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Washington Football Previews For 2015 Covering The Most Popular NFL And NCAAF Teams In The State

In the Evergreen State, the state’s two major college teams are hoping that past successes grow again for each in 2015. Meanwhile, the state’s only NFL team is trying to once again reach the Super Bowl after a painful trip there back in February. If you are a Washington sports betting fan, you might consider laying down a small wager for Seahawks to win the NFC west again. The odds are about 5-1 right now.

Washington Huskies 2015 Football

After one year of the Chris Petersen era, the Washington Huskies have hopefully crested with a six-win season and are enroute to bigger and better things for the 2015 college football season. However, the first order of business is to settle on a quarterback. Whoever takes over, whether it’s redshirt freshman K.J. Carta-Samuels or Jake Browning, a true freshman, will need to get up to speed quickly. One positive in that growth pattern is that there will be plenty of throwing options.

The top two threats are Jaydon Mickens and Dante Pettis, with Mickens having good enough speed to be used on the end around. Still, the depth took a hit with the season-ending knee injury to John Ross. At running back, Dwayne Washington returns after gaining just under 700 yards last season to lead the Huskies in rushing. He’s got both the size (6-2, 220) and speed (four TD runs of 50+ yards) to make things happen.

One problem on this side of the ball will be the offensive line, which only returns a single starter, left guard Dexter Charles. The others looking to fill in the blanks have experience, but right now it falls under potential help. Much the same can be said of the defensive line, which lost enough people that a shift to the 3-4 is in the works. Key players to watch will be Jaylen Johnson, Taniela Tupou and Elijah Qualls.

Linebacker will also be depleted as only Travis Feeney returns to the starting lineup, and the secondary will have super sophomore Budda Baker after a strong first season that saw him finish with 80 tackles. Given the many question marks, if the Huskies are able to reach a 2015 bowl game, they should be consider it a good season.

Washington State Cougars 2015 Football

After sliding to a 3-9 mark in 2014, the Cougars are hoping that Mike Leach’s fourth year is like Year Two, which ended in a bowl berth. Before that happens, however, Washington State needs to bolster the team’s depth and hope the newcomers gel quickly. Luke Falk was a pleasant surprise as a redshirt freshman, closing out the year by averaging over 300 yards and two touchdown passes per game. He’ll again have the starting backfield of Gerard Wicks and Jamal Morrow, and even though Leach is known for his passing teams, he has to adapt more running schemes.

That’s because the receiving area sustained some big losses, but does welcome back Gabe Marks, who sat out last year. In 2013, Marks led the team with 74 receptions and 807 yards. Dom Williams figures to be his on-field partner in this department. Departures and injuries might make things sketchy on the defensive line, so linebackers Peyton Pelluer and Jeremiah Allison will need to up their game to keep opposing offenses honest.

In the secondary, no one really stands out, but incoming junior college transfer Shalom Luani could become a huge asset at safety.  Like their in-state rivals in Seattle, simply getting to .500 or above would mean that Washington State’s season was a success. Given the overflow of 2015 bowl games, that could mean a spot in one of the low-level clashes, but the team could just as easily fall apart as they did during the 2014 campaign.

Seattle Seahawks 2015

One errant pass in the final minute of the Super Bowl prevented the Seahawks from entering the rare atmosphere of back-back titlists. Getting to the Ultimate Game is never easy, especially with the rising payrolls that come with success, so there’s no guarantee that the 2015-16 season will be more of the same.

Head coach Pete Carroll will welcome back quarterback Russell Wilson, who just signed a huge new multi-year contract. Wilson has had a magical pro career thus far, but if he goes down at any point during the year, the Seahawks are in major trouble. That’s because Tavaris Jackson, whose marginal career won’t excite anyone, is scheduled to be the backup signal caller.

For the running game, Marshawn Lynch isn’t paid to talk, he merely chews up yards on the ground. He’s getting to the point of where perhaps the wear-and-tear of all those carries may start taking a toll, but for right now, he’s still among the best. He’ll be aided by the return of Derrick Coleman at fullback. Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse return as the incumbent receivers, but players like Chris Matthews and Tyler Lockett figure to challenge them. Matthews had a huge Super Bowl effort, while Lockett’s a rookie with excellent hands.

However, the biggest addition will be tight end Jimmy Graham, who was obtained from New Orleans. He plays like a wideout, but gives the Seahawks a huge body to throw at regularly. The offensive tackles, Russell Okung and Justin Britt, have plenty of talent, but Okung needs to stay healthy. Meanwhile, the middle of the line could have some question marks.

Seattle lost their defensive coordinator Dan Quinn to the Falcons, but there’s still an ample amount of talent up front, led by defensive end Michael Bennett. The linebackers are also a solid group, led by Bobby Wagner, but the Legion of Doom in the secondary is pretty much intact. The trio of Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas get plenty of publicity, but it’s definitely earned. Given the relative weakness of the NFC West, the Seahawks should win the division again, and stand an excellent shot at a third straight trip to the Super Bowl.