The NFL season starts on September 5th, and this year teams will start five rookie quarterbacks. One of those rookie quarterbacks will be the Seattle Seahawks Russell Wilson. His first start of the regular season will be against Arizona Cardinals QB, John Skelton. So, in the interest of competition lets compare the two quarterbacks and see which one will have the advantage week 1 of the NFL season.
We will look at the coaching staff, Receivers, offensive line, and opposing defense to see which quarterback has the better support from their team.
Coaching- Arizona Cardinals Head Coach Ken Whisenhunt v. Seattle Seahawk Head Coach Pete Carroll
This is a tough category both coaches have had success in their own right, but only Whisenhunt on the NFL level, Pete Carroll has posted 7-9 records in each of his first two seasons with the Seahawks and Whisenhunt has taken his team to the Superbowl. Pete Carroll seems to have his team on the rise with a focus on defense that has not been apart the franchise since well before Mike Holmgren took the team over at the turn of the century.
Carroll has spent his first two seasons with the team instilling a new philosophy that has the team and their fans on a whole new high. This new philosophy has a new QB that hopes to bring the team to its first Superbowl victory in franchise history. Seattle traded last years starter late in training camp and will go with its third QB in three years. In terms of consistency the Seahawks hope they picked their QB of the decade.
Whisenhunt’s traded for Kevin Kolb in 2011 and was unable to bring him to the level he was at under Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Andy Reid. So, Kolb is out and Skelton is in. Like the Seahawks, the Cardinals had a QB competition in camp and eventually made the decision to go with the underdog in week 1. Skelton started more games last year, so the decision to go with him was not as surprising as the Seahawks. Whisenhunt seems to know what he is doing a little more than Carroll for the time being, the Seahawks may have a better record at the end of the year, but Whisenhunt is still the better coach.
So, who has the Advantage?
John Skelton of the Arizona Cardinals. Whisenhunt, although his team is in a rebuilding year, Pete Carroll’s lack of success at the NFL level will having him losing this war time and time again, but by the end of the year the Seahawks could be singing a more successful tune.
Receivers- Top three
Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Roberts, and tight end Jeff King v. Sidney Rice, Braylon Edwards, and tight end Zach Miller
The wide receivers for the Cardinals seem to have the advantage at first notice, but if you look at the gap between the tight ends it might be enough to close the gap. Zach Miller of the Seahawks seems to have the advantage and with the release of Kellen Winslow by the Seahawks he will seemingly get a lot more touches than before. A lot of people would have loved to see a two tight end set from the Seahawks with Winslow and Miller, but I guess the Seahawks are going with Anthony McCoy. But in the end, Larry Fitzgerald is just too good, all of Seattle’s starters for this weeks game did not do anything last year do to injury or lack of productivity.
So, who has the advantage?
John Skelton of the Cardinals again. The Seahawks wide receivers were all hurt or didn’t contribute to the game. Larry Fitzgerald is a future Hall of Famer and the Seahawks will have to take that into account if they want to win the game this weekend. Over the years Fitzgerald has put Seattle to work, but look for Roberts to have a huge game if this Seattle defense can shut Fitzgerald down.
Offensive Line- Seahawks v. Cardinals
At first glance, the advantage goes to Seattle, Russell Okung as a left tackle pretty much tells the story. The Seahawks are looking for him and Max Unger to set an example and bring the Seahawks to new heights. Another Advantage Wilson will have, that Skelton does not, is his legs. The play action pass will come into use heavily and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the occasional option out of Carroll’s offensive playbook. Wilson’s legs combined with a healthy offensive line give Seattle this win.
Defense- Seahawks v. Cardinals
If you are a Seahawk fan you probably haven’t been this excited about a season since Holmgren left the team, but the weird thing is you actually have a reason to be excited. The Cardinals defense is not great, but it can play averagely, but they are just going to rely way to much on the offense to help them out. The Seattle defense has the mind set that they don’t even need the offense. They can win all by themselves and that is why Seattle has a huge advantage here.
Overall advantage-Russell Wilson Seattle
“Defense wins Championships” seems to be the way Seattle is thinking nowadays. If Wilson can keep from making mistakes, the Seattle defense will do the rest. Seattle fans have not seen a defense like this in its entire history. During week 1 of the NFL season they are probably going to give Skelton a heart attack trying to read their explosively fast defense. But, who knows? Stranger things have happened, Right?