clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Seahawks 27 Falcons 20: Winners and losers from a fourth consecutive road victory

NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Atlanta Falcons Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a long time since the Seattle Seahawks just completely crushed a team from start to finish. You probably have to go back to last December’s 43-16 home win against the San Francisco 49ers, a game in which Nick Mullens still threw for over 400 yards and had plenty of chunk plays.

I’ll take a 4-0 road record and a 6-2 mark at the halfway point of the season, but they made Sunday’s 27-20 win over the Atlanta Falcons needlessly more difficult than it should’ve been. That’s an awful team missing its franchise quarterback, and what we saw in the 1st half should’ve sustained itself in the 2nd half. Great teams blow bad teams out. Seattle has kinda sorta done that once this year, which is worrisome given the opposition they’ve faced.

Let’s get to the winners and losers from this game.

Winners

Russell Wilson

Efficient as ever, Wilson was 14/20 for 182 yards and a pair of easy touchdown tosses. If the gameplan was more aggressive, I’m sure he would’ve wrecked shop some more. Not much more to add here.

Tyler Lockett

As much as the Falcons pass defense is pathetic, Lockett still had a couple of insanely difficult catches on his way to another 100-yard day. He’s on pace for a 1,000 yard season for the first time in his career, and is about as automatic as it gets on those play-action crossers.

Chris Carson

He had 90 yards on the ground, bullied Falcons defenders repeatedly, and got his third rushing touchdown of the season. The only thing you can knock him for is a bad drop in the first quarter on a checkdown.

Rashaad Penny

I have no idea if Penny will remain a Seahawk come the trade deadline, but he was a net-positive this time around. Eight carries for 55 yards and some good work between the tackles, as well as another successful toss play with Duane Brown leading the way.

DK Metcalf

How easy were his two touchdowns? Quite possibly the easiest he’ll ever get in his NFL career and he’s only a rookie. Metcalf has four touchdowns on the year, tied for the team lead, and continues to contribute through different route concepts that were largely an unknown given the system he played under at Ole Miss.

Shaquill Griffin

What a year it’s been for Shaquill! He had two outstanding passes defensed on Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage Jr that turned potential big plays into incomplete throws. I am wowed by his development and he’s really the only consistently good player in the secondary.

Bobby Wagner

Who else but Bobby Wagner to scoop up a game-changing fumble from Devonta Freeman? Or to break up the critical two-point conversion to Austin Hooper? He also had a sack and is now the Seahawks all-time leader in tackles. Has this been his best season? No. Is he still the best player on Seattle’s defense? You bet he is, and he’ll be Canton bound when his career is over.

Marquise Blair

The rookie did have a couple of missed tackles, but he had a team-high 11 tackles (9 solo). He closes to the ball quickly, hits hard, and he was credited with forcing the Freeman fumble. Blair looks like he belongs on the field. He’ll have his hiccups, you’ll just have to accept them. I am really excited about his potential based on what he’s shown over the past two weeks.

Special teams

This was easily the best special teams showing of the year. Michael Dickson had great punts, Jason Myers made two field goals, and kick coverage was rock solid.

Losers

Akeem King

His presence on the 53-man roster was iffy in the first place. In place of the injured Tre Flowers, King was rotten. Julio Jones unsurprisingly ripped him apart, and seemingly any other WR he covered was able to catch a pass. He also had a dropped INT that could not have been any more gift-wrapped. That was a horrid showing and if a backup is ever needed, those snaps need to go to Neiko Thorpe or Ugo Amadi.

Jadeveon Clowney

The penalties put him in the loser list. Three offsides/neutral zone infractions is unacceptable and very Michael Bennett-ian. He was fairly disruptive throughout the game but his flags arguably resulted in two Atlanta touchdowns. That’s sloppy and undisciplined.

Brian Schottenheimer’s 2nd half playcalling

This might have been a Pete Carroll directive, but Schottenheimer was terrible with his playcalls to close this game out. Up 24-0 is not time to run the clock out for the entire half, it’s time to keep scoring. There’s no reason to have been that conservative and run-heavy for all but one drive in the 2nd half. I had a feeling Pete Carroll would overcompensate for the surprising pass-first approach last week by trotting out that gameplan against the worst pass defense in the NFL , but to watch them actually do it is really baffling.

Ken Norton Jr

I am comfortable advocating for his firing. This isn’t the most talented defense the Seahawks have had, but it is hardly lacking in good players. It is a horribly coached unit that does almost nothing at an above-average level, regardless of whether it’s a normal or advanced statistic. I am horrified at the thought of what this game would’ve looked like if Matt Ryan was healthy. Matt Schaub is the third backup QB the Seahawks have played this year and they struggled against all of them. What I do know is that Norton’s never-ending love of linebackers on wide receivers is tiresome. And my goodness, never again with Jarran Reed dropping into coverage. Norton was fired by the Oakland Raiders for a reason, and I think he should not be retained through 2020. I’ll delve into the shittiness of this defense in-depth next week.

Officials

Both offensive pass interference calls — one on Julio Jones, the other on Tyler Lockett — were sketchy. Clete Blakeman’s crew missed a glaringly obvious face masking of Russell Wilson, a roughing the passer on Jadeveon Clowney, and frankly I don’t see how Devonta Freeman’s fumble was called a fumble live and then still upheld by New York. This league’s officiating standards are a joke.

Ronde Barber’s command of the English language

‘Twas a rough day at the office for poor Ronde. He called Grady Jarrett “JD McGarrett,” Desmond Trufant “Marcus Trufant,” Neiko Thorpe “Akeem King,” and gave us gems like “metal to the pedal” and an unfortunate slip of the tongue on the word “flag.”

Other Notes

  • Dan Quinn trusting his old, severely declined kicker to make 50+ yarders twice should be grounds for a mercy-firing. The perils of a defensive-minded coach.
  • Mychal Kendricks had a great interception dropping in the zone on Matt Schaub, he is still an abysmal tackler and I don’t know how much longer Carroll is going to tolerate that.
  • Bummer that Justin Britt is out, likely for the season. That’s made worse knowing Ethan Pocic won’t be back for a few more weeks. Joey Hunt, you’re the man moving forward for the really important part of the year.
  • I’ll close this out by acknowledging a lot of the comments about how we shouldn’t worry about the narrow wins because the Seahawks are 6-2. On one hand, you’re right. This isn’t college football and style points don’t matter. However, this was a very easy first-half schedule and they seldom showed that they were demonstrably better than the Bengals, Steelers, Browns, Falcons, etc. After the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Seahawks have a daunting schedule in which the “worst” team is either the Arizona Cardinals (3-4-1) or Philadelphia Eagles (4-4). Seahawks teams of yesteryear had their share of scares and weird performances (and upset losses), but they also dropped the hammer down on inferior opposition on plenty of occasions. Hell, they blew out other good-to-great teams. Those Seahawks squads are almost a useless model for determining the 2019 team’s fate, because the talent disparity is glaring and the coaching is worse. They need to be much better from November-December or else missing the playoffs is a distinct possibility. We can forgive these needlessly close wins against bad opposition if they get wins of any sort against the upper-crust of the NFL... and they’ll need at least four to get to January.