The Seahawks and Russell Wilson shocked fans after knocking off Tom Brady’s Patriots. Many now count Seattle among the NFC’s elite. Before you gush over Seattle’s future, let’s consider their past. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
Seahawks at 49ers
The NFL is a crazy, unpredictable machine. Many of us who follow the sport intently tend to forget anything that happened prior to our team’s most recent contest. In Week 6, the Seattle Seahawks erased a 13 point 4th quarter lead to edge Tom Brady and the Patriots. The victory was possible due in large part to Seattle’s impressive defense and then capped off by a solid 4th quarter from Russell Wilson. Now, the Seahawks are on top of the world.
Or not. Two weeks before beating New England, Seattle couldn’t break through against a stingy Rams defense in St. Louis. One week after that, the Seahawks struggled to wrestle a win from the downtrodden Carolina Panthers. When you look back over Seattle’s first six weeks, two trends stick out like a sore thumb. 1. The Seahawks suck on the road. 2. The Seahawks struggle against good defenses.
Let’s start with #1. At home, Seattle has crushed Dallas, squeaked by the Packers, and rallied against the Patriots. On the road, Seattle fell short against the Cardinals, were stymied by the Rams, and played their worst game of the season against the Panthers. If the Panthers were a bad team instead of an awful team, Seattle would have zero road wins. Furthermore, Russell Wilson is a mess away from home; 3 TDs, 6 INTs, and 1 fumble. (At home; 6 TDs, 0 INTs, and 1 fumble.)
In addition to homesickness, the Seahawks have struggled against good defenses. A win over the Cowboys was Seattle’s only legitimate win over a respectable defense. No, I’m not crediting the Seahawks offense with a victory over the Packers defense. (They essentially lost 12-7, not exactly a blistering offensive performance from the Seahawks.) If you eliminate the Cowboys game and the touchdown that wasn’t really a touchdown against the Packers, Seattle has scored only 36 points in three games against good defenses (Arizona, Green Bay, St. Louis). In those three games, Seattle mustered only three touchdowns (the Seattle Screwjob TD not included). In all the hoopla surrounding Seattle’s big victory over New England, no one thought to mention how poor New England’s defense is, or that Russell Wilson didn’t do all that much to rally the Seahawks except chuck the ball 50 yards downfield against a secondary that either started drinking at halftime or took the Seahawks money line.
Don’t get me wrong; Seattle is a competitive team with probably the best defense in the NFL. However, their offense isn’t good enough to compete against the other great defenses in the league. The 49ers have a great defense. Vegas knows this and opened the game by giving the Seahawks 9 points. That number has since dropped to 7 as the Seattle hysteria increases. If people paid attention to the Seahawks first five weeks instead of only Week 6, the line would be moving the other direction.
Though Seattle’s defense will give their team a chance, the offense won’t get anything accomplished. They may not even score. San Francisco is at home and angry. Seattle is on the road and facing a top five defense. Not a good combination for Russell Wilson and the Seahawks. 49ERS If I were Charles Barkley; 49ers -7