Wilson, Seahawks down Eagles
SEATTLE (AP) — Everyone knew Russell Wilson could run and pass.
But catch? The Seattle Seahawks quarterback showed he can do that, too.
“I think we’ve been trying to call that the past four or five years,” Wilson said.
Wilson threw for 272 yards and a touchdown, and caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Doug Baldwin as the Seahawks rolled past the Philadelphia Eagles 26-15 on Sunday.
Wilson became the first quarterback in franchise history to catch a touchdown, a perfect end-around pass from Baldwin to Seattle’s athletic QB as he ran down the left sideline and dove into the end zone to give the Seahawks a 23-7 lead.
Seattle had the call in the playbook for a few weeks and finally broke it out against the Eagles.
“I’ve been begging for that play for the past two or three weeks. They doubted my arm ability, they doubted I could make the throw, so I’m glad I got to prove them wrong,” Baldwin said with a grin.
Wilson was already causing headaches for the Eagles well before his TD catch. He scrambled and threw across his body to find Jimmy Graham on a 35-yard catch-and-run touchdown in the second quarter as Seattle built a 16-7 halftime lead that was more than enough. Rookie C.J. Prosise had a 72-yard touchdown run on Seattle’s fifth offensive play — the longest run by a Seattle player since CenturyLink Field opened in 2002.
Wilson completed 18 of 31 passes, with four of them going to Baldwin for 104 yards, along with the first touchdown pass of his career.
“I don’t know who is playing better than him right now,” Baldwin said of Wilson. “He’s the best player in the league right now, by far.”
Philadelphia lost its fifth straight road game as rookie quarterback Carson Wentz was provided an education while facing one of the best defenses in the NFL.
Wentz (23 of 45 for 218 yards) was good early, especially on Philadelphia’s first scoring driving that was capped by a 4-yard TD pass to Zach Ertz in the opening moments of the second quarter. Wentz then went 5 of 14 for 25 yards and two interceptions during the rest of the second and the third quarter.
Philadelphia’s wide receivers didn’t help Wentz, going mostly invisible against Seattle’s secondary. Until the early stages of the fourth quarter, Eagles’ wide receivers had the same amount of yards receiving combined as Wilson — 15. Dorial Green-Beckham caught a 5-yard TD with 3:46 remaining.
“I thought overall it’s going to be a great learning experience for him, coming in here, a tough place, and trying to get a win,” Philadelphia coach Doug Pederson said of Wentz. “I thought he played OK.”
The game took a brutal toll with injuries. Philadelphia lost running back Ryan Mathews (knee) and Darren Sproles (ribs) before halftime, while Prosise injured his shoulder and cornerback DeShawn Shead hurt his hamstring in the first half. Prosise suffered a “scapula injury,” according to coach Pete Carroll, and will be out a while.
The biggest loss could turn out to be Seattle safety Earl Thomas, who grabbed at his left hamstring in the third quarter running in coverage downfield on Wentz’s pass that was intercepted by Richard Sherman. Thomas was examined on the sideline for several minutes and taken to the locker room.
Carroll said the team didn’t know the severity of Thomas’ injury.
Seattle had the services of running back Thomas Rawls for the first time since he suffered a hairline fracture of his right shin in Week 2. With Prosise injured, Rawls took the bulk of the carries in the second half and finished with 57 yards on 14 carries.
“My leg is fine. Please don’t bring it up,” Rawls said.
The Seahawks didn’t want to overwork Rawls in his first game back, so backup QB Trevone Boykin got two snaps at running back in the closing minutes. His one carry was for minus-5 yards.
Carroll picked up the 100th regular season win of his career, becoming the 39th coach in NFL history to reach the milestone.
Nelson Agholor had a first half to forget for Philadelphia.
He failed to line up properly and was flagged for illegal formation on what would have been a 57-yard catch-and-run touchdown by Ertz. He also had a critical drop late in the half as he ran wide open across the middle after beating Sherman off the line of scrimmage.
“He’s trying his best, that’s all you can ask for,” Ertz said. “It’s not like he went out there that play and said ‘I’m going to take a touchdown away.’ We made a lot of mistakes tonight.”
Eagles: Philadelphia returns home to host Green Bay on Monday, Nov. 28.
Seahawks: Seattle travels east for the third time in five games heading to Tampa Bay next Sunday.