Wilson, Seahawks rout Saints to secure control of the NFC


Dec 2, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) scrambles from New Orleans Saints linebacker David Hawthorne (57) in the second quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Russell Wilson threw for 310 yards, rushed for 48 more and threw three touchdowns as the Seahawks rolled past the New Orleans Saints on Monday Night Football for their NFL-leading 11th win of the season.

The Seahawks scored 17-straight points in the first quarter and never looked back, handing the Saints their third loss of the year. The Seahawks, meanwhile, extended their home-winning streak to 14 games, the best in franchise history.

The win also clinched a playoff spot for the Seahawks.

Wilson is now a perfect 14-0 at CenturyLink Field. He is 22-6 in his career as a starter and is tied with Ben Roethlisberger for the most wins as a starter in his first two seasons in the NFL.

In the first quarter, the Seahawks used an explosive offense and brutal defense to score 17 points and keep the Saints off the scoreboard.

Steven Hauschka kicked a 26-yard field goal before Michael Bennett returned a Drew Brees fumble for a touchdown. With just under two minutes left in the quarter, Zach Miller caught Wilson’s first touchdown pass to make it a 17-0 game.

In the second, Brees hit Jimmy Graham for a 2-yard touchdown to narrow the margin to 17-7. Graham was relatively quiet, finishing with three catches for 42 yards and the touchdown.

The Seahawks countered with Hauschka’s second field goal of the night and, with seconds left in the half, Wilson threw a touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin that gave Seattle a 27-7 lead at halftime. Baldwin finished with four catches for 77 yards and the score.

New Orleans’ 20-point deficit was the largest halftime deficit the Saints had faced since 2007 when they were down 21-0 to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Seattle scored the only points in the third quarter, an 8-yard strike from Wilson to Derrick Coleman that gave the Seahawks a 34-7 lead. It was the final scoring play of the night.

Wilson finished the game going 22 of 30 for 310 yards and three touchdowns. Coming into the game, the Saints defense was only allowing 198 passing yards per game.

Brees finished with 147 passing yards and a touchdown. The Seahawks defense helped snap Brees’ 43-game streak of throwing at least 200 passing yards. The Saints passing game averaged more than 317 yards per game coming into the meeting.

Marshawn Lynch rushed the ball 16 times for 45 yards but was held in check for the most part. Miller led all receivers with five catches for 86 yards and the touchdown.

Seattle outgained the Saints in total yards 429 to 188.

The Seahawks are now 11-1 and have a significant lead in the race for best record in the NFC. With the Saints loss, they move to 9-3 and into a tie for the NFC South lead and the second-best NFC record with the 9-3 Carolina Panthers.

The San Francisco 49ers (8-4) have the NFC’s third-best record and will host the Seahawks on Dec. 8.