O’Neil: It’s hard to imagine Seahawks losing with how Russell Wilson is playing, but defense keeps trying
The Seahawks didn’t let it come down to the last play of the game this week.
They won it on the second-to-last play.
Seattle’s lead was seven points this time, instead of five. The Cowboys were at the Seattle 26 instead of the 1 like New England, and while it certainly didn’t have to be this hard for the Seahawks, nothing we’ve seen from this defense indicates that any game will be easy this season. At least not for anyone other than the opposing quarterback.
Russell Wilson threw five touchdown passes for the second consecutive game, and for the second consecutive game Seattle had to white knuckle its way through the opponent’s final possession before walking away with a 38-31 victory over Dallas.
Wilson was great, again. His 14 touchdown passes so far this season are the most ever for an NFL player after three games. He’s playing so well that it’s hard to imagine the Seahawks losing, though Seattle’s defense continues to try.
The defense was porous. Again. Dallas’ Dak Prescott threw for 476 yards, the most of any opponent in Seahawks history, and completed four passes of 40 or more yards. Prescott put Dallas in position to take a fourth-quarter lead, guiding the Cowboys 70 yards to set up a field goal with 3:59 left. After Seattle responded with a touchdown to reclaim the lead, Prescott had the Cowboys in position for the win in the final minute. Dallas got as close as the Seattle 22, and on third-and-14 from the Seattle 26, Prescott evaded a sack by Benson Mayowa before throwing the ball into the end zone where it was picked off by Ryan Neal.
Wait, who? Oh, that’s right. The guy who was promoted from the practice squad before the game. He was in the game because starter Jamal Adams was out with a groin injury and backup Lano Hill was inactive because of a sore back.
Just part of a particularly brutal day for Seattle’s health. The Seahawks were already missing linebacker Bruce Irvin and safety Marquise Blair, who suffered season-ending knee injuries last week against the Patriots. Cornerback Quinton Dunbar was inactive because of a knee injury and Hill turned up with a sore back. Then rookie Jordyn Brooks – who started in Irvin’s spot – left the game with a knee injury, and Adams suffered a strained groin. Throw in injuries to rookie guard Damien Lewis (ankle) and running back Chris Carson (knee) and Seattle didn’t run away with this game so much as it limped off.
Prescott is the ninth opposing quarterback to throw for more than 400 yards against Seattle during coach Pete Carroll’s tenure. The Seahawks are 9-0 in those games, but it took some pretty unexpected turns to reach that point as this game included one safety, two failed point-after kicks and one inexplicable gaffe by DK Metcalf that is thankfully reduced to a footnote given the fact that Seattle was able to win.
Tyler Lockett caught a career-high three touchdown passes, and Metcalf grabbed what turned out to be the game-winner with just under 2 minutes to play. Of course, Metcalf also cost Seattle a touchdown when he inexplicably eased up in the first quarter, allowing the cornerback he had ran by to force a fumble that turned what should have been a 63-yard touchdown pass into a 62-yard completion and fumble through the end zone for a touchback.
Metcalf provided a carbon offset in the fourth quarter, catching Wilson’s fifth scoring pass of the game when he ran from one side of Dallas’ defense to the other before catching a 29-yarder in the end zone to put Seattle ahead with 1:47 left.
That was enough for the Cowboys to put one more jolt of fear through Seattle, and unlike New England last Sunday, the Cowboys did get the ball into the end zone – where it was promptly picked off with 6 seconds left.
See, it wasn’t even a last-second victory.