By Dave Thomas
An 0-2 start and yet there is little semblance of panic among the Seattle Seahawks. As for their fans, well, that might be a bit different.
After opening the season with back-to-back losses in St. Louis and Green Bay, the Seahawks hope the friendly confines of the Pacific Northwest the next two weeks (games with Chicago and Detroit) will be just what the doctor ordered. The first of those contests has the also winless Chicago Bears coming to Seattle for an afternoon tilt this Sunday.
Seattle Looking To Find Its Game
With back-to-back appearances in the Super Bowl the last two years, the Seahawks are once again projected to go deep into the playoffs this season.
That said, a little bump in the road the first two games of the season has not diminished such thoughts around Seattle. This despite the fact starting safety Kam Chancellor is just back in the fold after a lengthy holdout, starting running back Marshawn Lynch has been held in check for the better part of two games, and off-season acquisition Jimmy Graham is looking to find his role as the feature tight end after a number of stellar seasons in New Orleans.
When you start the season 0-2 and are looking to find your football legs, the answer might very well be playing one of if not the worst teams in your own conference.
Coming into the 2015 campaign, the Bears were not forecast to have a great season, a prediction they’re living up to only after two weeks.
Although they were competitive in a season-opening loss at home to rival Green Bay, the Bears were all but destroyed at home a week later by Arizona. In the process, Chicago lost starting quarterback Jay Cutler for at least a few games due to a hamstring injury. With Cutler on the shelf, the starting job goes to Jimmie Clausen, a quarterback not exactly ready to strike fear in the minds of opposing secondaries.
Chancellor Ends Holdout, Sees Practice Time
Having a limited Chicago offense to deal with could be good news for the Seahawks, a team missing one of their better players on the defensive side of the ball since the start of pre-season.
With Chancellor having missed practice and games, the Seahawks have been exposed at times in both their losses. According to Seahawks Defensive Coordinator Kris Richard, having Chancellor back in the fold will certainly make a difference, but just how long will it take him to come into game-shape?
As Richard noted this week, Chancellor has looked good in practice to date, though it is not definite on whether or not he will play Sunday against the Bears. It is also not known what the crowd reaction will be to Chancellor once he steps on the field. While he is one of the team’s better players, will fans be angry with him for having missed the first two games, two games that might have been wins instead of losses?
Meantime, Lynch saw only limited practice on Thursday as he deals with a calf injury. If Lynch is limited in his playing time or not able to go Sunday, look for veteran backup Fred Jackson to see a fair amount of playing time.
Back on the defensive side of the ball, middle linebacker Bobby Wagner (leads team with 19 total tackles) and corner Cary Williams (six total tackles, one fumble recovery) are expected to see action despite battling ankle and thigh injuries, respectively.
Mike Morgan, outside linebacker (hamstring)
Bobby Wagner, middle linebacker (ankle)
Cary Williams, corner (thigh)
Michael Bennett, defensive end (toe)
Kam Chancellor, safety (returned from holdout)
Tarvaris Jackson, quarterback (ankle)
Marshawn Lynch, running back (calf)
Tharold Simon, corner (toe)
Steven Terrell, safety (hip)
Dave Thomas has been covering the sports world since his first job as a sports editor for a weekly newspaper in Pennsylvania back in 1989. He has covered a Super Bowl, college bowl games, MLB, NBA and more. His work can be found on Examiner.com.