A defensive line featuring Jadeveon Clowney, Ziggy Ansah and first round pick L.J. Collier has, somewhat surprisingly, been one of the few underperforming units on an otherwise excellent Seattle Seahawks squad.
While coach Pete Carroll foresees brighter days on the horizon, they are at least getting strong production from a somewhat unlikely source: veteran defensive end Quinton Jefferson.
“He’s playing ball,” coach Pete Carroll commented on Monday. “He just continues to do stuff every week. He’s really fundamentally sound, and well versed. He does so many things right, in the program a long time, knows what’s expected of him. [He’s] done a great job of finding his style of play, and the way that best suits his abilities. He just continues to be a really good player for us, and making things happen every week.”
Jefferson started the season off with a bang, recording two sacks and two passes defended against the Bengals in Week 1. He’s continued to play well since then, and is leading the team with seven quarterback hits on the season after getting to Jared Goff twice last Thursday.
Jefferson is now in his fourth NFL season, and his second as a regular contributor on defense. He is only one sack away from tying his season-high, and his 12 combined tackles are halfway to the 25 he posted last year.
The Seahawks are also getting solid production from Rasheem Green and Branden Jackson as well, which helps alleviate some of the concern about Ansah and Collier’s slow starts.
Once those two round into form, and the team gets Jarran Reed back from his suspension, the pass rush could quickly go from a weakness to a strength.