Seattle Seahawks headed to NFC Championship Game

Amidst the torrential rain and wind gusts, the 12th man looked upon CenturyLink Field with incredible enthusiasm.

When the clock hit zero, there was no reason not to be enthusiastic.

The Seattle Seahawks fought the weather and the tough New Orleans Saints to a grab a hard-earned 23-15 home victory.

As usual, Seattle’s defense stole the show, holding the Saints scoreless through the first three quarters, as well as setting up the offense early after Michael Bennett forced and recovered a Mark Ingram fumble. The defense absolutely stymied Drew Brees in the first half, and they held the line once New Orleans entered Seattle’s half, allowing two Shayne Graham field goal attempts that would both be missed. Drew Brees only got into a rhythm late, putting up fifteen fourth quarter points to make it close. Brees finished 29 of 43 for 309 yards and a touchdown.

It wasn’t just Michael Bennett who played spectacularly. Earl Thomas and Bobby Wagner were all over the field, making tackles and athletically breaking up passes. Cliff Avril had a key sack to push the Saints out of a field goal try, Kam Chancellor snuffed out a couple screen passes and nearly picked Brees off, and even Walter Thurmond broke up a pass to force a punt. Seattle’s defense has virtually no holes right now, and one can easily see that they feed off the 12th man’s energy.

Seattle Seahawks

Marshawn Lynch (Photo: newstimes.com)

And then there was Marshawn Lynch, who absolutely had a Beast Mode day: 28 carries for 140 yards and two touchdowns, including an electric 31 yard scamper to help solidify the win. Skittles were scattered among raindrops in honor of Lynch’s carrying of the offense to victory. Indeed, without Lynch’s day, Seattle could’ve easily lost this game.

Russell Wilson had an awful day. An AWFUL day. He was only 9 of 18 for 103 yards, and he had difficulty throwing five yard slants on more than one occasion. It was absolutely abysmal to watch, and his performance has me worried for next week against the 49ers. The 49ers’ defense is too good to allow Lynch to replicate Saturday, and so Wilson has to actually do something next week. Hopefully he’ll be able to step up, because a one-dimensional offensive performance is not going to get the Seahawks through to the Super Bowl.

And what would an analysis of a Seahawks game be without pointing out Percy Harvin’s absence? Honestly, I’m almost tempted to laugh because it’s so sad. He fights so hard through his hip injury to be ready for the playoffs, and then he goes out and gets a concussion before the first half is even over. This season for Harvin is so ridiculous that it’s kind of funny. He just can’t catch a break. With any luck, though, the concussion will be minor enough for him to start next week in Seattle.

Seattle will host the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship next weekend. Stay on isportsweb for breaking news out of Seattle as the game looms closer.