The Seattle Seahawks have won again, prompting me to need to come up with a new way to open these articles. A 31-21 victory over the Arizona Cardinals pushes Seattle’s winning streak to four games and their overall record to 6-3, still first in their division and the third seed in their conference.
The Cardinals kept the game close for the most part, having a lead as late as halfway through the third quarter, but the Seahawks pumped out three touchdowns in the final 17 minutes of play to turn a 14-10 deficit to a 31-21 win. Geno Smith again threw for 275 yards and two touchdowns. He did have a road bump when he threw an interception in the third quarter that was returned for a touchdown, but clearly the nerves didn’t bother him as Seattle’s next three drives went for touchdowns.
Kenneth Walker III went for two of those touchdowns, finishing his night with 129 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns, both rushing. His remarkable efficiency has placed him firmly as the Offensive Rookie of the Year frontrunner, despite only starting four of the nine games played.
Meanwhile, tight end Noah Fant led the team in receiving with 96 yards on five catches. Behind him were Tyler Lockett’s 67 yards and DK Metcalf’s 37 yards, though both of the latter had touchdowns to fill out the scorecard.
The defense put together another stout week, holding Kyler Murray to just 175 passing yards, though he added 60 on the ground. The five sacks they landed on Murray was the second-most he’s taken this season… to the first matchup against the Seahawks. The defense again showed up big and sent the Cardinals to a basement-dwelling 3-6 record.
There are few things to say that haven’t already been said: Smith is good and a legitimate MVP candidate. Walker is a ROTY contender. Tariq Woolen is also a ROTY contender. This team has turned what was expected to be an abysmal season into one where they are looking like playoff candidates.
Still, what most impressed me about their game was Smith and how he handled the pressure. The Seahawks haven’t gotten a good look at what happens when he makes mistakes, and his fourth interception of the season ended up being his biggest mistake so far. When he immediately took the field again, he went 6-for-7 on a 70-yard drive ending in a dart to Lockett. The defense stopped Arizona in six plays afterwards, letting Smith take the field again. Smith goes 3-for-4 with 30 additional rushing yards, allowing Walker to punch in a one-yard touchdown.
After the Cardinals put together their best drive of the day and narrowed the deficit to 24-21, Smith took a backseat to his playmakers. The drive started with a dump-off screen pass to Fant who ran it for a 51-yard gain for the last pass Smith would make that game. Four rushes by Walker (and a penalty on the defense) made up the 34 yards Seattle needed for their final points.