The strive for perfection will carry on elsewhere. The San Diego Chargers aren’t a flawless team, but Philip Rivers is an excellent quarterback who played a lot better than most do against the defending Super Bowl champions, putting on an exquisite passing performance and beating the Seattle Seahawks 30-21.
The Seahawks spoke all week about not getting everything they wanted in the win over the Packers. Much was made of Richard Sherman not seeing a single pass thrown in his direction. Some forgot to mention he was covering the number three receivers for the Packers. Against the Chargers, he was marking Keenan Allen. Allen never erupted for anything big, but he caught five passes (Rivers was five-of-five when targeting him) for 55 yards. Enough to make a crack in the famous shroud of Sherman’s confidence and arrogance, suddenly not wanting to talk after the game.
If it wasn’t for Percy Harvin scoring a 51-yard touchdown that shouldn’t have been allowed (Stepped out of bounds), the Seahawks might have been stuck on single-digit scoring the entire game. Their offense gained just 237 yards excluding that rush from the talented receiver. They did finish with 108 yards on 13 carries, but that was inflated due to Harvin’s run, not to mention walking away from the running game altogether for some reason.
The offensive line didn’t do a great job as always, while the Chargers’ pass rush managed to force two fumbles (one into a turnover) and although Wilson did throw a couple of touchdown passes, he struggled on third down and got stuck a lot more than he’s used to being. The Seahawks are often praised for the quality of their secondary, but the Chargers did an excellent job of covering all or most of his options during the game.
Rivers did something no quarterback has done against the Seahwks since midway through the 2012 season: He completed three passes for a touchdown, all going into the hands of Antonio Gates, who finished with 7 receptions for 96 yards. This was only the second time in which a Seahawks defense with Richard Sherman on the field gave up three touchdown passes. It’s been that hard scoring against them over the last three seasons or so.
The Chargers didn’t make big plays, but they kept making plays, consistently getting first downs. They had more first downs than the Seahawks, as Rivers finished with 28-of-37 with 284 yards and his three TD passes. With no mishap on the snap like last week against the Cardinals, it was an opportunity to show just how good this offense is, even against the best defense in the NFL.
For the Seahawks, the loss means they’re now looking up on the leaders of the NFC West, but the 49ers losing somewhat makes it less painful. On the road they’re bound to be a bit more vulnerable, but the ability of Rivers to get whatever he wanted whenever he wanted, not getting rustled by the Seahawks pass rush, goes to show that there are ways of beating and making this team look bad.