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Russell Wilson's Absence Reveals Skeletons in Seahawks' Closet

Russell Wilson was able to cover up a lot of flaws in Seattle when he was healthy. Now the Seahawks have nowhere to hide their mistakes and misdeeds in developing their football team.
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It's almost October 31, so you know I'm going with a Halloween bit. It's unavoidable, just like the Seahawks' fatal truths.

When someone has "skeletons in the closet," it usually doesn't mean the closet in their master bedroom is literally full of osseous matter. Rather, it alludes to an embarrassing or damning fact about them that could tarnish their reputation or good standing.

Seattle has plenty of skeletons. Russell Wilson's absence has made them abundantly clear. There is no more "hiding the bodies" in the basement like your favorite serial killer thriller. It's time to get everything out in the open: the Seahawks aren't a very good football team without Wilson.

To some, that's a "no, duh" statement. We all know how valuable Wilson is to this franchise, especially when he is playing and putting the entire team on his back and leading them to victory time after time. It's even more apparent now that he is on the sidelines for at least one more game. If there was ever any doubt that Wilson was the engine that made this Seahawks organization go, that is now dead and buried.

The Seahawks relied on Wilson too heavily in the past. Now, those sores are as open as a zombie wound. 

The offense, for starters, is a shell of itself. It, too, is in zombie mode. Before Wilson's injury, the Seahawks were averaging 351 yards of total offense and 24 points per game. Under Geno Smith, they are at 264 and 15, respectively.

Wilson's season-high for passing yards is 320 against the Titans. Seattle has yet to top 165 without him. 

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With the team unable to pass as effectively, its offense has become one-dimensional. The only problem is that running back Chris Carson has not played since October 3, and Alex Collins is hot and cold in his stead. The Seahawks ran into a buzz saw of a run defense in the Saints on Monday night, and the results were as expected—3.2 yards per carry. 

The offensive line resembles the monster of Dr. Frankenstein, patched up and stiff. Left guard Damien Lewis missed the latter half of the team's 23-20 overtime loss in Pittsburgh and did not play against New Orleans. Ethan Pocic has played just 14 offensive snaps all season. Swing tackle Cedric Ogbuehi was just released.

Four-time Pro Bowl selection Duane Brown has not missed a snap this year, but he is looking grayer than he did in years prior. Pro Football Focus confirms that, slapping him with a grade below 60 in three of his last four games, including a dreadful 42.0 grade in pass blocking on Monday. To make matters worse, the line has allowed 10 sacks in the last two games alone, though several of those should be credited to Geno Smith.

While the defense played well on Monday against the Saints, they are still far from perfect or even average. Although they allowed just 13 points to the Saints, they made some critical mistakes down the stretch that led to their eventual demise.

This team is 2-5, as well as 0-3 in games where Wilson did not play a full game. With how dominant the Cardinals and Rams look, the Seahawks are not going to defend their division title and their playoff chances as a whole appear bleak. 

Previously flawed Seahawks teams have been able to make the playoffs and even win a playoff game or two. Wilson was able to cover a lot of sins and stuff a lot of Seattle's skeletons in the closet. 

Now, they've all come tumbling out for the whole world to see. There is no amount of makeup or costumes that can dress up the holes in this team at the moment.