SEATTLE -- For just the second time in Russell Wilson's tenure as Seattle's quarterback, the Seahawks lost a home game by more than a single score.
While the loss to the New Orleans Saints in Week 3 was actually more convincing than the final score of 33-27 indicated, the 30-16 victory by the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday wasn't quite as lopsided as the score suggested. Nevertheless, the Ravens thoroughly outplayed the Seahawks in the second half and rode the legs of Lamar Jackson to hand Seattle their second loss of the season.
Russell Wilson was intercepted for the first time all season and it resulted in a 67-yard touchdown for Marcus Peters that helped swing the momentum of the game in Baltimore's favor. The interception wasn't a back-breaker by any stretch, but the Seahawks struggled to find any form offensively for much of the rest of the game afterward.
Jackson rushed for 116 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries to carry Baltimore's offense. Peters' interception and a fumble by DK Metcalf that was returned 18 yards for a touchdown by Marlon Humphrey helped the Ravens ultimately post a 14-point margin of victory at the end of the day. Sunday's loss to the Ravens along with a 42-7 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in 2017 are the only times the Seahawks have lost by nine points or more at home in Wilson's tenure at quarterback.
The Seahawks have played better on the road this season than they have a trip to scuffling Atlanta Falcons team next weekend to try and get back on track. But before getting that far ahead, here are the takeaways from the loss to the Ravens.
-- Lamar Jackson's scramble ability made all the difference.
The Ravens didn't beat the Seahawks with their passing game. They didn't even beat the Seahawks with their standard running game either.
Two things beat the Seahawks on Sunday: Turnovers and Lamar Jackson's scrambling.
"It's a little frustrating because we felt like we had a really good game plan," linebacker Bobby Wagner said.
"We felt like we did a good job on the running-back runs that they had. But then we get them to third down and he scrambles and we need to do a better job chasing."
Three of the Ravens' eight longest plays from scrimmage on Sunday were Jackson scrambles. Two of his scrambles went for greater than 25 yards. A fourth run was a designed run that went for 13 yards and set up a touchdown.
"I thought we played really well of defense. I thought Lamar Jackson was phenomenal," Carroll said. It wasn't on their designed runs, it was on the scramble runs, that he was so explosive and he's faster than he looked. When you saw him in person, he's faster than we saw him on film. He was able to just find the space and get out of things. There really wasn't any missed tackles. He just ran around people and found a way."
Mark Ingram and Gus Edwards were rushed for 81 yards on 20 carries combined and Jackson completed just 9 of 20 passes for 143 yards. But it was Jackson's legs that caused the most problems for Seattle. It was two back-to-back runs from Jackson that served as the turning points of the game.
"I always wanted to play against Michael Vick," defensive end Jadeveon Clowney said. "I guess I'm getting the new era with Lamar Jackson right there."
-- Third-and-15 run from Lamar Jackson was the key play of the game.
With the score tied, 13-13, with just over two minutes remaining in the third quarter, the Ravens were facing a third-and-15. K.J. Wright had a forced an incompletion of a would-be touchdown pass from Jackson to Mark Andrews and a delay of game penalty on Baltimore had pushed the Ravens into a long yardage situation.
Jackson kept the ball on a designed quarterback power run and side-stepped a tackle from safety Marquise Blair and fought through a tackle attempt from Wright to pick up 13 yards on the play. After initially sending out the field goal team, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh reconsidered after calling a timeout and elected to send his offense back onto the field.
"I told him we need to go for it," Jackson said. "I told him we need to go for it because we didn't score. We moved the ball down the field in the first quarter twice and kicked field goals. I'm like 'this time we aren't kicking no field goal because Russell Wilson is getting the ball again and if we didn't score, it might look ugly."
Harbaugh took Jackson's advice and called another quarterback run for Jackson which went for an 8-yard touchdown that gave Baltimore a 20-13 lead.
While the touchdown obviously delivered the points, it was Jackson picking up 13 yards on the third down play that even gave Baltimore a reasonable chance to go for it on fourth down that was the biggest issue. A 16-13 game may not have spiraled away from Seattle like it did at 20-13.
The two plays combined seemed to be the big shift needed for the Ravens.
The Seahawks managed just 124 yards of offense and an average of just 4.3 yards per play in the second half. They managed just one field goal with two punts, a fumble and a missed field goal in five possession after the break. The seven-point lead proved to be too much for Seattle's offense to rally from on Sunday.
A 13-play, 86-yard drive (that was actually 96 yards after a holding penalty) that lasted nine minutes in the fourth quarter was just the final blow to the Seahawks' chances.
-- Russell Wilson was bound to make a mistake eventually and his pick-six was a costly one.
Russell Wilson was going to be intercepted at some point this season. He wasn't going to go a full 16 games without having one throw end up in the hands of an opponent.
That reality landed with a thud late in the second half when a throw to the perimeter intended for Jaron Brown was picked off and returned 6 yards for a touchdown that gave the Ravens a 13-10 lead.
"It's kind of inevitable," center Justin Britt said. "That moment is kind of inevitable. It sucks that it went for six. He's going to be Russ and he's going to be alright and we're going to get back to it and do our job to protect him and keep him cleaner and we'll be alright. He's still the best quarterback in the league and I really believe that."
Wilson was deceived by the play of Peters. The Ravens were in a man-to-man defensive call with Peters having a responsibility to cover Brown. However, Peters sagged off of Brown at the snap to seemingly play the slot-fade route of Tyler Lockett instead. Wilson hesitated long enough to get caught in no-man's land. He threw flat-footed late to Brown and Peters jumped the throw to pick Wilson off with no one able to chase him down.
"Just made a bad play," Wilson said.
"Russ felt he was sitting there and he was wide open," Carroll added. "It was just an error. ... It was a pretty easy play for them. It was a good job, it was a nice job of making it but we kind of gave it to them."
It's now the third time Wilson has been intercepted for a touchdown in his last eight interceptions. Desmond King of the Los Angeles Chargers intercepted a pass intended for David Moore for a 42-yard touchdown in November of last year and Prince Amukamara scored on a 49-yard interception on a pass for Rashaad Penny last September.
The only other pick-six of Wilson's career was as a rookie against the Carolina Panthers with Captain Munnerlyn the culprit.
"Somewhere you have to make a mistake," Carroll said. "You're going to mess something up. How many games can you go without making an error like that. I don't know. Everybody in the locker room knows it. Russ said something after the game, they're telling him don't worry about it. We understand that there's a burden to that and all, but we've see Russ do so much. It was just a bad play."
Wilson finished the game 20 of 41 for 241 yards with a touchdown and an interception. It was the first time all season Wilson posted a passer rating of under 100.0 at 65.2.
-- Tyler Lockett adds two more incredible catches to his resume.
Tyler Lockett may not be the best receiver in football, but he might be the best receiver to have paired with Russell Wilson.
Lockett made two more fantastic catches on Sunday on balls that helped Wilson out of tough situations.
With a pair of defends closing in on a third-and-3 at the Ravens' 8-yard line, Wilson fired a throw to an open spot in the end zone. Lockett, who had been covered closely by Marlon Humphrey, skirted by the Baltimore cornerback and made a diving grab for Seattle's first - and only - touchdown of the game.
Later in the quarter, the Ravens brought a full blitz against Seattle with pure man-to-man coverage and no safety in the back end. Knowing a free rusher was coming at him, Wilson threw a ball up into the air in Lockett's direction. Lockett again managed to create space against Humphrey to haul in a 33-yard completion on a drive that culminated with a 33-yard Jason Myers field goal to end the half.
"Some spectacular plays, man," tight end Luke Willson said. "Another crazy touchdown catch today. ... Between the Rams touchdown and this one today, pretty special, man.
Photo Credit: SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - OCTOBER 20: Quarterback Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens looks to pass as outside linebacker K.J. Wright #50 of the Seattle Seahawks defends in the first quarter in the game at CenturyLink Field on October 20, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)