Week Twelve: Seahawks vs Raiders
Ahoy, 12’s! Hopefully, everyone made it through the bye week intact. A week without the Hawks is a tough go indeed. I see you. I get you. I feel you. Luckily, we had the distraction of Thanksgiving to help push us through these last few days. I hope that eating, cleaning up, napping and eating again helped to ease the pain.
The Seahawks are back home this week, welcoming the Raiders to Lumen Field. The Raiders are currently sitting at 3-7 and struggling with a host of issues. On paper, this would seem to be an easy win for the Hawks. In this league, however, anything is possible on any given Sunday. My gut says this could be a wild one, so I’m withholding any victory dance until after the game. There’s a 43% chance of rain tomorrow afternoon. A wet and mucky field could add a little chaos to the situation. Here’s my wish list:
- Running the ball. Defending the run. At the time of my death, as I finally meet the Divine Creator and lean in for the answer to the ultimate existential question, I believe he/she/it will whisper, “It’s all about the run game.” With a nod to the Divine, my wish is for the Hawks to ball out on the run, both offensively and defensively. May the o-line open the gaps as wide as canyons, creating ample space for K-9 to blast off and do his thing. Conversely, I hope the defense finds its verve again –post the Munich debacle–and ferociously jams up any and everything the Raiders try to get going on the ground.
- I would like to see Tariq Woolen shock and awe Davante Adams. Initially, I was content to enjoy this as an interesting matchup, on-fire rookie vs elite wide receiver. That changed a few days ago. During a guest appearance on the Seahawks Man 2 Man podcast*, Tashan Reed, Raiders beat reporter for The Athletic, said that Tariq Woolen isn’t ready for Davante Adams and that Adams was going to “give that boy hell.” For whatever reason, that didn’t land well with me. Maybe I’m just a neurotic fan, feeling protective of the star rookie. Maybe my buttocks were clenched a little too tightly as I was listening to the podcast. Maybe I’m an overly sensitive weirdo. I don’t know. The low-key diss on Woolen got under my skin. And Tashan’s remarks almost felt like an invitation for the young cornerback. What we’ve seen of Woolen so far is astonishing. And much more is coming. It’s all there. I can feel it. May he unleash it all Sunday, disrupting routes, breaking up passes and giving Adams hell all day. Of course, Coby Bryant and Mike Jackson will be in the mix as well. Yeah, Davante Adams is probably the league’s most elite receiver. But dude has to meet his match eventually, right? And besides, he’s been eating an awful lot of Taco Bell lately. We’ve all seen the ads. Too many nacho fries can definitely slow a fella down.
- I want the Seahawks to consistently covert on third downs and to dominate time of possession.
- While I don’t wish for the Seahawks pass rushers to make Derek Carr cry (again), I would like them to make him uncomfortable. Against the Buccaneers, there was no pressure at all on Tom Brady. It was frustrating enough to make a fan want to run out on the field and take a crack at sacking him herself. I hope Nwosu, Jefferson, Taylor and company come back hungry and take care of business.
*I want to give a quick shoutout about this podcast. Hosts Mike Dugar and Christopher Kidd present expert analysis in a laid-back style, made all the better by their good cheer and quick humor. I watch these guys weekly and always learn a ton. You can find them on Twitter: @MikeDugar and @CKidd206. Also, despite getting me rankled over the Tariq Woolen thing, Tashan Reed is hilarious. You’ll find him at: @tashanreed.
Player to watch this week: Tre Brown. There’s still a bit of mystery as to whether or not Tre will make his return on Sunday. Assuming he does, however, it will be cool to see him on the field again and what kind of a difference he’ll make on the secondary. Tre showed a lot of promise his rookie season, but it was cut short by injury. Tre was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, my old stomping grounds. Prior to hitting the pros, he played for the University of Oklahoma. I went to O.U. during the Barry Switzer era. While our paths are decades apart, I have a soft spot for my fellow Okie and wish him great success with the Seahawks.