Once again, the Seattle Seahawks looked flat in Week 11. The offensive struggles continued and surprisingly, the defense could not stop Colt McCoy and the Arizona Cardinals offense. It appears the tide of this franchise is turning. Over the last decade or so, Seattle has been one of the best teams in November and December. Thus far in 2021, Russell Wilson hasn’t thrown a single touchdown in November. Not to mention their 0-2 record.
Arizona has been the most successful team at playing in Seattle as they racked up their ninth win in the Pacific Northwest in dominant fashion. The Cardinals have been the surprise team of 2021 and enter their bye week with the best record in the NFL.
Most impressively, they were able to efficiently move the ball without their two best players in Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins. Kliff Kingsbury and his staff deserve a ton of credit for drawing up such a great game plan.
But, there was really no reason for the Seattle Seahawks to lose this game. They entered with a much-improved defense and the better quarterback. Not to mention the fact they were highly motivated as their season was on the line. Ultimately, they fell up short and the result has many questioning the future of this franchise.
3 takeaways from Seahawks Week 11 loss versus Cardinals
Lack of execution
Over the last few weeks, many upsets have occurred in the NFL. As we know, football is a game of inches and the team that executes better wins nine out of ten times. In Week 11, the Seattle Seahawks failed to execute on both sides of the ball. Coming into the game, the Seahawks had the 8th best third down defense in the league. Arizona went 7-14 (50%) on 3rd downs, consistently moving the chains.
Early on in the game, Arizona set the tone by putting together two 10+ play drives resulting in scores. They were able to get the ball out of McCoy’s hands quickly and establish the run. Seattle’s defensive scheme has always been to protect the deep play, giving up stuff underneath. They force you to work your way up the field and hope they can stop you completely or at least hold you to three points.
Unfortunately, that was not the case yesterday. Even in the 4th quarter, when Seattle stole some momentum with a touchdown to make it 16-13, Arizona was once again able to put together a strong offensive drive, converting on two huge third downs to seal the game with a touchdown.
Offensively, the struggles appear to be identical to last year. The Seattle Seahawks are just not converting on third downs. They went 2-10 (20%) on third downs in Week 11. It is very difficult to sustain drives when you cannot consistently move the chains. It certainly didn’t help that Arizona was having their way with this Seattle offensive line as Wilson was sacked 4 times. On the first possession alone, Arizona was able to stop a nice drive by getting back-to-back sacks.
Uncharacteristically, the Seattle Seahawks were awful in the red zone. Over the last couple of years, they have been known as one of the best red zone offenses (and they have the numbers to back it up). But in Week 11, they went 1-3 for in the red zone and that ultimately tells the story of this game. Wilson missed a couple of throws that would have resulted in touchdowns. But, settling for two field goals over two touchdowns can make all the difference in the world. And, in this game, it most definitely did.