Diagonal Guru: Most Unlikely Season Ever?

MIAMI — Not even the most optimistic saw it coming.

The signs were clear. They traded their starting quarterback Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos. They released the linebacker and future Hall of Famer, Bobby Wagner.

The Seattle Seahawks were flush with draft capital, and they were betting on youth and the future. A year of transition was coming up in Seattle. Or at least that’s what we thought…

But ten days have passed, and despite the recent loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Seahawks are the leaders of the NFC West.

We are living the most improbable season in history.

Such is the case that not even Las Vegas fully understands the Seahawks. They gave the 2 1/2-point favorite Arizona Cardinals to them, the Seahawks destroyed them. Tampa Bay has been a mess all year, and yet they were three-point favorites against Seattle.

And so since we get confused with the Seahawks, I don’t blame the betting line makers either, because it’s hard to understand something that has never happened before.

geno smith should win the Comeback of the Year award, regardless of whether Saquon Barkley runs for 2,000 yards. I say this because while we’ve seen quarterbacks who have failed with other teams, and then found their way with another franchise, we’ve never seen such a precipitous slump followed by such an improbable rise as Smith’s.

After coming out of West Virginia University, where he made it clear he had great talent, he lived through pure frustration in his early days in the NFL, and when I say early I mean 7 years!

He threw 21 interceptions in the only full season he played in his rookie year with the New York Jets and it was clear he wasn’t processing the information fast enough.

In his sophomore season, he played in 14 games and showed some flashes, but ended up throwing 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. It may sound curious, but Smith had never thrown for more touchdowns than interceptions in any season in which he started at least four games until this season.

He always had talent, but he found maturity late in his career.

In 2015, he got into a fight with teammate IK Enemkpali in the locker room over a $600 debt, and the defensive lineman broke his jaw, forcing him to miss nearly three months of action.

By the time he was able to return, Ryan Fitzpatrick had already taken his job. Since then, he’s played just one more starting game with the Jets. He went through the New York Giants and Los Angeles Chargers, with only one combined start between the two teams.

And then he came to Seattle.

Against the odds, Smith is first in the NFL with 72.8 percent of his passes completed, second in passer rating and has thrown 17 touchdowns against just four interceptions.

An unprecedented sporting resurrection.

In the first week of action this season, Smith completed 17 of his 18 passes in the first half, and Seahawks fans were chanting the name “Geno.”

However, beyond the great level that his quarterback had shown in the small sample, the chant seemed more like a message to Russel Wilson, who was the quarterback of the rival Broncos.

After beating Denver, Smith said, “I’ve been written off before, but I never lost confidence.”

Smith has a complete opposite personality to Wilson. He takes risks and is very outgoing when it comes to talking to the press.

That’s why the fans and Pete Carroll have supported him in an incredible way, and at the same time that has had an impact on the confidence with which Smith has played; It is worth clarifying that Smith is not a game manager, but rather he takes risks, and that makes the campaign he is having even more incredible.

The impact Wilson has had on coach Pete Carroll’s motivation cannot be underestimated either.

It is known that things did not end well between the two. While Wilson wanted more prominence and credit, Carroll wanted Wilson to understand that his defense and running game were his DNA. They both had a point, and they never saw things through the same prism.

That exchange of words continues even in the middle of the season after Carroll said the following:

“In years past, the quarterback didn’t always follow his wristband for plays. This year, we’re following the plan, and the results are showing.”

To which Wilson replied, “We won a lot of matches without a wrist brace.”

Carroll has renewed motivation to show they can win without Wilson, and he’s always been a great teacher of young players.

Wilson’s departure was predictable, and in retrospect considering the Broncos’ quarterback hasn’t looked good this year, it seems like a big turnaround for the Seahawks, who piled on draft capital going forward.

In the past, I’ve been very critical of the Seahawks for their poor drafts… CJ Prosise, Germain Ifedi, Ethan Pocic, L.J. Collier, Lano Hill to name a few chosen players in years past. Overall, since 2013, overall bad first-round and second-round picks and some questionable trades.

But all that bad trend changed this offseason.

Not just because of Wilson’s departure, but because Seattle had one of the best drafts in recent memory.

A team is usually lucky if it has three immediate contributors as rookies. In the case of these Seahawks, there are five rookies, who are not only contributing, but also look like potential stars.

It’s not normal for two rookie offensive tackles to bring sudden stability, as they have Charles Cross Y abraham luke, who have started all the games. In fact, they’re the first rookie duo to start a team’s first nine games at tackle since 1982.

Kenneth Walker is a tackle-breaking machine, and he has the perfect blend of patience and aggression. If he stays healthy, he’ll be one of the best running backs in the NFL eventually.

And if we talk about high school, Tariq Woolen he is second in the NFL with five interceptions, one returned for a touchdown. Coby Bryantmeanwhile, is first in the league with four forced fumbles.

Seattle has a historically good draft class.

But make no mistake, as much as I consider these Seahawks one of the more unlikely stories, it’s time to start taking them seriously.

In an NFC that doesn’t have an opponent to fear, Seattle allows itself to dream. After all, the Philadelphia Eagles have only one loss, but their schedule has been benevolent and Jalen Hurts He has no playoff experience. The Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings are interesting, but both have gaps that are hard to explain, and we don’t quite trust their respective quarterbacks. Tampa Bay and the Green Bay Packers are down as are the defending champions Los Angeles Rams, and perhaps the San Francisco 49ers are the most playoff-ready on paper.

Wilson’s departure awakened a new hunger in Carroll, who looks younger than ever at 70, and the Seahawks are buying what he’s selling.

Seattle is the best story of the season, and a team that is easy to love.

A new era has begun in Seattle, which won’t have as high draft picks as they thought, but in the meantime they are enjoying the moment and dreaming big.


*Local teams are in second place

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Diagonal Guru: Most Unlikely Season Ever?