Hitting Their Stride
Heading into Monday night’s matchup between the New Orleans Saints and the Seattle Seahawks, many believed the game would be a close contest that pitted the top-two NFC teams against one another.
With several ‘experts’ predicting the Saints to win and several picking the Seahawks, it was clear that there was still a divide as to who should be considered the top team in the NFC. But that was all before the game.
For, once it started, Seattle showcased an unbelievable offense and defense that eventually saw themselves come out with a thrilling, dominant, and downright abusive 34-7 win.
Aided by the thunder and noise of the CenturyLink crowd, the Seahawks burst right out of the gates and didn’t let off of the gas pedal.
Putting up three on their first drive while stifling the Saints, Seattle’s infamous defense got to Drew Brees, forcing a fumble return for a touchdown that has been aptly dubbed the Avrilanche (credit to Brett Bivens and his article Seahawks MMQB: Seattle send the Saints marchin’ home) or the aftershock of the Beastquake — the raucous crowd registered an earthquake at a nearby monitoring station.
After that the Saints were effectively rendered useless as Russell Wilson and company annihilated their opponents and sent them home on a sour note.
It was great, it was glorious, and it was a huge step towards achieving this team’s ultimate goal.
Here are the three standout players who received game balls for their efforts.
Lacking Percy Harvin and having to go against a stout secondary and defense, many were questioning whether or not Wilson and the Seahawks would be able to get anything going on the ground and through the air.
But Seattle’s quarterback would not let any statistics get to his head.
In fact, Wilson dismantled the Saints en route to his best performance of the year. Completing 22-of-30 through the air, Wilson accumulated 310 yards (a 10.3 average!!!) and threw for three touchdowns and no interceptions.
Not only that, Wilson also led Seattle in rushing, carrying the ball eight times for 47 yards.
After the game the chants of MVP, MVP could be heard, and after that kind of performance, well, they’re completely merited.
Aside from helping out in coverage, Wagner had 11 tackles and one pass deflection, stellar numbers from a spectacular player. But now, on to Maxwell.
While he did only rack up two tackles, Maxwell played absolutely HUGE against the Saints and Drew Brees’ arm. Having to step in for Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond III, Maxwell was brilliant and looked like he could start for any team in the league.
In fact, he should have had one pick and nearly hauled in two, showcasing his ability to stick with New Orleans’ receivers and play the type of physical coverage required of those in the Legion of Boom.
It was a performance many doubted he could turn in, and he definitely proved his doubters wrong.
Steven Haushka was 2-of-2 on the night and his long was from 26 yards. continuing to be the on-point kicker that he is, his recognition goes more to show how dominant Seattle was in just about every facet of the game.
Not having to rely on big punt returns or kick returns to generate any momentum, Seattle’s special teams just went out there and did the job they needed to in order to secure a win for the Hawks.
The Seahawks now have a quick week before a huge matchup against the 49ers in San Francisco where they will have a shot to lock up the NFC West with a win.