How can the Seahawks continue to run the football with the right running game?
This is the question the Seahawks must answer, especially after a lackluster effort in the passing game and a disappointing loss to the Titans on Sunday night.
Seattle has struggled with the running game in the past two weeks.
The Seahawks went scoreless in their first five possessions and allowed 15 rushing yards in that span.
Seattle’s run defense is far from ideal.
It ranked 29th in DVOA against the run in 2016 and 21st in 2016.
The team needs to find a way to improve on that stat.
The defense was supposed to be a major strength.
The offensive line, with Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch, is one of the best in football.
The run game was supposed be the engine behind the defense.
The Titans showed they could be more than that in their win.
Wilson’s 11 carries were the most by a quarterback since 2011.
The running back group struggled on a couple of plays.
Seattle went three-and-out on three of Wilson’s carries and failed to score on any of them.
Seattle also lost the starting job to a veteran.
Russell Okung is now the starter after Wilson’s injury.
The move will be costly, though, as the Seahawks are on pace for the fourth-lowest rushing offense in the NFL.
Wilson is the team’s most important player and the one most likely to be injured.
His health could be the biggest issue.
Wilson played just two games after suffering a knee injury on the final drive of the first half against the Bills on Sept. 29.
Wilson has struggled this season.
He was sacked 19 times in those games.
The Bills, in particular, were able to get a lot of pressure on Wilson with two running backs on the field.
Wilson completed just 15 of 31 passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns.
Wilson hasn’t played in two straight games after missing four weeks with a concussion.
He has not played since Nov. 1 because of a knee issue.
He is one week away from a two-game suspension, which could end his season.
The injury also hurt the Seahawks in the running back battle.
Wilson and Lynch combined for 71 yards on just 15 carries in Sunday night’s loss.
It was the second time this season that the Seahawks were unable to score from the field and the second straight loss for Wilson, who had 14 catches for 146 yards in the previous four games.
Wilson was also limited in the secondary with rookie free safety Kam Chancellor (ankle) and rookie safety Brandon Browner (ankles) both questionable.
It will be interesting to see how the Seahawks handle the running backs again.
It could be difficult for the team to keep both of them on the sideline in the first game of a back-to-back.
It also could be a difficult test for Wilson to be effective when his starting job is in jeopardy.
Wilson may have lost the battle against the Titans’ ground game.
The defensive line struggled to stop Tennessee’s ground game, yielding 431 yards on 39 carries.
That was the most yards per carry by a Tennessee running back since 2012.
The unit struggled to force the Titans into mistakes with its pass rush, giving up just eight sacks in the game.
Wilson also was pressured six times on the season, the most in the league.
That will be a challenge for the Seahawks if he is unable to run as effectively as he has in the two games since his injury.
Wilson had a solid game against the 49ers.
He scored a touchdown on his first carry and completed 12 of 21 passes for 130 yards.
Wilson finished with 14 yards on four carries.
It took a few big plays for the running team to get into the end zone, but Wilson was able to run for a first down on his second attempt.
Wilson missed two chances to score in the fourth quarter.
His touchdown run to tight end Austin Hooper gave the Seahawks a 17-14 lead with 4:54 left in the third quarter.
Wilson then rushed for his first score with 1:24 remaining in the quarter.
It would be Wilson’s final touchdown pass of the season.
Seattle finished with 631 yards of offense.
The 49ers averaged 4.7 yards per rush and were unable on the ground to hold the Seahawks to just 6 yards on 24 carries.
Seattle did manage to keep Wilson off the field on two occasions with Wilson injured and playing through a concussion, but he didn’t appear to be on the sidelines in the second half.
The offense struggled to get going in the final quarter and eventually was able only to take a field goal.
The loss will not hurt the team that much.
Seattle had two losses in three games after going winless in its first three.
Wilson wasn’t expected to be the main threat.
He had just seven carries for 23 yards in three appearances after suffering his first concussion.
Wilson suffered a concussion on Sept 18 against the Rams.
He returned for the final two games but played only 18 snaps in the remaining two contests.
Wilson will have