GLENDALE, Ariz. — It wasn’t the end to the season the Seahawks wanted.

But the ending itself was what they needed, rousing wins over Detroit and Arizona by a combined 89-59 and scoring on all but three of 22 drives, games that seemed to indicate that maybe Seattle really hadn’t been that far off all along and could, maybe, blame most of it on Russell Wilson’s injury.

Consider that Seattle finished with a plus-29 point differential, losing five games by 3 points or fewer.

More

That doesn’t feel good in the moment, to be sure. But those looking for some optimism about the future — regardless of whatever rumors of big change might be out there — need look no further than the last few games.

On to the grades.

Quarterback

Wilson had two uncharacteristically bad plays that led to 14 Arizona points, and to his credit, he took full blame afterward. But he also threw for three TDs and ran the ball tough a few times — more assertively than it feels like we’ve seen this season. He also finished the year with a 25-6 touchdown-to-interception ratio and a 103.1 passer rating that is better than his career rating of 101.8. The rumors of Wilson’s demise might have been a little overstated.

Grade: B

Running back

Man, Rashaad Penny!!!! His 190 yards was not only a career high but the kind of game against a quality opponent in a tough setting that added that much more validity to all he has done the past month. The question is no longer if Seattle will re-sign Penny but simply when it will get done.

Advertising

Travis Homer played the third-down back role and had a 23-yard reception in the second quarter to pick up a third down.

Grade: A

Receiver

After a quiet last two weeks, Tyler Lockett again had a big game in a stadium where he has often had them, with five receptions on five targets for 98 yards and two touchdowns. Lockett finished with 27 fewer receptions than a year ago — 73 — but with a career high 1,175 yards and an average of 16.1 per reception. DK Metcalf, continuing to battle a foot injury, had five catches on 11 targets for 58 yards. And Freddie Swain again just found himself wide open for a 25-yard TD. If there’s a disappointment, it’s that Seattle got little out of Dee Eskridge this season — he didn’t have a target Sunday.

Grade: A

Tight end

Seattle was without Will Dissly, the team’s best blocking tight end. But the Seahawks overcame that to rush for 202 yards that was the most allowed by Arizona all season — the Cardinals gave up just 45 last week against Dallas. Colby Parkinson had two catches for 14 yards, a career high, in helping fill the void. One downside was Gerald Everett dropping a sure touchdown pass.

Grade: B

Offensive line

The much-maligned offensive line ended the season on a really high note as Seattle not only rushed for 6.7 yards per attempt but also gave up just one sack. Granted, that was a big one, on the second play of the game, though Wilson took some blame for trying to make something out of nothing. Phil Haynes got the second start of his career, and first at right guard in place of the injured Gabe Jackson (he started last week at left guard) and again appeared to acquit himself well. So did rookie right tackle Jake Curhan, who might have made himself a big part of the team’s future with his play the past month. And credit Ethan Pocic for locking down the center spot the second half of the season.

Grade: A

Defensive line

Here’s maybe all you need to know — Seattle had a season-high five sacks, all from the defensive line. Carlos Dunlap, continuing his second half renaissance, had two while Poona Ford had 1.5, Kerry Hyder one and Darrell Taylor 0.5. Dunlap finished with 8.5 sacks to lead the team. Taylor and Rasheem Green had 6.5 each. And while the Seahawks were without Al Woods, who was on the COVID-19 list, the Seahawks held the Cardinals to just 38 yards rushing on 12 carries in the first half to set a tone for the game.

Grade: A

Linebacker

With Bobby Wagner out with a knee injury, snapping a streak of 62 straight starts dating to 2018, the Seahawks got solid play out of its linebacking corps, particularly from second-year player Jordyn Brooks, who tied a team record with 20 tackles and set a team record for tackles in a season with 184. Cody Barton, who filled in for Wagner in the middle, finished with 12 while also ably handling the play-calling duties. This was a game that really could have gotten away from Seattle early but didn’t thanks to the way the defense played, allowing just three points to Arizona’s offense in the first half.

Advertising

Grade: A

Secondary

First, we must mention the heart-wrenching scene that was the injury to Quandre Diggs, who is now a free agent. The hope is the injury — a dislocated ankle and broken fibula — won’t impact his market and that he can return to Seattle.

With Ryan Neal on the COVID-19 list, the Seahawks started Ugo Amadi at strong safety, where Jamal Adams began the season. Seattle also used Josh Jones in nickel formations at safety, with Amadi then moving to the nickel spot. Jones finished with 10 tackles. Arizona had just one play of longer than 20 yards, indicative of the secondary playing Pete Carroll’s “bend but don’t break” defense to a tee.

Grade: A

Special teams

Punter Michael Dickson didn’t get much work, with just two punts. But he downed both inside the 20 to finish the year with 40 to set a team record. Jason Myers made his only field goal attempt and had touchback on five of his seven kickoffs.

Grade: A