Postmortem on Seahawks loss to Bears finds cancer and blunt force trauma

CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 17: Khalil Mack #52 of the Chicago Bears rushes Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks at Soldier Field on September 17, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears defeated the Seahawks 24-17. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 17: Khalil Mack #52 of the Chicago Bears rushes Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks at Soldier Field on September 17, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears defeated the Seahawks 24-17. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Seahawks offense was pretty terrible against the Bears, and they lost again. The Bears have a good defense, but this was mostly self-inflicted.

This stat sums up the Seahawks 24-17 loss better than anything else. Seattle ran six plays in the third quarter, called no running plays, and gained one yard. Pete Carroll loudly proclaimed his team needed to establish the run after just 16 rushes against the Broncos. So of course after three quarters in Chicago, they had a total of eight running plays. Pete, here’s a clue: run the ball. Actually run it, don’t just say you will. The cancer: no run game.

After seven quarters of football, Seattle had a grand total of 24 running plays in 2018. At that pace, they’d finish the season with less carries than Tavon Austin. Actually, 219 carries. That clearly isn’t even half of what you need. After the game, Carroll said he wanted Schottenheimer to take a few shots down the field. He’d have been better off taking shots at a bar.

Stop with the excuses, and just run the damn ball. Somehow, they realized the handoff was a legal play in the fourth quarter. The Seahawks ran the ball 14 times in the fourth quarter and gained 48 yards. Amazing what happens when you actually commit to the run and don’t just say you will, isn’t it?

As for that blunt force trauma, Russell Wilson was sacked six times, again. While Khalil Mack “only” had one sack, he was in the Seahawks backfield more often than Chris Carson. I wish I was exaggerating about that. Mack disrupted the Seahawks offensive scheme all night. That is giving Seattle credit for having a scheme, and I’m not so sure about that.

Seahawks Chris Carson
SEATTLE, WA – OCTOBER 01: Running back Chris Carson #32 of the Seattle Seahawks rushes against the Indianapolis Colts in the third quarter of the game at CenturyLink Field on October 1, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images) /

What happened to Chris Carson?

Speaking of Chris Carson, he was nowhere to be seen in the fourth quarter. Afterwards, Carroll said Carson as gassed from special teams play. Umm… that seems a bit suspicious. If true, why the hell did you play your lead back on special teams so much? Is anyone coaching this team, or did they buy a Jump to Conclusions mat from Office Space? I have to think that Carson is in the coaches’ doghouse. Maybe it was the fumble last week…it sure isn’t over a conviction for insider trading.

Whether it’s Carson or not, we’re on record you need to run the ball for a lot of reasons. I hope someday the Seahawks do so, because I don’t want to write yet another variation on the theme again. At least with that fourth quarter surge, Seattle is on pace for 304 running plays now. Hopefully they finally figured that part of the game out. Okay, run game rant over.

The Seahawks defense was expected to crash and burn tonight. Bobby Wagner and K. J. Wright were both out. They would be starting Mychal Kendricks, who they just signed Thursday. Kendricks came up big with a sack. Even better, Shaquill Griffin kept building his credentials as a top corner with two interceptions on the night. The defense only gave up 17 points, and kept Seattle in the game as they nearly always do. Chicago’s heralded rushing attack of Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen only managed 43 yards on 18 carries. The defense more than held their own.

More from 12th Man Rising

Mr. Unlimited was very limited indeed

The biggest problem was Russell Wilson, of all people. It’s true, he got practically no time from his line for the second straight game. Six sacks, remember? As against Denver, some of these were on Wilson holding the ball too long. But Germain Ifedi looks like he’d be a much better toreador than tackle. If you just wave at the huge creature as it rushes by you, you need to be in a bullring.

Despite the troubles with the line, Wilson self-destructed in this game, and took the Seahawks down with him. He’s been the king of the fourth quarter, but was anything but that tonight. After making it a one score game again at 17-10, Wilson took a long look at Rashaad Penny in the flat.

He paused a moment longer, then threw the ball – directly into the hands of Prince Amukamara, who ran 49 yards for a pick six. That put the Bears up 24-10 with 6:37 left in the game. Amukamara’s last interception was in 2015, in case you were thinking this guy was another Richard Sherman…or Shaquill Griffin.

That was only Wilson’s first mistake

The Seattle defense held, as they did most of the night. On the next series, Wilson darted from the pocket, as he did so often tonight. Unfortunately, he held the ball out to his side as he was looking for a target, and was stripped of the ball. That’s two plays where Wilson showed a critical lack of awareness of his surroundings. The guy usually has his spider sense tingling on every play, especially in the fourth quarter. Tonight he looked more like the terrible made for TV movie version from the 70’s.

Seattle did mount a sweet 99 yard drive to get within a touchdown, so I have to give them credit for not just packing it in. 99 yards or not, scoring a touchdown with 14 seconds left just makes you stats look more presentable. The Seahawks offense was terrible tonight. Outside of their garbage time drive, they managed just two scoring drives. Five of their drives were three and out, one four and out.

Don’t get me wrong. Wilson made several brilliant plays. But he needs to make better decisions more consistently, which is supposedly one of the reasons Brian Schottenheimer was hired. The other reason was to re-establish the running game. So far, Schotty has done nothing to fulfill those expectations. It’s early, and both Wagner and Wright should be back soon. But the problem isn’t on defense. Seattle better google the definition of balance before the season gets away from them.