Seahawks' offense leads way in win vs. Packers


One of the most dominant Super Bowl champions in recent history showed how much better they can get.

The Seattle Seahawks ran through the Green Bay Packers 36-16 Thursday night with their offense leading the way. They treated one of the prime NFC contenders like also-rans. It's only one game, but it's a result that could echo in January when playoff seeding is decided.

Coach Pete Carroll's defense is not going away, and they did their part to hold the Packers to 255 yards. Heading into the fourth quarter, the Packers were averaging only 3.5 yards per play. They didn't give up big plays, and they didn't miss tackles. We expected all that, but the big takeaway Thursday: The Seahawks' offense could be just as dangerous this season.

The Seahawks didn't punt until the second half, and only punted twice in the entire game. They pushed Green Bay around up front, and kept the Packers off balance with their play calling. We see Seattle's potential offensive improvement coming from three prime areas:

Offensive line: Guard James Carpenter looked like a different player Thursday, mauling the opposition. Marshawn Lynch had huge holes to run through all night, and ran over defenders when he needed to. It sounds strange, but Lynch looked quicker and more explosive than he did for much of last season. The line's effectiveness showed up in everyone's carries: Percy Harvin and Robert Turbin combined for 68 yards on 10 carries. The Seahawks ran for 207 yards. Translation: It didn't really matter who was running for Seattle. Speaking of which ...

Percy Harvin: The offense is going to run through him. He had 11 touches for 100 yards in addition to his kick returns. The Seahawks are a different team when Harvin is healthy. Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell doesn't get enough credit for his creativity, and we get the sense the Seahawks are just getting started taking advantage of Harvin.

Russell Wilson's third-year growth: Sure, he had a 2013-looking box score. Wilson didn't need to throw more than 28 times and Harvin was the only wideout to gain more than 40 yards. But Wilson's quick decisions on third downs kept drives going, and he hit on three "chunk" plays of at least 24 yards. There are a lot of reasons to believe the Seahawks could get better, and it starts with Wilson continuing his development into a top-shelf quarterback.

The Seahawks were the youngest Super Bowl champions ever by some measures, and they have the look of a team that is still growing. That's a scary thought, because they already have the habit of making other contenders look clueless.

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