EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The Seahawks looked like a team that could make a return to MetLife Stadium, the site of the Super Bowl in February. Here’s a quick recap of their 23-0 win against the New York Giants on Sunday:
What happened: The Seahawks steamrolled the Giants in front of a lifeless crowd at MetLife Stadium. In fact, with 10 minutes left in the fourth quarter, only about a quarter of the crowd remained. In some corners on the internet, people seemed frustrated by the fact that the Seahawks had to settle for field goals instead of touchdowns. But make no mistake about it: This was a dominating performance. The backups were in for nearly all of the fourth quarter. It felt like a preseason game. The Seahawks finished 6-2 on the road this season.
The good: The defense played perhaps its best game of the year — and that’s saying something because the Seahawks entered the day second in points allowed per game. To be fair, the Giants are one of the worst offenses in the league, but even still, it was surprising to see how thoroughly Seattle throttled them. The Giants didn’t cross 100 yards of total offense until the fourth quarter, and Eli Manning added to his NFL-leading interception total by throwing a career-high five of them. The Seahawks’ defensive line looked like piranhas.
The bad: Two things jump out. First, the Seahawks put themselves in third-and-long situations for most of the game. That can’t happen against better teams; it will cost you. Second, The offense never looked in rhythm and settled for three field goals. The Seahawks won’t score touchdowns on every drive, and the offense was certainly good enough, but it also could have been better.
Big picture: The Seahawks didn’t wrap up anything up with their win against the Giants, but if they win one of their final two games — against Arizona and St. Louis in Seattle — the Seahawks will wrap up the NFC West and home-field advantage in the playoffs. Considering that the Seahawks haven’t lost a home game in two years, that seems highly unlikely.
Player of the game: How about cornerback Byron Maxwell? Why not? Maxwell, who is starting in the place of Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond, knew he was going to get challenged from opposing quarterbacks. So far, he’s answered most of them. Maxwell added two more interceptions against the Giants — he had one last week against San Francisco and dropped one the game before that. The Seahawks haven’t missed a beat with him playing.