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Matthews, Graham could be Seahawks red-zone stars

Fair warning to the rest of the NFC: The Seahawks' biggest 2014 weakness figures to be a team strength this season.

Seattle's pivotal Week 11 loss at Kansas City highlighted the passing-game's failures in the red zone. With no size or physicality at wide receiver and tight end, the offense was too reliant on Marshawn Lynch's power and Russell Wilson's elusiveness in the compressed area in front of the goal line.

That won't be a problem this year with three-time Pro Bowl tight end Jimmy Graham and surprising Super Bowl XLIX star Chris Matthews poised for major roles.

Stationed at training camp in Renton, NFL Media's Steve Wyche noted that Matthews is mixing into the rotation with Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse on the first-team offense.

The Seahawks unveiled a "jumbo" package featuring Graham, Matthews and No. 2 tight end Luke Willson in red-zone drills, Wyche added.

This is a scary thought for opposing defenses geared up to stop Lynch.

Even if Matthews' questionable speed and shaky route running leave him in the No. 3 role, he showed a huge catch radius and a knack for winning at the catch point in the Super Bowl. Those attributes are perfectly suited for red-zone success.

Graham's late-season fade while playing through a painful shoulder injury should not obscure his status as the game's dominant red-zone receiver when healthy and motivated.

Flip on NFL Game Pass and watch BrownsPro Bowl cornerback Joe Haden clinging to Graham's legs like a toddler in Week 2 of 2014.

Wilson now has the luxury of throwing to a 6-foot-7 tight end and a 6-foot-5 wide receiver after struggling to connect with a bevy of pocket-sized targets in the end zone last season.

That major upgrade in red-zone weaponry is one of many reasons the Seahawksremain the team to beat in the NFC.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast debates whose stock is up and whose stock is down after the first week of training camp.

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