The Seahawks kicked off their season with an impressive road victory, knocking off the Indianapolis Colts 28-16 at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Debuting a new-look offense, the Seahawks jumped ahead early, then saw its defense take over in the second half to give the Seahawks a balanced win with the type of complementary football head coach Pete Carroll loves.
Here are five rapid reactions to Sunday's win in Indy:
1. The new-look Seahawks offense showed of potential, and Russell Wilson was spectacular.
In their first game under new offensive coordinator Shane Waldron, the Seahawks got off to an impressive start on that side of the ball, scoring touchdowns on three of their first four possessions to build a 21-10 halftime lead.
Yes, a very good Colts defense adjusted and the Seahawks struggled to get going in the second half, but what the offense showed in the first half was very encouraging not just because the Seahawks used those drives to take control early, but because of some of the things the offense showed that should be important for that unit going forward.
As expected from both what we've seen in camp and heard from players and coaches, the offense used tempo at times, and also was balanced, with Chris Carson powering his way to 91 yards on 16 carries. Perhaps most encouraging was the number of easy completions to tight ends and running backs that Waldron was able to dial up, including four receptions, two each to Gerald Everett and Will Dissly, on Seattle's second touchdown drive, which ended with Everett catching a 9-yard touchdown pass on a slant route after lining up out wide.
As for Wilson, a year after the veteran QB started the season on fire, he did the same against the Colts, playing a nearly flawless game while completing 18 of 23 attempts for 254, four touchdowns, no interceptions and a passer rating of 152.3.
2. Russell Wilson to Tyler Lockett? Yep, that still works.
As good as Wilson was, he was hardly getting the job done alone, and his top weapons from last year again were great in this one, especially Lockett.
Lockett started the scoring for Seattle with a great over-the-shoulder catch that forced him to adjust just before the ball arrived. In the second quarter, with the Seahawks facing second-and-20, Seattle's line gave Wilson a ton of time, Lockett broke free with a double move, and Wilson delivered a perfect strike for a 69-yard touchdown. Despite having only four catches, Lockett finished with 100 yards, giving him his 11th career 100-yard game—13th if you included postseason games.
As for DK Metcalf, he was not targeted in the first half, but he enjoyed a great second half with four catches for 60 yards, including a 15-yard fourth-quarter touchdown that helped clinch the victory.
3. The defenses stepped up, especially against the run.
A big question heading into the season was whether or not Seattle's defense, which finished last year strong after struggling in the first half of the season, could pick up where it left off. And while it wasn't a perfect performance, the defense did a lot of things well, most notably eliminating most of the big plays that were an issue early last season, and taking care of a talented Colts rushing attack.
The Colts moved the ball fairly well early, scoring on two of their first three possessions, but from there the Seahawks got stops on six straight possessions, including two fourth-down stops, until the Colts again scored with the game all but out of reach.
The Seahawks knew one of the top priorities was going to have to be limiting the running back duo of Jonathan Taylor and Nyheim Hines, and the defense did its part, limiting Taylor to 56 yards on 17 carries, and Hines to 26 on eight carries.
4. The D-Line depth is as advertised.
Seahawks coaches and players have been raving about the defensive line and pass-rush depth all summer, with that whole group playing together for the first time—Carlos Dunlap II and Benson Mayowa didn't play in the preseason—the group was as advertised. In addition to helping with the aforementioned run defense, the Seahawks also got sacks from Rasheem Green, Mayowa and Darrell Taylor, the last of which came on a huge fourth-down stop with the Colts in the red zone down two scores in the fourth quarter. The Seahawks also recorded 10 quarterback hits, and Dunlap added a sack on a 2-point conversion attempt, though that doesn't count towards the stats.
On the interior line, Bryan Mone impressed with five tackles and quarterback hit.
5. Bobby Wagner is still elite.
Not that anyone was doubting it, but in case somebody needed a reminder, All-Pro linebacker Bobby Wagner started his season off like he has played throughout his career, making tackle after tackle. Wagner finished with a team-high 13 tackles, while second-year linebacker Jordyn Brooks chipped in 11, and Wagner also had a pass breakup and a tackle for loss.
The Seattle Seahawks take on the Colts in their first game of the 2021 season at Lucas Oil Stadium. This album will be updated throughout the game. Game Action photos are presented by Washington's Lottery.