By Cedric Williams
In some ways, it was probably to be expected. But, the Seattle Seahawks just didn’t play well in their 14-5 loss Sunday afternoon in Tampa Bay.
Seattle—which had won three in a row, with each victory coming in more convincing fashion than the one before it—had just played a string of high-profile games. In Week 12, the club was being asked to travel all the way across the country again for a match-up against the Buccaneers, a team that now has a three-game winning streak of its own.
The Seahawks have been strong-willed over the past several years, but still, something was bound to give. And on Sunday, it was everything, which is why we’re handing out fairly low marks in every category this week.
Sunday’s performance in Tampa may have been Seattle’s worst of the season. The Seahawks only managed 245 total yards, with one scoring drive, which resulted in a field goal, three turnovers, and seven punts on 11 possessions against the Buccaneers.
Quarterback Russell Wilson, who had been playing sensationally recently, just couldn’t find any rhythm at all on Sunday. Wilson completed just 17-of-33 passes for 151 yards, no touchdowns, two interceptions and a lost fumble to boot.
The Seahawks quarterback was sacked six times and went 3-of-11 on passes thrown 15 yards or more, with both interceptions coming on such passes.
The Seattle run game was also non-existent. Wilson did have 80 rushing yards to lead the club, but most of that came while scrambling away from the pocket on pass plays.
Other than Wilson, the Seahawks combined for just 47 yards on 14 carries.
Seattle’s defense played much better than the offense did, though it did get stunned early by two Jameis Winston touchdown passes, which proved to be the difference in the game.
After the slow start, the Seattle “D” kept Tampa scoreless for the final three quarters, which on most days might have been enough to secure a win. But, with the offense unable to deliver anything, two quick touchdowns against the Legion of Boom was all the Buccaneers needed.
Special Teams: C-
Special teams wasn’t really a problem, either. The way things worked out should probably earn Tampa more credit than Seattle any extra criticism.
The Bucs clearly didn’t want to give Seattle’s return game any chance to make anything happen, so they kicked away from WR Tyler Lockett all day.
The primary disappointment we have with the coaching staff is its inability to find a way to get the offense going. The defense made the adjustments it needed to, and wound up keeping Tampa Bay off the scoreboard for the final three quarters.
But, the Seahawks offense struggled all day long and it seemed to get worse as the day continued.
It wasn’t all bad, because everyone else in the NFC West lost on Sunday, too, so the Seahawks are still three games up with just five to play in the standings. But Seattle did fall another game behind Dallas, which won on Thursday, in the race for the No. 1 seed and home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.
Next Up: The Seahawks will be back at home Sunday, Dec. 4, and will once again play in the Sunday Night Football Game of the Week. The Hawks will be hosting the defending NFC champion Carolina Panthers.