The Seahawks have six safeties on their 90-man roster, and Saturday night each made plays to help the team capture its seventh consecutive preseason victory in a home-opener romp over the Broncos.
There’s “safety in numbers,” the hypothesis that, by being part of a larger physical group or mass, an individual is less likely to be the victim of a mishap, accident, attack or other bad event.
Then there is the number of safeties on the Seahawks’ 90-man roster who are capable of making life miserable for opposing quarterbacks, receivers and other assorted ball carriers. That was never more apparent after the havoc dished out in Saturday night’s 40-10 romp over the Denver Broncos by Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas, the starters; Jeron Johnson and Chris Maragos, the backups; and DeShawn Shead and Winston Guy, who comprise the third unit.
Who’s the blame? That would be coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider, and they should have taken a couple of curtain calls after the Seahawks preseason home opener at CenturyLink Field.
Think about it, when Carroll and Schneider arrived as an almost package deal in 2010 to rebuild a roster that had produced nine victories combined in 2008 and 2009, none of the safeties who pinned so much mayhem on the Broncos were even around. The 2010 NFL Draft delivered Thomas (14th pick overall) and Chancellor (fifth round). In 2011, Johnson was signed a rookie free agent and Maragos was added to the practice squad after being released by the San Francisco 49ers and then signed to the 53-man roster. Last year, Guy was drafted in the sixth round and Shead was signed as a rookie free agent.
Against the Broncos, Shead helped finish what Chancellor started, and the others did their parts to varying degrees in and around Chancellor making 11 tackles in the first half and Shead intercepting a pass in the end zone with 4 minutes left in the game.
“That was just us doing our thing, playing as we’re capable of playing,” Thomas, the All-Pro free safety, said in the locker room after the Seahawks had won their franchise-record seventh-consecutive preseason game. “It’s a good group, and we played well tonight.”
That they did, starting with Chancellor, the strong safety who played in the Pro Bowl after the 2011 season and has produced 90-plus tackles in each of the past two seasons.
Facing future Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning and the Broncos’ No. 1 offense in a much-anticipated exhibition between a pair of playoff teams from last season, Chancellor had seven tackles in the first quarter – before the bout became a rout. Then, in a five-play sequence to open the second quarter, the 6-foot-3, 232-pound Chancellor made three more tackles. He stopped running back Ronnie Hillman after a 1-yard gain; again after a 3-yard gain; and then teamed with middle linebacker Bobby Wagner to drop Hillman after a 2-yard gain.