Seahawks sloppy offense dooms team in loss to Cardinals at C-Link


Dec 22, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Arizona Cardinals inside linebacker Daryl Washington (58) tackles Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch (24) short of the end zone during the second quarter at CenturyLink Field. Arizona Cardinals inside linebacker Karlos Dansby (56) and Arizona Cardinals linebacker Marcus Benard (59) assist on the tackle. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Carson Palmer threw four interceptions but ultimately threw the game-winning touchdown for the Cardinals as the Seahawks lost for the first time at home since Dec. 24, 2011 on Sunday.

The game was plagued by one of the worst offensive performances of the year by the Seahawks.

Russell Wilson went 11-for-27 for 108 yards, a touchdown and an interception. At halftime, he was 6-for-16 for just 47 yards. The offense was doomed by multiple 3-and-outs and Jon Ryan punted the ball nine times, tied for his most this season.

The Seahawks were 2-for-13 on third downs in the game.

Seattle had not lost a game in nearly two years and Sunday’s loss marked the first time Wilson lost at home in his professional career. The team had many opportunities to play a better game, but they were simply outplayed by the Cardinals.

Arizona had more plays (70-51), more total yards (307-192), more possession (37:24-22:36) and fewer penalties (9-7).

Neither team scored in the first quarter, but the Seahawks took a 3-0 lead in the second quarter when Steven Hauschka kicked a 27-yard field goal. Later in the quarter, Jay Feely tied the game at 3-3.

The Seahawks had a chance to take the lead with seconds left in the half, but Hauschka missed what looked like an easy 24-yarder and the teams headed to the locker room tied at the half.

The miss was Hauschka’s second of the year.

In the third, Feely kicked another field goal and in the fourth quarter, he kicked his third of the game to ultimately give the Cardinals a 9-3 lead with 10:43 left in the final quarter.

The Seahawks scored a touchdown later in the quarter to take a 10-9 lead but the Cardinals countered with a 10-play, 80-yard drive that ended when Palmer hit Michael Floyd for a touchdown with just over two minutes left in the game. A two-point conversion later made it a 17-10 game.

Seattle had a chance to put together a game-winning drive but Wilson threw an interception that ultimately ended the game. The interception call was controversial — the ball bounced off the ground into a Cardinals’ defender’s arms, but the officials ruled the ball hit receiver Doug Baldwin, not the ground, to keep the ball and the play alive.

The Seahawks were docked for nine penalties for 102 yards, many of which were questionable. They allowed the Cardinals to get six first downs because of penalties. Seattle had nearly as many penalties as they did first downs (10).

Nevertheless, the Seahawks (12-3) will play on Dec. 29 in the regular season finale at home against the St. Louis Rams (7-8). They will be forced to play all of their starters and will need help to clinch the No. 1 seed in the NFC. They have already clinched a playoff spot and still have the best record in the NFC.

The Cardinals (10-5) can clinch a playoff spot if they beat the San Francisco 49ers (10-4) at home in Week 17.