Three immediate impressions from the Seahawks’ 40-3 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday afternoon at Lumen Field:
They ‘got right’, all right
From an offensive perspective, here were the top three things we needed to see from the Seahawks against the Jets:
- A confident Russell Wilson
- A steady diet of DK Metcalf
- A healthy Chris Carson
They achieved all three. You can throw in all the “yeah, but …” caveats you want; that’s only fair when you play a team as historically bad as these Jets. Even so, this was an important game for the Seahawks to get right — to start the fourth quarter of the season afresh and show they learned some harsh lessons from last week’s embarrassing loss to the Giants.
Wilson did throw an ugly interception in the first half, giving him a career-high 12 interceptions this season. But he was clean the rest of the game, and sharp for most of the day, finishing with four touchdown passes — to four different receivers — to give him 36 this season, a new career high for him (and a franchise record). His fourth of the game came on a 3-yard pass to David Moore, after Wilson stepped out of a would-be sack and threw off one foot to find Moore in the back of the end zone, giving the Seahawks a 37-3 lead.
Overall, Wilson finished 21 for 27 for 206 yards with those four TDs, one interception and a passer rating of 122.6. Perhaps most importantly, Wilson looked comfortable and confident in the pocket again, after being so hesitant and unsure against the Giants. The Seahawks, no doubt, hope this is a sign that Wilson is inching closer to his September form.
Metcalf, a day before his 23rd birthday, gave everyone a scare early when he limped off the field with a right ankle injury. Fortunately for the Seahawks, he returned after getting his ankle re-taped, and then caught his 10th touchdown pass of the season on the first play of the second quarter. Metcalf became the fourth player in franchise history with 1,000-plus receiving yards and double-digit touchdowns in the same season (joining Steve Largent, Doug Baldwin and Joey Galloway).
Carson finished with 76 yards rushing and one touchdown on 12 carries — and, boy, do the Seahawks need him. Pete Carroll keeps saying it: He wants balance in his offense, and the best way to do that is with a healthy Carson. This was another encouraging step forward for Carson, and add in Carlos Hyde’s 66 yards on 15 carries, and the Seahawks hope they’re primed for a strong December surge over the next three weeks.
Adams sets record
Jamal Adams said it would be sweet to play against his old team, and sweeter still to set a sacks record against them.
Well, Adams got the win and he got the record against the Jets. Adams was credited with a sack of Sam Darnold when he chased the Jets QB out of bounds; that gave Adams 8½ sacks on the season, an NFL single-season record by a defense back since sacks became an official stat in 1982.
Credit to Seattle’s defense overall. Yes, the Jets’ Sergio Garcia missed three first-half field-goal attempts. But the Seahawks also dropped three interceptions — three EASY interceptions, including one by Adams in the first half — so let’s call that a wash. It didn’t necessarily feel like a completely dominant defensive performance, but the score says otherwise — and, yep, that’s all that matters. The Seahawks held the Jets to just 185 total yards — 3.6 yards per play — and the defense seemed to be at its best whenever the Jets got inside the red zone. This is what the Seahawks should be doing against the NFL’s worst offense — against a winless team — and yet they still deserve credit for their execution.
The Seahawks, at 9-4, move back into a tie atop the NFC West with the Rams, who, by the way, are scheduled to host the Jets next Sunday.
So the pressure’s on Seattle to keep it going, and that won’t be easy with another trip back East next week to play the surging team from Washington D.C.
As we write this, Washington is leading the 49ers in San Francisco early in the fourth quarter. This after Washington upset Pittsburgh last week, handing the Steelers their first loss of the season.
What did the Seahawks really learn from the loss to the Giants? We should find out more about that in D.C. against a Washington team built much like those Giants — a stout defense capable of shutting down just about anyone.