushed around on both sides of the ball up front. That can’t happen today. This game is going to be a slug fest, so field position and ball control will be key, which starts up front. The Seahawks need to get a consistent push up front in the running game, and protect Russell Wilson. And defensively, the Seahawks need to get back to defending the run like they did earlier this season.

Contain Brandon Marshall: With 81 catches for 1,017 yards, Chicago’s Brandon Marshall has been dominant this season. Both Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner will get their opportunities to match up against the big receiver. Marshall is going to get his catches, but the Seahawks can let him own the passing game. Seattle’s cornerback tandem has to limit Marshall’s touches and make someone else make consistent plays in the passing game.

Here’s my advance for today. Seattle head coach Pete Carroll hopes being familiar with the surroundings at Soldier Field will help solve his team’s issues on the road. “We have found some success,” Carroll said. “We know how to travel there, and we know what it takes. And we’ll try to bank on that the best we can and make the most of it.”

Dave Boling of The News Tribune writes that the Seahawks have to turn up the heat on Cutler to win today.

Clare Farnsworth of previews the game here.

Danny O’Neil of The Seattle Times lists stopping Chicago’s running game as one of the keys for the Seahawks against the Bears.

John Mullen of CSN Chicago previews the game from the Bears perspective here.

Dan Pompei of the National Football Post takes a closer look at the prospects of eliminating all low blocks. Interesting, if you can’t hit someone low and you can’t hit someone high, sounds like we’re moving closer to not hitting someone at all. Pompei argues against eliminating all low blocks, but doing away with the chop block.

Check out the latest Real Robinson Report in the video below. I make a guest appearance at the end, although I’m labeled Mack Strong, which obviously does a disservice to Mack. Pretty funny. Mike Rob thinks I jinxed him because I brought up the fact that he was 100 percent converting third and 1 situations, then the following week he was stuffed for no gain.

Morning links
Leave a comment Comments → 29
  1. pabuwal says:

    Key 6 – Have a 2 score lead in the 4th quarter to ensure a victory.

  2. Ewalters7354 says:

    Hopefully we as fans don’t have to suffer through another game where the coaches call a conservative/scared game.Run, run, pass will not cut it against this team.Soft zone with no pressure also will make Cutler look like Tom terrific. He we go…

  3. Ready to get our asses whipped today? I’m not looking forward to it, but I’ll endure the agony because that’s what we do. Wait. Darn. I forgot. You can’t criticize the people who get paid to run the team. Because that’s done us a lot of good with every other GM/coach in the history of this franchise that has never won a Super Bowl.

  4. Dukeshire says:

    Or how about this: have more than 2 offensive scores, for the entire game.

    One player Seattle needs to account for is Tim Jennings. He’s having a great year. Whichever receivers draw his assignment on a given play, will have to be *very* physical off he line, and protect the ball once it’s in the air and after they’ve caught it.

    And using recent history as a guide, I expect Seattle to use a lot of corner blitzes out of nickel, on Cutler. I’d be surprised to see them play much 2 deep off, as we’ve seen them revert to many times this season.

  5. Dukeshire says:

    Nice cameo, E. Hey! Spin move got *you* the first, ‘all your sayin’… lol

  6. Ewalters7354 says:

    Duke, hopefully Pete dials it up on that porous Bears o-line.When they do play two deep man, they get no pressure at all.Also, that’s a correction of what I meant the other day when I said 3 deep.

  7. Dukeshire says:

    No worries. And that lack of consistent pressure when they only bring 4 is another reason why I really want them to find a three down 3-tech to pair with Irvin (who I presume will develop into a 3 down lineman). I feel there is almost too much of a rotation and too many down and distance specific linemen for them right now.

  8. confucious says:

    Or how about this, The offense scores twice and the defense holds the bears to one score.

  9. Ewalters7354 says:

    confucious, it’s hard to hold any team to one score.Not banking on it.

  10. confucious says:

    On another note, Dish dumped Fox or vice-versa in my area. I have 1.5 hours to find an alternative source for my fix. I don’t think I can stand to watch the game through redzone alone.

  11. confucious says:

    I hear ya Ewalt. I have read on this blog how potent our D was supposed to be this year. They do not fit that description. I was just poking at Duke because of the standards he is setting for the offense. Rookie Qb and all.

  12. boycie99 says:

    D needs to stop the run and cover the short over the middle dump off stuff, make Cutler throw to the corners and let Sherman and Browner take care of business.
    Lets hope the Hawks dont give yet another unknown a career game as has been tendency in the past.

    Feed the beast but if its not working then open the playbook up or our Rookie QB, I think this O will be fine, the D needs to show the last few weeks were just a dip and not what to expect going forward. No letting anyone run for 150+ on us and Bradley no soft zone on every 3rd and long or every down in the 4th Quarter

    24-17 Hawks

  13. SandpointHawk says:

    Confucious, I have the same problem with Fox, I was given this link for live streaming…

  14. Dukeshire says:

    The standards I’m setting for the offense? lol. What standard, exactly? Put up more than 2 scores? Yes, I am asking for that to be a standard. And so should everyone else. Good lord. How many defenses would look capable with an offense that puts up so few points? And look, last week the D failed when the offense, again, failed themselves. The defense could have been the hero but they blew it, so to speak. But get real; the offense needs to start doing their part long before we start saying all the failings of this team are on the defensive side of the ball.

    Moreover, it sound like folks like confucious are disappointed in the defense based on what others have said about them, rather than the reality that has been there all season. That’s a you problem, not a them problem, to put a fine point on it.

  15. confucious says:

    THANK YOU Sandpoint! I’ll give it a try. I just tried that digital box but it looks like KAYU in Spokane doesn’t broadcast over the local airwaves anymore. That is news to me as I have been with Dish network so long.

  16. confucious says:

    Duke. To put a finer point on it, the offense has put the team in a position to win in almost every game this season. Points have been put on the board with more regularity as of this point in the season. Granted, at the start of this campaign points were few and far between. The defense has struggled of late. I would also argue that the strength of this D has been in the redzone with a smaller field to work with. Good teams have been able to move the ball down the field on them all season.

  17. boycie99 says:

    Duke we have a QB thats about to have the best year a Seahawk QB has had in a very long time and hes a rookie to boot.
    As Confucious pointed out the O has done enough to put this team in a winning position against teams we should have beat, namely Miami and Detroit most recently. The problems lie on The D and its a them problem not a me or you problem.
    Other teams have worked out how to play Seattle, dump off and short passes over the middle exposing the linebackers and hit the TE and slot receiver. We have also gone from a stout D against the run to a porous one, the last 5 weeks and the numbers prove that. Part of the problem is PC and Bradley not adjusting as other Coaches have and part is the players not executing.
    Whilst the O is improving through the season the D is regressing and thats a worry and looking at the numbers its fact not an opinion

  18. key #1: Mebane needs to blow up Chicago’s weakened interior line, after being doubled and shut down for the past few weeks. If he does this, the whole D line gets a chance to redeem themselves and make Chicago’s day miserable.

    key #2: Our young players including Wright, Chancellor, Wagner, Irvin, and Thurmond all need to play as if they are 5 year veterans who have seen it all and are ready to win on the road.

    key #3: fans need to understand why #2 rarely happens for even the most talented young teams on the road.

    key #4: offensive line needs to demonstrate their performance in Miami was an aberration.

    key #5: Hello, is Doug Baldwin there?

  19. Dukeshire says:

    The offense scored only twice last week. Twice. Moreover, the defense has been in a position to defend these razor thin margins nearly all season, that is a recipe for failure. And for a young and talent thin group (at least at D line, nickel, and Will) themselves, it’s unreasonable to think they’ll be able to make that stand up every time. If you believe the offense is playing at an acceptable level, you will always be disappointed, I’m afraid. And forget Wilson for a moment, they struggle like hell to run the ball on the road. How does one defend that?

  20. Confucius–That link works, even on my Mac; be patient, and DONT download any plug-ins unless its last resort; try all the links. Usually one of the first three works, just give them a minute before trying the next…usually the sound works before the picture, and you have to watch out for the click adds that block the screen every few minutes..but it works.

    Im not watching today, Ive had enough and I cant justify ignoring my responsibilities to watch a game that sure to be UNFUN and piss me off. I hope Carrol opens things up and lets Wilson shine…

  21. I think right now the offense has their hands tied by the coaching staff, and the D just isnt executing. This offense is totally capable of 30 points a game if they coaches werent determined to run a 60’s offense. The D coord has tried everything, and while I wont give him a free pass, the guys are just playing sloppy and undisciplined and making too many mistakes like Hill on that TD, and Tru just being slow.

  22. Dukeshire says:

    boycie99 – Defend this offenses’ inability to run the ball on the road. Look, I have been as critical of the defense as the next guy. But those that don’t place appropriate blame on the offense for their inability to convert first downs and sustain drives at the end of games, absolutely and completely miss the point.

  23. IBGoofy says:

    Well, this game, on the road, may well be the deciding factor of the playoffs for us… interesting…. win or lose, it may also be a telltale indicator of weather we DESERVE a playoff position or not… Like noted above, I hope we get the chance to actually play the game wide open, unlike the poorly coached Miami game…

  24. I think the seahawks O knows they can’t expect to win on the road with less than 24 points. After the conservative game called last week by coaches, I”m expecting a more entertaining game today. Everyone is picking Chi, and I seem to remember winning in Chi town in the past after no one said we could.

  25. Dukeshire says:

    This may sound weird, but I dreamt Thursday night that Seattle won this game. Close and late, but held lead all game. We’ll see… lol

  26. confucious says:

    Duke. On the contrary. Last weeks final drive by the O was putrid. They couldn’t make a yard in the first quarter either. Very inconsistent. I’m not defending the O so much. I’m just not giving the D a hall pass just because of a few good performances at the beginning of the season. This D has been figured out by opposing coordinators.

  27. confucious says:

    Hope you dreamed right.

  28. confucious says:

    Forte is warming up. Wonder what Chicagos game plan is? Run and short pass?

  29. DanielleMND says:

    BobbyK: “Ready to get our asses whipped today?”


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