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Seahawks rebound behind Clowney’s pick 6 in 27-10 win over Cards

For the Seattle Seahawks, the Arizona Cardinals’ home stadium has been somewhat of a house of horrors in recent years, not just because it hasn’t been an easy place to play but also because it’s where Kam Chancellor, Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas have all suffered season-ending injuries.

Seahawks 27, Cardinals 10: 710’s Instant Reaction | Final stats

Well, this season the stadium has a new name, and the Cardinals have a new coach, new quarterback and new offensive philosophy. It appears somewhere in the changes, whatever curse that may have existed for the Seahawks in what is now called State Farm Stadium has been lifted.

Seattle rode a strong first half into an important 27-10 win over their NFC West rivals a week after a surprising loss to the New Orleans Saints at home. The Seahawks had an answer for Arizona quarterback Kyler Murray in their first meeting with the 2019 No. 1 overall pick, keeping him and the rest of the Cardinals out of the end zone for the first three quarters. Seattle also benefited from Arizona kicker Zane Gonzalez missing two of three field goal attempts in the first half, which allowed the Hawks to build a 17-point lead at halftime.

Seattle linebacker Mychal Kendricks had his best game of the season, registering six tackles and a pair of sacks, while defensive end Jadeveon Clowney had his first career interception and pick-six in the first quarter. Ziggy Ansah, the other notable offseason acquisition to Seattle’s defensive line, also had more of a noticeable impact after making his season debut a week before, including his first sack as a Seahawk on the last play of the game.

On offense, Russell Wilson connected with tight end Will Dissly on a touchdown for the fourth time over the past three games. That completion gives Wilson eight touchdowns to no interceptions so far this season.

Wilson threw 22 of 28 for 240 yards while taking four sacks. Dissly led Seattle’s receivers with seven catches for 57 yards, while Chris Carson ran for a season-high 104 yards on 22 carries and – most importantly – no fumbles.

Seattle won’t have long to savor this one, however. Next up is a battle with the defending NFC champion Los Angeles Rams in just four days on Thursday Night Football.

Here’s a quarter-by-quarter look at the 3-1 Seahawks’ latest win.

First quarter

Seahawks 10, Cardinals 0

The Seahawks’ acquisition of Clowney was more about adding to their pass rush than anything. Turns out the talented defensive end is quite the factor in defending against the pass, too.

Clowney used his long arms to pick off a short pass by Murray, and he was gone for a 27-yard pick-six to give Seattle a 10-0 lead.

That was not just Clowney’s first interception in a Seahawks uniform but the first of his six-year NFL career. He also has two passes defensed this season.

Defense stood out for Seattle in the first quarter. Though Murray led Arizona on an 11-play, 49-yard drive to field goal territory on the first drive of the game, Kendricks had a sack during the series and the Hawks stood up to keep the Cardinals from reaching the red zone. That was important, as Arizona kicker Gonzalez just missed a 43-yard field goal attempt, keeping the game scoreless.

Seattle took that and ran with it, getting to Arizona’s 15 to set up Jason Myers for a 33-yard field goal to open the scoring. Two plays later, Clowney’s interception pushed the lead to 10-0.

SEA – Jason Myers 33 FG, 4:59 (3-0 SEA)
SEA – Jadeveon Clowney 27 interception return, 4:15 (Myers kick, 10-0 SEA)

Second quarter

Seahawks 20, Cardinals 3

Dissly’s big breakout as an important weapon in the Seahawks’ offense continued in the desert.

After Wilson couldn’t find David Moore for a TD from the Arizona 9 on Seattle’s first series of the second quarter, Dissly made himself very find-able.

That nine-yard reception was Dissly’s fourth touchdown of the year and sixth in just eight career games, and it helped the Seahawks take a commanding lead into halftime a week after a disappointing loss at home against the Saints.

Heaps: Why Seahawks’ Will Dissly has emerged as valuable offensive weapon

Seattle was clearly taking advantage of a Cardinals defense that has struggled against tight ends this year.

Dissly’s TD was an answer to Arizona’s first score of the day, a 33-yard Gonzalez field goal at the end of a 12-play, 60-yard drive. Gonzalez had a chance at a second field goal on the Cardinals’ next series, but he missed for the second time in the game. Worth noting is that regular Arizona punter Andy Lee, Gonzalez’s usual holder, was declared inactive for the game due to a hip flexor injury. Gonzalez was a perfect 5 for 5 on field goals and 3 for 3 on extra points entering Week 4 but clearly isn’t as in sync with new Cardinals punter Ryan Winslow as his holder.

The Seahawks had four shots at a third touchdown of the day inside the red zone late in the second quarter but had to settle for Jason Myers’ second field goal, this time a 24-yard chip shot.

ARI – Zane Gonzalez 33 FG, 13:49 (10-3 SEA)
SEA – Will Dissly 9 pass from Russell Wilson, 10:48 (Myers kick, 17-3 SEA)
SEA – Myers 24 FG, :17 (20-3 SEA)

Third quarter

Seahawks 20, Cardinals 3

After a first half that was about as close to 100% positive as it can get, the second half started with a concerning development for the Seahawks. Starting running back Carson, a 1,000-yard rusher last season, limped off the field with an apparent lower leg injury during the opening drive of the third quarter.

It turned out to just be a hiccup, however, as Carson was in the backfield when Seattle got the ball back.

It didn’t take long for the Seahawks’ defense to return the ball to the offense and let Carson return to the field, either. Arizona went three-and-out for the second time on the day, something caused in part by Kendricks’ second sack.

Seattle and Arizona otherwise traded punts in the third quarter as the score remained 20-3.

No scoring.

Fourth quarter

Seahawks 27, Cardinals 10

The Cardinals showed some life in the fourth quarter, but the Seahawks responded with their biggest drive of the game to put the score out of reach.

Murray led Arizona on an eight-play, 80-yard drive to open the final frame, eventually keeping it himself on a 9-yard touchdown run to bring the Cardinals within 10 points.

When Seattle got the ball back, Wilson, Carson and the rest of the Seahawks’ offense was just about perfect. They covered 75 yards on 15 plays, draining 8:08 off the clock and finding the end zone on a 9-yard run of their own, this one by C.J. Prosise to push their lead back to 17 points just before the two-minute warning.

Just as important as the touchdown – Arizona had to use all three of its timeouts while the Seahawks were driving.

The Cardinals were near the goal line on the final play of the game, but Ansah got to Murray for his first sack.

ARI – Kyler Murray 9 run, 10:21 (Gonzalez kick, 20-10 SEA)
SEA – C.J. Prosise 9 run, 2:13 (Myers kick, 27-10 SEA)

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