A few weeks into the season, Russell Wilson looked like he was going from end to end in the MVP race.
At the end of the season, no one could know what to expect from the Seattle Seahawks passing playoff game.
Wilson and the Seahawks face the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday afternoon in a wildcard clash, a game that can be streamed live on the Yahoo Sports app. The Rams are having quarterback issues. Jared Goff will be out of thumb surgery for less than two weeks. If he can’t go, John Wolford will make his second career start. LA head coach Sean McVay has said he won’t announce a decision until kick-off.
We know the Rams have concerns. But what happened to Seattle’s passing game?
Russell Wilson’s numbers have dropped significantly
In eight games this season, Wilson has totaled 2,541 yards, 28 touchdowns and a passing rating of 117.1. He was about to defy the passing records in a single season. The fact that Wilson never received an MVP vote has been repeated thousands of times. Wilson is a Hall of Fame talent, but Seattle had never let him function as a high-volume passer. It seemed like the season it finally happened. He looked like he won MVP in a runaway.
The second half of the season was a big difference. Wilson pitched for 1,671 yards and 12 touchdowns. This is in part due to the Seahawks relying less on Wilson. He had 4.5 fewer passing attempts per game in the second half of the season. Wilson was not efficient either, however. His rating dropped to 91.3.
Seattle doesn’t have a lot of receivers although DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett are two of the best in the NFL. It’s not like Wilson’s talent is in doubt. Seattle’s passing game has just evaporated.
In the second half of the season, the Seahawks have never had more than 236 net passing yards in a game. It’s shocking in the NFL today for any team, but inexplicable for the one with Wilson, Metcalf and Lockett.
Seahawks’ passing offense struggled
It’s hard to deny the Seahawks’ record. While it is odd that they limited Wilson on offense, they are winning. Even though the pass offense struggled, Seattle went 6-2 and won the NFC West. One win was a decisive 20-9 win over the Rams in Week 16 to clinch the division title.
It’s also fair to assume that if Seattle is to win four games, including the Super Bowl, Wilson will have to play better than he has in the past two months. Seattle’s defense has improved significantly since the start of the season. The racing game was good. Maybe that’ll be enough to beat the Rams, who have fantastic defense and will likely want to play a low-scoring game due to their quarterback conundrum. But if the Seahawks are up against Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, or any other top quarterback, 200 passing yards probably won’t be enough.
Wilson is one of the most talented quarterbacks in NFL history. He has also won a Super Bowl before. It should come as no surprise that Wilson activated him in the playoffs and led the Seahawks to a deep run.
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