Seahawks-Saints: Final Score, Reaction, Stock Up/Stock Down
10/9/22, Seaside Joe 1314: A recap of what happened and a place to talk about it with other Seahawks fans
Last week, the Seattle Seahawks did something that is rarely accomplished in the NFL: They gave up 45 points and still got the win. It wasn’t something that happened when Russell Wilson was the quarterback and it was a lesson learned about taking advantages of opportunities when opportunities are gifted to you. In Week 4, that opportunity was facing the worst defense in the NFL, and the Seahawks scored 48 but still allowed 45 points.
On Sunday, the Lions responded to that loss by scoring zero points—0 points—in a 29-0 loss to the New England Patriots.
The Seahawks responded by playing well at times against the Saints, but this week they handed out too many gifts of their own, including an unfathomable fake punt attempt and another fumble by DK Metcalf, losing 39-32 in New Orleans and falling to 2-3 on the season.
For any fan who said before the year that they would be happy with Seattle losing so long as good things happened, then maybe Week 5 delivered such an example. But it doesn’t feel “good” does it?
The Seahawks should be 3-2.
After getting out to a 10-3 lead, Seattle’s mistakes led to a 17-10 advantage for the Saints. The Seahawks scratched back to take a lead before halftime, but the exclamation point on the first half was a missed PAT by Jason Myers and a 19-17 advantage instead of hitting 20. It would soon be 24-19 despite getting the ball to start the third quarter, thanks to the aforementioned fumble by Metcalf and an overturned incomplete pass that became a touchdown for Chris Olave against Coby Bryant.
Seattle’s next three drives went for 15 yards, seven yards, and one yard, leading to a 31-19 advantage for New Orleans. That was cut to 31-25 after Geno Smith unleashed another preview that he does have talent somewhere in there on a 40-yard bomb to Tyler Lockett, followed by Ken Walker’s inevitable “breakout run” for 69 yards, giving the Seahawks the lead (32-31) with under 7:00 remaining in the game.
If only Seattle’s defense didn’t need to be responsible for winning the game.
The Seahawks gave up 69 yards on three rushing plays, capped off with a 60-yard touchdown by Taysom Hill. The next drive went -6 yards on three plays, ending in Geno Smith taking a loss of 14 on a sack that definitely felt like the last opportunity for Seattle to make something happen.
Is it good that Geno Smith went 16/25 for 268 yards and 3 TDs if the Seahawks only have one good passing play in the second half and still lose? Is it good that Rashaad Penny left with an injury? Is it good that the Seahawks have given up 84 points in the last two weeks? Is it good that DK Metcalf seems to only be half of an “elite receiver”? Is it good that even if Seattle has a couple potential breakout players on that side of the ball, the defense is still among the worst in the league?
That’s up for debate. This debate. But yes, some good things were seen by the Seahawks on Sunday and that will be featured in this week’s Stock Up/Stock Down report. Help support Seaside Joe with a paid subscription, it helps us immensely. As does sharing this post with Seahawks friends if you like it.
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CB Tariq Woolen
He might be the best draft pick in the entire 2022 class. I know it’s only been five games, and I’m not saying that Woolen has to be the best player in the 2022 class… but he was a fifth round pick and he’s already up for Defensive Rookie of the Year.
RB Kenneth Walker III
In case you want a refresher on the Kenneth on Kenneth series, in which we broke down every game of his college career over the course of many months, here’s one link.
With Penny leaving the game in the second half, it was Walker’s chance to shine. He responded with a 69-yard run, finishing with eight carries for 88 yards. It’s too soon for me to speak on Penny’s injury; it feels like Walker is going to be the starter in the foreseeable future. Hence…why the Seahawks picked a running back.
NT Al Woods
Over his first 11 seasons, he never made the Pro Bowl, but Woods is having an All-Pro type season. He was unblockable on Sunday and facing Erik McCoy, a decent center in his own right. Woods did leave the game early with an injury.
CB Coby Bryant
Bryant forced a fumble from Alvin Kamara with :20 seconds left before halftime, his second forced fumble in as many games. Whatever Bryant needs to work at/improve upon in coverage and as a football player in general, at least he’s creating havoc as he’s developing.
Bryant then had a big pass breakup in the end zone against Chris Olave, forcing the ball out, but it was overturned to be ruled as a touchdown. Still a nice play by Bryant.
WR Tyler Lockett
Lockett scored his first touchdown of the season in the first half, then his second of the season in the second half. He’s every bit as good as he ever was and Lockett finished with 104 yards on six targets.
S Ryan Neal
Neal had some key tackles, stops, and a huge pass breakup against Adam Trautman for what would have been a touchdown for Andy Dalton. Neal finished with eight tackles and is probably the starter in Week 6 against the Cardinals. Will Josh Jones even hang on the roster for the entire season?
P Michael Dickson
Special Teams in general
The Seahawks failed all over special teams on Sunday, including a missed PAT by Jason Myers and a block in the back penalty that negated a decent punt.
Worst run defense in the NFL? Taysom Hill had nine carries for 112 yards and three touchdowns. The Saints finished with 48 carries for 235 yards. This is the worst run defense that Pete Carroll has ever coached in Seattle… and maybe anywhere else.
One sack for Al Woods. This defensive line and front-seven lost battle after battle to the Saints offensive line. Though they didn’t throw the ball nearly as often as they passed it, New Orleans wasn’t failing the passing game for lack of protection. Darrell Taylor got the start because of Darryl Johnson going to IR, and Taylor had two tackles, no pressures. Boye Mafe started opposite of Uchenna Nwosu and had one QB hit. Nwosu had a good tackle that I remember in the fourth quarter, but no pressures.
The Seahawks might have a bottom-five unit in both run defense and pass rush. Unless you’re seeing something that I’m not, let me know, is this the worst defense?
WR Marquise Goodwin, CB Sidney Jones IV
Jones was a healthy scratch against the Saints. It seems like Pete Carroll is keeping Jones on the roster as insurance, knowing the attrition rate at cornerback. Goodwin’s eventual release also seems inevitable. He has 53 yards over four games, I’m not sure what element he’s bringing to the offense or special teams that the Seahawks wouldn’t prefer to get out of Dee Eskridge or Penny Hart.
TE Will Dissly
He had his first drop and finished with two catches for 21 yards.
Stock Up and Stock Down
QB Geno Smith
Smith was great in the first half, bad in the second half. Sort of the same story that we’ve heard all season, minus playing the Detroit Lions.
In the second half, Smith was 6-of-11 for 53 yards prior to a 40-yard touchdown to Lockett. Maybe all things considered, the total package was fine. But we’ve seen the Seahawks struggle to finish games over and over when Smith is in at quarterback in the fourth quarter. His game-ending sack for a loss of 14 just didn’t feel necessary and it did feel like him once again believing that he’s more elusive than he actually is.
But do I think that Geno Smith deserves a high-five and a “good game”? Yes.
WR DK Metcalf
Metcalf had an 84-yard touchdown against the Saints with Geno Smith at quarterback last season. He answered with a 50-yard touchdown in the first quarter on Sunday.
But he also dropped a touchdown on third down in the second quarter, then fumbled the ball away on the first play of the third quarter. Metcalf finished with five catches on eight targets for 88 yards.
OT Abe Lucas / OT Charles Cross
I am not going to say that Lucas and Cross were bad or even am I meant to be criticizing them. It’s just a true observation that Lucas wants a couple of plays back, and Cross had a critical holding penalty that negated a DK Metcalf touchdown.
OC Shane Waldron
The Seahawks were 1-of-9 on third down and 0-of-1 on fourth down. As good as the first half started to feel, plus the long touchdowns of the second half, it feels like Seattle wasn’t as good offensively as they should have been.
NFL Draft Order news
The Broncos lost on Thursday to the Colts, putting Denver at 2-3. It was also revealed that Russell Wilson is playing through a partially torn lat. The Broncos placed starting LT Garret Bolles on season-ending IR too.
We have to consider the Steelers serious players for a top-three pick. Pittsburgh lost to the Bills in Kenny Pickett’s first career start and they are now 1-4 with a rookie at quarterback and no T.J. Watt.
The Lions are 1-4 and they have the Rams’ first round pick also.
The Commanders are 1-4.
The Texans got their first win of the season, shocking the Jacksonville Jaguars. Houston is now 1-3-1, which means that the Steelers, Lions, and Commanders are ahead of them in draft order now.
Right now, the Seahawks appear to have two first round picks in the 8-16 type of range.
QB Survivor news
Regardless of Geno’s season, the Seahawks absolutely must heavily scout the QBs in the 2023 draft and strongly consider using a pick in the first 4 rounds. There will be no change or hiatus in QB Survivor—Seattle was strongly considering QBs in 2017 and 2018 with Russell Wilson and they have no QBs under contract next season, so if you feel some type of way about talking about QBs in the draft, don’t take it as a criticism to Geno Smith.
There is no question that the Hype Tribe is going to Tribal Council and there will be two QBs on the chopping block: Taulia Tagovailoa and Cameron Rising. Start thinking about which you’d prefer in a Seahawks uniform and who you’re ready to send into the transfer portal.
It was a war of attrition for college QBs on Saturday: Bryce Young, Will Levis, K.J. Jefferson, and Dillon Gabriel were all held out of their games, while Jalon Daniels was hurt early in his start and did not return.
I’m getting the sense that the 2024 QB class, with Quinn Ewers, Drake Maye, and Caleb Williams, will be better than the 2023 class.
I was entertained.
No doubt the defense had no answer for the run game, but it seemed to me the referees played too big a role in the shift in momentum in the third quarter. They missed two extremely obvious holding calls that let the Saints get in position to score (even Matt Millen noticed one and pointed it out from the booth). Then they called two very questionable holding penalties twice on the Hawks to kill the next drive, and then a defensive holding that Millen felt compelled again to mention. The sum total of bad refereeing got the Saints some momentum and had the Hawks puzzled. I notice Lockett was willing to take a fine after the game to point out the uneven calls.
Still, no excuse for not tackling. Quandre Diggs, we're looking at you on that last Hill touchdown. You can't miss that tackle. You have to slow him up at least.