5 things the Seahawks did right and wrong versus the Patriots
As expected, the Seahawks match-up against the New England Patriots was a close one and ultimately came down to the very last play of the game.
After struggling to stop Cam Newton all night, the Seahawks defense—specifically L.J. Collier—managed to stuff Newton’s attempt at a QB Draw on the one-yard line.
The Seahawks may have managed win 35-30, but it’s not a win to be necessarily proud of—at least on the defensive side of the ball.
Stats courtesy of Seahawks vs. Patriots gamebook.
Right: Russell Wilson continues his MVP performance
Russell Wilson had another exceptional game at quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks and continues to improve his MVP campaign. It’s an absolute shock that he hasn’t earned a single MVP vote in his entire career.
Through two games, Wilson has an 82% completion percentage, 610 passing yards, nine passing touchdowns, and one interception—which was the result of a tipped ball by tight end Greg Olsen on a very catchable pass.
Wrong: Pass rush/pressure
The Seahawks defensive line couldn’t put pressure on Cam Newton if their life depended on it. They gave Newton all day to throw the ball and were only able to get five hits on him. I’m genuinely shocked that he didn’t pass for more than 397 yards and one touchdown, although he did throw one interception. He also was sacked only one time by safety Jamal Adams, not the defensive line.
Seattle had nine total penalties versus New England’s two. Seven of those were committed by the offense and five were on first downs. The offense was lucky Russell Wilson still put up big numbers (288 yards, five touchdowns) but any other day, and this could have easily ruined the offense’s momentum.
Two penalties were committed on defense and one even gave safety Quandre Diggs the boot for a helmet-to-helmet hit on N’Keal Harry.
In order to properly move forward, Seattle has become more disciplined on the penalty side of things. Against a stellar defense, these offensive penalties could coast them the game. On the defensive side of the ball, Seattle can’t afford any ejections after losing Bruce Irvin and Marquise Blair for the season.
Right: Ground-and-pound with Chris Carson
The Seahawks were smart to attack New England’s weaknesses on the defensive line by handing the ball off to Chris Carson and letting him put in the work. He racked up 72 yards on 17 attempts while also catching three passes for 36 yards and a touchdown.
So far, Carson hasn’t shown any signs of regressing after his hip fracture last season. He still looks fluid and continues to pound in both the running and passing games.
Wrong: Third-down efficiency
Seattle struggled to convert on third-down scenarios 43% of the time against the Patriots, which is something they’ve struggled with through two games so far. In week one, Seattle was efficient on third-down only 33% of the time.
While they have begun to become more aggressive on first downs, they have to be able to convert on third-down situations. I guess it’s a good thing that their next opponent, the Dallas Cowboys, have allowed teams to convert on third-down 50% of the time this year.