The Seattle Seahawks open their 2014 NFL preseason schedule against the very team they beat in Super Bowl XLVIII -- the Denver Broncos.
Clare Farnsworth of the Seahawks' official website wrote about the upcoming match between the two teams on Aug. 7:
"As Russell Wilson completed a short pass to Doug Baldwin, rookie middle linebacker Brock Coyle was in position to make the tackle -- but didn't, because the Seahawks don't tackle during their training camp practices.
"As Wilson was preparing to throw another passs to Baldwin, defensive end Cliff Avril got around rookie right tackle Justin Britt and reached in with both hands to indicate he was going to sack the quarterback -- another thing the defense is not allowed to do in practice.
"So it's not surprising what's atop Dan Quinn's want-to-see/need-to-see list in Thursday night's preseason opener against the Broncos in Denver.
"'The No. 1 thing that I'd like to see is where we're at tackling,' the Seahawks' defensive coordiantor said. 'For the whole spring and training camp, you've really had to use your imagination on, 'OK, what kind of tackle is going to happen here?
"'So this is our first chance to really go and get the tackling in.'
"And it comes in a rematch with the team the Seahawks took down 43-8 in Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb. 2. Nothing that happens on Thursday night can alter the significance that victory had on (a) franchise that had waited 37 seasons to win its first Super Bowl; or soften the impact of the loss of the Broncos' offense that was the highest-scoring in NFL history last season.
"But it is the next needed step for two teams that are again among the favorites to represent their conferences in the championship game next February."
"Seahawks strong safety Kam Chancellor realizes teams will try to emulate the Seattle defense, but Chancellor says it can't be done.
"The Denver Broncos, who the Seahawks play in their first preseason game Thursday night at Denver, beefed up their defense in the offseason by signing cornerback Aqib Talib, defensive end DeMarcus Ware and safety T.J. Ward.
"After being dominated by the Seattle defense in Super Bowl XLVIII, a game the Seahawks won 43-8, did the Broncos try to copy what beat them?
"'I'm sure it's very impactful,' Chancellor said. 'Teams are probably trying to imitate us and do what we do, but I don't think it's possible. You can go get guys our size and our speed, but you can't teach the heart side of it. You can't teach the want-to. Guys here have the want-to.
"Chancellor also believes the Legion of Boom secondary has made an impact in another way when he was asked if the LOB's aggressive play influenced the NFL's decision to call defensive holding more aggressively this season.
"'A little bit,' Chancellor said with a chuckle. 'The league will have their rules -- the extra touching rule (beyond five yards of the line of scrimmage), the holding rules and whatnot.'
"Chancellor said the Seattle coaches make sure the players are prepared for (the) changes.
"'One thing we do here is emphasize what the league is dishing out,' Chancellor said. 'When they started with the helmet-to-helmet contact, our coaches explained to us what it was, how not to do it and the proper way to do it.
"'Now the coaches are doing the same thing with the illegal contact, showing us the proper way to to do it in man coverage. I think guys are adjusting to it and practice is going well.'"