Regardless of how the Seahawks handled the preseason QB "competition", few can watch the Seahawks last preseason game versus the Cowboys and come to a conclusion that Drew Lock should be the starting quarterback going into week 1 of the NFL season. Reasons why Lock struggled and didn't look completely comfortable in the offense is a whole other discussion, but based on what we saw in the dress rehearsal leading into the NFL season, Geno should be the starter for when Denver comes to town.
A tough situation for Drew Lock to be in, as he was primed to be Russell Wilson's replacement when he was the QB coming back to Seattle in the big trade with Denver. After a bright start to his young career, he struggled in his last 2 seasons, which prompted Denver to look for a new QB1. And with the Seahawks seemingly needing a QB because of shipping away Russell Wilson, it seemed as if the job was Lock's to lose. However, it never really played out that way as Geno has a strong connection in the locker room and his risk averse style is much more complementary to Pete Carroll's brand of football. Drew Lock's redemption against his former team apparently will have to wait.
Then there's the Geno Smith side of the story. His first real opportunity to lead an offense by default and not by injury or other circumstances since he was on the Jets, and his first game happens to be against the guy he's been backing up for 3 years. By all accounts, their relationship was a positive one, but Geno will still be feeling the need to prove himself. Playing against the guy that the Seahawks used to have and traded away means the two will be compared all night.
The big story of the night, and undoubtedly what most NFL fans will be paying attention to, is the return of Russell Wilson to Seattle. With all of the drama over the past 3 seasons about wanting more involvement in the offense, or at least an offense that better utilizes his capabilities, he finally got his wish and got his move to a younger, more offensive minded head coach who will build the team around him. Now with him in the place he wanted to be, there can't be any more excuses...is Russ still the playmaker he used to be? Has he slowed down athletically? Can we ever expect MVP form to return? Is he still a top 5 QB? Fans will be eager to find out.
Of course then there's Pete Carroll, the 70 year old defensive head coach who traded away his star QB and who now believes he can still win with his backup...It wasn't a secret that Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson did not exactly see eye to eye on the pathway to success when Russell was still in Seattle. And just like Russ got what he wanted, Pete now has what he wanted as well: a team centered around a strong running game and defense with a QB who doesn't take risks. The final judgement can't be made just from one game but it is quite a first game in the new era, only time will tell who was right and who 'won the breakup' between the two.
So many story lines to follow week 1 for both sides, as there always is with players and coaches on new teams, but the NFL scheduling team really wanted to make sure all eyes would be on this one with as much on the line in a week 1 matchup that I have seen in recent memory.