Two years ago, it was a popular prediction that the Seattle Seahawks would fall to pieces and miss the playoffs for a second consecutive season. Many of the pundits even had Seattle finishing below .500 for the first time under Russell Wilson.
Now that Seattle is coming off consecutive 10+ win seasons and playoff appearances, but admittedly they have not won the NFC West since 2016. They had to make a serious second-half surge to make the playoffs in 2018 and rode historically great success in close games to get into the postseason in 2019.
With the 2020 regular season (tentatively) just over three months away, NFL.com columnist Adam Schein has rolled in with his nine bold predictions, and one of them is that the Seahawks won’t be good enough to make even the expanded playoff field.
I know that the Seahawks have been one of the most consistent teams in the NFL over the last decade, posting a winning record in each of the past eight seasons, with double-digit wins in seven of them. I know that Russell Wilson is a first-ballot Hall of Famer. And I never want to bet against fellow future gold-jacket wearers Bobby Wagner and Pete Carroll. But I have serious questions about the overall quality of this roster — especially when compared to a host of rosters across the NFC.
San Francisco, last year’s NFC champs, look even better right now. Tampa Bay won the offseason, with Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski joining a talented young roster and Jason Licht adding some key pieces in the draft. New Orleans will be squarely in the Lombardi hunt for the fourth straight season. The Cowboys and Eagles both upgraded their rosters. I have already declared the Cardinals this year’s Cinderella team. And Aaron Rodgers is still Aaron Rodgers.
Don’t get me wrong: I don’t expect the Seahawks to fall apart. But they’ll lose a few more games than usual, especially in this year’s highly competitive NFC West.
Based on what he’s written, presumably has the 49ers, Cowboys, Eagles, Cardinals, Buccaneers, Saints, and Packers in the playoffs. In fact we know he has the Cowboys in the playoffs because one of his other bold predictions was that Dallas would be the #1 seed.
Even as a Seahawks fan, I do not think it’s a bold prediction that they miss the playoffs, but I also still back them to make it anyway. I was among those who didn’t predict a postseason berth for Seattle in 2018 — I had them finishing 8-8 — but the lesson learned is that any team with Russell Wilson at QB should not be discounted from the playoff picture.
That said, I don’t think Schein is necessarily wrong to be concerned about the overall roster. It is not bad, per se, but unless the recent and current draft classes start becoming consistently positive contributors, I don’t think you can make a good argument that this is a particularly deep team. There are still serious question marks about wide receiver depth below Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf, a defensive line still without a proven #1 pass rusher, the largely retooled offensive line, and the development of young secondary players like Tre Flowers, Ugo Amadi, and Marquise Blair.
In conclusion, Adam Schein also called Buffalo Bills YOLO quarterback Josh Allen a darkhorse MVP candidate so you can pretty much rubber stamp a Seahawks playoff berth.