It’s no state secret that the weakest link in the Seattle Seahawks championship chain is its offensive line. While it might be easy to write off problem areas when you win the Super bowl by 35 points it would be foolish to downplay just how much the unit struggled in 2013.
Russell Wilson has one year left on his rookie contract. His cap hit for next season is roughly $800,000, making him one of the best deals in the NFL. Protecting that value is paramount for the future of the Seahawks franchise: in some ways it’s even more important than winning individual games. If you don’t believe me just look what happened to the Washington Redskins last year when Robert Griffin III was hobbled with knee issues which began in the 2012 playoffs.
The Seahawks may have broken the camel’s back, but Griffin was already in bad shape thanks to his constantly playing hero Michael Vick circa 2004 ball. Despite having one of the better offensive lines protecting him, Griffin likes to scramble. Why? Beats me, but I assume it’s because he’s just not a very good passer.
Wilson is, however. He knows better than to risk a serious injury by diving for a few extra inches. When Wilson scrambles, he does a great job of either getting out of bounds or sliding to protect himself, as you’ll see in this clip from his Badger days:
Unfortunately he doesn’t have the luxury of Washington’s pass protection so he has to dash around like a hunted animal every time the pocket collapses on him without warning.
Improving Wilson’s protection is a big deal and Tom Cable certainly has his work cut out for him in 2014. Each Wednesday we’re handing out grades to different personnel groups, and this week it’s the offensive line’s turn. I’ll be judging them based on pass protection and run blocking. Bad news coming after the jump…