Seahawks Dispatched by Bengals: Some Things I Liked, Some Things I Didn't Like

SEATTLE - OCTOBER 30: (L-R) Richard Sherman #25, Earl Thomas #29, and Kam Chancellor #31 of the Seattle Seahawks look on from the bench near the end of the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at CenturyLink Field on October 30, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. The Bengals defeated the Seahawks 34-12. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

I had all these grandiose plans to have play breakdowns, drive breakdowns, and awesome coverage complete with illustrations, bubbles, boxes and arrows this morning but of course I waited until Monday Night Football went on to try and get some game-video screen caps and the NFL said nuh-uh to that idea. Apparently the are trying to force me into watching MNF. I REFUSE!!!

Anyway, I figured this would present me an opportunity to go over some good and bad from the Seahawks' loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. So here are my thoughts.

No me gusta:

-- Drops. The Seahawks had, I think I saw somewhere, six dropped passes and they didn't just come from your usual suspects. Sidney Rice missed a back shoulder throw from Charlie Whitehurst that would have moved the chains on 2nd down but I will admit it was pretty much a bang-bang play and the degree of difficulty was high. The very next play he took a screen pass and dove for a first down so I just can't stay mad at you Sidney Rice. He also had another missed pass later in the game on a hook route that went right through his mitts and hit him in the face and another in the endzone that was flagged as pass interference. 

Two (three) drops for Rice in one game isn't common so I'm not especially worried. He also made some pretty tough catches later on in the game on his way to 102 yards receiving. 

Zach Miller had a pretty untimely drop as well on a third down play. It looked like he just didn't have enough time to track the ball as he got his head turned around but for your elite free-agent signee you'd love to see him make that catch. Again, not sure that this is something habitual so I'm not super worried, but Rice and Miller didn't help the Seahawks' offense on these two plays.

-- In the third quarter, Darrell Bevell called a read option looking thing, designed run for Tarvaris Jackson, which he took left, ran and slid for 2 yards. This is, I think, the identical play in which Jackson was injured two games previous. Why on god's green earth would Bevell call this play after Jackson was forced into the game despite an injured pectorial from that same play after Charlie Whitehurst sucked so much that the Seahawks had no other choice but to bring Jackson in after getting hurt on this very play after Charlie Whitehurst sucked so much the Seahawks had no other choice? Seriously. What the hell? 

-- The Seahawks punt and kick coverage (punt team is worse) has been suspect this entire year, and continues to plague comeback attempts. On Sunday, the Bengals had a return by Adam Jones that should have been a touchdown if not for a pulled hamstring that led him to suddenly run as slow as a punter and get caught from behind, and later a touchdown from Brandon Tate that sealed the deal. I don't know what the easy fix is for this; when you go back and watch these two returns it's almost comical the amount of terrible angles Seahawks take and on the Pacman return, Roy Lewis, the gunner, is taken out hard like a bowling pin by his own teammate. 

-- Penalties. Does anyone like penalties? Knock it off. I remember the Bengals' blog tweeting that he thought the Seahawks had more false starts than the visiting team. Unacceptable. 

-- I like the no-huddle in general, but I don't like the no-huddle when the Seahawks go three and out, which happened several times in this game. The defense barely has time to take off their helmets and catch their breath. It seems to me that Charlie isn't very good in the no-huddle. Tarvaris is most comfortable there. I'd advocate the Seahawks make the adjustment based on who is out there but maybe Charlie just isn't that comfortable in any offense. 

Me Gusta:

-- Heath Farwell on special teams. Heath had three special teams tackles in this one, all three big hits, and seemed to be a big spark for that unit. Obviously, they let that punt return happen, but the Farwell signing seems to have been a good one. 

-- Tarvaris Jackson. I don't need to go over this a whole bunch more, but he appears to be a changed man. Pocket presence has improved. Timing has improved. Body language has improved. The teardrop he threw to Sidney Rice in the endzone while scrambling out of the pocket was a thing of beauty as was damn close to being review worthy. He's got zip on his throws and his toughness has earned the respect of his teammates. 

I'm not trying to talk him up too much because there's a lot of season left, but I don't think many of us expected this.

-- Ben Obomanu. Drops in prior games are pretty infuriating, but Obomanu had himself a pretty decent game. He sneaks up on you. You forget about him, and then all of a sudden he's a focal point of the offense. If Mike Williams continues his "what's the deal with Mike Williams?" season, Obomanu could reap the benefits. 

-- The Seahawks secondary. I don't need to tell you about Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas, because you probably already know. It's Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman that I'm excited about. Browner is who we pretty much figured he'd be (though I don't know how many people figured he'd be starting) - tough, physical and big on the outside. Good tackler. He's also proven to be somewhat of an enforcer, and has managed to get into opposing receivers heads with his physical style of play. The results are iffy with Browner thus far, but I think there has been some improvement in his game as the year goes on.

On the other side, Richard Sherman had probably the most surprising day of any Seahawks' player. Several passes defensed, several strong tackles. An interception, and a tipped pass to Kam Chancellor that was intercepted. He's able to track the ball in flight and go up and make the grab - something we haven't really seen in a cornerback here in Seattle in a long time. 

He's got some attitude, something the Seahawks defense has been developing this year. He called A.J. Green out and called him overrated. Ha. I mean, I don't agree with him, but that shows swagger, even it it is misplaced. As Davis put it on Twitter:

"Seahawks went from Trufant and Jennings at CB to a guy that called AJ Green "trash" and another that bodyslammed Jerome Simpson...I see ya."

-- David Hawthorne and Leroy Hill. I just really like these guys, and they were making plays all day.

-- It's nice to have Cameron Morrah back. With Anthony McCoy all up in his head and dropping passes left and right, it's nice to have an athletic and versatile guy to pair up with Zach Miller.

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