EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J.—The Seahawks won their past two games on the strength of an offense that scored 74 points in those victories, but facing the Giants on Monday Night Football, it was Seattle's defense that led the way, pummeling Giants quarterback Daniel Jones, forcing three turnovers and keeping New York out of the end zone on the way to a 24-3 victory.
The win was the sixth in as many games for the Seahawks at MetLife Stadium, four of them wins over the Giants, one of them a win over the Jets, and most notably, the Super Bowl XLVIII win over the Broncos.
Here are six rapid reactions to Monday night's win, which improved Seattle's record to 3-1 heading into the bye week:
1. Devon Witherspoon was a star in prime time.
Devon Witherspoon was really good in the first two games of his NFL career, showing he was sticky in coverage a hard-hitting physical cornerback. But the No. 5 overall pick really had his breakout game in the national spotlight, enjoying a monster performance on Monday Night Football to help lead a standout defensive performance.
Witherspoon was active early, including a pair of sacks, the first two of his career, then he made the play of the night to help the Seahawks put the game out of reach, jumping the route on a short pass in the red zone and returning it 97 yards for a touchdown.
After starting the first two games at left cornerback, Witherspoon played in the nickel spot with Coby Bryant and Artie Burns both out, and the move inside seemed to only accentuate his playmaking ability, which showed early on a blitz for a sack, and throughout the game up to and including his pick-six when he was lined up in the slot inside of Riq Woolen.
2. The Seahawks defense, and pass rush in particular, was dominant.
The Seahawks defense has been steadily improving since a season-opening loss to the Rams, and on Monday that unit put it all together for a dominant performance. On their way to limiting the Giants to just a single field goal, the Seahawks sacked Daniel Jones a whopping 11 times, including two each for Witherspoon, Bobby Wagner, Uchenna Nwosu and Jordyn Brooks.
Those 11 sacks tied a franchise record, with the Seahawks also having 11 sacks in a 1986 win over the Raiders.
And it wasn't just the pass-rush getting the job done, the Seahawks also had three takeaways, one of which came on a Mario Edwards sack and forced fumble, which Jordyn Brooks recovered, and two in the form of interceptions by Witherspoon and Quandre Diggs. The defense also had a crucial fourth-and-1 stop early in the game to keep the Giants from a potential first-quarter score, with Wagner and Brooks joining the defensive line to stuff a quarterback sneak.
3. Offensive line coach Andy Dickerson and company deserve a ton of credit.
The Seahawks came into the game with both starting tackles out, having lost Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas to toe injuries during the opener. Then in the first half, Seattle lost both starting guards, Phil Haynes and Damien Lewis, to injury.
Anthony Bradford took over for Haynes at right guard, then when Lewis went down, starting center Evan Brown moved to left guard and rookie Olu Oluwatimi took over at center. That meant for more than half of the game, the Seahawks were missing four of five Week 1 starters, and the only one who was healthy, Brown, had to play out of position.
And while the offense wasn't dominant in the second half, that line held up admirably well as the Seahawks were able to cruise to a comfortable win. The players, of course, deserve a lot of credit, but that performance also speaks to the job being done by offensive line coach Andy Dickerson and assistant offensive line coach Keli'I Kekuewa, who had those players all ready to go.
4. Bobby Wagner was everywhere.
While Witherspoon was the star of the game, he was hardly alone in making big plays, and another standout on Monday is the only player for Seattle who was in this building for the team's Super Bowl XLVIII win a decade ago, linebacker Bobby Wagner.
Wagner and Brooks teamed up to stuff a fourth-down quarterback sneak early in the game, and it was just the start of a big day for him, Wagner finished the game with 17 tackles to lead the team and also had a pair of sacks.
5. Drew Lock looked very comfortable in his regular-season Seahawks debut.
When Geno Smith left the game in the second quarter with a knee injury, Drew Lock took over at quarterback, making his regular-season debut with the Seahawks after Smith played every offensive snap last season.
Fortunately for the Seahawks, Smith was able to return to the game after halftime, but his brief absence did give Lock a chance to play some meaningful snaps. And while Lock's overall numbers don't jump off the stat sheet—he was 2 for 5 for 63 yards—he looked comfortable and in command of the offense, and teamed up with former Denver teammate Noah Fant for a big play that set up a score, a 51-yard catch and run on third-and-10, setting up a 1-yard Kenneth Walker III touchdown run.
6. Jamal Adams' 2023 debut was unfortunately brief.
Jamal Adams had to wait more than a year to return to action after tearing his quadriceps tendon, finally returning to action on Monday night. A fired-up Adams was active early in the game, delivering a big hit for his first tackle of the season, and nearly sacking Daniel Jones on a blitz. But unfortunately for Adams, his 2023 debut was a short one, as he suffered a concussion in the first quarter while tackling Jones after a scramble run. Adams went low to tackle Jones, and caught a knee to the helmet, and after being evaluated on the sideline, he was ruled out of the game.
Check out some of the best action shots from Week 4 at the Giants at MetLife Stadium on October 2, 2023. Game action photos are presented by Washington's Lottery.