A sampling of national-media reaction in the wake of the Seahawks' 26-15 victory over the Eagles at CenturyLink Field. "If NFL teams weren't frightened by the Seahawks before, they should be now," one wrote.
The Seahawks appear to be settling in, injuries notwithstanding.
Seattle put together a 26-15 victory over the Eagles on Sunday at CenturyLink, a win that further cemented the Seahawks’ status as one of the best teams in the league and burnished Russell Wilson’s MVP credentials. Thomas Rawls returned to action and was effective, which is a good thing with C.J. Prosise getting hurt after a promising start to his day.
The Seahawks (7-2-1) also had a little fun, with Doug Baldwin throwing a touchdown pass to Wilson.
It all added up to another impressive win and bolstered Seattle’s Super Bowl dreams. FiveThirtyEight.com now lists the Seahawks as its Super Bowl favorite. The national media had plenty more to say about the Seahawks after their big win. Below is a sampling:
Peter King of Monday Morning Quarterback named Baldwin one of his offensive players of the week:
“Key rule point here: A quarterback under center is not an eligible receiver; a quarterback in the shotgun is eligible. So when Baldwin came from the left flank around the backside of Wilson on Sunday against Philadelphia, Wilson was able to leak out for a pass … and he did, and he wasn’t covered at first, and he was open long enough for Baldwin to loft a perfect 15-yard touchdown pass to Wilson at the left pylon. Oh, and Baldwin added four catches for 104 yards. Seattle 26, Philadelphia 15. Month after month, game after game, Baldwin doesn’t get the A.J. Green/Antonio Brown/Jordy Nelson hype, but Seattle’s 7-2-1, and only Russell Wilson is more important to that offense.”
Sports Illustrated’s Greg Bishop named the Seahawks Super Bowl contenders:
“Seattle’s offense appears primed for a postseason run. Everything worked in Sunday’s win over the Eagles, even though setbacks emerged. Rookie running back C.J. Prosise ripped off a 72-yard touchdown run, averaged 19 yards a carry and left the game with a scapula injury that may sideline him the rest of the season. Then, Thomas Rawls, who hadn’t played since Week 2, stepped in and gained 57 yards on 14 carries. The Seahawks’ maligned o-line cleared the way for 152 rushing yards at a 5.1-yard-per-carry clip. Eight receivers caught passes, as did Wilson, who hauled in a 15-yard touchdown thrown by Baldwin, his favorite target. Baldwin also caught four passes for 104 yards, after completing the first TD throw—of his life.”
Sheil Kapadia of ESPN.com said the run game is giving the Seahawks reason to think they’re becoming more complete:
“The unknown piece is the run game. At one point this season, coach Carroll said the Seahawks didn’t necessarily need to run the ball to win. But just saying that seemed to pain him. Carroll is a coach who believes in balance and wants to be able to put teams away with a strong rushing attack. There’s no guarantee that the Seahawks will be able to do that down the stretch, especially now that Prosise is out. But the blocking and Rawls’ performance in Sunday’s win over the Eagles provided some hope.”
ESPN.com’s Kevin Seifert wrote about the Seahawks and Cowboys pulling away from the pack in the NFC:
“(The Seahawks) have lost only once since Week 2 and continue to hold a multiple-game lead in the NFC West. Most notable: None of the six teams remaining on their schedule has a winning record.”
Jeffri Chadiha of NFL.com said Wilson and the Seahawks are warming up right on cue:
“You just knew this time was coming, when Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson would hit his stride. The knee and ankle injuries that once plagued him would become old news. The questions about the inconsistency in the Seattle offense would vanish suddenly. For a team that has proven that the second half of the regular season is their time to shine, Wilson would be right back where he belongs, as the man pushing the Seahawks to heights they always expect to achieve.”
NFL.com’s Chris Wesseling noted Kam Chancellor’s performance in one of his takeaways from the game:
“Reminiscent of Bobby Wagner‘s sterling 2014 campaign which famously drew an MVP vote away from Aaron Rodgers, Kam Chancellor has been a difference-maker for Seattle’s defense this season. The Legion of Boom’s tone-setter recorded eight tackles, two pass deflections and an interception versus the Eagles. This defense is allowing 291.5 yards per game with Chancellor in the lineup versus 401.3 yards in four games without the Pro Bowl safety.”
Will Brinson of CBSSports.com also noted Wilson’s emergence for the Seahawks:
“When Marshawn Lynch sailed off into the sunset after last season, the Seahawks officially became Russell Wilson‘s team. Not from a leadership perspective or anything — Wilson was already important in that regard — but offensively, the Seahawks’ identity was shifting from the hard-nosed rushing attack to a team led by Wilson and his arm. Or more accurately, his arm and his legs. … Even without a big yardage total, Wilson’s mobility is the huge difference over the past few weeks.”
CBSSports.com’s John Breech graded the Seahawks at an A (the Eagles got a C-minus):
“If NFL teams weren’t frightened by the Seahawks before, they should be now. With Thomas Rawls back in the lineup, Seattle played its most balanced game of the season on offense. Rawls (57 yards) and C.J. Prosise (76 yards) led Seahawks rushing attack that put up 152 yards, the team’s highest total of the season. If you’re wondering why that’s a big deal it’s because the Seahawks are almost unstoppable when they actually have a running game, something that had been non-existent for Seattle this season. In Russell Wilson’s career, the Seahawks are 27-5 when they rush for 150 yards or more as a team.”
Frank Schwab of Yahoo Sports’ Shutdown Corner blog listed the Seahawks’ running game as one of his losers of the week:
“Just when the Seahawks seemed to be getting things rolling, they suffered another huge injury in the running game. Thomas Rawls finally returned, but C.J. Prosise could be on his way out. Prosise has a scapula injury and will be out a while, coach Pete Carroll said. It’s a bad enough injury that Carroll is already talking in terms of Prosise maybe being able to return before the end of the season. … The Seahawks looked great again on Sunday, and perhaps Rawls can immediately resume full-time duties and stay healthy. But if anything derails the Seahawks in the NFC, it could be because the running game ends up failing.”
Schwab also wrote about Baldwin’s touchdown pass to Wilson:
“And just to make matters worse for the Eagles, after Wilson caught that 15-yard touchdown he had more receiving yards than any Philadelphia receiver at that point in the game. The Seahawks held on to win, 26-15. It’s also a good sign that Wilson is healthy again, after dealing with plenty of injuries early in the season. The Seahawks had a lot of reasons to have a good time on Sunday.”
The Ringer’s Rodger Sherman tongue-in-cheekly assesses Wilson’s receiving skills:
“Now, I haven’t really kept my eye on Wilson since the Seahawks made the mistake of wasting a third-round pick on the diminutive quarterback. But I know that at 5-foot-10, he’ll never succeed under center. But look at him catching the ball! He shows plus speed, the ability to run a crisp route, and soft hands. On this play, he hit the end zone shortly after hauling in the ball, but there’s no doubt in my mind that he could also use his maneuvering ability to create great yardage after the catch in the open field. I’ve been a bit baffled by Wilson staying on an NFL roster all these years, but this play makes it clear that he can make it in this league as a wide receiver. Hopefully the Seahawks are smart enough to use him that way.”
Zach Berman of The Philadelphia Inquirer wrote about the Eagles not being able to solve their season-long issues:
“The Eagles came to Seattle optimistic that they could compete with one of the NFL’s elite teams and left with their own problems further reinforced. Quarterback Carson Wentz does not have enough around him to threaten a top defense, penalties and dropped passes emerge at inopportune moments, and the Eagles still appear a different team away from Philadelphia.”