This was a great win. Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. During the game I noticed people complaining about play calling, a lack of offense and one or two other issues. Quit complaining. The Seahawks handled this game after the early setback of a Jets turnover-touchdown.
Here’s the facts. Seattle’s defense didn’t concede a single point and completely shut down Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow and co. The offense struggled early on against a good Rex Ryan defense, but that’s to be expected. Check Ryan’s record against rookie quarterbacks because the guy can coach a defense. It took a while for Russell Wilson to get settled today. Eventually, Darrell Bevell found intelligent ways to combat the exotic blitz packages. And in the end Wilson had two touchdowns, Marshawn Lynch had over 100 yards plus a score and the receivers made big plays.
You can linger on a difficult period after the Jets touchdown if you like. Or you can concentrate on some solid in-game adjustments and another great win for the Seahawks.
Wilson continues to show real potential. His two touchdown throws were right on the money. He had a couple of moments where he tried too hard to hold onto the ball and make a play. One led to a touchdown for New York. Yet unlike a lot of young quarterbacks, it didn’t get to him. Anyone who saw Miami’s Ryan Tannehill today saw a rookie throw a pick-six and go on to throw two more interceptions as he tried to force a response. Wilson was unflappable after his turnover. He’s yet to throw a pick at home and now has 15 touchdowns for the year. Get excited.
Sidney Rice and Golden Tate are showing why they can become a very productive tandem for this offense. They aren’t just making plays, they’re scoring touchdowns. A problem area a few weeks ago is becoming a strength. It’s no coincidence that the production has increased as Wilson has settled into the NFL. As the quarterback continues to grow, I suspect we’ll see even more from Rice and Tate.
Marshawn Lynch has over 1000 rushing yards after ten games. Enough said.
On defense, Bruce Irvin is up to seven sacks as a rookie and Richard Sherman continues to play at an elite level. There won’t be a more deserving Pro Bowl debut if Sherman gets to Hawaii this season. The Jets’ offense is one of the worst in the NFL, but it’s good to see the defense as a unit hit back with a shut-out after a couple of difficult games.
The Seahawks can feel very good about their position at 6-4 going into the bye. There are tough games ahead against Miami and Chicago, but these are occasions where you have to prove you belong. There are six games to go and four wins likely gets you into the playoffs as a wildcard. Although the 49ers struggled against St. Louis today, they maintain a 1.5 game lead in the NFC West. San Francisco has Chicago, New Orleans and New England among their remaining opponents, but they also face the Rams again, Miami, Arizona and Seattle on December 23rd. The Niners are getting a lot of breaks again this year (today being a huge example). In terms of the NFC West title, that luck may not run out until 2013.
As for the draft, one thought struck me today. The Seahawks are running more and more trick plays. They’re still throwing downfield and they’re looking for advantages all over the field. In my last mock draft I projected Cordarrelle Patterson (WR, Tennessee) to Seattle. This is a guy who returns kicks, takes snaps at tailback, will take an end around with a throwing option, run downfield routes. He does it all. Watching this offense today, I think he’s even more of an option than I did previously.
Here are Patterson’s numbers: 638 receiving yards, four touchdowns. 553 kick return yards, one 98-yard touchdown. 270 rushing yards, three touchdowns. One pass attempt, complete, for 28 yards. He’s 6-3, 205lbs and will run a good time at the combine.
In the past I’ve thought if anyone drafts Patterson in round one, it’ll be a team in a position to make a ‘luxury pick’. He’ll be a home run hitter. Suddenly, this Seahawks team looks capable of justifying such a pick. And imagine this offense with another explosive receiver? The front office appears to like multi-faceted playmakers with size and speed. Patterson fits the bill.
It’s merely one option at this very early stage. But it’s an option we might need to give greater consideration as we move forward.