As odd as it may seem, the Seattle Seahawks through eight weeks of the NFL season are in first place in the NFC West. I don't mean to imply that Seattle isn't a pretty decent team because they are. But the way the San Francisco 49ers began the season, it appeared that maybe the 49ers wouldn't lose. Now they've lost three straight.
Meanwhile, Seattle keeps winning the games they should win. Three times this year the Seahawks have faced a team starting what is really a backup quarterback and Seattle has won all three. This is somewhat different from many previous years when backup quarterbacks, such as Colt McCoy, seemed to thrive against Seattle.
Seattle's Week 8 victory over the Cleveland Browns wasn't beautiful. Seattle won 24-20 by scoring a touchdown with less than a minute left. But in the NFL, a team will take any victory it can. Here are some winners and losers for Seattle from Week 8.
Seattle Seahawks winner No. 1 - Edge rusher Boye Mafe
Mafe got another sack on Sunday, his fifth straight game with a sack. That now stands as the franchise record. Mafe is making good on the promise he showed all the way back in the 2022 preseason. Last year as a rookie, Mafe didn't really have a chance to prove how good he could be as he lost snaps to Darrell Taylor. In training camp this year, though, Mafe leaped past Taylor to become a starter at one edge spot.
Against Cleveland, Mafe was in on 8 tackles, had a tackle for loss, 4 quarterback hits, and the one sack. He continuously pushed whoever was attempting to block him into the backfield. Mafe is fast for his size, but he is also extremely strong. Plus, he is still only 24 years old and his technique will continue to get better as well.
Through Week 7, Mafe was tied for the league lead (along with Cleveland Browns' beast of an edge rusher, Myles Garrett) in pass rush win rate at 31 percent. After Seattle's Week 8 victory and with the 4 quarterback hits, Mafe's number will likely rise. He currently leads the Seahawks in sacks (5), quarterback hits (9), and is tied for the lead in tackles for loss (6).