The Seahawks begin their regular season on Sunday in Denver. The team got some good news this week with the return of holdout Earl Thomas.
KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel talked with Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick about Thomas and the outlook for the Seahawks this season.
Thiel said there's still a chance the Seahawks could trade Thomas, but he will likely play otherwise this Sunday. Thomas had been holding out for a contract extension and more pay. That remains unresolved.
As far as the season goes, Thiel cautioned fans not to expect too much. He pointed out the team has a lot of young players in key defensive roles, trying to fill the shoes of departed stars like Richard Sherman, Michael Bennett, Kam Chancellor and Cliff Avril.
"This time, this season, the offense is going to have to carry the Seahawks," Thiel said.
"That means a lot of pressure on Russell Wilson. The offensive line is going to have a real challenge."
"I see trouble early on in the season. They've got four of their first five games on the road. The young guys are going to be on a steep learning curve in critical positions."
"I see them getting better in November and December but I don't see them getting much beyond 8-8, which is likely not going to be good enough for the playoffs. But that's what happens in transition years."