2013 NFL Grades, Week 7: Seahawks snuff out Cards' small chances

Russell Wilson threw three touchdowns Thursday. (USATSI)
Russell Wilson threw three touchdowns and ran for 29 yards Thursday. (USATSI)

For a few minutes early in the first quarter, the Cardinals offense was driving, the crowd was getting louder and you can forgive yourself for thinking that this could be an interesting ballgame. Then, for a few minutes there late in the second quarter, where Russell Wilson was fumbling, Calais Campbell was recovering and Rashard Mendenhall was scoring a touchdown to cut the lead to four points, you might have been pondering a possible upset in Arizona.

Then, reality smacked the Cardinals in the face.

Tony McDaniel sacked Palmer for a 14-yard loss in the first quarter, knocking the Cardinals well out of field goal range and stopping any momentum Arizona had built early in the game. Then, the Seahawks responded to their lead being shortened by building an 18-point advantage in the next 15 minutes.

The main problems for the Cardinals were a porous offensive line and a quarterback in Carson Palmer who couldn't do much of anything. These two ideas are not mutually exclusive, by the way.

Wilson made some mistakes, fumbling twice, but he also uncorked a few astonishing throws. He and Seattle's defense were the stars of this game, and as a result, the Seahawks are 6-1 for the first time in club history.

Seahawks 34, Cardinals 22
B+ Seattle gave no reason for us to believe that it's not one of the best teams in the NFC. Sure, Arizona made a nice drive in the middle of the fourth quarter to make the score closer, but make no mistake, the Seahawks were dominant.
C- The offensive line was pitiful, Carson Palmer wasn't much better and the defense had a tough time stopping Russell Wilson. Overall, this was a terrible night in front of the home crowd, even if the score is a little more palatable.
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