The NFL is a "win now" league and no one understands that more than the Seahawks. Pete Carroll and John Schneider have just pushed their chips to the center of the table -- they are officially all-in this season. Fans have to love the commitment they showed in getting Duane Brown.
Did they pay too hefty a price? Well, by throwing in their second-round pick in 2019, that means the Hawks don't have a second rounder the next two years. Next year's second round pick belongs to the Jets after the Sheldon Richardson trade. Although, how's that working out for the "win-now Seahawks?" Pretty darn good. Richardson has been a force on the defensive line.
So when presented with an opportunity to give up another second round pick for a proven pro bowl lineman, I can see why Schneider didn't hesitate.
You hear people talk about a team's Super Bowl window. The Hawks' window may be as wide open as it's going to get over the next few years.
Look at their defense. That collection of stars isn't getting any younger. Plus, they're cashing some big checks on that side of the ball, which means this will likely be the last year they can keep all that high-priced talent together.
On the offensive side of the ball, Russell Wilson's escapability has allowed the organization to save money along the offensive line.
But as of this week, Wilson is the second-most pressured quarterback in the league. Schneider knows the penny-pinching in the trenches has come to an end. Center Justin Britt got his big contract and Brown will likely get himself a new contract in Seattle. The organization has to start protecting the player who's most important to their success: Russell Wilson.
As fun as it's been to watch the Seahawks' defense dominate in recent years, you have to admit it -- it's nice to see the team is willing to spend some money and make a commitment to the offensive line, a line that is traditionally the lowest paid in the league. Give that line credit. Their pass protection was much improved against the Texans, but when it came to the running game, Pete said his group got "knocked around." I think bowled over is a little more accurate. It was Seattle's version of The Running Of The Bulls on Sunday. The only thing missing on the offensive linemen were red bandanas.
But the addition of Brown fortifies that line and should pay noticeable dividends in both the running and the passing games.
Again, the move to get Brown shows the Seahawks are all-in. Just look at the rest of the NFC. It's wide open this season. One look across the top of the standings and you can see, there are no powerhouses. The Philadelphia Eagles seem to be the most complete team, sitting atop the conference with a 7-1 record. Over the next few weeks, they play the Broncos, the possibly Ezekiel Elliott-less Cowboys and the Chicago Bears. Throw in a bye week, and they could be 10-and-1 when they face the Seahawks at CenturyLink Field December 3.
The two-loss teams include the Hawks, Rams, Vikings, and Saints. And there are some three-loss teams that will make things interesting.
The conference is wide open, just like the Seahawks' window.