NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks defense demolishes Eagles
The Seattle Seahawks have had some legendary defenses, but a new one could be emerging.
In back-to-back games, Seattle has leaned on its defense to take steps forward, and they have proved they are dominant enough to shut down opposing offenses. Some might say the difference-maker has been the addition of Jadeveon Clowney or Quandre Diggs. What about Shaquem Griffin's disruptive play? The real question over the next five weeks, however, will be: Can this defense stick around?
This week, the Seahawks take on the Vikings, who are fresh off a bye in Week 12. Seattle and Minnesota will be battling for playoff positioning during primetime on Monday Night Football.
Before we look ahead to this week's pivotal matchup, let's take a look at where the Seahawks sit in the NFL Power Rankings in Week 13.
The Seahawks remained at No. 4 in ESPN’s Week 13 Power Rankings.
Seahawks reporter Brady Henderson highlighted the player the Seahawks are most thankful for this holiday season: Russell Wilson.
“Sunday's game was a reminder of how fortunate the Seahawks are to have Wilson, even though he had a nondescript performance by his standards. The Seahawks improved to 9-2 with a win over the Eagles, who wanted to draft Wilson in 2012 and would have if Seattle had not snagged him at No. 75, 13 picks before Philadelphia chose Nick Foles. The win makes Wilson the first quarterback in the NFL's 100-year history to post a winning record in each of his first eight seasons. He now has a league-high 24 touchdown passes and three interceptions after throwing one of each on Sunday.”
NFL.com also listed the Seahawks at No. 4 this week following a breakout performance from rookie running back Rashaad Penny.
Around the NFL Writer Dan Hanzus tries to make “cents” of Penny’s big day.
“Welcome to the offense, Rashaad Penny. The former first-round pick has been buried behind Chris Carson since the beginning of last season, but that could be changing after Sunday's 17-9 win over the Eagles. Penny set career highs in carries (14) and rushing yards (129), and he busted the game open with a 58-yard touchdown that served as a reminder of why Seattle was so high on the former San Diego State star in the first place.
Penny's big output came on the same day Carson struggled against the Eagles and fumbled for the seventh time, the most in the league amongst running backs. Is Penny about to steal the primary ball-carrier role in Seattle? Not so fast -- Carson has had a very good season, on balance. But you can safely assume the Seahawks will begin to mix Penny in more often after Sunday's breakout showing.”
Seattle managed to drop a spot in USA Today’s latest power rankings.
Nate Davis had no explanation for the Seahawks fall to No. 5, but he did share this about Russell Wilson:
“Want another great Russell Wilson statistic? When given a halftime lead of at least four points during his eight-year career, he's 55-0.”
The Seahawks stood firm at No. 4 in Sports Illustrated’s power rankings in Week 13. The staff at MMQB said it wasn’t Russell Wilson who stole the show, but rather Seattle’s defense.
“The Eagles made it ugly, but the Seattle defense sent Carson Wentz into a tailspin with their demolition of the Philadelphia offensive line. Six sacks, nine QB hits, three fumble recoveries and two picks will do that to a quarterback, and Rashaad Penny broke out for his best outing of 2019 (14 carries, 129 yards, TD) at the perfect time on a rainy, messy afternoon at the Linc.”
Seattle moved up three spots to No. 4 in Pete Prisco’s latest power rankings for CBS Sports.
As Prisco noted, however, the Seahawks have another tough challenge ahead this week.
“At 9-2, they are clearly in the chase to be the top seed in the conference. They face a big one against the Vikings this week, but the defense is improving.”