While it's easy to bury the Seattle Seahawks now, it's probably worth a look back at last season.
The Seahawks are 2-3 after a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. Last year, they started 3-3. After that 3-3 start, the Seahawks lost two more times: A four-point loss at Kansas City on Nov. 16, and when Malcolm Butler picked off Russell Wilson a yard short of a Super Bowl title. That's it. After 3-3, they had 11 wins and two losses. Worth noting.
Also, you can make a case that the Seahawks could easily be 4-1 this season. They led in the final minute of regulation in two of their three losses. If the Rams don't get a long touchdown after a Seattle defensive back fell down and Tyler Eifert doesn't make a circus catch for the Bengals in the final two minutes Sunday, the Seahawks are about where we thought they'd be, with just one loss at the Green Bay Packers.
But, of course, the Seahawks are just as close to being 1-4. The Detroit Lions, who were inches away from taking a late lead and got hosed on a non-call on the same play, think so anyway.
Maybe the Seahawks bounce back, but at this point you have to wonder if something is truly off with this team. The fearful Seahawks defense has had its moments, for sure, but was also that crazy Calvin Johnson play away from blowing second-half leads in four games this season. Andy Dalton might be having a fine season, but it's still alarming that the Seahawks allowed him to put together four scoring drives in the fourth quarter and overtime to overcome a 24-7 lead.
The offense has had its issues. The fact that the Seahawks couldn't put away a 17-point fourth-quarter lead is on the offense, too. Seattle had two first downs in its final five drives, from the last play of the third quarter through overtime. Just a few more first downs and the game is over, and Seattle couldn't do it. Not having Marshawn Lynch played a role in that. But it also doesn't seem that easy to explain away.
The offensive line isn't good, and Russell Wilson will eventually tire of having to make defensive linemen miss every play. Still, Jimmy Graham isn't a big part of the offense. And the defense doesn't look so scary anymore.
The Seahawks can turn things around and make a Super Bowl. That's what they did last season after three early losses. There's still a lot of talent on the roster. But something seems off about this team. Until further notice, the Seahawks can't be considered contenders anymore. However, they'll always be lurking, just like last year at about this time.
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Xia Dian Lu, Licheng Qu, Putian Shi, Fujian Sheng, China