On Monday night, Sleepless in Seattle wasn’t just the name of a popular movie… it was the state of being for the entire Seattle metropolitan area following a thrilling 17-16 victory over the Denver Broncos.
The Seahawks happily played the role of spoiler in regards to Russell Wilson’s debut with Denver, as they won their 18th hope opening victory since 2003. Once more, the Seahawks proved Monday night is their night, as they improved their already league-best record to 28-12.
It was an emotional night for the Seahawks as they made the case they should not have been written off so easily by the national media this offseason. There’s still plenty of work to be done – especially on offense – but the Seahawks have started the 2022 season undefeated. As a result, here are four well deserving Studs.
No. 1 Stud - Geno Smith
The story of the night for the Seahawks was their quarterback, Geno Smith. In his first outing as a full-time starter for the first time in *eight* years, Smith gave one of the best performances of his career.
Smith started the game a perfect 13-of-13 with two touchdown passes and had the Seahawks enjoying a 17-13 lead in the first half. He finished the game 23-of-28 for 195 yards with an additional 17 yards on the ground.
Smith may not be the future of the Seahawks at quarterback, but he proved he is more than capable of captaining the ship as the starter.
No. 1 Dud - Second half offense
Geno Smith played admirably, but the Seahawks’ offensive output as a whole dried up entirely in the second half. In the first half the Seahawks managed to score on three of their four first half offensive possessions.
In the second half the Seahawks’ drives went as such:
- End of game
Seattle finished the game with only 253 net yards of offense. Fortunately, the defense and special teams came up big. But had they lost, Seattle’s offense would be prime suspect No. 1 for reasons why.
No. 2 Stud - Mike Jackson and the red zone defense
Veteran cornerback Mike Jackson had the game of his career on Monday Night. Following various stints around the league, Jackson finally found a new home in Seattle and he rewarded his new employers handsomely.
On the Broncos’ first two drives of the second half, Jackson was the reason why they managed to score a grand total of zero points. Jackson recovered two fumbles from Broncos running backs, both at the goal line.
Overall the Seahawks defense played lights-out football. The Broncos had four possessions end in Seattle’s red zone, but only allowed six points off two field goals. Seattle’s defensive philosophy is defend every blade of grass and Russell Wilson was on the receiving end of this for the first time.
No. 3 Studs - Will Dissly and Colby Parkinson
The Denver Broncos did a solid job limiting the impact of wide receivers DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. Denver held Metcalf and Lockett to 36 and 28 yards, respectively.
The Seahawks didn’t panic. When the doors of opportunity for Metcalf and Lockett closed, they opened for the tight ends. Will Dissly and Colby Parkinson scored the only Seattle touchdowns of the night, both finishing with 43 yards exactly.
Seattle has struggled to effectively integrate their tight ends into game plans over the year. Perhaps with Geno Smith at the helm, Dissly and Parkinson will be in for solid seasons.
No. 4 Stud - The 12th Man
Lumen Field has a well-earned reputation of being one of the most difficult environments for visiting teams, and that is directly a result of Seattle’s rabid fanbase: The 12th Man.
However, in recent years, Seattle hasn’t enjoyed the nigh-impregnable home field advantage they’re used to and the home crowd has been silenced a tad.
Not on Monday night. Against the Broncos, the 12s rediscovered their roar and were louder than they’ve been in years. Deafening boos cascaded down the moment Russell Wilson stepped on the field and were unrelenting for the duration of the game. The Broncos offense was out of sync all game, including three false start penalties and difficulty managing the clock as well.