Three things we learned from the Seahawks’ 31-7 game against the Jaguars


Led by backup quarterback Geno Smith and a rejuvenated defense, the Seahawks managed a losing three-game skid with a 31-7 victory over the hapless Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday afternoon at Lumen Field.

The Seahawks improved to 3-5 at the start of their week off.

Instant impressions from Sunday’s game:

Stop defense

We have to start with the defense because, well, they ALMOST signed a shutout.

It’s a defensive performance that deserves to be highlighted, even though it came against a Jacksonville team that looks as poorly trained as any NFL in recent history. (Yes, everything you heard about the Urban Meyer disaster seemed to be true on Sunday – and the Jaguars were coming out of their week off!)

It’s three solid performances in a row from the Seattle defense, and you know it was a good day when Pete Carroll spent half of the fourth quarter doing a double-barreled fist pump on the Seahawks sideline. .

Yes, the Seahawks needed it.

They need Russell Wilson’s return, of course.

But if they were to get back into the playoff race – legitimately – they had to have that kind of defensive resurgence as well.

They did so in 2020 after a historic bad start.

And they are starting again in 2021 after a historic bad start.

Defense deserves credit for it.

Of course, you can still correct a lot of issues and note that those three games were against Pittsburgh, New Orleans and Jacksonville – three of the worst offenses in the league.

We will always reserve judgment on this defense until it faces Green Bay and Arizona two weeks in a row. We’ll know a lot more in a few weeks, that’s for sure.

But Sunday was another positive step forward.

The Seahawks took a shutout in the final two minutes of the game, until Jacksonville scored on Trevor Lawrence’s fourth touchdown pass to Jamal Agnew.

Quandre Diggs had another interception, this one a gift from Jacksonville rookie Trevor Lawrence in the first half. Diggs has all three Seattle interceptions this season.

Officially the Seahawks only had one bag from Lawrence, but I felt like they were in the backfield much of the afternoon.

Bobby Wagner had a sack canceled by a penalty in the field. And Carlos Dunlap made two passes on the line, and Al Woods and Rasheem Green also had a broken pass on the line. The passing rush in general needs to be better, but those are at least some bright spots – in what has been an overall very positive day for the defense.

Geno’s big day

The offensive plan for Monday night’s game against New Orleans was obvious: the Seahawks weren’t going to let Geno Smith lose the game for them.

Six days later, the plan changed.

In what the Seahawks hope will be Smith’s last start, the veteran substitute QB has enjoyed one of the best games of his NFL career. From the start on Sunday, the coaches were willing to let him broadcast – to involve his best playmakers – and it worked.

Smith completed 20 of 24 passes for 195 yards with two touchdowns – a score of 128.3. He scored Seattle’s first touchdown on a fourth down for QB, and he didn’t commit a turnover for the second straight game.

Not only did he not put his team in jeopardy, but Smith actually played a big role in the Seahawks’ victory.

It could be a good start for Smith ahead of Russell Wilson’s return.

Wilson had stitches removed from his broken middle finger over the weekend, then went through his usual pre-game warm-up routine on Sunday morning. The Seahawks, inactive next weekend, are hoping he can return for their next game in Green Bay.

Trick and Treat

What’s the point of Halloween if we can’t all have a little fun, right?

The Seahawks had a great time on a sunny and cool afternoon at home.

And, yes, they had a trick up their sleeve in the third quarter. Smith pitched to running back DeeJay Dallas, who returned to Smith, who then pitched to Tyler Lockett for a 28-yard gain.

That set up DK Metcalf’s second touchdown of the game a few games later, taking Seattle’s lead to 24-0 midway through the third quarter.

The two Metcalf touchdowns came with former Seahawks cornerback Shaquill Griffin on cover.

Metcalf and Griffin have spent the past two years competing against each other in Seahawks’ practice, and for the first time today, they come face to face when it counts – and, yes, Metcalf wins this game in a slide of. ground.

Metcalf passed Griffin at the right pylon to catch his first touchdown of the day in the second quarter on a perfect 16-yard Smith throw.

In the third quarter, Metcalf beat Griffin on the left side of the end zone for a 5-yard touchdown to make it 24-0.

As important as any development on Sunday, the Seahawks finally allowed Tyler Lockett to start over. After five relatively calm weeks, Lockett has his first 100-yard receiving game since Week 2. He finished with 12 catches (on 13 targets) for 142 yards.

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