The first week of the 2022 NFL season was loaded with revenge games. These were games that were brought up between quarterbacks and their former teams. One of the big games of the week one was between the Seattle Seahawks hosting the Denver Broncos. This game was highly significant as Seattle traded nine-time pro bowl quarterback Russell Wilson to Denver for a significant package. It was clear that it was Wilson’s time to go with his beloved Seahawks, but tensions have been rising for the past few seasons between management and head coach Pete Carroll and Wilson. ESPN’s report from Brady Henderson indicated the toxic culture with the organization involving Wilson.
Wilson came into Lumen Field with a roar of boos from the fans as they knew it was time for a new culture for Seattle. While Geno Smith wasn’t the quarterback and leader many of the fans were hoping for, he was the quarterback they got. The Seahawks opened their season with determination as they marched down the field consistently behind an emotionally charged and highly efficient Smith and the defense ready to give Wilson the fight of his life. Seattle took an early lead and held on for a big 17-16 win.
Geno Smith, Seattle Seahawks, Get Last Laugh Over Denver
Geno Smith gets his time to shine for Seattle
After Wilson was traded to the Broncos, many fans of the Seahawks wondered who was going be the leader of the offense moving forward. While many thought it would be a quarterback from the 2022 NFL draft, management and coaches were destined to let the quarterback competition between Smith and Drew Lock. Smith took the first-string reps and never let go as he battled through tenacity. Finally, he made himself the starting quarterback for the season opener against Denver.
This was very much a revenge game for Geno Smith just as it was for Russell Wilson. Smith has been one of the disrespected quarterbacks in the 2022 preseason due to his battle with Lock. He had also been disrespected as if felt like the Seahawks were tremendously downgraded at quarterback in the eyes of NFL media. Despite the mutual respect and admiration for Wilson, there is no doubt that Smith and some of the offense have been feeling ill feelings about Wilson and his departure and willingness to leave.
Smith started off the game perfectly as he led the Seahawks’ offense with incredible strides and throws to his past catchers. While Denver locked down Seattle’s deep-threat receivers, Smith relied on his tight ends to extend drives for the offense. Smith completed 17-of-18 for 164 yards and two touchdowns in the first half. Smith had been contained significantly in the second, but he found ways to win with his legs or arm. Even though the offense was scoreless in the second half, Smith found ways to not turn the ball over and take time off the clock. Time will tell if Smith will be the quarterback of the future for Seattle. It is evident, however, that Smith was the most beloved Seahawk by the fans on Monday night.
Seahawks’ defense has the potential to take down high-caliber offenses
Monday night felt like a revenge game for Seattle’s defense and a constantly pressured Wilson, their former teammate to a losing performance. While the Seahawks’ pass defense was not perfect in holding some of Wilson’s efficient mid-range passes and screen passes, they held their own against a deep receiving core that included Jerry Jeudy and Courtland Sutton. Seattle locked Sutton down in deep-threat plays as he barely made an impact. Jeudy made most of his impact in yards after the catch. The Seahawks made Wilson extend his time in the pocket, allowing the defensive line to create some significant pressure despite only having two main efficient pass rushers.
Seattle’s defensive line didn’t get much penetration, but they had enough to pressure Wilson into some bad passes. The biggest accomplishment that Seattle’s defensive line had was shutting down the running game of the Broncos. They constantly stuffed the line of scrimmage as they made most of the run plays on the outside. They were also key in helping secure the two forced fumbles at the goal line for Denver. Seattle’s defense accounted for eight quarterback hits, two sacks and six tackles for loss.
Seattle after Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season
This was a key game for the Seahawks as they showed they are not the joke of the NFL. The jury is still out of them as a legitimate playoff contender. They showed they can have the focus and the talent to match up and take down playoff-level teams like Denver. The loss of Jamal Adams for the rest of the season will be play a part in the team’s success. There is no doubt that Seattle will enjoy this win over their former quarterback for the rest of the season. They will continue this positive mindsight this Sunday as they take on the San Francisco 49ers.