Seattle (CBS) – The Seattle Seahawks are now three games ahead in the NFC West after a 26-15 romp of the visiting Philadelphia Eagles Sunday.
The game wasn’t as close as the final score would indicate. Seattle’s defense dominated much of the first three quarters, intercepting Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz twice (one apiece to safety Kam Chancellor and cornerback Richard Sherman) and holding the rookie quarterback to 82 yards (62.7 rating) through the first half and to just four yards in the third quarter (1-of-6, 1 interception, 0.0 rating).
Seattle’s offense struggled on third down (both teams finished below 40 percent) but kept the game out of Philadelphia’s reach with big plays — one being a 15-yard touchdown pass from wide receiver Doug Baldwin to quarterback Russell Wilson.
“I think we’ve been trying to call that [play] for the past four or five years, literally,” said Wilson, who finished 18-of-31 for 272 yards and two touchdowns. “We’ve called it several times then it wasn’t the right look, whatever that look is, it wasn’t the right look. Fortunately, we got the right look today.”
The return of Rawls (and a first half from C.J. Prosise) provided a boost for Seattle’s rushing game, which before Sunday averaged 85.1 yards per game. Against Philadelphia, Seattle recorded 152 total rushing yards.
“That was huge,” tackle Garry Gilliam said of Rawls’ impact. “That’s a big load on his plate, especially for his first game back. He just brings that physical mentality and he’s going to make sure the defense feels it after a while.”
Rawls said he felt lighter on his feet in his first return since suffering a fibula injury in week two.
“I felt like I could make more lateral movements and get in and out of cuts,” he told reporters. “A lot of attributes to my game were on display today and I’m proud of myself for that.”
The Seahawks finished with 439 net yards on offense, their most this season.
Running back C.J. Prosise, who had his first touchdown Sunday — a 72-yard run — sustained a shoulder injury shortly before the end of the first half, and did not return to the game.
“He’s got a scapula (shoulder) issue that we have to figure out,” Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said postgame. “But, he’s going to be out for a while, and that’s too bad because you can see what we see in him and how excited we are to have him.”
Carroll did not provide a timetable for Prosise’s injury, but said the young tailback could make a return this season.
There were a number of injuries for both teams. The Seahawks saw tackle George Fant (shoulder) linebacker Brock Coyle (foot) wide receiver Tanner McEvoy (toe) running back Troymaine Pope (ankle) cornerback DeShawn Shead (hamstring) safety Earl Thomas (hamstring) and cornerback Neiko Thorpe leave the game with injuries. Fant, Coyle, McEvoy and Thorpe returned to play.
The Eagles lost starting running backs Darren Sproles (rib) and Ryan Matthews (knee). Tackles Jason Peters (forearm) and Halapoulivaati Vaitai, defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, and defensive back Leodis McKlevin – who was evaluated for a head injury.
The Seahawks have just two healthy running backs remaining on the roster: Rawls, and rookie Alex Collins (who was a healthy scratch Sunday). Running back George Farmer is on the practice squad.