Pre-game Thoughts vs. Buccaneers
Not all wins are going to be pretty. From a maturity standpoint, Monday night’s game was a great step forward for this team. Good teams win games when their offense, defense, and special teams are firing on all cylinders. Great teams find a way to win when they’re not. Once again, you 12’s brought the noise! No team travels better than the Seahawks, and we can’t thank you enough for your support!
Obviously, most of you have heard about Sidney’s injury. He is a great player and was a huge asset to this team. It is tough to lose such a great playmaker at this point in the season. With Sidney down, it’s time for the next man to step up and fill his role. This makes the return of Percy Harvin that much more important. We have a very talented group of wideouts, all of which are capable of big plays. They need to hit the field with confidence and play up to their capabilities. Golden Tate stepped up and made big plays for us last week. The team will lean on him to lead the receiving corps.
Last week made it clear that we need to improve our pass protection. Our offense is filled with talent and they have done a great job correcting their mistakes in practice this week. It is important that we maintain a balanced attack through the air and on the ground. When facing an experienced secondary like the Buccaneers, it is crucial that we create more time for Russell to progress through his reads in the pocket. A steady air attack will create wider running lanes for Marshawn. Our inability to protect Russell last week hurt the ground game because we found ourselves in 3rd and long situations too often.
Defensively, we progressed in some areas and regressed in others. Our goal line stance to end the game was huge! It is important that we continue to play big in those situations. As a unit, we did a great job of smothering routes and minimizing pass windows. The Buccaneers have a talented receiving corps led by Vincent Jackson. As a competitor, it is always fun to go against one of the best in the game. Vincent is a talented receiver that will test our cover abilities – I look forward to the challenge. We need to be on point with our coverage and minimize the big pass plays. On another note, our run D was not on point Monday night. The Rams did a great job down blocking their tight ends and preventing us from effectively using a two-gap scheme. We have put in a lot of extra film work this week to clean up our techniques against these offensive arrangements.
Hard work and preparation is what our team takes pride in. We learn from each week’s mistakes and move on. A short term memory is key to playing at a very high level. Mistakes will be made each game, but it is how you respond to those mistakes that affects the outcome. I am looking forward to returning home to play in front of the best home crowd in the NFL! This will be an exciting matchup, and we look forward to taking on the challenge!