Instant reaction: Seahawks beat lowly Texans

Seattle won back-to-back games for the first time this season.

Yet it was hard to muster too much enthusiasm for a win against an opponent very much going through a tanking process.

The Seahawks added gloss to the scoreline late on, making what was actually quite a tepid encounter look like a hammering.

The reality is it was quite nip and tuck until the end.

Russell Wilson continues to return to form, that’s a big positive. He wasn’t flawless by any stretch but the disaster-zone performances against Green Bay and Arizona are clearly in the rearview mirror. Rashaad Penny had a really impressive game in a ‘look what could’ve been’ type display. Good for him. I hope he can finish strong and earn a fresh opportunity for 2022.

Seattle kept Houston alive longer than was necessary. It was a six-point game deep into the second-half.

The whole thing felt very up and down until Houston imploded.

On offense — creative runs, motion and Wilson on the move. There were throwbacks to week one in what we thought would be the norm. Yet there was also some frustratingly conservative play-calls, missed opportunities and a lack of killer instinct.

On defense — Darrell Taylor continued to flash as did Al Woods. The unit had success on third down again. They also continue to show total inability to defend screens properly, they give up too many easy conversions and just play, too often, with a bit of a passive nature.

A collection of highlights from the game will be fun to watch because there were enough attractive plays to enjoy over multiple watches. I must confess though — there were long stretches in the game where I had to fight against nodding off.

33-13 doesn’t feel like a fair reflection of what we saw. While I’m happy to accept it, given the way other games have gone this season, it just felt a bit ‘meh’.

I’m sure some of the media and fanbase will begin to talk about a late playoff run. I can’t see this version of the Seahawks going to LA next week and winning. In fact I think it could get quite ugly. And that’s when, officially, the season will be over bar the shouting.

I’m ready to see something else. Some new ideas, a new approach.

In the live stream I will again discuss the lingering elephant in the room. Ian Rapoport validated Jordan Schultz’s Wilson report from earlier in the week. I have a theory on this to discuss, watch the video at the top of the article for more.

I also have to say — given what was eminently possible next off-season, I don’t know why Seattle didn’t take a shot on Kellen Mond or Davis Mills in the draft. I think Mills showed he has talent in this game and generally did about as well as can be expected given the appalling supporting cast he has to work with.

It’s not like the Seahawks are making the most of their Dee Eskridge investment anyway.

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  1. BobbyK

    I didn’t think it was possible to win any game ever again without Jamal Adams.

    • Big Mike


  2. MattyB

    It was an easy win, and I’m not getting carried away but I just watched the final race in F1 and, hey any shit can happen …

  3. Paul Cook

    Solid confidence building win, even if it was against a poor team. But that’s what weak teams are for, isn’t it?

    This sets up a huge game with the Rams next week. If we can upset the Rams who have played hot and cold of late, it puts us squarely back into the playoff hunt. It would move our record to 6-8 and then we play at home against the Bears and Lions the next two weeks. Both eminently winnable games.
    And then, the final week of the season against the Cards…who knows?…maybe the Cards will have clinched their playoff position and will sit some of their key players.

    Basically speaking, the Rams game is everything next week.

    RW is clearly back in control of his game, and the offense is showing signs of being a bit more diverse and sophisticated in scheme and execution. Both of these things clearly give us a chance to win any of our remaining games.

    It’s nice to still be alive and hopeful for at least a little while longer.

  4. Whit21

    The biggest fails of recent drafts and liability are dline and jordyn brooks in coverage. The first drive by the texans and he drifts back into the middle of the field and amost runs into Bobby Wagner.. they are not a playoff team even if they pull off wins against the rams and cardinals.. and win out.. defense holds its opponents but with context.. u see who they held.. and its just not good enough.. theyre hurt on the back end..

    All we can hope for is a moral victory and not give the jets a top 5 pick. Sliding our 2nd round pick back a few spots isnt reason to tank..

    Im gonna echo what i said a few years ago… its either pete or russ.. you likely wont see both together next year unless russ gets ugly and wont play ball once his deal is over.. the jody allen at the helm is gonna come to a head… i doubt she will make the smartest decision.. which is to send pete to the pasture.

    • Roy Batty

      If I am not mistaken, I saw Woods in coverage.

      Who in their right mind sends that mountain of run-stopping flesh into coverage?

      Was it for comic relief?

      • Olyhawksfan

        It’s the dumbest thing I’ve seen in a long time.

      • Big Mike

        Pete Carroll, defensive genius

        • Whit21

          Im buying what rob is selling…

          1 ticket for the fire pete carroll and bring sean payton to seattle, please..

  5. Roy Batty

    Honestly, after Penny made a few good runs with power and a bit of finesse, I was really hoping they would get him in on the passing game. Get him a few tosses in open ground 5 yards down field, and let him show his stuff. Really mix it up with him.

    Russ had a few misses, but he and Lockett are back to normal.

    DK must be wondering why he’s here? Ignored for long stretches, then trying to force-feed. Makes no sense. Just feed him the ball. Period.

    If I’m an opposing OC, I target the 5-10 yard range over the Hawks middle all day until they shut it down completely. Otherwise, just keep attacking the crap zone coverage.

    Myers will cost the team $5 million next year. Do they keep him or eat the $1 million in dead cap?

    Wagner and Brooks with 25 tackles, with only 1 TFL. Yikes.

    It was nice to see Diggs only had one tackle. He didn’t need to bail anyone out. Him being him, it wasn’t surprising to see him ruin Neal’s pick chance. Such a ball Hawk. I’m sure he will buy Ryan a nice dinner somewhere expensive.

    Sydney Jones had some really good tackles. By no means perfect, but he laid into receivers when he could.

    The game had its moments, but I really wanted Russ riding the pine the entire 4th, watching a big lead. Instead, they put it away late and Carroll still kept him in the game when it well and truly over. Why?

    If Stafford doesn’t implode, as he has for a stretch this year, it could be ugly next week. McVay will do a much better job exploiting the defense. And they happen to have Aaron Donald. Ugh.

    • Andrew M

      Minor criticism of a good play but Neal and Diggs should both know not to intercept that pass. It was a fourth down desperation play, and the team could have lost about 25 yards of field advantage had the ball been picked. Swat it down and go rest on the sideline.

      • BobbyK

        That’s just not understanding the game. Those guys wanted that pick but that INT would have been especially stupid because of the field position they’d give up. The Patriots rarely do stuff like that situationally and both our starting safeties don’t even have a clue they just did something stupid.

  6. cha

    The 2022 QB class. See if you can spot Pickett:

  7. Big Mike

    Our old friend Sherm with a pick for Tampa just now.

  8. cha

    Go Bengals!

    I was laughing at the bearded guys in Bengals fuzzy footie pajamas in the stands. But if they beat the Niners I might buy a pair!

  9. Paul Cook

    Yes, we need all those sub .500 teams above to lose.

    • Justaguy

      Buwhahahahaha! Thanks for the good laugh Paul Cook

  10. GoHawksDani

    Any win is good since they soften the blow a bit about the JA trade. It’s always going to be a disaster but if we could keep that pick in the #12-15 area it wouldn’t hurt that much as a #4-5 pick.
    But this was a boring game.
    Lockett is amazing, Penny run well against the worst run D, Taylor has potential and Russ looked pretty decent.
    Last one is good because it either can give us hope for the future with a better FO or can strengthen our bargaining position in a possible trade.

    I hope Rams game can be close and we can potentially win it but not sure how much hope I have about this team

    • 12th chuck

      by doing that, you’re dropping in all the other rounds as well. they are not going to make the playoffs

      • Paul Cook

        The Hawks aren’t out of the playoff picture yet. There is a traffic jam of poor to mediocre, sub .500 teams vying for the last playoff spot. We are one of them. We probably have to win out, but it’s possible.

        • 12th chuck

          we lost to saints, vikings rams, and washington, they own the tie breakers

          • Paul Cook

            Yeah, but if we finish 9-8 and none of these teams win 9 games, then we finish ahead of them. I haven’t looked at all these teams schedules closely yet, but it seems like it would be possible.

  11. Paul Cook

    Effing Bengals. I felt like they were playing more for the field goal than the TD once they got down into FG range in OT.

    • Matthew

      So frustrating. Rooting for the Bengals is not a place I like being.

  12. Sea Mode

    Yeah, I’m really stumped that they are not using Eskridge at all. Seems like a great opportunity to get him some touches and integrate him as a threat to opposing defenses.

    • Matthew

      Don’t want to put anything on tape. Save him for the playoffs!

    • Sea Mode

      Oh, and can he please be our kickoff returner? Tired of watching Dallas run out of gas at the 25…

      • Roy Batty

        I was tired of seeing Dallas bring it out of the end zone and never reach the 25 so many times before.

      • cha

        I’m a contrarian in this area.

        I don’t care if there is a possibility of injury. I’ll take the risk. Why not put your best players on the field and let them use their skills?

        Tyler Lockett should be taking punts and Dee Eskridge should be taking kickoffs.

        Using running backs and fourth wide receivers whose only usable skill is ‘doesn’t cough up the ball’ is far too risk averse for my taste.

        • Paul Cook

          I’ll meet you half way on that. Dee but not Tyler, except maybe the playoffs.

          • Mike

            I agree, I think they just want swain back there to not screw things up. Reminds me of Bryan Walters.
            deejay Dallas has done alright in kick returns for the most part

            • Mike

              I wish they’d give eskridge a couple jet sweeps or put him in the backfield sometimes. He’s kind of a Walmart Deebo Samuel/percy Harvin type

        • Andrew M

          I’ve been wanting to see DK on returns since the Rams loss. He’s the fastest guy they have on the team and he’s hard to tackle. And after the WFT loss I hate seeing them not trying things out. Let DK and Lockett return, put Eskeridge in motion, and Gaddamn go for the 4th down inside the 50 yard line. Any surprise decision by the coaches makes the game fun, especially when you have nothing to lose.

  13. Hughz

    The niners win effectively put any thoughts of playoff hope to bed. Not that they deserve it. I just still had some glimmer of hope.

    • Paul Cook

      The 7th seed playoff spot is still a possibility. If we win out and finish 9-8, maybe we squeak in.

  14. Rob Staton

    Was never a fan of Fields or Lance

    Feel validated so far in that opinion

    The way draft media analysed them was absolutely shocking. The issues and flaws were obvious. Yet you’d never have guessed based on what was written and said.

    • ABCinco

      If it helped pressure Shanahan into taking Lance over Mac Jones then I’m fine with it

      • Mike

        I think a lot of it is that they have impressive highlight tapes and casually fans like myself get drawn in by that.
        Mac Jones doesn’t have the wow factor but obviously good decision making and accuracy are way more important for quarterback play.

    • bmseattle

      People *still* talk about Fields like he’s a future star. So weird.
      I watched the Jets game yesterday, and Zach Wilson looks terrible, as well.
      He’s extremely inaccurate and makes terrible decisions.

      • bmseattle

        … though, to be fair, the Jets give him zero support, so that’s probably a big part of it.

  15. Paul Cook

    The Bears just returned a punt 97 yards for a TD. Then I heard Al MIchaels say that was the first punt return for a TD in the NFL this season.

    I would have never guessed that. I might have guessed 6 or 7 or some such thing.

  16. Ashish

    What if they beat RAMS next week? They will play next 2 game where i can see they can win. A loss will clam down media.

  17. Mike

    Rashaad penny at least shows flashes….but how the hell was lj collier a first round pick there is absolutely nothing there

  18. swedenhawk

    Rapoport’s validation of Schultz’s report is RW’s camp sending ownership a message. But it also feels like an indication that PC, despite his uncharacteristic behavior at the podium this year, does not have it in mind to retire at the end of the year. As the knuckle rapping that Florio received following the Jody Allen report suggests, he sees this season as an anomaly within a decade of winning — even if she may not — and is going to continue ‘battling’ to right the ship. I get the sense that the people in Wilson’s camp know that Carroll (and Schneider) is planning on staying put and are doing what they can to force the issue.

    • Rob Staton

      I think people underestimate how much this might be about JS as much as it’s about PC

      • swedenhawk

        if ownership commits to building around RW and issues a directive to extend his contract along the lines of Mahomes or Allen, do you think that the relationship between JS and Mark Rodgers is potentially so fractured that a deal couldn’t get done?

        • Rob Staton

          Yes I do believe that

          I’m convinced if you want RW in Seattle for the long term, you’re looking at PC & JS needing to go

      • Elmer

        Yes! I believe that too. At least as much about JS.

  19. Gross MaToast

    If Jan 10 passes without any news, RW is gone. That’s clear. He may be gone even if there is a new regime.

    But, I want to believe that the “normal” meeting that Jody Allen had with Pete and JS last month was much, much more – that she was seizing the wheel and making known her intentions to clean house if expectations weren’t met. Maybe Pete announces that this is it for him as soon as the team is officially eliminated from playoff contention. Maybe JS announces he’s stepping down at the same time. I want to believe that, but not sure that I do.

    Ideally, they have a list right now with two or three names for HC and GM, have made contact and gotten some feedback on willingness and terms. They’ve set it in motion and as soon as Pete announces, they run some names past RW for feedback. Maybe he hears something he likes, maybe not.

    The easiest thing to do is always nothing. Let’s chalk it up to a bad luck season and run it back in ‘22 for one more go. That seems a likely scenario – the sheen of stability.

    It would in all likelihood nuke the franchise for quite awhile. Losing RW, Pete being allowed to spend more draft picks and sign another free agent class, maybe make another panic trade when he realizes he forgot to address some fundamental element – that would be disastrous. But, it would be easier than explaining why you fired the winningest coach in team history who is still very popular.

    Maybe McVay helps finish off an era next Sunday. But it shouldn’t have to come to that. I hope that things are happening behind the scenes right now. We’ll find out in four weeks.

    • fan

      I agree with Rob’s theory and swedenhawk’s and Gross MaToast’s comments.

      There must be some strong lobbying campaigns headed in Jody Allen’s direction.

      Pete’s arguments:
      Just a one year anomaly
      We just won 2 games and Russell is back from injury.
      When they lose at the end, he’ll likely say something like, “the season ended a few games too soon”. or “We were just getting started”.

      Russell’s case:
      Pete’s philosophy of football is stale and unsuccessful.
      We play not to lose, especially to inferior teams.
      Hold it close and expect me (Russell) to pull out a miracle at the end.

      I hope that McVay and the Rams win overwhelmingly next week so this will make things clearer. McVay seems to own Carroll.

      NFL football is about winning, but it is also about entertainment. Many of the Seahawks games feel so tedious, predictable and tiresome.

      The last few years-3 different OC’s, but mostly the same look on field. Russell isn’t without fault, but it is time for Pete and probably John to go.

      • Elmer

        Waldron may be about to make the offense look better diversified. We will see. I don’t see them beating the Rams though, but I expect them to compete and not roll over..

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