No use Seattle Seahawks having the best chef in the NFL if there’s nothing in the freezer to serve
Russell Wilson has started 136 games in a row over the course of nine seasons and has become the face of the Seahawks, a Super Bowl winner and a leader in the community. But one thing he hasn’t done is garner a single MVP vote.
Each year a group of 50 sportswriters vote on the most valuable player, and despite nine years as one of the top quarterbacks, Wilson is still waiting on his first nomination.
In that time Wilson has chalked up 92 wins but he’s never started a season the way he has this one.
Through his first five games, Wilson has thrown 19 touchdowns against just three interceptions - a rarity for Seattle who have traditionally been a run-first team. This hot start has led to the Seahawks fans mounting a “Let Russ Cook” campaign. Put simply, they want Wilson to be allowed to play his natural attacking game.
The Seahawks have been a defensive based team since 2010 when Pete Carroll took over as head coach. They have boasted a top ten defense in six of those, but the two outliers have been this season and last.
This year the team are on course for the worst-ever pass defense, surpassing the 2015 Saints.
Since 2014, year on year, the Seahawks have been ranked 1, 2, 5, 11, 16, 26 in yards allowed and currently sit as the worst team in the league in yards allowed, a long way from the 2013 Legion of Boom, proclaimed as Seattle’s best ever defense.
There is a clear pattern of decline in defensive aptitude here. Carroll always preached the importance of the tackle, even hiring a rugby coach to teach the players effective technique. But tackling is only one part of the game.
The Seattle secondary has given up over 3000 yards in the passing game and find it hard to get off the field. In two of three defeats, this season the offense has scored 34 points. On Sunday, in loss number three, they gave up 23, and that was only due to the Rams’ inability to convert.
Wilson is a game-winner. He always has been, but for the first time ever he is in situations where he has to win the games.
It’s all well and good that they let Russ cook, but there’s no use having the best chef in the NFL if there’s nothing in the freezer to serve.
Wilson has a short week to prepare to face the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday night, and the NFC West rivals will be on a high after a hail mary winner against Buffalo. Kyler Murray managed to extend the play before heaving a ball into the endzone where DeAndre Hopkins climbed above three defenders and caught the touchdown ending the game 32-30.
The Bills still top AFC East, but a Dolphins win over LA Chargers means that their lead is now just one game, setting up what could be a week 17 showdown.
The Pittsburgh Steelers remained the only unbeaten team with a franchise-record 9-0 start after easily pushing aside the Cincinnati Bengals 36-10. The Steelers will be buoyed by the division rival Baltimore Ravens surprise loss to New England late on Sunday.
The Ravens entered the game as clear favourites after a low season from the Patriots but succumbed to a 23-17 loss.
Meanwhile, the Cleveland Browns and Houston Texans struggled through a defense led game, with the Browns eventually coming out 10-7 winners.
Detroit Lions threw away another big lead as they led 24-3 before Washington fought back. The Lions needed a 59-yard field goal as time ran out to win the game 30-27.
The Packers also eked out a win as they swapped leads with the Jaguars five times throughout the game before closing it out 24-20, leaving them two games ahead of Chicago in the NFC North.
In the NFC South, the Saints got off to a slow start but ran out comfortable winners over the injury-ridden 49ers, while Tom Brady and the Buccaneers bounced back from a humbling loss to the Saints with a resounding win over Carolina.
While the Chiefs were resting this week, Las Vegas Raiders kept the heat on with a win over the Broncos in an AFC West.
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.
If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.
Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.