Posted August 18, 2013

Seattle Seahawks go long and look strong in first-team beatdown of Denver Broncos

AFC West, Denver Broncos, NFC West, Seattle Seahawks
Jermaine Kearse scored two touchdowns against the Denver Broncos on Saturday. (John Froschauer/AP)

Jermaine Kearse scored two touchdowns against the Denver Broncos on Saturday. (John Froschauer/AP)

SEATTLE — If the game between the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos on Saturday night turns out to be a preview for Super Bowl XLVIII (as it well might), the Broncos’ starters will hope for a very different result, and the Seahawks’ first teams will pray for a replay. Both teams played their main men through most of the first half, and the Seahawks dominated nearly every phase of the game. They took a 33-7 lead into the locker room at halftime, and wrapped things up with a 40-10 win in their first preseason game at home this year.

Peyton Manning played through the first two drives of the second half, and he was the lone consistently effective player on his side of the ball, slicing through Seattle’s estimable secondary for 163 yards and a touchdown. He completed 11 of 16 passes and got out of the game with no sacks. The same could not be said of backup Brock Osweiler, who was sacked twice in two first-half drives, and finished with one completion in two attempts for minus-1 passing yard. Osweiler finished his day with nine completions in 14 attempts for 66 yards, no touchdowns and an interception. In the third quarter, Denver gained a grand total of minus-3 yards.

Though Manning was able to drive the Broncos earlier, scoring was a tougher task. In a drive that started at the end of the first quarter and went more than five minutes into the second, the Broncos travelled from their own 20-yard line to the Seattle 1-yard line, when running back Ronnie Hillman fumbled the ball deep into the end zone. Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner picked up the ball and ran it back for a 106-yard touchdown.

“When I looked up, I saw nothing but green ahead of me,” Browner said. “I only saw offensive linemen, and I’ll always take my chances against offensive linemen.”

That was the second play of the game for Seattle that went at least that long — near the end of the first quarter, receiver Jermaine Kearse returned a Matt Prater kickoff 107 yards for a score.

“He told me a couple of weeks ago — ‘Man, if I get a return, I’m taking it all the way,’ and sure enough, he did,” Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson said after the game.

It was his second touchdown of the day — Kearse led off Seattle’s scoring with a 12-yard catch from Wilson with 8:37 left in the first quarter. It was a fortuitous ending to a play that started with Wilson dropping the snap from center.

“I knew I would have a chance, because the corner was playing off,” he said. “We call it a Colorado route. I just knew that if I could sell that slant and make him bite on it, I would have a chance. At first, I didn’t know that Russell was messing around with the snap, and I didn’t know that the ball was on the ground. I was wondering where the ball was, but I was just trying to make a play and get in the end zone.”

Some days, everything just goes your way. Wilson finished his day with eight completions in 12 attempts for 127 yards, two touchdowns, and no interceptions. Backup Tarvaris Jackson came in for the second half and beat Wilson in passer rating, 141.4 to 141.3, completing four of seven passes for 93 yards and a score of his own.

For Kearse, who never returned punts or kicks at the University of Washington from 2008 through 2011, special teams has been his ticket to a relatively permanent address in Seattle. Still, he was only recently approached about returning kicks, and it’s safe to say he made a fairly decent first impression.

“They told me that the cutoff [to return the ball in the end zone] was seven or eight yards, but I didn’t know how deep I was, and the ball was kinda hanging up there,” Kearse said of his play. “So, when I took my first step, I just said, ‘Whatever,’ and just went out. It was a return left, and those guys blocked it up really well.”

The Browner return was emblematic of Denver’s main bugaboo on the evening — they lost the turnover battle in a landslide, and as Broncos coach John Fox said after the game, that won’t wash when you’re dealing with an upper-echelon opponent.

“Like I told our team, when you’re minus-four in turnovers, you’re going to win 10 percent of your games. When you play a good team, you’re going to win zero percent. We have got to look at that in practice. Ball security is something that we will work hard at in practice, because you’re not hitting live. That is something that we will definitely emphasize.”

Things went just about perfectly for the Seahawks even when the reserves were in — for the second straight week, under-the-radar free-agent pickup Stephen Williams caught a touchdown pass from Jackson. This time, with 3:37 left in the third quarter, Williams brought it in near the goal line and flipped his way across untouched for a score.

“It’s just being aware — I didn’t feel like they touched me, but I wanted to make sure,” Williams said. “Leave no doubt, catch the ball, and get in the end zone. We came out kind of sluggish and slow in the second half, and I wanted to do something to get the game going again.”

Beyond the game, the best news for either team came when the Broncos announced that defensive end Derek Wolfe would be able to travel back with the team. Wolfe was laid out in the first quarter by a dual hit from Seahawks tight end Luke Willson and fullback Michael Robinson. He lay on the field for several minutes, and team trainers took him off the field on a backboard into an ambulance. Wolfe underwent a battery of tests at a local hospital and was deemed safe to travel.

46 comments
picklejuice
picklejuice

Anyone else find it funny that Denver (Colorado) played Seattle (Washington) on Hempfest weekend?

ken.burnside
ken.burnside

The 'Hawks were sloppy.  Lots of times their lead blocking for running plays was out of step.  Wilson was consistently overthrowing his intermediate routes.  Richard Sherman kinda played "jog along" on Denver's bunch routes where he couldn't go man-to-man-and-mug.

EG, this is still pre-season football, they're still making mistakes....and there's reason to think they're going to get even better.  Should be a FUN season as a 'Hawks fan.

This message brought to you by the Separation Is In The Preparation and Always Compete memes.

Rebel
Rebel

Sure it doesn't count in the standings, but you can bet the next time Denver faces Seattle, they'll be thinking of the beat-down they got.

OK
OK

Denver Born Agains think the Broncos just need Reverend Tebow to replace Brock Osweiler.

WilliamEnglehart
WilliamEnglehart

Of course preseason is meaningless but Seattle looks like the best team in NFL ever since they beat San Francisco Dec 23, 2012 42-13 (ATL was up 20 and 18-0 on SEA and SF in playoffs and both came back, luckily for SF, they got by ATL while SEA let last second get away from them. SEA looked a year away. ) and Seahawks have only gotten better with Harvin, Avril, and rookies. Scary. Manning played entire first half except for final few min, which Seattle led 33-7 at half. It's not about just winning and loing but the x and o's, which Seattle dominated across every position, even knocking out Denver G and DE, Wolfe, on a stretcher (And this is even scarier that, Again, it's PRESEASON and they KO players like that. Scary. ) The Seahawks are just BEASTS at every position. Win or lose, No team looks forward to playing them. If Denver Keeps losing players, it won't be a SEA/DEN SB I had been hoping for...Go Hawks

Kalzy
Kalzy

Hilarious! It's a preseason game. Good heavens.

LeilaniHernandez
LeilaniHernandez

calm the f down....it was a meaningless preason game. means absolutely nothing.

BradMcCauley
BradMcCauley

Wow, talk about over reaction.  This was preseason game that is erased in two more weeks, and 21 points turned on 2 plays based on horrible homer officiating.  History says Super Bowl champs have had great preseasons, horrible preseasons, and a lot of so-so ones.  One thing history does prove is that preseason accomplishments mean nothing once the regular season starts.


Jean
Jean

Once Again Peyton is Shot Down by the Idiots which surround him.

Thomas9
Thomas9

I should say up front that I'm not much of a fan of either the bronco's or seahawks, but the officiating in that game was 1000% putrid.  So was the announcing.

cflath
cflath

Since when do preseason games matter?

CraigWachs
CraigWachs

i'm tired of these 100 plus yard calls ..last i checked the field is 100yrds , period .. so the longest return can only be 100yrds. if a QBdrops into endzone 5 yrds and completes pass to 20yrd line , its still only a 20yrd completion .. if he throws td pass from 10 to back of endzone its still only a 10 yrd td pass... so lets quit this 100 + bull crap


DODGERFAIL2013
DODGERFAIL2013

good ole payton manning...  greatest choker of all time.  bummer he got that SB ring vs a worthless rex grossman chicago bears team.

can't wait for peyton to fall short again

FedorGaponenko
FedorGaponenko

@ken.burnside I know right! They were sloppy especially with some of those big holding fouls. Also Wilson could've easily went 12-12 not 8-12, I don't think a single incomplete pass was because of defense but just a missed throw. On defense they also committed a couple of bad fouls and had a couple of miscommunications on Denver's lone TD drive. 

Obviously it's impossible to play flawless football but Seattle dominated despite making a lot of sloppy mistakes. 

The game may not count, but winning is still better than losing, especially when in it's in such a dominating fashion. 

doghockey
doghockey

@WilliamEnglehart For some reason I get the sense that if the score had been reversed you would be telling us how this was only a preseason game.

cammcharg
cammcharg

@Kalzy- It is pre-season, but the big blatant point is that this was a massive display of speed, talent, and execution (particularly during the first half, when it was largely starters playing on both sides of the ball) by the Seahawks against a very, very good team. If anyone beats a team as good as the Broncos and a competitor as strong as Manning by 40-10, it's actually an incredible and yes very meaningful statement and win.

cammcharg
cammcharg

@LeilaniHernandez - You're right that the record means absolutely nothing during pre-season, but I think the point is that this was a massive display of speed, talent, and execution (particularly during the first half, when it was largely starters playing on both sides of the ball) by the Seahawks against a very, very good team. If anyone beats a team as good as the Broncos and a competitor as strong as Manning by 40-10, it's actually an incredible and yes very meaningful statement and win.

E.
E.

@BradMcCauley Curious how a team scores 21 pts. on 2 plays in football? Reflects a bit on your football knowledge.

Merv
Merv

@BradMcCauley Homer officiating??  The Seahawks looked like a team ready to start the regular season.  The Broncos looked like a team that needs at least two more weeks of practice.

cammcharg
cammcharg

@cflath- Pre-season records don't matter, but the obvious point is that this was a massive display of speed, talent, and execution (particularly during the first half, when it was largely starters playing on both sides of the ball) by the Seahawks against a very, very good team. If anyone beats a team as good as the Broncos and a competitor as strong as Manning by 40-10, it's actually an incredible statement and win.

Merv
Merv

@cflath   They matter a whole lot to the players trying to make the team.

picklejuice
picklejuice

@CraigWachs Passes and runs are measured from the line of scrimmage not from the hand off point or the place where the pass is thrown. That is why if the ball is on the 10 and you throw the pass behind the line of scrimmage and they are stopped short it is a pass for negative yards. On a kick, interception or fumble return, the "line of scrimmage" is where the change of possession occurs. Then the ball cannot be advanced any farther than the end zone, since as soon as you cross the goal line the play is over.

If you are on the 10 and throw the ball 5 yards in to the end zone for a touchdown. The QB threw a 15 yard pass, but only advanced the ball 10 yards since that is as far as you can go. 

Although I think all returns from and end zone should be measured from the 20 yard line (where the ball would be placed if you stayed in the end zone). If you leave the end zone and only get the ball out to the 5 yard line, then that should be considered a -15 yard return not a 5 yard return.

cammcharg
cammcharg

Manning actually played well and had good numbers in this game. The Broncos were just brutalized by the Seahawks in every way all night long.

picklejuice
picklejuice

@DODGERFAIL2013 This loss was certainly not manning's fault. He played great. Those around him just couldn't hold onto the ball.

southaustin
southaustin

@DODGERFAIL2013Bottom  line is that Peyton Manning studies the game obsessively but can't scramble to  extend plays and tends to panic under pressure. the net of this is that  he  does well during the during the regular season but doesn't do well during the playoffs.  He has a losing record in the playoffs and a lot of those losses are of the "one and done" variety  (ie first playoff game after the regular season). Last year against the Ravens with an opportunity to win in overtime  and advance he throws a pick 6 instead - a classic example of a Peyton Manning playoff choke.

BradMcCauley
BradMcCauley

@cammcharg @LeilaniHernandez Dominating, outside of the first drive Seahawks did little against the first team Denver defense.  Manning drove the Broncos the length of the field twice against the Seahawks 1st team defense.  Take away bone headed fumbles and a kick return the Broncos lead the game 14 to 10 when when Denver pulls it's first team.  It was a massive display not of execution but of breaks. 

BradMcCauley
BradMcCauley

@E. @BradMcCauley Reflects you didn't watch the game.  One touchdown on a kick return where holding flag was picked up (7pts) another touchdown where Hillman was in and called a fumble, fumble was returned for a touchdown (-7 for Broncos, +7 for Seahawks).  That makes a 21 point swing in 2 plays, minus a touchdown for Denver and plus 2 touchdowns for Seahawks. 

BradMcCauley
BradMcCauley

@Merv @BradMcCauley Holding flag was picked up on kick return, didn't take 5 seconds to review fumble, didn't call late hit on Manning. 

BallRush
BallRush

@southaustin @DODGERFAIL2013  You've got to be kidding me.  I'm not a Colts or Broncos fan, but really?  Peyton is one of the top QB's of all time.  Superbowls and playoffs are team efforts, so you can never blame or give credit to one guy for a loss in one game.  But give credit where credit is due over the longer haul.  His teams are always in the hunt, and his stats are amazing relative to the rest of the QB field.  One real clear example is that in his last year with the Colts (2010), the team went 10-6 and went to the playoffs.  The next year without him?  The team won only 2 games.   The difference?  Just look at the QB stats from 2010 vs 2011...  91.9 passer rating vs average of about 60 for the two starting QB's that year.  ALSO, your comment that he "panics under pressure" is an absolute joke.  His interception percentage is 2.7% over his entire career.  That puts him at #25 on the list of all-time lowest QB interception rates.  Which means there are thousands of QB's below him on that list.  So if you want to say he "panics", and interceptions are what you point to, well, he's in the top 25 coolest cucumbers of all time.

(by the way, interesting..  the top 2 lowest career interception rates all time belong to Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady at 1.7% and 2.1% respectively)

So, now that I've written this, I wish I didn't.  Because as I look at your comment, it is clear that you don't even deserve an answer.  You might want to start watching another sport because this one clearly escapes you.


Merv
Merv

@BradMcCauley @Merv The Seattle player was already in the air when Manning released the ball.  That was not a late hit.  All Fumbles and Touchdowns are automatically reviewed this year in the booth.

What about the Denver receiver blocking Browner before the ball was thrown on the Denver TD?  Denver would have not even scored one TD if not for poor officiating. 

BallRush
BallRush

@DODGERFAIL2013 @BallRush @southaustin

Please, please, please... watch another sport or don't comment on this one.

"Manning is terrible in the playoffs".... another quote by you with no meat.

First of all, he's led his teams to a 9-11 record in the playoffs and has won a Superbowl.  His 9 wins puts him at number 14 ALL-TIME for QB's competing in the NFL playoffs. 

Secondly, here is an excerpt from an article on Manning in regular season vs playoffs which I think sums up my point nicely:

"It’s a perplexing question with no right or wrong answer. Are we even talking about this if Denver safety Rahim Moore doesn’t take a mind-bogglingly bad angle on that pass to Jacoby Jones with less than a minute left? Nope. We’d all be slamming the Ravens for completely forgetting Torrey Smith was on the roster in the second half after he abused Champ Bailey in the first half.

In comparing his regular season numbers to his playoff stats – sample size alert – the difference isn’t jarring, but his completion percentage, QB rating and Yards-per-attempt are all down a bit. One obvious thing to remember  – just because the QB is the most important position on the field, no entire win or loss is ever on one player."

Why am I wasting my time with you???

DODGERFAIL2013
DODGERFAIL2013

@BallRush @southaustin @DODGERFAIL2013 yeah... that INT manning threw last season in the playoffs vs the ravens...  great team effort that led to the INT.

manning is terrible in the playoffs.  guy can't carry a team on his back for nothing.