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Week 4 Game Recap: Seattle Seahawks 27, Arizona Cardinals 10

What you need to know

Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks were efficient and were in control of this game from start to finish. What started out as a balanced attack, shifted toward the ground game in the second half as they held the lead and committed to giving Chris Carson the ball. No one receiver shone, but Russell Wilson targeted TE Will Dissly with much success throughout the game.

Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals trailed early against the Seahawks and failed to find offensive traction as they stayed winless on the season. Arizona’s offense has struggled to complete scoring drives even when in rhythm and this week’s positives were more difficult to find. On the positive side, David Johnson was a force in the passing game, but the other receivers were generally gobbled up by coverage and Kyler Murray struggled to produce big plays as a passer or runner. While still an injury-away option, Chase Edmonds was more involved early in the game than previous weeks behind David Johnson. Christian Kirk suffered an ankle injury late in the game and his Week 5 status is uncertain.

Seattle Seahawks

QB Russell Wilson, 63 offensive snaps, Pass: 22 - 28 - 240 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 2 - 7 - 0
Wilson had not true highlight worthy plays against the Cardinals, but was quietly very efficient. He hit his TE, Will Dissly all day long, including for the lone TD, as he hit him wide open in stride as he crossed the goal line. Wilson had more success on short plays, to Dissly and Carson, primarily. His deep passes were not on the money in this one. Coverage was tight and he was forced to overthrow the ball rather than risk an interception, which he has so far managed to avoid in all four games this season. The blemish on his game is that he had more opportunity to score, but failed to get in on three passing plays from the 6-yard line, at the end of the half.

RB Chris Carson, 48 offensive snaps, Rush: 22 - 104 - 0, Rec: 4 - 41 - 0 (4 targets)
It’s safe to say that Carson fully redeemed himself for his fumble problems over the first three games. He had a great game all around – by the numbers and on the field. He proved to be not only reliable holding on to the ball, but showed both power and speed, while catching several passes out of the backfield and finding/making room to run. Carson played almost the full first half, including for the two-minute drill, as the Seahawks clearly were committed to giving him the ball. Unfortunately, he was spelled twice by CJ Prosise – both times in the red zone. This felt like coincidence, but it’s hard to tell, since Prosise is typically their best pass catching back. For what it’s worth: Without Carson, the drive stalled and they had to settle for a field goal. With him, the momentum was palpable, and it seemed inevitable they would end up with a major. There were several individual plays worth mentioning – a nice spin move that got him outside for the first down; his vision helping him to get the short yardage first down; and most impressive was a reception in the fourth quarter that was essentially a dump pass. Carson was draped in coverage but broke the tackle, beat two defenders with his speed, and powered through a fourth Cardinal for a first down. He kept running hard til the end, and in fact did find the end zone on a short play that had him cutting all the way to the outside to make it in, but it was called back on a penalty. A few plays later, Prosise vulture a score. Even with Rashaad Penny coming back next week, Carson clearly has the trust of his coaches and should continue to get the bulk of the carries.

RB C.J. Prosise, 14 offensive snaps, Rush: 3 - 4 - 1
Prosise saw the field only to spell Chris Carson briefly. He did not get the customary call for the two minute drill – however, he did sub in at the 6-yard line, presumably to give Carson a breather more than anything. Late in the came, he was similarly subbed into the red zone, and this time vulture a TD with a nice run up the middle, which put the game out of reach.

WR Tyler Lockett, 61 offensive snaps, Rec: 4 - 51 - 0 (4 targets)
Lockett sometimes doesn’t see any targets for a while, but by now we know the rapport is there with Wilson, and usually it’s just a matter of time. But as the Seahawks built a lead, they leaned a bit more on the running game and short passing, which meant a pedestrian day for Lockett. Later in the game, Wilson seemed to be looking his way more often. Lockett made a very nice catch in the red zone as Wilson threaded the needle with a 28-yard pass. And in the 4th quarter, Lockett took a big hit to make a first down on a comeback route. He had one end zone target late in game, which drew a Pass Interference penalty, but he could not come down with the ball.

WR Jaron Brown, 35 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 50 - 0 (3 targets)
Brown seems to have the lead on the third WR spot, and made the most of his opportunities. He made all three of his catches look pretty easy, finding openings in the coverage, and had room to run on a short outside catch and one over the middle for 32 yards.

WR DK Metcalf, 40 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 6 - 0 (4 targets)
Good news/Bad news. The positive here is that three of his four targets were in the end zone, so he’s got a pretty important role in this offense. However, all three were more or less uncatchable, two overthrown, and a jump ball in tight coverage but he couldn’t get both hands on it.

WR David Moore, 25 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 9 - 0 (2 targets)
Moore seems to have fallen behind in the third WR competition, as he works his way back from a shoulder injury. He had one short catch, and was targeted in the end zone but the ball was uncatchable.

TE Will Dissly, 50 offensive snaps, Rec: 7 - 57 - 1 (8 targets)
Dissly has become a permanent fixture in Wilson’s multi-faceted arsenal. Against the Cardinals, he took the top spot with 7 catches, including a TD. He was used mainly on short patterns, but he and Wilson like to team up on a seam pattern, which usually sees Dissly open and getting the ball near or at the goal line, which is exactly how this one went down.

Arizona Cardinals

QB Kyler Murray, 63 offensive snaps, Pass: 22 - 32 - 241 - 0 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 4 - 27 - 1
In the sound home defeat to the Seahawks, Murray struggled to comeback from an early deficit. Murray’s flash moments were just that – moments – as consistency has eluded the Arizona passing game and their offense overall through four weeks. Murray’s interception came at the hands of an athletic play by Jadaveon Clowney, snaring an intended screen pass and turning it into a pick-six touchdown. Murray’s best plays used his mobility, like breaking a tackle in the pocket before delivering a strike to Trent Sherfield and eluding rushers before finding David Johnson over the middle for nearly 30 yards. Murray also added a well-designed red zone draw play for a touchdown, Arizona’s lone end zone appearance on the day. Cincinnati’s struggling defense offers a potential get well matchup in Week 5.

RB David Johnson, 54 offensive snaps, Rush: 11 - 40 - 0, Rec: 8 - 99 - 0 (11 targets)
Arizona did not stick with the run game for long against Seattle as they trailed from nearly the outset. Johnson was regularly used as a receiver, including from a split-out alignment, as the leading receiver (yardage and targets) for the team. Johnson had two receptions total 60 yards of his game’s tally, one on a breath-taking Kyler Murray play to elude rushers and find Johnson over the middle. Johnson had a 15-yard rush in garbage time to make his pedestrian rushing stat line look even more bleak otherwise. Johnson will look for a better game script against Cincinnati next week.

RB Chase Edmonds, 13 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 37 - 0
Edmonds was more involved in the Arizona offense early in this week’s game against Seattle than previous weeks. Edmonds had three touches in the first four minutes alone, a strong uptick from his typical relief appearances for David Johnson’s rest intervals. Edmonds, more so than Johnson, found success as a rusher, including a huge interior hole for close to 10 yards and two more quality runs later in the game. Edmonds projects as a high market share option for Arizona’s backfield if David Johnson were to miss time in a future week.

WR Larry Fitzgerald, 53 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 47 - 0 (5 targets)
In a record-setting week for Fitzgerald, moving into the second position for all-time receptions in the NFL behind Jerry Rice, the veteran did not move the needle for impact on his five catches, two of which coming in garbage time. Another reception came on a give-up third-and-long well in front of the sticks. Fitzgerald did not see any downfield targets as the Arizona offense was stifled outside of a few flashes in the sound home defeat.

WR Christian Kirk, 59 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 6 - 0, Rec: 4 - 37 - 0 (5 targets)
Kirk saw an early season-low five targets against Seattle as the Arizona passing game as a whole struggled in the home loss. Two of Kirk’s receptions came in clear garbage time and a deep comeback route earlier in the game, Kirk’s biggest play, was called back of offensive pass interference. Kirk looks to rebound against Cincinnati in Week 5, a pass defense which as struggled after quality slot and after-the-catch options this season. Kirk suffered an ankle injury late in the game that could sideline him.