Seahawks Blowout Jets, 40-3, And It Felt Good

Finally treating an inferior opponent like a bug on a rug feels really good.

Sometimes, in life, you need a good blowout. You need the release of all that bad stuff that you’ve been carrying around. Most often, it has a very positive and immediate carryover effect. This is especially true in the sport of American football.

So, I was quite happy to have sat in front of my television set to witness my beloved Seattle Seahawks finally have a good old fashioned blowout. They needed it, and frankly, so did all of us fans.

Now there, of course, will be those Seahawk skeptics out there saying “so what.. it was against the Jets.” While I get much of that, it is fair to note that these lowly Jets managed to put together a good enough game to nearly beat the playoff contending Las Vegas Raiders the week before (and would have had it not been for probably the worst defensive call imaginable at the end of the game). Last week, when the Seahawk offense was playing like garbage against the Giants, I was monitoring that game between the Jets and Raiders, and to be honest, the Jets were more than making me a little bit nervous.

So, in my opinion, this was a good blowout win. The Seattle Seahawks did what they needed to do against a team that was clearly an inferior opponent. They soundly beat them down offensively, and defensively. It was a complete beat down. Bravo.

Here are my notes.

The Good

Seattle’s overall offensive game plan, and execution was the star for me. Seattle’s offense was a perfect example of balance between the run and pass in this match. When Pete Carroll talks of the need for balance, this is what he means. It’s not about being a running team. It’s about mixing the run enough with the pass so that a defense cannot fully key off of either, and that frees Russell Wilson up to truly play efficient ball, and to make key plays throughout the game. In my opinion, this is how you want to let Russ cook, and one could make the easy argument that had they played with a similar offensive game plan against the Giants as they did in this one against the Jets, the Seahawks would comfortably be 10-3 right now instead of 9-4 and going into a tough stretch of games against Washington and the LA Rams (and maybe even the 49ers).

Russell Wilson was a big reason why Seattle lost last week against the Giants, and he was a huge reason why they beat down the Jets in this one. Outside of one badly forced throw towards the end zone that led to his twelfth interception (now most in a season for him), Russ was on point. He found the check downs when hurried, and he made numerous pin point passes both from the pocket and on the run. Getting Russell moving around a bit more and throwing on the run was a big benefit in this one. Last week against the Giants, he felt tied to the pocket, but in this one, he was moving. I’ve said this before many times, and am happy to say this again; Russell Wilson throwing on the run is one of the single most difficult things to defend in all of football. I hope Seattle finds more ways to do this heading down this final stretch of games.

One great way of finding the ability to have Russ throw on the run is to establish the run game, and Seattle did a great job staying committed to the run in this one. It was great to see both Chris Carson and Carlos Hyde have productive outings against a defense that statistically does its best work against the run. Yes there were a few negative plays, but just because that happens does not mean that you abandon it for the pass. Seattle stayed committed to hammering with Carson and Hyde enough for the dam to start breaking, and they ran often in the times when the box was most favorable to do so. That’s smarter football.

I loved the speed that this defense played with, and the general connection they seemed to have. Sam Darnold did not have the luxury of a comfortable pocket, and without their best pass rusher in Carlos Dunlap, Seattle’s defense often found pressure rushing with four. Credit some youngsters in this one. LJ Collier got good pressure rushing at defensive tackle (and a near explosive sack that Darnold somehow spun out of). Rookie Alton Robinson brought nice pressure rushing at end. Third year rush linebacker Shaquem Griffin made a splashy sack. And, of course, Jamal Adams notched yet another sack (8.5 for the season and a new league record for a safety). This was a solid defensive effort, overall, and it could have been a tremendous one had they not dropped three would be interceptions and had one blown coverage, but I will take it.

When the game was long decided in fourth quarter, it was great to see the reserves get time. It was nice to see what Geno Smith could do replacing Russell Wilson, and it was great to see some of the younger players buried in the depth charts. In particular, I thought Ben Burr-Kirven (BBK to Husky fans) looked flashy at WILL linebacker, and I thought rookie tight end Colby Parkinson looked really interesting catching a couple passes from Smith. Both are younger players that I have been particularly interested in as developmental players for Seattle with some possible starter potential down the road. BBK displayed some of the decisive play-making quickness he showed in college playing for Washington, and Parkinson showed nice hands and run after catch ability as a taller outlet receiver that Smith was clearly taking advantage of with a couple of tosses. Parkinson, in particular, could be one to watch for next year should Seattle continue down this whole Let Russ Cook road (expect that they will).

The Bad

For as good as Russ was going 21/27 for 206 yards and four TD passes and a pick, that pick was another really stupid interception. Russ had immediate pressure on him, he rolled out of it, but didn’t have enough time to properly set his feat and he lofted up a pass that the Jet safety had better position on the ball than DK Metcalf did. What made it worse for me is that it was yet another red zone interception that Russ threw. Simply, it was another throw that shouldn’t over happened, and I don’t like this trend.

Look, I love Russell Wilson, he has been my favorite Seahawk since his rookie year, and still is, but it absolutely is driving me nuts this year with the amount of times that he has forced bad throws into unfavorable coverage. I think it is most likely a direct effect of the Let Russ Cook volume passing, and this needy feeling he has developed to make hero throws out of it. He doesn’t need to do this, and I’m now thinking this might need to be the big off-season fix for him.

For as good as the defense played, it could have been way better had Jamal Adams, KJ Wright/Poona Ford, and Ugo Amadi been able to haul in easy interceptions. This defense should have had three picks, and the drops by Adams and Amadi both had pick-six written all over them. Had those pick-sixes happened, this blowout win would have likely been significantly greater. Ken Norton Junior might want to put his DBs and linebackers through some extra jugs drills this week.

The Ugly

The New York Football Jets.

Moving Forward

The Seattle Seahawks control their own destiny for the playoffs. If they win the next three games, that would earn them not only the NFC West title, but the top overall seed in the playoffs. They will have two very likely tough back to back matches playing in Washington DC and then playing home against the Rams, and they will be playing against a San Francisco team that will be chomping at the bit to play spoiler against them.

Let the chips now fall where they may. If Seattle should play any of these games like they did against the Giants, it will be very tough for them to win any of these matches, but if they should play like they did against the Jets, it is conceivable that they win out.

For Seattle to be anything this year that resembles a true championship contending team, they need to play against the Washington Team, the Rams, and the 49ers like they played against the Jets. They need to play with enough balance offensively to allow Russell to play to his best, and they need the defense to continue playing fast and connected ball. If they stay closer to this formula, I like their chances to still make this a special season, but they have got to do that.

Russell Wilson feeling like he needs to play hero ball is not what we want, and a defense not on the same page is not what can happen. Fortunately, I think Seattle can fully avoid both of these scenarios. They completely control their own destiny, and the formula to their success is clear.

Now, go out, and go that, Seattle Seahawks. Go take it. It’s there for you.

Go Hawks.


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