Seattle made the plays that mattered
Seattle Seahawks 24, New England Patriots 23
When: 1:05 PM PST, Sunday, November 14, 2012
Where: CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Washington
After the Seahawks imploded in the second quarter, and stumbled their way through the 3rd quarter, they found themselves down by 13 points with less than 10 minutes to play.
From that moment on, both sides of the ball made every play they had to.
Sure, Tom Brady and the Patriots racked up 475-yards in total offense. But, when it mattered the most, the Seattle Seahawks defense held the Patriots two yards short.
Russell Wilson #3
I have to throw out his line for everyone. Partially because it seems like people like to talk about his stats, and partly because I love numbers.
16/27 for 293-yards, 3 touchdown and no interceptions. Plus, 5 rushes for 17-yards. It all adds up to a 133.7 Rating and a QBR of 91.4. If you felt like you have read that before, I stole it from my MMQB piece last night.
In case you didn’t read that piece, let me point out that the last time a Seattle Seahawks quarterback had that much of an impact (QBR) in a game was week three of the 2008 season.
We were able to see Russell Wilson air the ball out quite a bit on Sunday. I have to be honest, I am extremely impressed with the way he throws a deep ball. The last time I saw someone throw a ball like that, for the Seahawks, was before Matt Hasselbeck.
From here on out, defenses will have to game plan against big passing plays. That should limit the amount of defenders opposing teams are willing to stack in the box.
Which should really help the running game, not that it isn’t pretty good already.
Sidney Rice #18
Sidney Rice made several nice plays throughout the game. He also messed a few up, we will skip over those for the purpose of this piece. After it was all said and done, two plays put Rice on my list.
I have been critical of some of Darrell Bevell’s play calling, especially on third and short, but I have to give him some props here. The game winning touchdown play was set up on a 29-yard pass to Rice on a first quarter pass.
Both plays came off play action, running away from Sidney Rice, while lined up in the I-formation.
On the first quarter play, Sidney ran a corner route. The play action was key to holding the safety inside and away from the throw.
The Seahawks final offensive play, excluding the two from the victory formation to end the game, Bevell threw a kink into the play. When Sidney broke for the corner he was open, just like in the first quarter.
I even yelled “throw the ball,” clearly I had bitten on the double move that was about to follow. So did the Patriots safety. He sprinted hard outside to close the window on Russell Wilson.
Just then, Rice planted his foot in the ground and cut towards the post. The safeties momentum carried him outside and it was easy for Rice to cut under him and create separation. A beautiful throw by Wilson sealed the deal!
Richard Sherman #25
Apparently, Tom Brady talked a little smack to Richard Sherman at some point. We all know Richard is the biggest talker in the Legion of Boom, so I am sure he said some choice words in response.
Sherman also let his play deliver big blows to the Pats’ offense.
Early in the game the Patriots were moving the ball pretty well. On third down Tom challenged Richard on a Go-route to Brandon Lloyd. Sherman got his hand on the ball and broke up the pass.
Later in the game, Brady thought Wes Welker’s quickness would be too much for Sherman. Richard broke up that would-be touchdown. Tom didn’t learn his lesson, obviously he thought that maybe the older, slower, smaller Deion Branch would be able to beat Richard Sherman.
Sherman must have been surprised when Brady threw the ball right to him. Interceptions don’t usually come that easy. I’ll take Sherman on Branch 365 days a year!
After the game, Richard had a few words for Tom. He probably said something along the line of “One of us played like an All-Pro player today my Brother!” Or maybe he thanked him for his participation, we will probably never know.
We do know that shortly after the game Sherman tweeted a photo from that conversation with the caption “You mad Bro?”
Bobby Wagner #54
A simple glance at my notes from the game makes one thing apparent. The only player who had more positive things written about his play during the game than Bobby Wagner was Russell Wilson.
Bobby was all over the field on Sunday. He led the Seahawks, and the game, in tackles.
Once again, his solid and consistent play has landed him on this list. He’s also my colleague Britton’s Seahawks rookie of the week.
Chris Clemons #91
Tom Brady was only sacked once in the game. Jason Jones was the player who sacked him. That doesn’t mean Chris Clemons wasn’t able to get an effective pass rush. Tom Brady knows where all his check-downs are, so as soon as he feels pressure he dumps the ball off.
Chris Clemons was able to hit Brady three times during the game, right after he released the ball. Brady does not like to get touched, let alone driven into the ground the way Clemons did.
It was a Clemons hit that forced Tom Brady’s intentional grounding penalty late in the fourth quarter. He would like to get some sacks on Sunday, just like every other pass rusher, but he was able to be almost as effective by getting into Brady’s head.
There were so many players who made big plays during the game Sunday. There you have my top five. I would like to give an honorable mention to a few more.
Leon Washington had a great kick return that set up the Seahawks winning touchdown drive. Doug Baldwin made a couple great catches in the first quarter, unfortunately, after those 74-yards, and a touchdown, he was never heard from again.
Brandon Browner stopped the Patriots from gaining a first down during the final 5 minutes with a pass defense. Russell Okung had the second best game of his career. I was thinking that it was Okung’s best game, but @derekseahawks29 reminded me about the performance he had against Julius Peppers a couple of years ago.
The game started 38 hours ago and I am still hyped up about the way it all went down.
The Seahawks have been in every game they have played.
More often then not, they have taken advantage.
4-2 feels pretty good. Bring on the Niners.