Thursday night saw a second face-off between two NFC West teams in the middle of a divisional race. Week 7 saw the first matchup between these two teams with the Cardinals outlasting the Seahawks in OT, but Seattle got their revenge this time around. Here’s a brief recap with five studs and five duds from the first game in week 11:
Stud – Russell Wilson
Although I was hesitant to put him in this category, he did perform efficiently completing 23 of 28 passes with no INT’s, 2 TD’s, and he did fumble twice but didn’t lose either one. Plus, if you have over six seconds to throw a TD, you better complete it. If he closes out the season the way he started it, Seattle will be the team to be in the NFC.
Dud – Kyler Murray
Arizona’s offense has been hot over the last 5 weeks scoring over 30+ points a game; and, not to mention that Hail Mary to Hopkins last week. This week was a different story; Murray was 29-42 with 2 TD’s and 0 INT’s which is respectable, but several mistakes were made and he couldn’t get the job done when the game was on the line. Keep an eye on that shoulder over the next few weeks.
Stud – Tyler Lockett
Lockett was Seattle’s top receiver catching all 9 of his targets for 67 yards and a TD. He and DK Metcalf have battled back and forth all year for the top receiver spot with Lockett having more receptions, but Metcalf has the edge in yards and TD’s. Lockett is in the top 5 in the NFC in receptions and TD’s and is projected to hit nearly 1,200 receiving yards.
Dud – DK Metcalf
He caught 3 out of 5 targets for 46 yards and a TD but had a legitimate shot at a pair of TD’s, but couldn’t haul it in as he took the Wilson pass off his helmet. I wouldn’t be surprised to see that play on this week’s edition of “C’mon Man”. When you let Russ cook, you gotta finish that meal DK.
Stud – Seattle Defense
They held Murray and Hopkins in check and had 3 sacks, hit Murray 7 times, and held on at the end of the game. Murray had several chances again this week for the Hail Mary win but on 4th down with the game on the line, Seattle only rushed 3 and got to Murray for the sack to seal the deal for the Seahawks.
Dud – Arizona Defense
When it comes down to it, you gave Russell Wilson all the time in the world in the pocket, forced him to fumble twice with no recoveries, and even sacked him three times. They’re lucky to only give up 28 points in that performance. The Cardinals defense is gonna have to lock it up if they’re gonna have any chance of making a playoff run.
Stud – Carlos Hyde
Hyde was the leading rusher of the night with 79 yards on 14 carries with a TD for Seattle. With Chris Carson still inactive (foot), Hyde stepped up and played a factor in the contest and gave the Cardinals’ Patrick Peterson a wake-up call with a big stiff arm near the goal line as well.
Dud – Kenyan Drake
The Alabama alum carried the ball 11 times for a mere 29 yards with 12 of those yards coming on one carry and a TD. He also caught 4 passes for 31 yards, but it seemed like the whole offense never really found a good rhythm. Not much else to say here, just a lackluster performance.
Stud – Carlos Dunlap
Acquired from Cincinnati just a few weeks ago, Dunlap has been a huge factor in the two games he’s played for Seattle. He had a pair of sacks last night and 3.5 total in two games and only having one with Cincinnati. It would appear he’s found new life with the neon green contenders as opposed to the orange and black in the cellar.
Dud – DeAndre Hopkins
It’s not very often you find this guy on the dud list, but he needed to step up in this matchup, and Seattle’s defense rose to the task. Hopkins was targeted 8 times catching 5 for 51 yards and 0 TD. Larry Fitzgerald led the team in targets, catches, and yards which are nothing new for the Cardinals, but when you have Hopkins on the field, he’s gotta be thrown to more.
Seattle stepped up and showed us why they are the team to beat in the NFC West. Murray and the Cardinals are gonna have to clean things up a bit if they want to contend in January. We will see how Arizona stacks up in the conference with both of their games with the Rams coming up in weeks 13 and 17.