Russell Wilson had a career day on his 27th birthday to give the Seattle Seahawks a crucial victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday by the score of 39-30. With that victory the Seahawks (6-5) lay claim to the final wild Card spot in the NFC. Wilson completed 21 out of 30 passes for 345 yards and five touchdowns, three to Doug Baldwin including an 80 yard touchdown to seal the game with 2:01 left to play. This drive was preceded by a field goal by Chris Boswell to cut the lead to 32-30. The decision was questionable in my opinion at the time, but when Ben Roethlisberger had to leave the game with concussion like symptoms it seems understandable. Roethlisberger threw for 456 yards, which is the most passing yards ever thrown against the Seahawks, but he also threw two interceptions.
Thomas Rawls rushed for 81 yards on 21 carries for Seattle. Doug Baldwin had six catches for 145 yards with the three touchdowns, and Jermaine Kearse caught four passes for 47 yards and two touchdowns. For the Steelers (6-5) Markus Wheaton caught nine passes for 201 yards and a touchdown and DeAngelo Williams had 117 total yards, 88 of those on seven receptions.
The Steelers outgained the Seahawks 538-436, won time of possession 32:00-28:00, and had more first downs (26-21). What made the difference in this game was the Seahawks 4 takeaways and did not give the ball up once. What also cost the Steelers is some questionable decisions by Coach Mike Tomlin. The decision to go for the sure field goal instead of going for the go ahead touchdown was baffling because the defense had been struggling all day and I would not have trusted that the defense was going to get a stop and got them the ball back with a chance to win. Another decision that was made that was head-scratching was the attempted fake field goal in which Landry Jones threw a pass intended for Alejandro Villanueva which was intercepted by Jeremy Lane. The Seahawks went on to score a touchdown and turned the momentum and fired on the “Twelves”.
Moving forward the Steelers still have a tough stretch in front of them with the surging Indianapolis Colts led by veteran Matthew Hasselbeck coming to Heinz Field on Sunday Night. Roethlisberger’s status for Sunday night’s game is uncertain after leaving the game after a late hit by the Seahawks Michael Bennett on the Steeler’s second to last drive. Landry Jones subbed in and threw an interception to Kam Chancellor to ice the game on the Steelers last possession. It is obvious that the Steelers are not going anywhere without Ben playing quarterback and they are now eighth in the AFC playoff picture. The Chiefs and Texans occupy the two wild card spots as if right now and the Jets are also ahead of them due to various tiebreakers. The Steelers have shown resiliency all year long with injuries, but the question is this: How long will they be able to fight against the war of attrition?
PIT: vs. IND 11/6 8:20 NBC
SEA: @MIN 11/6 1:00 Fox