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Winners and Losers from Bears 25 Seahawks 24

Chicago Bears v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images

Not only are the Seattle Seahawks bad, they’re worse than we thought.

They are “lose to the Nick Foles-led Chicago Bears” bad, and honestly that sounds about right. At 5-10 they are only one game better than the New York Jets and Giants, and they have no wins against NFC opposition other than the San Francisco 49ers.

Seattle isn’t going to the playoffs (we knew that, but it’s official now) and they will finish last in the NFC West. It’s fully deserved.

Let’s get to Winners and Losers.

Winners

Carlos Dunlap and Rasheem Green

They are lumped together in tandem because they had all four of Seattle’s sacks. Dunlap and Green had two apiece and Dunlap was really close to having two strip sacks if not for a replay review reversal into an incomplete pass. Carlos has revived himself with five sacks over the past two games and he may yet finish the season as the team leader in sacks... but lest we forget that Rasheem now has 6.5 sacks on the year and looks like he should be re-signed by the team.

Jordyn Brooks

It looks like Brooks has taken it upon himself to sniff out some of these screen passes. He did it twice today and made a 4th down stop at the goal line to force a turnover on downs. We’re seeing more good plays than bad plays from Brooks in recent weeks, and ideally that continues into year three.

Gerald Everett

4 catches for 68 yards and a touchdown for the big man, as well as a key block on Rashaad Penny’s touchdown run. That awful 49ers game aside he’s been one of the few bright spots on the offense this season. Unfortunately he had a 4th and 1 false start on the final drive, but I’m numb to it.

Rashaad Penny

Another fantastic day for Penny, his second over the past three weeks. Penny rushed for 135 yards on 17 carries and had a walk-in touchdown. This is one hell of a contract year push given he barely featured in the offense until this month. He’s hitting holes hard, he’s breaking tackles, and he’s flashing his speed. All the things we’ve hoped to see on a regular basis but have never consistently seen for a variety of reasons, but mostly because he hasn’t been able to stay healthy.

Hopefully he can keep showing out over the final two weeks.

Losers

Jason Myers

Another critical miss by Myers in a close loss. This is who he is. The 2020 season was the aberration (and I guess his 2018 with the Jets) because otherwise most of his career has been mired in shockingly poor PAT rates and showing no consistency with his field goals. He’s sub-70% on the year on his 19 attempts and that’s 4 misses from inside of 50. We’ve discussed this topic before but I think Myers should be gone.

Michael Dickson

This is one of the rare times that I will ever put him on the Losers list, but he was not good today. A bad punt with little hang time created a massive return by Dazz Newsome into Seattle’s red zone. His last punt went into the end zone for a touchback. There was another punt from Chicago’s territory that was functionally a touchback given it was fair caught at the 18. Just a rare off-day for the Aussie.

John Reid

I didn’t even think John Reid played poorly necessarily but he had a pass interference penalty on Chicago’s second touchdown drive and then was boxed out by Jimmy Graham for the late touchdown. Tough spot for the 3rd string CB but he had two key negative plays that stand out.

Colby Parkinson

Let’s not leave out that Parkinson, who was TE2 in the absence of Will Dissly, had a critical holding penalty on the Seahawks’ penultimate drive that resulted in Seattle getting bumped out of FG range and eventually punting. Just can’t have those mistakes and not from someone who has scarcely contributed.

Bobby Wagner

I love Wagner and he’ll be in Canton very soon. There is no way you can consider 2021 Wagner to be in his prime. He’s struggling to make tackles in open space and was certainly culpable on at least one 3rd and long conversion. Wagner leads the NFL in tackles but he only has three tackles for loss, which would be his fewest since 2014. Racking up tackles after several yards are gained or after a 1st down is converted is as close to an empty stat as you can get.

“Bend but don’t break”

They broke. And they broke bad. The Seahawks defense was 7/14 on 3rd down and that final drive was absolutely pathetic. I can’t fathom being so terrified of getting beat over the top on a weekly basis (even though they rarely do) that the underneath of the field is just conceded so meekly. That stalwart red zone defense allowed two touchdowns and I guess if you consider the 20-yard line as the start of the red zone it’s actually three in five trips. Some abysmal tackling across the board at all three levels.

I understand the defense is undermanned but they have been heavily culpable both this year and parts of last year for why they play so many snaps. When the Bears are getting eight-minute drives on you then that’s a problem. Relying on defending the red zone and getting 3rd down stops is not sustainable on a year-to-year basis.

I’ve laid off of Ken Norton Jr for the past month or so but that was a really unacceptable defensive performance given the opposition. Chicago matched its season high in first downs and since a few of those in the Arizona game were garbage time, this is really their season high.

Russell Wilson

I don’t think Wilson played terribly as a whole and he made a couple of money throws to DK Metcalf and Gerald Everett, but he did not play well for much of the 2nd half. His QBR was 30.8, he was just 5/11 in the 2nd half after going 11/16 in the 1st half, and he definitely got away with a couple of passes that could’ve been picked. That DK Metcalf overthrow on the opening 2nd half possession was a killer as it wasted great field position, and the sack he took down in the red zone was unacceptable. The risk of taking a huge negative play is not worth the reward of a touchdown in that time/score situation. Any points there and it’s a two-possession game and any bad play reduces the probability of getting points.

Myers should make his 39-yard field goal, but Wilson taking that sack turned a chipshot (99% conversion rate this season from 20-29 yards) to highly makeable but not a guarantee (93% from 30-39 yards). PATs are from 33 yards out and kickers miss every single week and indeed conversion rates are at a record-low 92% since they were moved back in 2015, so let’s not act like 39 is a drop in the bucket.

Wilson has spent his entire career making magic happen and he’s going to Canton off the back of that plus his overwhelmingly consistent and brilliant play. But the magic has scarcely been there (yes, including pre-injury) and there are times where you have to live to fight another day. The sack didn’t cost them the game, but it’s emblematic of Wilson’s season and the offense as a whole.

Duane Brown

Officially, both sacks by Robert Quinn go against Brown, but I don’t pin the second one on him. The first one, though? Oh he got owned and Wilson had no chance. Thanks for all your years of service Duane, but Seattle will surely be looking for a new left tackle in 2022.

Final Notes

  • DK Metcalf a non-factor again after a 41-yard touchdown. Tyler Lockett with just 3 catches for 30 yards and wasn’t able to get out of bounds on 3rd and 16, costing the Seahawks a timeout.
  • Myles Adams looked the part of a defensive tackle worth keeping on the 53. I liked him in preseason and he played well for the most part today.
  • I was real concerned when Dee Eskridge took a late hit out of bounds and to the helmet. Thankfully he was okay and continued playing.
  • Germain Ifedi false starting in a Seahawks game but for the other team was a different, very pleasing experience.
  • Pete Carroll and timeout management. Name a worse duo. This applies to the end of the 1st half and the challenge on the Nick Foles sneak.
  • I have been on Field Gulls long enough to remember some of the steadfast denial within the community that the Seahawks were in decline in ‘08 and ‘09. How could they be?! They won four straight NFC West titles and a Conference Championship. Next thing you know a rebuild happened and we were treated to a decade of great football and a Super Bowl title. Maybe we’re in that phase again like the end of the Holmgren era. The next few weeks will tell us if the organization will look at 2021 as a blip in the radar or if, to quote Semisonic, “Closing time, every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”