The Hawks defense had far too many dud moments, but they weren't alone
I'm not going to call out any individual on the Hawks defense, as at some point, literally every player on that side of the ball came up short on this night. Seattle allowed 136 yards rushing on 34 carries, a 4.0 yard average. That apparent early-season improvement is now clearly an illusion created by their schedule. It's also true that the Seahawks defense held the Cowboys to just four scores in eight trips to the red zone. That's impressive.
Sadly, it's more impressive to Dallas fans that their team rolled for 411 yards and 4 points. Even when the Hawks made a big play, they shot themselves in the foot. Quandre Diggs had a key interception at the Seattle five-yard line, but an offsides penalty negated the turnover. Of course, the Boys scored. Such was the night for the Hawks defenders.
I'm not so sure that Seahawks offensive coordinator Shane Waldron called a great game. Yes, Seattle had one of their best offensive games of the season. But was that a function of an improved design, or more that Geno Smith was getting rid of the ball more quickly? Yeah, I know, that could very well be strictly the result of plays designed to get the ball out faster. Or, maybe it was Geno Smith making decisions more quickly. I mean, Smith himself said that he's been holding on to the ball too long. All I saw from Waldron was the same handoff to Zach Charbonnet on fourth down that failed, again.
Still, it's hard to fault the OC on a night when the offense rolls as the Hawks did. Again, the penalties in this game were atrocious. Some of that comes down to discipline on the team, certainly. But as our own Sara Marshall noted, the Cowboys had nearly the same number of penalties as the Seahawks. They were hurt about as badly as Seattle, so it's not as if the game completely changed on one call and the other team got off easy. This loss is on the Hawks, absolutely, but it would be nice for a professional league to have officials that match the expertise of the players.