There will be a little less Skittles on the sidelines at Seattle Seahawks games his season. Marshawn Lynch retired during the Super Bowl in February and will be eating Skittles from his couch in 2016. It was a special career for Lynch, which saw him enjoy one heck of a run with the Seahawks. Lynch made a thunderous statement during the playoff game against the New Orleans Saints, where he busted off a long, bruising touchdown run which registered a small earthquake in the area due to crowd noise. Life was never the same for Lynch again, in a very good way.
The Seahawks have had plenty of success since that game, including a blowing win over the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl. Seattle will find out what it’s like without Marshawn Lynch. There aren’t too many people that can replace Lynch, but Thomas Rawls showed something when he was given the time.
Rawls rushed for 830 yards on 5.6 yards per carry. That is some impressive stuff, and now he will get the opportunity to be the feature back in Seattle. Rawls will get to operate with Russell Wilson, who is entering his fifth season as a quarterback in the NFL. It feels like it’s been longer than that, but Wilson has accomplished a lot in his short in Seattle. Wilson has been a great quarterback, right from the get-go coming out of Wisconsin. There were questions about his arm strength and his size, Wilson responded to all doubts with a Super Bowl ring.
People want to point to the Seattle defense, which I admit has been the MVP of the Russell Wilson era. However, Wilson cannot be overlooked as one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Wilson threw 10 interceptions in his rookie campaign, but hasn’t hit double-digits since then. In his last three seasons, he has passed for an average of 27 touchdowns and an average of 8 interceptions. That is what you call much more than a game manager.
The Miami Dolphins will travel all the way from one side of the country to the other, which could be the longest flight between NFL teams. The Dolphins are hoping that it all comes together for them in 2016. Tom Brady is suspended for the first four games, this is their opportunity to rise up and make the Patriots have to think about another team in the division. The Dolphins have been stockpiling talent on the defensive front. They have had a fairly strong defense, but they’re looking to turn up another notch in 2016.
The Dolphins would love to etch out the same kind of identity that the Seahawks have made for themselves over the last five years. It really is time for the Dolphins to make a run at the Patriots. We’ve heard all of the talk for years, and now they have to finally do it.
Miami Dolphins vs. Seattle Seahawks NFL Betting Odds:
vs. Seahawks -10.5(-105)
Odds provided by Bovada.lv
Dolphins vs. Seahawks Pick:
The Dolphins handed over a Brinks truck to Ndamukong Suh when they signed him. Have they made good on their investment thus far? Nope, dare I say, Suh looked like a player taking plays off at times in 2015. When you played the Detroit Lions with Suh, he struck fear into the eyes of opposing defenses. I didn’t see that too much with him in Miami. Suh did start to play much better later in the season, so I would be surprised if he doesn’t have a big season. He Dolphins have talent on the back-end in the secondary with Reshad Jones, who threatened the team with a holdout in the offseason. Jones is a much better player than he gets credit for, as he accumulated 135 tackles and 5 interceptions in 2015. In other words, Jones is on the brink of turning into a superstar in the NFL. If he has another season like that, people will start to take note.
Seattle should have a decent team in 2016 but they are not going to revert back to the same team they had against the Broncos and Patriots in the Super Bowl. They are causalities of the salary cap, as they have been figuring out how to spend their money wisely. The position to be weary of is the Seahawks’ offensive line. If Rawls doesn’t produce much, it is probably more of a reflection of the talent he has on the offensive line to run behind. The Hawks starting left tackle, Bradley Sowell has made twelve starts in four years. He has spent time between different teams and on practice squads. Their center is a converted tackle, Justin Britt. Starting at the guard positions are two fifth-round selections from the 2015 draft, with Mark Glowinski the only one with a start under his belt. And now the Seahawks’ first-round selection in the previous draft, Germain Ifedi is dealing with a high-ankle sprain.
I fully expect Russell Wilson to be doing his best to perform magic on the field with his legs in 2016. I believe more than ever, Wilson is going to have to be the main attraction on the Seahawks. The Seahawks will be playing in the trenches against an adequate front-seven, and will have to deal with Ndamukong Suh. Suh was quiet in 2015, but he should be able to make some more plays this season. I expect a chip on his shoulder. I like the Seahawks’ defense, but this is a heck of a lot of points to give a team that is dealing with a work-in-progress offensive line. You are going to see multiple line combinations between now and the winter on the Seahawks. Catching double-digits, the Dolphins appear like a solid bet. Seahawks win, but it won’t be clear sailing on Sunday in Seattle.
PICK: DOLPHINS +10.5 (-115)