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Danny O'Neil covers the Seahawks for The Seattle Times.

August 19, 2012 at 10:31 AM

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Three things we learned: Seahawks 30, Broncos 10

Exhibition games aren't tests. More like progress reports, as it's not the results that matter nearly so much as the team's readiness for when the regular season begins.

With that in mind, here are some observations from Saturday's game:

1) You can't proclaim Seattle's pass rush fixed.
At least not yet. The Seahawks had a single sack for the second consecutive exhibition game, and for all the playing time rookie Bruce Irvin got, he didn't spend all that much time near the quarterback. He did get one clear pressure, knocking the quarterback down, and he showed his speed in chasing plays down from behind. He didn't show much in terms of getting around blockers, though. The Seahawks didn't play Jason Jones, the defensive tackle they're expecting to be a big part of their nickel pass rush, and August isn't the time teams typically put their best pass-rush plans on display. But given all that, it's worth noting that pressure hasn't been a big part of Seattle's defense so far.

2) Seattle's offense is again off and running.
Marshawn Lynch looked great in the quarter he played, gaining 32 yards on his five carries. The rest of Seattle's backfield didn't look too bad either. Seattle finished with 228 yards rushing, their most in any exhibition game since at least 1999. It was only the second time since that year Seattle had gained more than 200 yards rushing in an exhibition game. As a sign of progress, consider that Seattle's 228 yards rushing wasn't all that far off the August exhibition total in Pete Carroll's first year as coach when the Seahawks totaled 284 yards in their four exhibition games.

3) The Seahawks are in fact deeper this season.
Seattle held Denver to a single first down in the second half of Saturday's exhibition game, and the Seahawks have outscored their opponents 38-14 in the second half so far this month. So what's so significant about Seattle winning the battle of substitutes? It speaks to the depth of Seattle's roster, which in turn speaks to the Seahawks' ability to survive injuries. It was only two years ago that Seattle made five changes to its roster after the cut down to 53 players. Now? The Seahawks are going to face some tough decisions about who to cut, and expect to see some players Seattle cuts land elsewhere in the league.

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