Moore: Seahawks’ Bruce Irvin has made a career of sacking new Patriots QB Cam Newton
Earlier this week on 710 ESPN Seattle’s Bob, Dave and Moore, we asked Seahawks pass rusher Bruce Irvin a question about the challenges of facing Cam Newton, and he said he’s had good success against him, sacking the former Carolina Panthers quarterback nine times in his career.
I found it surprising that he would know how many times he had sacked Newton in his nine-year career, and in fact, you could actually say eight years instead of nine because Irvin played for the Panthers last year and couldn’t have possibly sacked him for two reasons: Newton was his teammate and was injured and out most of the season anyway.
Checking the game logs of Irvin’s career, I discovered he’s right – he sacked Newton seven times with the Seahawks from 2012-15, six during the regular season and once in the playoffs in 2014. He sacked Newton twice in three games in 2012, 2014 and 2015.
He sacked Newton once when the Raiders faced the Panthers in 2016 and once when the Falcons played Carolina in 2018.
Nearly one-third of his 22 sacks with the Seahawks and nearly one-fifth of his career sack total of 55.5 have come against Newton.
I bring all of this up since the Seahawks are hosting Newton and the Patriots Sunday night so there’s a good chance that Irvin will get his 10th and maybe 11th career sack against him. Get this – Irvin never played a game against Carolina while Newton was with the Panthers in which he didn’t register a sack.
Almost as good, the Seahawks were 3-1 against the Panthers in those games, and Oakland won its game against Carolina in 2018, and Atlanta won its game against Carolina in 2018. So his overall record is 5-1 against the Panthers, the only loss occurring in 2015 when his current teammate, Greg Olsen, caught a last-minute touchdown pass from Newton in a 27-23 Panthers’ win at CenturyLink Field.
These sack stats with Newton speak to how solid Irvin is as a pass rusher. Newton is not only big and strong and hard to take down, but he’s also elusive. To have more sacks against him than any other quarterback is quite an accomplishment.
If history has anything to do with it, expect the trend to continue with a sack or two from Irvin Sunday night.
Listen to Irvin’s interview with Bob, Dave and Moore at this link or in the player below beginning around the 25:15 mark.
Previously from Jim: Top 10 Seahawks takeaways after Week 1