It is a running joke/the absolute truth that the Seattle Seahawks are uniquely bad at executing screen passes. These are plays typically designed to punish aggressive defenses and get yards after catch, and yet...
I get it, the Seahawks offensive line has been overwhelmed of late. But Shane Waldron really needs to cool it with the screens and horizontal passing game. I've seen no evidence that it slows down the pass rush. And it is certainly not keeping the offense on schedule pic.twitter.com/HEzk7s1ZW8— Parker (@ParkerLewes) December 26, 2022
Well guess what? We have quantifiable proof that the Seahawks are the worst screen pass team in the league. They run them at a pretty low rate and manage to be far and away the worst in the NFL in terms of success rate. PFF analyst Arjun Menon created this graph and has defined success rate as Expected Points Added (EPA) > 0.
Looking how at successful teams are when they run screen passes this year. How do the Seahawks have a 13% success rate when running screens this season? pic.twitter.com/1uuc33Gbpt— Arjun Menon (@arjunmenon100) December 30, 2022
Let’s be honest, 13% even seems a little bit high. No other team in the NFL is even in Seattle’s zip code, which is staggering. This is not some hidden secret but to see this visually laid out is astonishing.
Screen passes being YAC-heavy plays also ties into the fact that Seattle is 30th in YAC/reception and with the odd exception of 2021, have routinely ranked near the bottom in yards after catch. Notice that the Detroit Lions, Kansas City Chiefs, and San Francisco 49ers, three of the best YAC teams in the NFL, are also three of the best screen pass teams. The Carolina Panthers are numero uno in YAC/reception and run screen passes frequently, with a success rate just under 40%.
I don’t know if or when this will get better, but it sure as hell can’t get much worse for the Seahawks. A dangerous combination of poor execution and receiving targets who break fewer tackles than all but the Atlanta Falcons is a recipe for not getting any extra yardage.
Update: Silly me! To hammer home the point a little further, Seattle can’t defend screens either.