Our weekly look at where the Seahawks rank in key NFL statistical categories illustrate well how the passing game and defense have been the key to wins the last two weeks.
Time for our weekly look at where the Seahawks rank in major team statistical categories and assess what it means.
2016 — 357.5, 15th
2015 — 378.6, 4th
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Comment: After another good offensive game (354 yards against the Jets), the Seahawks keep moving up, having gone from 26th after week two to 19th last week and 15th this week.
YARDS PER PLAY
2016 —5.4, 20th.
2015 — 5.88, 5th
Comment: This number also continues to go up after a game in which Seattle had five plays of 24 yards or longer. Seattle was 29th at 4.7 per play after the week two loss to the Rams. Seattle has averaged 5.88 and 5.85 yards per play the last two seasons, the two best marks in franchise history.
2016— 93.0, 20th
2015 — 141.8, 3rd
Comment: If you are looking for a cause for concern, the rushing numbers would be it as Seattle is markedly down in both yards per game and attempt. Or, maybe it’s just a gentle shift in team personality — I wouldn’t say philosophy as I don’t think the Seahawks will ever not value greatly running the ball. But with Russell Wilson continuing to mature as a passer, Jimmy Graham becoming a big weapon — and Wilson not able to run as much the last few weeks — Seattle has obviously favored the pass of late. Seattle hasn’t averaged under 100 yards rushing in a game for a season since 2010, Pete Carroll’s first year.
YARDS PER RUSH
2016 — 3.3, 29th
2015 — 4.5, 7th
Comment: The Seahawks rushed for just 66 yards against the Jets and 2.5 per carry. Carroll didn’t sound worried about that noting that the Jets are a good run defending team that was “loaded up” to stop Seattle’s running game. So the Seahawks instead use their passing game to get the win. That said, it’s obviously strange seeing the Seahawks so low in this category. I’d expect the return of a healthy Wilson and playing some defenses that re more forgiving against the run to lead to bigger rushing days for the Seahawks down the line. The last time Seattle averaged as little as 3.3 yards per carry was 1984, the year Curt Warner got hurt in the first game of the season.
2016 — 264.5, 11th
2015 — 236.9, 20th
Comment: This number continues to go up and is now — believe it or not — at a pace that would set a team record. Seattle’s franchise high for passing yards in a game is 254.8 in 2002. It also reflects what has been Seattle’s shift to a bit more passing so far, with the Seahawks throwing it 57.2 percent of the time compared to 53.29 last season.
YARDS PER PASS
2016 — 8.0, 3rd
2015 — 8.3, 3rd
Comment: The big plays of last week contributed to another huge rise in this stat for the Seahawks, who were at 6.1 yards per pass and 27th after the week two loss to the Rams. The Seahawks averaged 8.5 yards per pass against the Jets.
2016 — 19.8, 22nd
2015 — 26.4, tied for 4th
Comment: Seattle moving on up in this stat, too, scoring 64 points the last two weeks after tallying just 15 the first two.
2016 — 264.0, 2nd
2015 — 291.8, 2nd
Comment: A few of the big plays in the first half allowed the Jets to 305 overall on the Seahawks and drop Seattle from first last week to second.
RUSHING YARDS ALLOWED
2016— 80.3, 6th
2015 — 81.5, 1st
Comment: After the disappointment of the fourth quarter against the 49ers, Seattle responded by holding the Jets to 58 yards on 20 carries — with a long run of 10 by Bilal Powell on a third-and-28 draw.
YARDS ALLOWED PER RUSH
2016 — 3.3, 4th
2015 — 3.6, 3rd, tied
Comment: On pace to be stingier per rush than last season when the Seahawks led the NFL in fewest total rushing yards allowed.
2016 — 183.8, 4th
2015 — 210.3, 2nd
Comment: The Jets passed for just 73 yards in the second half Sunday.
PASSING YARDS PER PLAY ALLOWED
2016 — 6.4, 5th
2015 — 6.6, 5th
Comment: Only one pass of longer than 20 yards Sunday in 41 attempts.
2016— 13.5, 3rd
2015 — 17.3, 1st
Comment: Take out that weird offensive fumble return for a touchdown and Seattle would have pitched a shutout in the second half Sunday. Due in part to that play and the two drives by the 49ers the previous week and the Seahawks are allowing 32 points in the fourth quarter this year compared to just 19 in the previous three quarters combined.