The Seattle Seahawks had the hurt put on them by a rookie quarterback. After a bad loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the Wild Card round, who is to blame?
The Seattle Seahawks were playing with house money in the NFL playoffs this year. Expected to be competing for the first overall pick before the season began, they rallied around quarterback Geno Smith and made a push for the playoffs instead, officially securing their playoff berth in Week 18 when the Green Bay Packers lost to the Detroit Lions.
Even if you are playing with house money, though, the hope is always that you still make some smart bets and come out ahead. Or at least come close! The Seahawks were just simply unable to do that in their playoff game on Saturday against the San Francisco 49ers, ultimately losing 41-23.
The Hawks are now eliminated from playoff contention and go back to the drawing board with the rest of the teams now prepping for the draft.
So, who is to blame for the beatdown the Seahawks suffered on Saturday? Let’s take a look.
Seahawks most to blame for Wild Card loss to 49ers: Tariq Woolen
Tariq Woolen capped off a great rookie season with a not-so-great performance.
Though he wasn’t to blame for this touchdown since the pass rush did its job, he slipped in man coverage and nearly gave up an easy score.
He struggled where it mattered most against Brandon Aiyuk, losing him in route coverage:
And while the recovery speed is certainly impressive here, it would be nice if Woolen didn’t need to recover in the first place:
Woolen was a great pick and his rookie year showed us there is a lot to like about his future. But overall, he didn’t play a great game.
More on the defense later, because it wasn’t all Woolen’s fault.