Seahawks fans got a good look at Geno Smith last season as he started three games while Russell Wilson’s hand was injured. Much of the country hasn’t seen Smith starting for an NFL team since the 2014 season, though. Tonight they’ll meet the new Geno Smith as Seattle hosts Denver on ESPN, and he’s totally different than the previous version.
When he first entered the league, Smith was an aggressive but reckless passer who threw more interceptions than touchdowns in his first two seasons. Since that time Smith’s game has done a total 180-degree turn, though. Now Smith excels at taking care of the ball and taking what the defense offers.
Speaking with reporters after Friday’s practice, Smith explained how his game has grown out of its hero-ball phase.
Wearing a “We Believe” tee in team colors, Seahawks QB Geno Smith emphasizes his focus on “protecting the football” is how he’s changed since 2014 Jets. “I don’t have to make every play. I don’t have to play ‘hero ball.’” pic.twitter.com/QGchxgu4gh
— Gregg Bell (@gbellseattle) September 9, 2022
Playing this brand of conservative, mistake-free ball won’t win you a lot of championships, but it certainly won’t hurt Seattle’s chances. During the preseason Smith didn’t record a single turnover-worthy throw and he wound up with the second-highest PFF grade of any QB with more than a handful of dropbacks.
If Smith gets support from a quality running game and the defense is as good as we expect it to be, this Seahawks team is going to surprise a lot of people.