Seattle Seahawks slide by struggling New York Giants

By Patti Traina, The Sports Xchange  |  Oct. 22, 2017 at 9:26 PM
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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Quarterback Russell Wilson threw three second-half touchdown passes to give the Seattle Seahawks a 24-7 win over the New York Giants on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.

The Seahawks (4-2), who were coming off their bye week, put together a sloppy, penalty-filled first half, which included eight penalties for 63 yards and two second-quarter dropped passes by tight end Jimmy Graham, one of which would have been a touchdown on a fourth-down play.

Perhaps even more disturbing for head coach Pete Carroll's group was that the offense, twice given new life inside the red zone thanks to Giants penalties, were unable to punch the ball in, with the fourth-down attempt dropped by Graham in the end zone capping a fruitless sequence.

The New York offense, under the direction of offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan, struggled to get much of anything going in the first half where they held the ball for 9:22, failed to convert a third down and recorded just 42 yards of net offense.

It took a defensive turnover to help break the Giants' offense's sleepwalking, that coming in the second quarter when rookie defensive end Avery Moss, filling in for the injured Kerry Wynn (ankle), forced a fumble by Seahawks running back Thomas Rawls.

Giants safety Landon Collins alertly recovered the loose fumble, returning it 32 yards to give the Giants offense a first-and-10 inside the red zone. After quarterback Eli Manning connected with receiver Roger Lewis Jr. on a 12-yard pass, Manning found tight end Evan Engram in the end zone for a 5-yard score to give the Giants a 7-0 lead.

The Seahawks would get an opportunity to tie the game later in the second quarter, but a 27-yard touchdown pass from Wilson to receiver Tyler Lockett was nullified thanks to an offensive pass interference call against Lockett.

The Seahawks ended up having to settle for a 39-yard field goal by Blair Walsh to make it 7-3 at the half.

In the second half, the Giants' defense, which had been on the field for 41 plays in the game's first 30 minutes, began to show signs of fatigue.

Wilson, who in addition to the three touchdown passes, completed 27 of 39 for 334 yards and no interceptions, found receiver Doug Baldwin for a 22-yard go-ahead score to give the Seahawks a 10-7 lead.

That score capped a drive in which the Seahawks once again set themselves back by a penalty, this time an unnecessary roughness infraction called against offensive lineman Mark Glowinski that turned first-and-goal to second-and-long.

"They gave us Cover-0 in the red zone, a look that we like to go against," said Baldwin. "Russ saw it, I saw it -- we all saw it across the board, and got really excited. We checked out of another play we had, and we got it."

With both teams struggling in the second half to generate points, the Giants did get an opportunity to tie the game at the start of the fourth quarter. But kicker Aldrick Rosas missed a 47-yard attempt.

The Seahawks finally cracked open the game in the fourth quarter. Following a strip-sack of Manning by defensive tackle Jarran Reed and the ensuing recovery by defensive end Frank Clark, the Seahawks offense took just one play and 15 seconds to increase their lead to 17-7.

Seattle's second touchdown came when Wilson found receiver Paul Richardson in the end zone on a play in which the receiver did a good job of keeping Collins from ripping the ball from his grasp.

"What an exciting play," said Wilson. "I tossed it to (running back) J.D. (McKissic) and he throws it back to me, and then let Paul do his thing.

"Paul did a great job of attacking the football, snagging it down and it was contested but I think Paul got his hands on it first obviously and brought it down and it was definitely a pretty crazy play."

The Giants, obviously, did not agree with the call and hinted they might seek further clarification from the league.

"I did not think he had possession of the ball before his foot hit the white," head coach Ben McAdoo said. "But, again, we'll go take a look at the tape and see what we can see."

Collins was more direct: "It was an interception."

Graham then made amends for his two earlier drops in the game by catching Wilson's final touchdown pass of the afternoon, a 1-yard fade to make it 24-7.

The Giants (1-6) head into their bye week to self-scout what has gone wrong in their disappointing campaign and to heal up some of their injured players, especially on the defensive side of the ball that, in addition to losing inside linebacker B.J. Goodson to a sprained ankle and reserve defensive lineman Cap Capi to a hamstring, they were without linebackers Jonathan Casillas (neck) and Calvin Munson (quad) and defensive end Olivier Vernon (ankle).

Manning was just 19 of 39 for 134 yards and a touchdown.

NOTES: Seahawks WR Doug Baldwin's 22-yard third-quarter touchdown catch tied him with Sherman Smith for eighth place on Seattle's all-time touchdowns list with 38. ... Giants QB Eli Manning has thrown at least one touchdown pass in six straight regular-season games. Manning's current touchdown streak through six games is the most since he threw at least one touchdown pass in 11 straight games in 2015. ... Seahawks QB Russell Wilson tied Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger and Atlanta's Matt Ryan for most wins by a quarterback in his first six seasons with 60. ... New York lost starting MLB B.J. Goodson in the second quarter to an ankle injury; starting RT Justin Pugh left the game in the second half with a back injury; and reserve DE/LB Cap Capi was ruled out of the game in the third quarter with a hamstring strain. ... The Giants' defense has now allowed eight touchdowns to be scored this season by opposing tight ends.

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