Demario Davis is now speaking with the media https://t.co/Ec7fMQCnsC— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Seahawks vs. Saints score: Alvin Kamara explodes for 179 total yards as New Orleans escapes Seattle with win
New Orleans moves to 4-2 on the season
The New Orleans Saints moved to 4-2 on the season after defeating the Seattle Seahawks on the road 13-10. After Jameis Winston was able to lead the Saints' offense on a 42-yard drive that resulted in the go-ahead field goal late in the fourth quarter, Geno Smith and the Seahawks were unable to march down the field to -- at the very least -- force overtime. On that final drive of the game for Seattle, the Saints were able to sack Smith twice to truly ice the contest and pull away with the win.
Out of the gate, it looked like Smith and the Seahawks were going to pull off the prime-time win as the veteran quarterback connected with receiver DK Metcalf for an 84-yard touchdown to begin the scoring for the evening. However, Seattle's offense went silent for the remainder of the first half while the Saints were able to claw into the lead. Just before these teams went into the locker room at halftime, the New Orleans was able to pull off a two-minute drill that traveled 85 yards don't the field and resulted in an Alvin Kamara touchdown reception to take a 10-7 lead. At that point, Seattle seemed to be on its heels.
Alvin Kamara was the star of Monday night as the Saints star back had 30 touches for 179 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown. He primarily did his damage in the passing game, catching 10 of his 11 targets for 128 yards and that score. Winston finished 19 of 35 passing for 222 yards and a touchdown. On the other side, Smith completed 12 of his 22 throws for 167 yards and a touchdown. As a team, Seattle rushed 28 times for just 90 yards (3.2 yards per carry).
Fore a more in-depth look at how this game unfolded, check out our takeaways below.
Why the Saints won
Kamara carried the offense for the bulk of the night. Out of New Orleans' 68 total plays on offense, he touched the ball nearly 50% of the time (30 touches). The Pro Bowl back also accounted for 58.8% of the Saints' overall offensive production, finishing with 179 yards from scrimmage. That type of performance was needed as the New Orleans wide receiver unit couldn't really get into a consistent rhythm for much of the game. The fact that the Seahawks had no answer for Kamara helped Sean Payton's team earn an edge in time of possession, particularly early in the game.
The Saints also were able to absorb Seattle's opening punch of the game in the form of a Metcalf 84-yard touchdown and bounced back well. On back-to-back drives just before halftime, New Orleans went on a 10-0 run to take the lead. Over that stretch, they held on to the ball for more than 12 minutes and travelled more than 80 yards on each of those two possessions.
While Kamara was dominating out of the New Orleans backfield, the Saints' defense was smothering Seattle's running game throughout the evening. The Seahawks clearly wanted to run the offense through the ground game, but they couldn't get much of anything going, especially with starter Alex Collins, who the Saints limited to just 35 yards on 16 carries.
Why the Seahawks lost
It seemed like Pete Carroll didn't want to put the game in Smith's hands. The veteran quarterback gave early flashes that he could possibly pull out the win with his arm with that touchdown bomb to Metcalf, but the Seahawks continued to force-feed the running game to a maddening degree. After that touchdown to Metcalf, the star receiver went 38 offensive snaps before receiving another target, which came at the 11:51 mark in the fourth quarter. Getting the ball in his hands along with Tyler Lockett (two catches on three targets) should have been a much bigger priority, especially as the backfield kept running into a wall.
While Smith maybe should have been given a longer leash in the passing game, he also didn't do his team many favors in this game either. There were a handful of times where Seattle was needlessly forced to burn timeouts as the play clock was ticking down to zero. That was due to Smith trying to adjust at the line of scrimmage and not noticing how much time was left to get the play off. Not having those timeouts did prove costly in their hopes of possibly moving down the field late to tie or take the lead in the fourth quarter.
Issues in the kicking game also put Seattle behind the eight ball as Jason Meyers missed two field goals in the loss, both coming in the second half.
At around the six-minute mark of the fourth quarter, it looked as if the Seahawks were going to force the Saints into a three-and-out as linebacker Bobby Wagner was wrapping up Winston for a 5-yard sack. However, Marquise Blair committed a clear roughing the passer penalty that not only negated the sack but gave New Orleans a new set of downs. It also completely flipped the field as they were now into Seattle territory at the 41-yard line.
Penalties really plagued Seattle on that drive as they were also called for an encroachment penalty on a fourth-and-5 play later on in the possession where Seattle was liming up for a field goal. While they would eventually settle for a field goal, that penalty chewed off another minute of time on the clock and burned the two-minute warning.
That drive ultimately resulted in the game-winning kick by undrafted rookie Brian Johnson.
Play of the game
.@GenoSmith3 ➡️ @dkm14 and that's a touchdown for EIGHTY FOUR YARDS! 🙌— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) October 26, 2021
📺: #NOvsSEA on ESPN pic.twitter.com/nFsCwP1mx6
You won't find a a more dramatic play from this game than Metcalf's 84-yard touchdown to open up the scoring. Smith saw that the safety was playing the middle of the field, which meant Metcalf had a one-on-one with Marshon Lattimore. He was able to get a step on the Saints corner as he made a play on the ball, secured the catch and galloped the rest of the way for a touchdown. Unfortunately for Seattle, that was essentially all we saw from Metcalf for the rest of the game as he finished with just one other catch that came in the fourth quarter.
From here, the Saints will head back to New Orleans and await the division-leading Buccaneers for their first of two matchups this season. Tampa Bay will be coming into that game winners of four straight, including a 38-3 rout vs. the Bears on Sunday. As for the Seahawks, they'll be sticking around Seattle in Week 8 when they play host to the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are fresh off a Week 7 bye.
NOLA ROAD DUBS ⚜️ https://t.co/mCZa4qoDyM— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Brian Johnson on his #Saints kicking debut (2-2 FGs, 1-1 PAT) pic.twitter.com/QbGh2PbZwx— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Winston speaking with the media now https://t.co/Ec7fMQCnsC— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Final stat leaders for the night ⤵️#NOvsSEA | @Sanderson_Corp pic.twitter.com/cUnIU9x5C8— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Cam Jordan is speaking with the media https://t.co/Ec7fMQCnsC— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Leaving Seattle with the W 👍 pic.twitter.com/l88uTvlDLe— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Kamara is speaking with the media https://t.co/Ec7fMQCnsC— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Listen in as Head Coach @PeteCarroll and select players speak with media after tonight's game.#GoHawks x #NOvsSEA https://t.co/4QsWBMxYeJ— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) October 26, 2021
Payton on the impact of @demario__davis pic.twitter.com/lw7teZeUMO— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
QB RESPECT 🙌 #NOvsSEA pic.twitter.com/jwWHwpkVKj— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Payton on the Monday night win pic.twitter.com/Rlt22jrAyq— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Watch Live: Saints postgame show#NOvsSEA | @Verizon— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
October 26, 2021
Monday Night Dubs 🤑🤑https://t.co/T71T2dCSSx— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
PRIMETIME DUB ✔️#NOvsSEA | @Gatorade pic.twitter.com/n1M6I2JsbL— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
Very impressive win dudes. @Saints— Steve Gleason - "Live Impossible" (@SteveGleason) October 26, 2021
Geno Smith hit DK Metcalf for that early 84-yard TD.— Mike Clay (@MikeClayNFL) October 26, 2021
Smith had 83 yards on his other 21 pass attempts.
Metcalf had 12 yards on his other 4 targets.
Lockett finished with 12 yards on 3 targets.
Russell Wilson could still come back in a few weeks and salvage Seattle's season, but the Seahawks might be too far behind by the time he's ready.
That'll do it, folks. The Saints are going to win it 13-10, and improve their record to 4-2. The Seahawks will drop to 2-5 and last place in the NFC West, though only because the 49ers have played one fewer game.
Welp. Gonna be fourth-and-20-something here. Bad time for Seattle's offensive line to self-destruct. Geno Smith didn't have much of a chance on either of these last two sacks.
DEMARIO 💪— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) October 26, 2021
📺: ESPN pic.twitter.com/9jVjpnuY53
Malcolm Jenkins comes through on the slot blitz and he's completely unblocked. Seahawks now in quite a bit of trouble here.
IT’S GOOD! @Saints take a 13-10 lead with 1:56 to go.— NFL (@NFL) October 26, 2021
📺: #NOvsSEA on ESPN
📱: https://t.co/qQQB8T9hRg pic.twitter.com/PaRetqtOoq
So the Saints will have a short FG attempt to take the lead when we come back from the 2-minute warning. Questionable clock-management decisions there, as the Seahawks will have ~1:50 and a timeout to work with when they try to drive to tie or win the game. (They'll play for the tie, no doubt.)
🚨 TWO MINUTE WARNING! 🚨— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) October 26, 2021
Seemed like Jameis pre-determined that he wasn't going to be able to get the ball to Kamara on the slant-and-go to the top of the screen. Should have waited it out. But he gets bailed out by Al Woods on fourth down and the Saints have a new set of downs. Wow.
Not the best night for Tre'Quan Smith. No idea what he's doing here.
Third-and-10 shotgun run with the guard pulling around as a lead blocker and Kamara picks it up. Unusual play call for that situation but it worked.
Oh no... The last man in on that sack just hit Jameis helmet to helmet when it was totally unnecessary as he was already wrapped up. That's an enormous penalty.