The Seattle Seahawks don’t look like a playoff team through six weeks, let alone the group that reached the last two Super Bowls from the NFC.
Despite their 2-4 record after Sunday’s loss to the Carolina Panthers, Seattle’s offensive playmakers at least provided impressive fantasy numbers for owners relying on a late-afternoon boost. Russell Wilson, Marshawn Lynch and Jimmy Graham all turned in solid fantasy performances in what was otherwise a dismal performance from Seattle.
Here is a look at their final totals and some reactions for each player.
Carolina sacked Wilson four times in Sunday’s loss and forced him to run for his life on seemingly every dropback. That is a concern for fantasy owners who are hoping he stays healthy all year, especially since Football Outsiders ranked the Seahawks offensive line dead last in the league in pass blocking through five weeks.
Health concerns aside, unless you are in a league that penalizes quarterbacks for taking sacks, the fact that Wilson has to scramble on a consistent basis opens up fantasy scoring opportunities. His legs make him dangerous, and he already has 251 rushing yards in six games.
What’s more, the pressure is not forcing him into crippling mistakes, with only three interceptions on the season.
Wilson boasts a trustworthy track record with more than 3,000 passing yards and at least 20 touchdown tosses in each of his first three seasons. The fact that Seattle’s defense appears vulnerable this season has also forced the Seahawks to air it out more often in the early going.
In fact, Wilson has thrown at least 30 times in four of his team’s six contests this year, which has provided him with opportunities to rack up consistent fantasy production. He will continue to do so in 2015, regardless of his team’s record.
Seattle’s offensive line has been better in the rushing attack, as Football Outsiders ranked it 13th in the league through Week 5.
Still, that hasn’t resulted in big numbers for Lynch. Sunday’s 54 rushing yards were his most since he posted 73 in Week 1. At least, he finally scored his first touchdown of the year, which rescued fantasy owners from another lackluster outing.
Lynch’s track record, with six seasons of more than 1,000 rushing yards and double-digit touchdown totals in each of the last four years, is why he is largely considered to be one of the best players in the league. However, that doesn’t do fantasy owners any good in 2015.
Lynch dealt with injury problems earlier this season and is 29 years old, with more than 2,000 carries in his career. Perhaps the wear is finally taking its toll on the star.
Fantasy owners should give Lynch the benefit of the doubt as he gradually becomes healthy, given his past, but the mediocre offensive line, age and workload concerns are causing owners to hesitate for the first time in years.
Speaking of trustworthy track records, Graham topped 1,200 yards in two of the last four seasons and posted double-digit touchdown totals three times in that span.
He took some time to grow accustomed to his new role in a Seattle offense that doesn’t spread the ball around as much as Drew Brees used to for the New Orleans Saints, but Graham finally looked like his superstar self in Sunday’s contest.
What’s more, his 12 targets were eight more than anyone else on the team saw, and Wilson trusts him when plays break down because of poor protection.
Like Lynch, Graham should earn the benefit of the doubt in fantasy circles, especially at the tight end position, which doesn’t have as many consistent contributors as running back and wide receiver. The fact that he finally looked like the superstar fantasy owners have seen in recent years is more reason to insert him into your lineup every week.
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