3 Reasons the Seattle Seahawks Can Still Win the NFC West in 2018

Los Angeles Rams, Jared Goff, Todd Gurley, Sean McVay
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Reason No. 1: Don’t Crown the Los Angeles Rams Yet

Andy Benoit tabbed two teams to finish ahead of the Seahawks this season — the San Francisco 49ers and Los Angeles Rams.

The Niners may be close, but more than a few accounts suggest head coach Kyle Shanahan’s squad is at least another year away. Benoit’s included. Therefore, with the Arizona Cardinals in rebuild mode, the only legitimate threat to challenge a possible Seahawks divisional run is L.A.

The Rams stole the divisional crown from Seattle last season, thanks largely to then first-year head coach Sean McVay, who prevented quarterback Jared Goff from descending further into “bust” status, propelled running back Todd Gurley to MVP-like levels and rode that offensive momentum to the top of the NFC West with an 11-5 record.

Sounds great for Los Angeles, right? And after a slew of offseason powerhouse moves — such as grabbing wide receiver Brandin Cooks and bringing in defenders Ndamukong Suh, Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib — the Rams appear to be about the closest thing to a “Super Team” we’ve seen in the NFL for quite some time.

But history proves otherwise.

Super Teams rarely flourish in the NFL, especially during the modern salary-cap era. The 2000 Washington Redskins were one such example. So were the 2011 Philadelphia Eagles. Both teams were dubbed a “Super Team,” in one way or another, and both ended up finishing with 8-8 records those seasons. Far from the likes of a conference powerhouse.

Mark Maske of the Washington Post described the challenges:

The potential upside is that Cooks gives Goff a game-breaking receiver to make the offense even better, Suh teams with Donald to form an impossible-to-block middle of the defensive line, and Peters and Talib smother opposing receivers to the point that Phillips can dial up anything he wants on defense. That could be a Super Bowl-winning formula.

But McVay and Phillips now face the considerable task of making it all work, of keeping all the personalities and egos in check to form a cohesive and fully functional team. If the Rams fail, it could be a spectacular failure indeed.

Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman’s July 2018 article sheds even more light on the subject.

It’s important to understand the context the Seahawks find themselves in this season. Sure, the Rams are the team to beat on paper. Yet so were those Redskins and Eagles.

Therefore, envision a scenario in which the Rams also finish 8-8 this season. And if the Niners are a year away from serious playoff contention, all one has to consider is how much more wide open the NFC West truly is than initially thought.

Next Page: No. 2

6 Comments

  1. It is ok to vote MMQB opinions. BUT it is imperative to remember that those opinions are of a micro-relevance because MMQB and others of that sort are almost always wrong such how they predicted that the Eagles and MVP Foles stood no chance against the Patriots. And they would have been correct except for those many missed penalty calls on illegal Eagles plays. But the bottom line is the Eagles still won the Super Bowl and MMQB was all wrong again.
    Seattle has just as good a chance to compete for the championship than any team, even with MMQB citing what they believe are reasons why Seattle or any other will fail to win out.

  2. LOL at “Still”. The season hasn’t even started yet! The upcoming season bears a lot of resemblance to the Seahawks’ 2012 season, and I’m optimistic the next 3 seasons will turn out in a similar way to our last SB run. Anyone dismissing Seattle as a contender this year hasn’t been paying attention, and I’m looking forward to the “experts” trying to rewrite history (again) when they’re proven wrong (again). It’s a great time to be a Seahawks fan. =D

  3. The defense lives or dies on its d-linemen stopping the run and putting pressure on the opposing QB. I don’t see reason for that optimism so far. The offense must control the clock and not fall behind in scoring to make this run-emphasize offense be relevant. I again don’t see that happening often. Misdirection and read option plays will be the key to winning. 6-10 if Wilson stays upright; 3-13 if he goes down early in the season. Wish we had those two picks back!

    • JoeB just watch the starting units during the first two preseason games. If not for a total ticky tack call on Dissly we start with two scoring drives. Earl has to come back and when he does he solidifies the back end and our new pass rush is going to be powerful. See Green 3 sacks and Clark really getting into game shape. Jordan will return and be a force so the playoffs are coming this year. The ground game will explode with the one two punch of Penny and Carson and if Procise is back he can be a huge factor. Marshall better than Graham in the entire field and red zone. Chin up or are you even a fan of the Hawks? Trolling.. probably

      • Not a troll. Just a semi-depressed fan. Here’s hoping that your predictions are right and the pieces come together.
        I’d rather be awful for a few years while reloading new talent, like in 2010-12. Just not a slew of 8-8 seasons.

  4. The Seahawks have outstanding athaleets! They need to find ways to play together and make the player next to them even better!!! Robinet

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