Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Week 2: Atlanta vs Hawks

Well, I'm 1-0 so far (although I suppose a fairly disappointing 1-0). I have a lot of confidence going into this game. Let's see why...

Atlanta Falcons: 1-0
2004 Away Record: 4-4

Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck (246 yds, 2 TDs, 2 INTs) vs Michael Vick (156 yds, 0 TDs, 1 INTs, 68 yds rushing)
As you will soon be able to tell, I'm not a huge Michael Vick fan. He threw one 58 yd pass last week. Guess what that means? Every other pass wasn't able to push him over 100 yds. If Vick wasn't able to run like a banshee he would be one of the five worst QBs in the entire NFL. Of course, he can run like a banshee, and will be able to make some serious plays against our young linebacking corps. Matt Hasselbeck had a terrible game (especially the second half) and yet still managed to almost throw for 250 yds and 2 TDs. What does that mean, especially against a Falcons team with a mediocre secondary? Advantage: Seattle

Running Back: Shaun Alexander (73 yds) vs Warrick Dunn (117 yds)
The running game revolves around Vick, Dunn, and TJ Duckett, helping Atlanta become the #1 running team in the year last season. Considering how they absolutely never throw the ball effectively, this is a facet of their game that has to be above par. Shaun gained 73 yds against a great Jacksonville defense while Holmgren forgot about him. He will hit 100 yds this week. Still, when up against the triple threat of Atlanta... Advantage: Atlanta

Quick, name a receiver for Atlanta who would be a starter on most other teams in the NFL. Waiting... waiting... Michael Jenkins is the only one who would even be a #3. I suppose if I count Tight Ends, then Atlanta has a terrific one in Alge Crumpler, but if the TE is the #1 target for a mediocre quarterback, that's a very bad sign. Bobby Engram was great last week, and we only had the one Bannister drop. This isn't even close. Advantage: Seattle

Offensive Line:
I would love to go with Seattle here, but Atlanta was the #1 rushing team for a reason. Chris Gray was a huge weak link for us and I have some concerns until Womack returns. Advantage: Atlanta

D-Line: I would like everyone to know that our defensive line actually performed very well against the run last week. We held Jacksonville on several third and one opportunities, which is such an improvement over last year. Still, they generated absolutely zero pass rush, which allowed a mediocre quarterback to find open receivers. If that happens again, Vick might actually look good. As for the Falcons, Patrick Kearney looked fantastic last week against the Eagles, but their run defense isn't as good. Overall, I find a slight Advantage: Atlanta

Linebackers: Tatupu had a very good first game. Sharper had a very good first game. DD Lewis had a very bad first game. Ed Hartwell and friends again have a slight Advantage: Atlanta

Secondary: Some idiots have tried to say that our secondary had a terrible day. Those people weren't actually watching the game against Jacksonville. You can't cover people for 10 seconds, and you can't control linebackers missing coverage. Atlanta is missing Kevin Mathis for the season. You might be able to control that one week, but it will catch up to them. Big weak link for Atlanta. Advantage: Seattle

Special teams: Well, we didn't suck last week, but not enough to still give a solid Advantage: Atlanta

Prediction: This game comes down to our run defense. If we control Atlanta, this game is easy. Even if we are mediocre (Philly allowed 200 yds rushing) we have a great shot. Atlanta looks very bad on offense and gave up a lot of yards on defense. They are going across country to play a home opener against a team looking for respect. This game should easily be Seattle's. If not, it's time to start being concerned. Seattle by 10.

posted by Gavin @ 11:09 AM  0 comments


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