Seahawks’ K.J. Wright on win over Eagles: ‘They hadn’t faced anything like us’
Dec 3, 2017, 11:15 PM | Updated: Dec 11, 2017, 10:07 pm
K.J. Wright had a message last week.
“Don’t sleep on us, man,” Seattle’s linebacker told ESPN following news that the Seahawks were listed as six-point underdogs in their Week 13 home game against the NFL-best Philadelphia Eagles. “This team is really good. We’re still talented. We can be the best of the best. We are the best of the best, so just because we have injuries don’t mean that things will change. We’re going to be good out there.”
Sure enough, the Seahawks bested the Eagles on Sunday night with a 24-10 win that felt much more dominant than was reflected by the final score. Afterwards, Wright stood in the Seahawks locker room, calm, confident, and maybe a little satisfied.
“It just feels good to make a lot of people look like they don’t know what they’re talking about,” said Wright, who finished with eight tackles and a quarterback hit. “To come out here and put on this performance, it felt good. It felt really, really good.”
The Eagles have been averaging 32 points per game, making them the league’s highest-scoring offense. Their previous lowest-scoring game was in Week 2, when they put up 20 points in a loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
Against the Seahawks on Sunday, Philadelphia scored just one touchdown. That came in the fourth quarter, making it the first time all season Philadelphia had been held out of the end zone through the first three quarters.
It was perhaps the most complete performance yet from Seattle’s defense, which finds itself entering a rough December schedule without Richard Sherman or Kam Chancellor.
Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson forced a fumble by Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz on a red zone keeper in the third quarter, which went out of the end zone for a Seattle touchback. The Seahawks’ offense then capitalized on the turnover with an 11-play, 80-yard touchdown drive.
“You can’t make a bigger play than that,” head coach Pete Carroll said of Richardson’s play postgame. “We always talk about you give us an inch and we’ll defend it. That’s kind of how that was right there. A spectacular turnaround right there for us.”
The defense finished with three sacks (two by defensive end Frank Clark and one from cornerback Justin Coleman) and 12 quarterback hits. Cornerback Byron Maxwell – back with the Seahawks after being traded by the Eagles in 2016 and released by Miami earlier this year – recorded an interception in the end zone against his old team with two minutes remaining, halting the Eagles’ rally attempt and effectively sealing the win for Seattle.
Wright said the game had a Super Bowl XLVIII feel to it, noting that Seattle was able to eliminate explosive plays and shut down a high-profile offense.
“We just watched the teams that they played, and we knew that none of those teams were like the Seahawks,” Wright said. “None of them were even close to us.
“We knew that they hadn’t faced anything like us, and we took advantage of it.”
Still, Wright said the team doesn’t intend to ride the high too long. They’ll face another tough test against the Jacksonville Jaguars – currently leading the league in defense – on the road next Sunday.
“A win’s a win. We’re not going to get too high off of wins and we don’t get too low off of losses. We’re going into next week with the same confidence that we always have.”