The Seahawks could’ve beaten the Chargers but they didn’t

Another too-little-too-late drive later, the Seahawks are 4-4, extremely vincible at home, facing an uphill battle to regain playoff positioning, and finished looking not-that-great in multiple phases against tougher competition than October presented. Make whatever joke or snarky comment comes to mind. Pretend it’s social media. I can make them for you. It is easy.

  • The 2018 Seahawks are dead, long live the 2017 Seahawks
  • Knew they were just beating up on inferior teams last couple weeks
  • New faces, same old Seahawks
  • playoffs.jimmorasenior.gif, PLAYOFFS?
  • Can’t win with a prehistoric game plan
  • Moral victory = just another way of spelling defeat

Doesn’t have to be the end of the list. Our Seahawks weren’t very good yesterday, and they deserve some scorn. But the underlying truth — what happened against the Chargers — is a good team made some enormously good plays, got enormous help in the first half from officials who aren’t crooked, the defense clamped down too late, missed out on some turnovers, a few mental errors were costly, and Russell Wilson wasn’t good enough throughout the incomplete comeback.

What also happened is what didn’t happen. No turnovers generated means the game will swing on two or three plays. On a different afternoon, all of those swing the other way, toward Seattle, and we’re drinking celebration beers tonight instead of eating therapy bacon. Pick a couple: the tipped ball at the end, the David Moore misplay, the brainfartastic pick-six, or the sideline dance on which Mike Williams probably stepped out. But since review rules are the enemy of the 2018 Seahawks, sadface, curse the officials, sigh at the league, and prepare to tie the Rams.

Also not happening: two important no-calls killed Seattle drives; a non-existent pass rush aided LA’s. Not calling Williams out of bounds at the 9 in real time meant six for the Chargers they didn’t immediately deserve, but the way they were moving the ball on the ground with Melvin Gordon and in chunk plays through the air, there is little reason to believe that possession would have stalled inside the 10-yard line. The bad call actually gave the Seahawks 1:10 to construct a field-goal drive on which a touchdown could have happened, but didn’t, for playcalling reasons that deserve a whole other post some whole other day.

The Seahawks ran 81 plays on offense. 81! But only five passes netted 10 yards or more; only four double-digit gainers happened at all in the first half. The curious decision to attack the Chargers chiefly on the ground and through horizontal passing meant that explosive plays didn’t happen. Third and long is hard to convert in the NFL, but giving up twice and not even trying to get to the sticks — that stops points from happening.

Despite all that could have happened but didn’t, the Seahawks still found themselves in a decent position to force overtime. Losing is not a moral victory, but Seattle would have defeated an inferior team today easily, and would have defeated a team they were evenly matched with, such as the LA Fathers, with another break or two.

But that too, didn’t happen.

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