The Seahawks bounced back from a rough outing last Sunday against the Redskins to beat the struggling Eagles tonight, 31-14. The performance was pretty solid on all fronts, offense, defense, and special teams. Marshawn Lynch was the engine that ran the Seahawks offense, rushing for 148 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries, at 6.7 yards per carry. His 15-yard touchdown run in the first quarter was the quintessential 2nd and 3rd effort we've come to appreciate with Lynch, as he barreled into a pile, appeared to be stopped in his tracks, then miraculously emerged unscathed to run the 13 yards or so to the score.
The defense did their part as well, picking off Vince Young four times, including a 77-yard touchdown return by David Hawthorne that iced the game.
The Eagles looked discombobulated for the most part in the first half and the Seahawks took advantage, taking a 17-7 lead into the half. In the second half the Eagles made a run for it with a 17-play, 80-yard drive through the 3rd quarter and into the 4th that chewed up 10:13 and ended with a LeSean McCoy touchdown on a shovel pass, which cut the lead to ten with 12:56 to go. That was the closest it would get from there.
Here are some of my quick hit reactions:
- On offense, it was great to see the offensive line opening up big holes for Lynch and the run game and they really set the tone. The Hawks rushed for 174 frickin yards. I like that. Marshawn played like a man possessed (on skittles, maybe). He looks like a feature, franchise type running back, dangerous between the tackles, bouncing it outside, and receiving out of the backfield.
My SBN colleague Joe Goodberry, a writer for the Bengals blog Cincy Jungle and native of Buffalo, pointed out this statistic to me: (in his career), after November 1st, Marshawn Lynch has 543 carries for 2,350 yrds at 4.3 YPC. Other months, 489 for 1,694 yrds (3.46). That stat doesn't include today, so tack on 148 yards on 22 carries for 6.7 YPC. The longer Lynch plays throughout a season, the better he gets.
- Tarvaris Jackson really did have himself a hell of a game. He finished 13-16 for 190 yards and a touchdown. If that's not a 'game-manager' performance I don't know what is - with a rating of 137.0. He was also clutch, and in the first half had first-down completions of 21, 25, and 26 on third-downs. That's huge.
Jackson also spread the love - Golden Tate led the way with four receptions for 47 yards and a touchdown, Michael Robinson had four catches for 41 yards, Zach Miller two for 53, Ben Obomanu two for 28. Surprisingly, Doug Baldwin only had one catch for 21, but as Charlie pointed out pre-game, he was a third down machine, and was the recipient of that first big third down conversion pass I just mentioned above.
- Speaking of Golden Tate - I thought he had a very solid game. He broke out his nifty spin move, that I love so much, and his touchdown catch was a thing of beauty, falling out of the back of the endzone and just getting his feet in bounds. Also, should point out that it was an absolute dime by Tarvaris Jackson.
- The Seahawks had six plays of 20 or more yards. That's decent.
- The Seahawks cleaned up the penalties this game, with only 5 for 30 yards. That included only one in the 2nd half. Big improvement.
- Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman both had strong games again - Browner picking off two Vince Young passes and Richard Sherman batting down a sure touchdown pass. Love to see the development of these two players.
- I thought Leroy Hill and KJ Wright both played well, and David Hawthrone was his steady self, picking off a pass in which he looked to go "Oh sh*t here's the ball!" right before catching it.
- Hell, I thought the whole defense played pretty well, though they did give up 132 yards rushing to the Eagles on 5.3 yards per carry. 58 or so of those yards though came on that long 3rd/4th quarter drive where the Eagles really started hitting on all cylinders. Regardless, they did enough to keep the Eagles out of the endzone but twice, and make no mistake, this is a very good rushing team that came into the game 2nd in the league on the ground.
All in all, a pretty convincing win, regardless of how banged up the Eagles really are. The attitude and swagger is back, and hopefully the Seahawks can carry that into next week's MNF game against the Rams. There is a good feeling around the team right now but I'll still be looking for consistency and mental toughness.
Mike Williams still didn't get involved in the offense and it's looking like Russell Okung could be hurt with a pec injury suffered late in the 4th quarter. The severity of the injury is unknown at this point, but Pete Carroll said it "doesn't look good" right now. The defense still got gauged at points and mistakes were made. Right now though, I'll take the win and enjoy it for the next week and a half.
What do you think? Highlights? Lowlights? Hit me up.