A lot of the things that worked so well last season disappeared for a while, but the Seattle Seahawks are playing like the tough-as-nails champions they were a year ago, as Russell Wilson gets by with a so-so offensive line while the defense, doing an excellent job in the 24-14 win over the Philadelphia Eagles, is back to its formidable self.
The Eagles, 10 days after a terrific performance in Dallas on Thanksgiving, looked miserable and quite helpless offensively for most of the game, held to 0 points in the second and fourth quarters. This marks their third loss of the season to an NFC West team, and in all of them struggling to make an impression with their offense. Sanchez threw for just 96 yards, completing 50% of his throws, with two touchdowns and one interception.
The Seahawks looked scary in the win over the 49ers, and continue to look like a team that it’s almost impossible to put up points against for long stretches. They did turn the ball over twice on fumbles, but with the Eagles struggling so badly to move the ball (only 57 rushing yards, 2.6 per carry), the Seahawks could afford to make the mistakes they make on their troublesome and sluggish offense.
Russell Wilson completed 22-of-37 throws for 263 yards and two touchdowns, this time sacked only twice. He also ran for 48 yards and scored a touchdown, while Lynch, turning the ball over once, finished with 86 yards on 23 carries.
The last three games, as the Seahawks have improved to 9-4 this season, one game behind the Arizona Cardinals in the race for the top spot in the NFC West, Seattle have held their rivals to season low in total yards and points – The Cardinals, 49ers and the Eagles, who had their worst offensive performance since Chip Kelly became the head coach. The Seahawks slowed the game down and allowed the Eagles only 18 minutes of possession, resulting in just 45 snaps and 139 total yards.
The inconsistent offense makes the Seahawks look less impressive than they did this time a year ago, but the cliché suggests that defenses wins championships over the long run. After all the talk about a crumbling locker room, the problems with wide receivers and the criticism against the declining secondary, the Seahawks are playing the kind of football that won them the Super Bowl last season. Playing on the road doesn’t seem to be scaring them all that much.