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Snap Reactions: Seattle defense shines as Hawks call on depth

Defense didn’t miss a beat with Cody Barton taking over for Jordyn Brooks

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at Seattle Seahawks Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks closed out the 2022 regular season Sunday afternoon with a home victory over the Los Angeles Rams, and then got to celebrate the come from behind victory of the Detroit Lions over the Green Bay Packers that put the Hawks in the playoffs.

It will be a short week for the Seahawks to gear up for their Saturday afternoon showdown against the San Francisco 49ers, though with another six days of recovering from surgery, Tyler Lockett should be poised to be back at full speed. Lockett was on the field for 55 snaps against the Rams, after playing sparingly the prior week against the New York Jets.

In addition, another wrinkle at wide receiver appears to be that Cade Johnson took the third receiver role from Laquon Treadwell in Week 18, outsnapping the former first round pick nearly five to one. It’s true that the Seahawks used up all three elevations for which Johnson is eligible, however, postseason elevations are unlimited, meaning the Hawks can utilize the same rotation against the Niners should they so wish. One other item worth watching during the week is the health of both Phil Haynes and Gabe Jackson. The two had been rotating in recent weeks. However, with Haynes inactive due to a sprained ankle Sunday, Jackson handled the entire workload. Thus, the status of both during the week bears watching, as the Hawks young offensive line will have its hands full against a talented 49ers front seven.

On the defensive side of the ball, there was little noticeable decline in performance from the linebackers, even as Jordyn Brooks was replaced by Cody Barton, with Barton’s usual snaps taken by Tanner Muse and A.J. Johnson, who was elevated from the practice squad Saturday afternoon.

On special teams it was the regulars in Nick Bellore, Dareke Young, Jon Rhattigan and Godwin Igwebuike leading the way with more than 20 snaps. Also of note on special teams, Tre Brown was on the field for 13 special teams snaps, which was more special teams snaps than he had seen since being activated from injured reserve prior to Week 12.

And now it’s on to the Wild Card round to write the final chapter of the Seahawks-49ers 2022 trilogy.