Incredibly, much of this run has come without Marshawn Lynch or Jimmy Graham.
Four weeks ago, shortly after Baldwin had commented on the evolution-to-come for the Seahawks, Russell Wilson found himself struggling, with a 10-to-7 touchdown-to-interception ratio. Now, four weeks later, it sits at 26-to-7.
The Seahawks have scored 29 points or more in five straight games, another team record, and after starting out the first eight games of the year with just 12 offensive touchdowns, they have 23 in the last five. Doug Baldwin has nine touchdowns in those five games after scoring just 11 in his entire career previously. Rookie Tyler Lockett has emerged as a viable deep threat and has five touchdowns on the year. Jermaine Kearse is contributing. Luke Willson has stepped up to fill in for Graham.
How have the Seahawks so suddenly turned things around?
Well, it starts up front. After being sacked 31 times in their first seven games, Wilson’s only been sacked seven times in the last six, including zero Sunday against the Ravens. It’s amazing what a little bit of time in the pocket can do for a passer like Wilson.
A lot of this could be attributed to the Seahawks’ decision to replace Drew Nowak with Patrick Lewis at the center position. Lewis improved the line’s communication vastly, as Seattle’s coaches have told us, and they’re getting on the same page with their protections.
Here is a look at our rankings of all 32 teams playing this week. That is followed by each writer making a pick, providing some reasoning for the pick, and then providing some alternatives to consider. Best of luck!
I’m riding the hot hand here. The Packers are steam-rolling the competition right now and Detroit doesn’t look like a squad built to go back and forth with a top offense. Seattle should be able to beat the 49ers with their third stringers and I also like Denver beating an Oakland team that will be without Derek Carr.