Seahawks vs. Steelers: Things We Learned from Seattle's 24-0 Loss
TheÂ Seahawks continuedÂ their East Coast time-zone woes with a 24-0 drubbing at the hands of thePittsburgh Steelers, moving to 0-2 on the year.
Seattle hung tough early with a goal-line stand, but the game went downhill from there. They were down 17-0 at halftime, after being down 16-0 at half in Week 1, but this time the second half saw no real turnaround.
The offense never found a rhythm, the defensed proved to have issues with the Steelers' balanced offense, and Seattle looked overmatched for 60 minutes. Here are seven postgame thoughts.
The Offense Was Stale in the First Half, Again; No Turnaround This Week
The offense was unable to pick up where they left off inÂ San Francisco. For the game Seattle went 2-for-12 on third down and averaged 2.4 yards per carry, and balance was again issue as they fell behind early with nine runs compared to 34 dropbacks.
Seattle's offense improved in this week's first half, barely; after three first downs and 37 total yards last week, they registered four first downs and 81 yards of offense in Pittsburgh. Improvement yes, but not what the Seahawks were hoping for.
Unfortunately the struggles continued, dissimilar to their second-half "outburst" in Week 1;Â Seattle finished with eight first downs in the game, allowed five second-half sacksâ€”pass protection was improved for much of the gameâ€”and Seattle provided few positives to build on going forward.
Perhaps the most discouraging statistic about the Seahawks' offensive performance: they didn't run a play in Steelers territory until there was just under 10 minutes left in the game.
The offense went no huddle for the majority of the fourth quarter and registered four of their six plays over 10 yards in the game in perhaps the only silver lining in this one.
The Run Defense Can Be Stout...but There Are Plenty of Holes
The Seahawks' run defense was supposed to be a strength for Seattle, after they heldÂ Frank Gore to under three yards a carry in Week 1.
Things didn't turn out as planned. After Earl Thomas knifed through the line to stop Rashard Mendenhall on fourth-and-goal from the 1 on the Steelers' first drive, the Steelers found plenty of running room.
The defense struggled to consistently wrap up and Steelers runners were able to keep the play alive; after five tackles for loss against the 49ers, the Steelers lost two yards total on two negative runs.
Minus Roethlisberger's scramble yards, the Steelers ran 17 times for 84 yards and two touchdowns in the first half for an average of 4.9 yards per carry. They set the tone for the game, winning the time ofÂ possessionÂ battle, 38:44 to 21:16.
Seattle can't compete without a stout run defense. We saw a balanced Pittsburgh offense expose holes in the defense that were covered up by the 49ers' conservative game plan in Week 1.
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