The Seahawks captured their sixth win of the season on Sunday, defeating the Washington Commanders 29-26 at Lumen Field, and in that victory, second-year outside linebacker Boye Mafe continued a breakout sophomore campaign, etching his name in the franchise record books by recording a sack for a seventh-straight game.
With the game knotted at 9-9 early in the third quarter, Mafe sacked Commanders quarterback Sam Howell on third down to surpass Seahawks Legend Michael Sinclair for the longest streak of consecutive games with a sack in franchise history.
It's been nearly two months since Mafe recorded his first sack of the year in Seattle's Week 3win over the Carolina Panthers, and the Minnesota alum has shown no signs of slowing down. After starting three games as a rookie, Mafe has nearly doubled his rookie year production in every category. Through eight starts, he's combined for 32 tackles, seven tackles for loss, 10 quarterback hits, two fumble recoveries and his first career forced fumble. Mafe joins Jevon Kearse (1999) and Aldon Smith (2012) as the only players in league history to record a sack in seven-consecutive games within their first two seasons. With another sack in Week 11's matchup against the Los Angeles Rams, Mafe would tie Kearse for the longest streak by a first or second-year player.
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll's reaction was captured postgame upon hearing the news of Mafe breaking the franchise record.
"Seven straight?" said Carroll. "I don't know how the heck you do that, but he's doing it and really proud of him. As we've talked about him so much during the season about his growth and really the transition from year one to year two, it's obvious he's playing with the big boys now. He's up there and having a chance to really put together a great season. He's already had a terrific season. Really fired up for him in that regard."
Mafe took the podium following Seattle's win to discuss the win and his record-breaking performance.
"For me," said Mafe. "It's just another accomplishment. The biggest thing for me is just understanding that it's bigger than me. This is a testament to the things we we're working on in the offseason. It's a testament to a lot of guys who wanted to buy in and understand what we had to do this year. Especially (with) where we were last year and how we were getting better in certain situations. It's one of the things we want to strive to get better at and now it's coming to fruition."
Seattle's 6-3 record is something to be proud of, but Mafe's humility and focus on the team doesn't take away from his individual ascension in Year 2. Regardless of the lengths of Mafe's streak going forward, his devotion to improvement and commitment to the team is evident.
"I kept telling him congratulations today," said defensive end Leonard Williams. "He's a great football player, and he's also very humble. Last week I found out he was on six (sacks in consecutive games) and I kept trying to tell him congratulations and he kept saying 'that's nothing, that's nothing.' I think having that type of mindset is the reason why he's continuing to make plays. You even see it in practice, he's a big effort guy. He has the talent, but he also plays with a lot of effort."
Check out some of the best action shots from Week 10 vs. the Commanders at Lumen Field on November 12, 2023. Game action photos are presented by Washington's Lottery.