Something was off the entire game in Phoenix for the Seahawks offense. I had not really seen Rusell Wilson inhibited by his knee injury like he seemed to be against the Cardinals.
Compounding the passing game's struggles was the offensive line getting flagged for holding time and time again. Niether side could really get anything going, however if you compare the stats, see that Arizona registered 300 yards of offense and possessed the ball for about 40 minutes compared to the Seahawks 22 or so.
But the defense kept on coming through, getting to Carson Palmer when they needed to most, and flexing their special teams muscle with a blocked punt and field goal to keep hope alive. The offense owes the defense a hearty steak dinner for keeping them in the game for so long, and for much of it, it seemed like it would be on the defense to get a pick-six in order to bring the game to a close.
In the passing game, Russell looked off, and it looked like he could not get his legs into his throws, especially as he was chased around by the Cardinals defense. Sunday night's game against the Cardinals was a perfect example of how important Wilson's ability to run can be for the offense. On a night when a defense is able to styme everything Seattle throws their way, the threat of taking off and getting yards with his legs would have been welcomed.
We saw how it can help win a game when he rushed for over 100 yards against the Houston Texans two years ago. Nothing was moving on offense, so Russell moved the ball as if he was Michael Vick.
I thought that Jimmy Graham should have been utilized more, even though he was targeted 10 times. But on the play before Hauscka tied the score at six in overtime, there seemed to be a strange disconnect, as Graham just stopped running his route. That play seemed to characterize the Seahawks' offensive performance as a whole, something was just off about the whole thing.
Pete Carroll has always said that the Seahawks' brand of football is centered around strong special teams and defense. And it was the performance of those units that gave Seattle even the slightest chance to win in Arizona. But in the end, they fell just one play short to come away with another win in Phoenix.
Photo: Flickr/Ben Rea