Seattle Seahawks (2-2, Preseason, 1-2 Regular Season) VS Chicago Bears (3-1 Preseason, 0-3 Regular Season) Game Recap
By Sam Smith
It was all eyes on the Seattle Seahawks as Kam Chancellors contract holdout ended, this past week, setting the stage for a crucial must win scenario at home in front of the 12s. The Seahawks did not disappoint, blanking the Jay Cutler-less Bears, 26-0. If you’re wondering if Cutler’s departure really hurt the Bear’s chances at winning, the Bears are 0-3 versus the ‘Hawks since 2011 (counting this game).
With Chancellor back, there was a noticeable air of urgency in the play of the defense. Chicago hadn’t been blown out in well over one hundred games, and the ‘Hawks hadn’t blanked a team since the 2013 matchup with the NY Giants. Both streaks came to an end, as the Legion of Boom made sizeable thunderclaps on the Bears offensive players. Of special note, the Bears star running back, Matt Forte was held to only 74 total yards, and the ‘Hawks surrendered an obscenely low 161 total yards (including return yards!) in this blowout win.
It was very clear that playing at near mythic levels was a point of concern for the ‘Hawks defense and special teams, with a trick punt return play for Richard Sherman notching 63 yards on an unobservant Bears team, and a scorching 105 yd kick return touchdown by Tyler Lockett. What’s even better about the trick play on the punt return, is John Fox used it against an unsuspecting team when he was in Denver with the Broncos. Seems like a bit of sweet revenge. Even with the Bears utilizing a number of multiple Tight End sets to provide blocking schemes for Matt Forte, it didn’t matter, as the defensive backs notched plenty of tackles and made the passing game a none factor. The only part of the passing game that even got going was to Chicago Tight Ends Martellus Bennett and Zach Miller, who were kept to less than 20 yards and 21 yards, respectively. Seattle’s defense notched two sacks as well, keeping backup QB Jimmy Clausen inconsistent and hurrying on his downfield throws.
Offensively, the play started a little sluggish for the ‘Hawks, with the only points being scored in the first half came off of a pair of 31 and 21 yard FGs by Steven Hauschka. Speaking of Hauschka, he would go 4/4 for kicks during this game, notching successful 45 and 48 yard attempts. A 50 yard bomb by Russell Wilson came up barely incomplete off of the helmet and hands of Tyler Lockett, but Jimmy Graham showed his 3rd down conversion ability, especially on a 30 yard touchdown reception and run. Graham appeared to be more involved in the passing game, notching 83 total receiving yards in this game. On a 4th and 1 play, Graham received a hand flicked pass from an in trouble Russell Wilson, gaining the 1st down. Jermaine Kearse and Doug Baldwin weren’t far behind, securing 6/6/76 and 3/3 35 receiving lines, respectively. Of note, Kearse was double teamed at the 3 yard line, and had it been single coverage from Chicago’s Defensive Backs, Kearse could have easily scored.
Marshawn Lynch didn’t start the game on the field, came in, and promptly came out a few plays later, paving the way for undrafted rookie running back Thomas Rawls to rush for 104 total yards in this scrimmage. If there were any dull spots to highlight in this game, it was still the offensive line, who gave up 4 sacks to the Bears, who had remained sack less this season after leading the NFL in sacks last season. Wilson, who would end the night with only 10 incompletions, still managing to eek out some runs when the passing options weren’t open. He would only throw the lone TD to Jimmy Graham, but remember, Kearse was a few yards of making that lone TD a TD pair.
After the game, head Coach Pete Carroll voiced his pleasure, saying: “It’s so hard in this league to hold someone to no points… Coach Richard and the defensive staff were all jacked up, and as they should be, this was the first time ever (shutting out an opposing team) for those guys.” He would lament on the poor third down conversions, as Seattle was 5 for 16 on the evening. Up next, they face a flailing Detroit Lions football team, 0-3 on the season thus far, but they do possess a wildcard receiver named Golden Tate, who was with Seattle during 2010 to the 2013 season. Their running game, tailored by newcomer back Ameer Abdullah, has shown some bright spots. Stud receiver Calvin Johnson figures to keep Richard Sherman’s attention for most of the game. The ‘Hawks are still at home this week, playing the last game of week four on Monday Night Football. GO HAWKS!!