Thursday, August 18, 2011

Seahawks Face the Vikings in Preseason Home Opener

(Photo Courtesy of @RGray525)

By Wyatt Lyles

This Saturday, the Seahawks will be taking on the Minnesota Vikings in their second preseason game. Coming off of their 24-17 win against San Diego, the Seahawks will be looking to make it 2-0 for the preseason thus far.

In the first game, the starters, if they even played, did not play all that much. In this game, look for the starters to play a lot more. Coach Carroll went on 950 KJR this morning and said that Tarvaris Jackson will play a full half in the game. This is great news since we didn’t get a good feel of him last Thursday. With him playing a whole half, we’ll be able to get a much better gauge of his paying ability. While a lot of people are still skeptical of his ability, I think that he will be able to do well for us.

With Jackson playing a half, that means the 2nd half will most likely be split in half with Charlie Whitehurst and Josh Portis. Over the last week, reports coming out of camp have been very positive for Whitehurst. It looks as if he may actually be getting better after all this time. It will be interesting to see if that translates in the game on Saturday.

Even though Pete named Jackson the starter early on, he knew that at some point down the line, there was going to be some competition between Jackson and Whitehurst. He just didn’t expect it to come all that fast. But with Whitehurst starting to look better, Pete even admitted that the competition may be coming up here soon. Jackson is still the starter though. He will start game 1 of the regular season.

All this talk about Whitehurst getting better may be a bit premature, however. Last preseason, he passed pretty good, but that didn’t translate over to the regular season when he had to fill in. So he tends to be better in the preseason when it doesn’t really count. It’s still possible for there to be some competition between him and Jackson, which is going to be interesting to see how that goes.

Saturday will be the first time that Sidney Rice will officially take to the field in a Seahawks uniform since he did not play last Thursday. I’m really excited to see how he does out there. We can finally see if that $41 million was worth it. It will also be nice to not only see how Rice does, but see how the combination of Rice and Mike Williams does. Will it be something that only looks good on paper? Or will it really be as great as we all hope it will be? I’m saying it’s going to be the latter, but we’ll have to wait until Saturday to know for sure.

We should also be able to see more of “Beast Mode” AKA Marshawn Lynch this Saturday. I’m very interested to see if this is going to be a big season for him. I have a feeling it will be, but only time will tell.

Saturday will also be the first game for newly signed safety Atari Bigby. This was a pretty good pickup for the Seahawks as he will add a veteran presence to our secondary. Right now, our starters at safety are pretty young, so Bigby will be able to give them some leadership and guidance. Only thing about him is that he needs to stay healthy. So be on the lookout for him to see how he does with injuries in this game and games to come.

Russell Okung suffered an ankle injury in last Thursday’s game, which was a big blow to the newly minted offensive line. At first, there was some worry about this being another high ankle sprain, but it was confirmed by Coach Pete that this was not the case. Okung has been seen at practice doing some minimal work, so it’s looking pretty good. He may be back as early as the season opener. In the meantime, though, it will be interesting to see how the offensive line does in his absence. Will Tyler Polumbus be able to fill his spot? We shall see this Saturday.

All in all, Saturday will be a great since we will be able to get a nice long look out of our starters. Will they start to gel and smoke the Vikings? Or will there still be some kinks to iron out that will make them look rusty as they did in the first two series last week? At halftime on Saturday, the answer to the this question should be apparent. Let's hope it's the answer we're all hoping for.

For those who don't know, I'm Wyatt Lyles from I'll be writing here periodically as part of a new partnership that our sites have worked out. So feel free to go check out our site, and I hope you all like my article!

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