August 21, 2011

Vikings 20, Seahawks 7

Let's get this out of the way: No, Charlie Whitehurst should not be Seattle's starting quarterback. I think that it's awesome that he played well last night, because at some point this season he may be called upon to win a game for us (like he did last year). I've said for a long time that CW could be a valuable asset to the Seahawks as a competent back-up quarterback, but nothing I saw last night screamed out "Coach Carroll is WRONG WRONG WRONG! Charlie must start!"

I've never presented myself as a hard-core X's and O's guy, but even I know that the guys Whitehurst was lighting up were primarily dudes that will be in the CFL, Arena League, or OOF very soon. I also know that he didn't have to face a relentless assault from a pretty good NFL defense behind a porous offensive line like Tarvaris Jackson did.

Which of course leads to this observation: Maybe I was watching a different game, but I thought T-Jack did some promising things out there- He showed the mobility and escapability our QB will need until the offensive line solidifies, was accurate for the most part, and avoided any big mistakes (the INT Minnesota returned for a TD bounced off Golden Tate's hands- Not Jackson's fault). Jackson is on the right track, and all starting Whitehurst next week in Denver would accomplish is fucking up T-Jack's preparations for the opener at SF in 3 weeks. I sincerely hope Jackson's play is so obviously brilliant at Mile High that it silences the "CHAR-LIE!" chanters, at least for a spell.

The larger concern is the offensive line- Yes, Okung was out, so we can expect their play to improve when he returns... But what we saw last night was discouraging: T-Jack forced to run around like Ben Richards (You know, The Butcher of Bakersfield), and a running game that struggled to press beyond the line of scrimmage. While I loved the attitude of running it 3 times from the goal line in the 1st half, the result (failing all three times) is worrisome.

Other poor performances that stuck out? Golden Tate, Kelly Jennings and Aaron Curry. What can really be said about Jennings at this point? It almost seems unfair to pick on him, and you can count me among those who think he might not make the 53-man roster. Golden Tate's saving grace is that Carroll spent a #2 draft pick on him last year- If not for that, he might be getting a visit from The Turk soon as well. Curry? Man, I really want to like that kid, but then he does DUMB shit like pulling off an opponent's helmet and throwing it. A player trying to erase two disappointing seasons and move forward shouldn't be pulling crap like that.

Good stuff? I liked what I saw from Leroy Hill and Leon Washington. I'm very excited to see us get the ball to Leon: The Professional in more ways this fall, and Hill might end up being "this year's BMW." Speaking of BMW, he had the play of the night with his amazing catch in the first half. We had that LONG drive in the first half too, which was encouraging despite the ultimate failure at the goal line.

The Seahawks have a lot of work to do between now and September 11, but they should still be ready to knock some gold teeth out of Niners mouths by then.

What do you think, sirs?


Eric Flatness said...

This is exactly how I felt about T-Jack. Another quarterback would have ended the night with multiple sacks, and multiple turnovers as a result. His biggest moment was when he stood in the pocket with a blitzer in his face, and launched a bullet to Tate on the left that Golden couldn't quite haul in (was that the play where he got leveled by a safety?). T-Jack was hit. hard. But he popped right back up and got in the huddle again. This guy is a warrior in the same vein as Hasselbeck, but with a younger, sturdier frame to work with. He will play AT LEAST as well as Hass this year (I say that because everyone seems to forget how plain bad he was in 2010, playoffs excluded).

As for the o-line, they were not good. No doubt about it. And I wouldn't expect anything else. Because most of them had never met each other before three weeks ago. We talk all the time about how getting the same guys on the field, playing together and building comradere is one of the most important facets to a good line, but these guys are collectively the backups of some amazing, suddenly decimated line. Every week, they will get better, work together more effectively, and, flying spaghetti monster-willing, they'll be one of the more cohesive units in the game come February.

Ricardo Slick said...

I also thought T-Jack did well considering the constant pressure he was under. The people clamoring for CW just don't understand that he's not facing the same level of D that the starters are. Its great that he plays so well against 2nd stringers, but we can't assume he'd have the same poise against that Viking tidal wave that T-Jack faced. Some people have no clue.
Like you, I trust that Pete Carroll has the right vision for our Seahawks.

HawtSoop said...

I am not clamoring for clipboard by any means, but Tarvaris looks like bad Seneca... not just being under pressure but making questionable decisions under pressure and pretty quickly giving way to just panicky QB play.

I hope I am wrong but T-Jack so far looks like a guy with all the physical tools in the world and a distinct lack upstairs.

Please tell me why I am wrong and Tarvaris...


bleedshawkblue said...

Indeed, I thought TJack showed some great stuff behind a line that had only met one another 3 weeks ago. 2/5 of which have never played a single down of pro ball (and Carpenter is playing a brand new position in the pros - he was a Left Tackle at 'Bama, blocking for a Heisman winner...), Unger at a brand new position, and Polumbus (a Detroit reject!!!) the starting Left Tackle.

As an unapologetic Bald Bomber fan, I can say with utter conviction that Matty would have gotten himself killed Saturday night as he just doesn't have the wheels, arm or durability to face down a threat like that with that young of a line attempting to protect him. Were he back there, the haters would have got their wish to see Charlie start next week...

Considering this stage in their development, I'm impressed with all the positive things that are going on. I would rather see young, talented players have correctable lapses as they climb to the peak of their upside than wily, old warhorses getting torched as their beatdown bodies cease to respond as they once did.