The best part of the Seahawks’ win wasn’t the blowout

Dec 9, 2012, 9:02 PM | Updated: Dec 10, 2012, 10:21 am
LISTEN:

By Mike Salk

When you wax a division opponent by 58 points, you are bound to see a few novelties. Forcing eight turnovers turns out to have been the second most in Seahawks history. They broke the franchise record for points scored in a game. And 284 rushing yards sure looks nice as well.

But the final score doesn’t really matter in a game that was over long before even halftime.

What matters is the Seahawks showed something we haven’t seen from them before: a killer instinct.

We know this team is talented. They have yet to get blown out this year and have shown the ability to play with any team they’ve faced. Whereas the team Pete Carroll and John Schneider inherited found itself often inhibited by its lack of talent (and, as a consequence, blown out), this one is strong across the board. Each position group has some explosive talent. Each position group has some level of depth. That means each position group can hold its own with anyone and survive an injury (or suspension) or two.

5cf6b060-a418-470b-b6a3-901599b02e6d
Marshawn Lynch had three touchdowns and a season-high 128 rushing yards on just 11 carries against the Cardinals. (AP)

But it often takes time for talented teams to learn how to win.

We saw the Seahawks lose four early games to teams with records at or below .500 this year. In most of them, they made mental and physical mistakes that sabotaged their superior talent.

Not on Sunday.

Nearly all of those mistakes were made by an Arizona team that would have been better off not even getting off the bus. John Skelton threw four interceptions, only one of which wasn’t an awful pass or an even worse decision. Patrick Peterson fumbled twice – both were his fault. The Cardinals took the season of giving quite literally.

But the Seahawks also took advantage of the gifts they received. Marshawn Lynch was dynamic; he adjusted plays to find holes and ran through tackles in his unique way. Richard Sherman and Bobby Wagner caught passes intended for them errant throws. The Seahawks’ special teamers stepped up. Their depth cornerbacks shut down Larry Fitzgerald (one catch for two yards).

It doesn’t matter how poorly your opponent plays, you have to put them away and the Seahawks did exactly that.

So now we know the Hawks are capable of a blowout. Cool. But does that mean we should expect more of them?

I say no. This team is still built to play defense, run the ball, and win close games. That recipe does not lend itself to many blowouts. The NFL is too evenly matched to see even comfortable wins very often.

But does it mean that we need to start expecting “bigger” things for this team?

It sure might. I’m not as much impressed that the Seahawks won by 58 as I am that they played so well in Week 14. The NFL is such a grind that often the best team in the regular season is not playing the best in January. But a team hitting its stride in December can set itself up perfectly for a January run.

The Seahawks seem to be one of those teams playing its best at the perfect time. Now we’ll see if they can make the most of it.

Brock and Salk podcast

Brock and Salk

Apple Cup 2021...
SeattleSports.com Staff

Podcast: Apple Cup preview with CFB analysts Michael Bumpus, Brock Huard

Listen to Brock Huard of FOX Sports and Michael Bumpus of Pac-12 Network break down Saturday's big Apple Cup between the WSU Cougars and No. 12 UW Huskies.
1 day ago
Seahawks Tre Brown...
Brandon Gustafson

Huard: What Tre Brown brings to the Seahawks’ cornerback room

Tre Brown, a 2021 fourth-round pick, could see his first action of 2022 for the Seahawks on Sunday against the Raiders following recovery from a knee injury.
1 day ago
UW Huskies...
Brandon Gustafson

UW Huskies HC Kalen DeBoer talks new contract, Apple Cup, much more

Fresh off receiving a new contract, UW Huskies HC Kalen DeBoer joined Brock and Salk to discuss the deal, the Apple Cup and more.
4 days ago
Apple Cup UW Huskies WSU Cougars...
Brandon Gustafson

Huard: The biggest matchup to watch for between UW and WSU in Apple Cup

When the Huskies travel to Pullman for the Apple Cup vs WSU, Brock Huard is keeping a close eye on UW's edge rushers vs the Cougars' O-line.
5 days ago
Apple Cup WSU Cougars UW Huskies...
Brandon Gustafson

Huard: Does this ‘epic’ Apple Cup mean more to UW Huskies or WSU?

This year's Apple Cup is shaping up to be a good one, and former Huskies QB Brock Huard discusses if this game means more to UW or WSU.
6 days ago
Seahawks...
Brandon Gustafson

If Seahawks don’t draft a QB, what should their first 4 picks be?

The Seahawks may not need to draft a QB in April after all. If that's the case, Brock Huard shares the positions Seattle should target early.
8 days ago
The best part of the Seahawks’ win wasn’t the blowout