The Seahawks handled the Eagles 24-10 Sunday night in Seattle to remain in the thick of the NFC playoff race. The loss snapped Philadelphia’s nine-game win streak, and with a record of 10-2, the Eagles are now tied with the Vikings for the No. 1 seed in the conference.
Here are three takeaways from the Week 13 primetime tilt:
The Seahawks aren’t going quietly. The Seahawks are not the same fearsome team that went to two straight Super Bowls in 2014 and 2015, but they’re also not a group other NFC contenders will necessarily look forward to facing in the playoffs. Missing some key players on defense, a few of whom won’t return this season, Seattle was tenacious Sunday night, shutting down an Eagles offense that’s lit up the league to a tune of 31.9 points per game this season.
The Seattle D held MVP candidate Carson Wentz to 45 passing yards in the first half, as the ‘Hawks took a 10-3 lead into the locker room. Wentz finished with 348 yards through the air, but most of that production came when Philly was in come-back mode. The Seahawks also turned Wentz over twice (one interception, one fumble), both in their own end zone, robbing the Eagles of scoring opportunities.
The Seahawks, now 8-4, are in wild-card position, but their schedule has a high degree of difficulty over the next three weeks. They opened as 3-point underdogs for next week’s game at Jacksonville, they host the Rams the week after that, and while a game at Dallas in Week 16 may not sound daunting at this point, we remind you that’s when Ezekiel Elliott is slated to return. The Eagles’ season ends at home vs. the Cardinals, but they can’t afford to step on too many land mines before that potential Week 17 walkover.
A loss at Seattle is nothing to freak out about but…. It was unrealistic to expect the Eagles to go the rest of the season without losing another game, and this was a natural spot for a loss to come, but there goes their hold on sole possession of first place in the NFC. Philly is another tough spot next week, as they face the Rams in its second straight game on the West Coast. The Eagles’ schedule lightens up after that, with games at the Giants and home vs. Oakland, before they close their season at home against what could be a Cowboys team in a do-or-die situation.
And while we’d hate to discredit any nine-game winning streak in the NFL, let’s face it: the Eagles’ just-ended run didn’t come against what we’d consider a murderers’ row of opponents. According to Pro Football Reference (via Inside The Iggles), their schedule has been the fifth easiest in the league.
Has Seattle found its solution at running back? Pete Carroll’s been flummoxed regarding his running back position ever since Marshawn Lynch “retired” following the 2015-16 season. This season, Chris Carson, Eddie Lacy, J.D. McKissic, Thomas Rawls and C. J. Prosise have all gotten their cracks, but it’s the quarterback who leads the team in rushing yards – that’s far from ideal, even with an athletic signal-caller like Russell Wilson.
But Sunday night, Mike Davis shined.
.@MikeDavisRB out here putting the defense on skates 😯 #PHIvsSEA pic.twitter.com/8uAs4oJCYX
— NFL (@NFL) December 4, 2017
Davis, a third-year player from South Carolina, was a solid contributor in both the running and passing games. Coming into the game with six carries for 18 yards on the season, Davis racked up 64 yards on 16 carries, plus another 37 yards on four catches, vs. the Eagles.