Arrow-right Camera

Color Scheme

Subscribe now
Seattle Seahawks

Commentary: This Seahawks offseason has been hectic. Has it been productive?

By Matt Calkins Seattle Times

SEATTLE – So are the Seattle Seahawks gonna be any g …?

Few got around to finishing that question this offseason because shiny storylines distracted from it.

Coach Pete Carroll was fired after 14 years when Seattle’s playoff-free season ended. Longtime general manager John Schneider emerged as the organization’s final-hammer decision-maker in regard to personnel. Ravens defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald was hired to replace Carroll at the end of January, and in filling out his staff he brought on former Huskies offensive coordinator Ryan Grubb to serve in the same role.

Then multitime Pro Bowl safeties Quandre Diggs and Jamal Adams were released. Seahawks legend and future hall of fame linebacker Bobby Wagner signed with the Commanders. Defensive end Leonard Williams inked a three-year, $64.5 million deal to stay in Seattle. And any mystery surrounding the return of Geno Smith as the starting quarterback appeared to be quashed.

Not sure “chaotic” would quite be the word to describe the organization’s offseason, but it was one of the newsiest ones we’ve seen around here. So now that it’s calmed down a bit – back to the question …

Are the Seahawks going to be any good? Well, honestly, probably not good enough.

It shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that sportsbooks have set the over-under for Seattle’s 2024 win total at 7.5. This is a team that won nine games in each of its past two seasons, likely lost more talent than it gained and will probably have a 34-year-old with just one standout season behind center.

I argued before the cuts that parting ways with Diggs and Adams would be the best move for the Seahawks, but that doesn’t mean they’ve replaced them with adequate DBs to accompany the likes of Devon Witherspoon.

I knew Jordyn Brooks and Wagner (emphasis: at this point in his career) weren’t elite linebackers, but there are no proven reinforcements lying in wait.

Who are the three best players on this team? Witherspoon, Williams and wide receiver DK Metcalf? That might be so. And yet not one of them was a first- or second-team All-Pro last season.

The Seahawks are about as far away from the 49ers as Seattle is from Santa Clara. Vegas has the defending NFC champions’ over-under win total at 11.5 – tied for the most in the NFL. San Francisco had seven first- or second-team NFL All-Pro selections – and they’re all returning. The Seahawks, meanwhile, have a lot of decent players but not a lot of dominant ones.

So why should fans have hope? Well, for one, it’s the NFL – where a bounce of the ball here or a missed field goal there can turn seven-win seasons into 10 wins. Remember when the Seahawks got roasted by the Rams at home in Week 1 last season before beating NFC championship game participant Detroit on the road in Week 2? That can happen in this volatile, variable-filled league.

Second, there is a new coach in Macdonald, whose defenses thrived at Michigan and in Baltimore. Part of the reason Carroll got the boot was because he was a defensive-minded coach whose “D” was in the bottom fourth of the league in each of the past three seasons. The hope is that a new set of eyes and schemes can bolster the side of the ball that features Witherspoon, Williams and the returning Uchenna Nwosu, among others.

There are also a slew of young players who could break out. Perhaps it’s receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba, or left tackle Charles Cross. Or maybe cornerback Riq Woolen rediscovers the form that shot him to the top of the league’s interception leaderboard in 2022.

You never know in this league. Just like you don’t know who Schneider might pick in the draft, acquire right before the season or pick up at the trade deadline. Remember, dealing for Diggs in 2019 seemed to single-handedly turn the defense around that season.

But we do know a lot. There were no major personnel additions. Players such as Smith and receiver Tyler Lockett – entering his 10th season – might be past their primes. And that Seattle team that finished one game above .500 last year? It still gave up 38 more points than it scored.

This has been one of the busier, noteworthy offseasons in recent memory for the Seahawks. But it’s hard to say it was a productive one.

The start of the season is five months away. Not exactly close. As far as the distance between the Niners and the Seahawks? Not even a tiny bit close.