Pete Carroll did not blame the Seattle Seahawks’ 16-21 loss on ongoing jetlag from their lengthy journey to Munich, Germany, as sluggish as they appeared early on, whereas the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had been main 14-0 at halftime .
He did not fault the turf both, noting they weren’t the solely staff struggling to acquire a foothold on the slick floor of the Allianz Arena.
So the greatest clarification for the Seahawks’ worst efficiency since their Week 2 debacle in Santa Clara may be that they merely got here into the sport from the best quarterback of all time and a staff higher than Tampa Bay’s 4-5 report got here, had been overwhelmed.
Whatever it was, the Seahawks (6-4) performed too properly throughout the 4-sport profitable streak that took them throughout the Atlantic to resolve their bubble was bursting after a loss, particularly given theirs sturdy rally in the second half. But the means they performed the majority of the NFL’s very first sport in Germany is at the least a bit of disconcerting given how comparable it was to their struggles on each side of the ball throughout their 2-1 begin.
“We talked about how important it is to realize that we’re back in this game and that we’re not out,” Carroll advised reporters. “We never thought so and we didn’t show it either. It’s the same kind of mentality that will help us finish the season and make something special out of this year. In our opinion, this will not change. Only that night they did a better job than us.”
The third loss was history as Seattle went just 1-of-9 on offense, allowing the Bucs to convert on 10-of-15 chances for a 66.6% win rate that nearly doubled their average on Sunday.
By their own admission, the Seahawks underestimated Tampa Bay’s running game, which ranked last in the NFL in yards per game (60.7) and yards per attempt (2.98). Seattle’s defensive game plan was more focused on bringing down the pocket with a four-man rush and taking cover to stop Brady and the Bucs’ pass catchers. Because of that, they made the run-stuffing defensive tackle Bryan Mone a healthy scratch in favor of Myles Adams, a better interior rusher.
The Seahawks could have used Mone as the Tampa Bay back rushed for 164 yards on 38 carries, nearly double what they did before Sunday. According to ESPN Stats & Information, the Bucs intentionally ran 57% of their plays (excluding knee downs), the highest rate for a Brady team since 2018. Carroll was particularly annoyed at how they ruined the game on the floor with their iced four- Minute attack that prevents Geno Smith and Seattle’s attack from getting the ball back.
“It’s actually disappointing,” said Carroll. “They did not run the ball very constantly so after we received into play we had been hoping simply to be ready to lock it down and use it for the throwing sport they usually did higher than we thought. And they completed the ball in the fourth quarter, which is killing me.
The sport plan, which was constructed round stopping Brady, did not do this both.
Cody Barton’s leaping interceptions in the fourth quarter had been the form of play the Seahawks envisioned once they determined to simply blitz 3 times and as an alternative hold seven defenders beneath cowl most of the time. But that technique produced just one official QB hit. According to NFL Next Gen Stats, the lack of strain allowed Brady to throw a mean of two.78 seconds, his highest since Week 4 of final season. He posted his greatest total QBR, completion price and yards-per-strive common of any sport this season and made the Seahawks’ protection look little like the resurgent unit that had been certainly one of the NFL’s greatest for the previous 4 weeks .
Their solely different defensive spotlight – Tariq Woolen’s third-quarter interception on a halfback go to Brady – went nowhere. The Seahawks had an opportunity to lower Tampa Bay’s lead to 4 when Smith drove them deep into Buc’s territory on subsequent possession, although he misplaced a fumble on a deliberate QB draw.
By this level, the Seahawks had put the sport in Smith’s arms.
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Smith completed together with his trademark environment friendly line (23 of 33 for 275 yards) and threw two landing passes to Tyler Lockett and Marquise Goodwin. His on-the-run throw into the finish zone to a diving Goodwin had only a 24.4% completion likelihood, in accordance to Next Gen Stats. Smith now has six landing passes with beneath 25% completion likelihood this season, whereas no different quarterback has greater than two.
Smith additionally led the Seahawks in speeding with 22 yards, 5 greater than Kenneth Walker III had on 10 carries. But his blended day report included only one end on 5 third-down throws – and the killer fumble.
Smith has performed at the Pro Bowl degree this season thanks to each knowledgeable determination making and expertise, however this was his second straight sport with a pricey error. And not like final week, when he led the Seahawks to three straight landing drives and a win over the Arizona Cardinals after throwing a choose-six, this time they discovered themselves in too massive a gap to climb out of.
“Of course I have to protect football,” he stated. “That can never happen. Guy made a great play going down but if I don’t flip that in the red zone I think it’s a different game.
The silver lining for the Seahawks is that they will still go into their bye at the top of the NFC West with a half-game lead over the 5-4 San Francisco 49ers. They still have some difficult encounters ahead of them, including a Christmas Eve meeting with the Chiefs in Kansas City, but will play five of their last seven games at home.
But the Seahawks’ 12-hour flight back to Seattle might seem even longer after that loss.
“I feel this expertise will humble us,” said defensive tackle Al Woods, “and convey us again to fundamentals and simply begin over.”