It’s not like the Seattle Seahawks (5-2) didn’t know what was coming for them – they just couldn’t stop it.
Lamar Jackson carved up the Seahawks defense with his legs on Sunday with 116 rushing yards and a touchdown on 14 carries in the Baltimore Ravens (5-2) 30-16 win at CenturyLink Field. Jackson showcased why he’s a special talent with clutch plays throughout the game.
“They’re doing a fantastic job with him in their offense,” Pete Carrol said postgame. “He’s unique and they know it.”
Bobby Wagner said he’s never seen a skill set like Jackson’s, who’s a more than capable passer as well. Jackson threw for just 143 yards on Sunday, but drops plagued Baltimore’s passing game.
“He’s 1-of-1,” Wagner said. “You see he’s special – some of the plays he had where he’s running full speed and stops on a dime and lets the defender go past. You knew you were going to have your hands full containing him. We saw firsthand.”
Jackson had three plays that were particularly marvelous.
On 3rd-and-10 in the second quarter, Jackson escaped for a 28-yard run that set up a field goal.
Shortly after Seattle played it conservative on fourth down, Baltimore decided to go for it on 4th-and-2 from Seattle’s 8-yard line, and Jackson took it up the middle on a designed keeper for a touchdown.
In the fourth quarter, on 3rd-and-8 from his own 12-yard line, Jackson escaped once again for a 30-yard run up the left sideline. That was the pivotal play in a drive that chewed up 9:00 off the clock. That possession resulted in a Ravens field goal to make it a two-score game at 23-13.
“He made plays when they needed him,” Wagner said.
Added Jadeveon Clowney: “We knew it was going to be a hard game chasing this guy down. He came in today and executed.”
The threat of Jackson’s athleticism helped keep Seattle’s pass rush at bay. Clowney said that Seattle’s defense was mindful to stay in its rush lanes and, as a group, try to collapse the pocket. That didn’t matter, clearly, as Jackson was still able to find space and escape while making it look relatively easy.
“He kept sliding up out of there,” Clowney said.
The Seahawks only sacked Jackson once and it came when the quarterback slipped on the rain-soaked CenturyLink Field turf. Brandon Jackson was the one who benefitted and tallied the “sack.” That was Seattle’s lone hit against Jackson, whereas Russell Wilson was hit eight times by the Ravens defense.
The good news for Seattle is that they won’t have to see Jackson again this season. The fact that he’s truly one of a kind will make it hard for other teams to replicate Baltimore’s success offensively. Jackson’s ingenuity makes it easier to tip your cap and move on.
“He just did his thing as a great player,” Clowney said. “He made plays when he had to with his legs and threw it when he had people open. He was better than we were on defense today. He won the game for them.”
Seattle is still 5-2 and will have another winnable game in Week 8 – a road matchup against the reeling Atlanta Falcons. A more stationary Matt Ryan (or Matt Schaub if Ryan is unable to go with an ankle injury) will be a welcome site for Seattle’s defense.