The Washington Times-Herald

Columns

December 6, 2013

Seattle is the class of the NFC

The Seattle Seahawks are the best team in the NFC, and I'm not sure it's even particularily close at this time. Monday night the Seahawks eviserated Drew Brees and the New Orleans explosive offense with a 34-7 victory that served to put the rest of the league on notice. Seattle stands at 11-1 with a two-game lead over New Orleans and Carolina for home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs, ensuring the Seahawks '12th Man' will be a major factor in who will be the NFC representative in February's Super Bowl in New Jersey.

Entering Monday night's game there was talk that Seattle would be at a disadvantage as it was without their top two wide receivers (Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice) and the second and third cornerbacks (Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond). ESPN's Trent Dilfer even asserted on Monday Night Countdown that Seattle hadn't faced a quarterback as great as Drew Brees. Seattle's "Legion of Boom" was more than up to the challenge, in fact, it hadn't looked this good all year.

The Saints offense managed zero first downs on their first three drives and found themselves down 17-0 after the first quarter. The Saints couldn't deal with the combination of the ferocious Seahawk defense to go along with the intense crowd noise, which set a Guiness World Record when it reached the 136 decibel mark. Brees was held under 200 yards passing and didn't even look like the best quarterback on the field — that honor went to second-year quarterback Russell Wilson. The Seattle defense, which allows a league-best 177 yards through the air embarrassed Brees and the rest of the New Orleans offense in a national televised game.

For anyone still doubting whether or not the 5'11 Wilson could play the quarterback position at an elite level, Monday was an eye opener. Wilson used his legs to evade New Orleans defenders and hit two passes of over 50 yards to wide receiver Doug Baldwin and tight end Zach Miller. Wilson completed 22-of-30 passes for 310 yards and three touchdowns. The Saints defense had no answer for Wilson and the Seattle offense. Pro Bowl running back Marshawn Lynch only ran for 45 yards and it had no impact on the Seattle offense.

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