The Seahawks continued their Jekyll and Hyde season with another loss to a team that was demonstrably worse coming into the game. Three Hawks stood out for all the wrong reasons.
Pardon me, 12s, but I feel a bit ill right now. I’m sure you understand. The Seahawks went from a surprising entry into the postseason field to the team wondering where it all went wrong. They’re now two games behind the Niners and have already lost head-to-head. Seattle lost to a 4-8 team that hadn’t won on the road in their last nine games. Carolina traded away one of the leagues best running backs, yet still managed to roll up 223 yards on the ground.
I am reminded of Casey Stengel’s line about his woefully inept ’62 Mets in their inaugural season: “Can’t anybody here play this game?” The problem is, Seattle isn’t fielding an expansion team. But for much of the game, Lumen Field looked like it had been transposed with another sport and decade. Far too many times, the Hawks couldn’t tackle, couldn’t block, couldn’t run, couldn’t throw. The final score was 30-24, but the advantage in rushing yards for the Panthers – 223 to 46 – tells the real story of this game. Not all of it, and we’ll get to that. So let’s get on with the postmortem.
Seahawks stop runs about as well as bacon grease
Yeah, I know I’m supposed to isolate the worst performances, but the inability of the Hawks to stop the running game falls on the entire front seven. It didn’t help that Shelby Harris was out for the entire game, or that Al Woods went out with a heel injury with just 20 snaps. L.J. Collier, Bryan Mone, Poona Ford, and Quinton Jefferson all gave their best impressions of mass-transit turnstiles as the Panthers running back committee rolled up the yards.
D’Onta Foreman’s 74-yard game was matched by Chuba Hubbard’s output. I mean, at least we know Foreman is a talent. Rookie Raheem Blackshear added 32 yards and a score. Even Sam Darnold ripped off 26 yards on a scramble. That’s simply inexcusable.
Bob Condotta said it all with his grades for The Seattle Times. The Seahawks defensive line couldn’t get it done, and they haven’t since the October 30 game against the Giants. The only reason Condotta didn’t give the group an “F” was because of the injuries.
This was the second game in three weeks that the Hawks gave up over 200 yards on the ground. It’s no coincidence that it’s also the second time in three chances that they lost to a bad team. The Raiders were 3-7 coming into the Seahawks game. A big part of Seattle’s inability to stop the run falls on their linebacker corps, Cody Barton and Jordyn Brooks. Yes, they make a lot of tackles – they have to, considering the sieve that the defensive front has been so often. But far too often, they’re out of position to make the play.