The Seahawks’ win in Cleveland was full of big moments that spanned the emotional spectrum from hilarious to devastating. Seattle waved “bye, bye, bye” to the haters with a TD celebration, but also possibly lost tight end Will Dissly for the second straight season. Most of all, Russell Wilson is generating national buzz.
Here’s what the national media are saying after the Seahawks improved to 5-1 with a 32-28 win over the Browns.
Let’s start with the best reaction of them all: *NSYNC rating the Seahawks touchdown dance.
The Ringer’s Robert Mays writes that Russell Wilson is the story of the NFL season — and MVP favorite.
“… it began to feel like we’d never see what he could really do. Until now. Because no matter what Wilson has been called in the past, there’s been only one way to describe him this season: the MVP favorite and best player in the NFL. … To watch Wilson right now is to see a quarterback completely in control—which is a feat for someone who moves around as much as he does. … The blend of high-level quarterbacking and borderline magical powers that Wilson displayed against the Browns is the same elixir he’s been brewing all season. … The Seahawks are now unmistakably Russell Wilson’s team, and for the first time, people are understanding how great that team can be.”
Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer says Russell Wilson would get his MVP vote if the season ended today.
“As it stands now, Seahawks QB Russell Wilson would probably get the edge for me over Watson for MVP. And one reason why is that 20-6 deficit in Cleveland today felt like nothing for an offense that doesn’t really have another skill player who’ll keep the defensive coordinator up on Saturday night. So much of it is Wilson himself, and how he rubs off on his teammates.”
In his grades for CBS Sports, John Breech gives the Seahawks a B+ and the Browns a C.
“Russell Wilson might not be putting up Patrick Mahomes-type passing numbers, but he is quietly having one of the best seasons of any quarterback in NFL history through six weeks. Wilson has been nearly perfect this season, and that perfection continued for Cleveland. … The biggest surprise in this game for the Seahawks is that Wilson didn’t have to do everything by himself. … Freddie Kitchens’ popularity level in Cleveland might fall below Hue Jackson’s after this loss. In a game that the Browns led 20-6 at one point, Kitchens basically coached Cleveland out of any chance to win this game with multiple bad decisions, especially in the second half.”
ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio writes that Wilson is forging a path to the MVP and the Seahawks to home-field advantage.
“This year, he’s arguably playing better than any other quarterback, and if he keeps it up he very well could become the MVP. More importantly the Seahawks could end up forcing the road to Miami through Seattle, which will make a return to the Super Bowl more likely.”
Yahoo Sports’ Frank Schwab calls Russell Wilson the best value in the NFL.
“The Seahawks are 5-1. If they didn’t have Wilson, it’s fair to wonder if that record would be flipped. Wilson is the very definition of valuable. The Seahawks have made some odd organizational decisions, but it doesn’t matter because Wilson erases so many mistakes. … MVP awards aren’t given out after six games, but Wilson has built a good foundation through Week 6.”
In his Football Morning in America column for NBC Sports, Peter King thinks the Seahawks are a “formidable” team with Jarran Reed’s return on the horizon.
“Seattle is 2-for-2 in Eastern Time now, with Eastern games at Atlanta, Philly and Carolina left. This is a formidable team, and they’re never out of it with Russell Wilson in charge. And now the Seahawks get a valuable and rested piece back for their defensive front—Jarran Reed, suspended for the season’s first six games—just at the right time. The Ravens come to Seattle next Sunday as the most dangerous rushing team in football.”
David Moore was one of three special teams players of the week, while Browns receiver Dontrell Hilliard earned a goat of the week nod in King’s column for letting the game-sealing interception go through his hands (despite the 74-yard kick return earlier)
“Seesaw game in Cleveland. Punch-drunk teams by the end. Just under three minutes left, Seattle up 32-28, Cleveland ball at its 20. Baker Mayfield throws to a fairly open Hilliard … and the ball, right on target, squirts through Hilliard’s hands directly to Seattle linebacker K.J. Wright. … Would the Browns have been able to drive for the winning touchdown? We’ll never know, but Hilliard’s error was huge. …
“Sometimes, a blocked punt takes more than just a strong rush. It takes smarts to figure out which hole to burst through. That’s what Moore did in the second quarter at Cleveland, Seattle down 20-9. Playing almost a roving inside linebacker before a Jamie Gillan punt in Cleveland, Moore picked a hole near the right guard, ran through it, and smothered the Gillan punt. That led to a Seattle field goal in the Seahawks’ 32-28 win.”
SBNation’s James Brady says it’s the 49ers’ turn to be the bullies of the NFC West.
“The Seahawks had their run of being the most-feared team in the division when the Legion of Boom was running the show. The Rams took over that mantle when McVay came in. Now it’s the 49ers’ turn to the bullies in the division.”
The Browns and Freddie Kitchens earned the honor of the week’s dumbest mistake from SBNation.
“Despite the ball looking like it had crossed the plane before the fumble, the refs said the fumble happened beforehand and the Browns couldn’t advance it. Cleveland got a chance to replay the fourth down, but just as a Chubb looked like he would saunter into the end zone, Kitchens called a timeout and asked for a review on the fumble. Chubb was stuffed and Jadeveon Clowney clearly got a hold of the Chubb’s facemask in the process. Not that the refs threw a flag.”
The officials upheld the call, Kitchens lost his challenge (foreshadowing!) and then he … ran the same play that the Seahawks were now ready for:
Colin Cowherd calls out Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield for his poor judgement costing Cleveland the game.
Nick Wright said Russell Wilson is separating himself in the MVP race and called Mayfield a “turnover machine” on FS1’s morning show.