BALTIMORE - For a fourth straight week, Russell Wilson passed for at least three touchdowns, had zero interceptions, completed at least 70 percent of his passes, and registered a quarterback rating of 138.5 or more.
And for a fourth straight week, the Seattle Seahawks won a football game, improving to 8-5 on the season with a 35-6 road win against the Ravens (4-9) at Baltimore's M&T Bank Stadium.
If that introduction to Wilson's Week 14 performance sounds familiar, you probably read the story we wrote about the Seahawks quarterback after last week's 38-7 road win over the Minnesota Vikings. Simply put, Wilson keeps adding to a historic run of play that has his team's offense surging as Seattle continues to compete for a spot in the postseason.
In Sunday's victory, Wilson completed 23 of his 32 (71.9 percent) throws for 292 yards and five touchdowns, good for a 139.6 quarterback rating. After throwing 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions through Seattle's first nine games, Wilson has thrown for 16 touchdowns and zero interceptions over the Seahawks past four contests, when he's been averaging 292.8 yards per game, a 75.4 percent completion rate, a quarterback rating of 145.9, and 9.9 yards per pass attempt.
"It's been amazing the past few weeks," said Seahawks wideout Doug Baldwin, who was on the receiving end of three of Wilson's five scoring strikes against the Ravens to become the first player in franchise history with two-plus touchdowns in three-straight games. "I've got to give a lot of credit to Russ, he's playing unbelievable. I know he'll come up here and he'll say that nothing's different, but he's playing his tail off. He'll be humble with it, but I can't say enough about what he's doing right now. It's Russ."
Baldwin was correct with his assumption. Wilson, who with three games to play has tied his career-high of 26 touchdown passes and now leads the League with a 110.0 quarterback rating, humbly deflected a question at his postgame press conference that asked if he was surprised by the "gaudy" numbers he's put up the past four games.
"I'm not surprised," Wilson said. "I'm just looking forward to next week."
While Wilson remains locked in to what's next, football fans should take time to appreciate what the Seattle signal caller accomplished with his latest outing. Here's a few things worth noting:
- Wilson is the only player in NFL history to record a passer rating of 138 or more in four-straight games.
- Wilson is the first player in NFL history to have four-straight games with at least three passing touchdowns, a 70-percent completion rate, and zero interceptions.
- Wilson is the only player in team history to pass for three-plus touchdowns in four-straight games, outdoing Ring of Honor member Dave Krieg, who threw for three-plus scores in three-straight games back in 1983.
- Wilson's four-straight games with three-plus passing touchdowns and zero interceptions ties Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Aaron Rodgers for the longest streak in NFL history.
Wilson is quick to credit his offensive line for the consistency the Seahawks have enjoyed in the passing game of late, and deservedly so. The unit that surrendered 31 sacks of Wilson through Seattle's first seven games has allowed just seven sacks in its past six matchups, including zero against the Baltimore defense on Sunday. Wilson has enjoyed a clean pocket to throw from as a result, with all five of his touchdowns against the Ravens coming from inside the pocket - three to Baldwin and two to rookie wideout Tyler Lockett, one of which came from 49 yards out. According to ESPN, 15 of Wilson's 16 touchdowns the past four games have come on throws from inside the pocket, matching his total from all of last season.
"I think the offensive line is doing a phenomenal job," Wilson said. "They're playing the best they could possibly play in football and I think what they're doing is unbelievable, especially with all the negativity everybody was trying to give them. I think just lights out football up front. All the touchdowns, all the plays, all the runs, all the throws, it all goes to those guys."
Seattle head coach Pete Carroll points to adjustments made at the team's Week 10 bye as a turning point for the Seattle offense. He doesn't delve into specifics, but has noted changes were made in pass protection, like moving center Patrick Lewis into the starting lineup. Wilson, meanwhile, put more emphasis on getting the ball out of his hand quicker, and on delivering it with greater precision. It's part of a collective effort that Carroll said the Seahawks have "fit together really well."
"He looks like he does in practice," Carroll said of Wilson. "We're practicing like this and it's coming through. We're all together on it. I think offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell] is doing a marvelous job of calling it and working it out to make sure that the plan fits where we’re having success and continue to find those ways in the installation of the game plan. That [one-two punch with he and [assistant head coach/offensive line coach Tom Cable], they're just getting it done with the players, who are coming through magnificently."
Wilson said he doesn't know if his chemistry with playmakers like Baldwin, Lockett, and Jermaine Kearse can get much better at this point, but stressed that the Seahawks "want to keep rising," "keep building," and "keep bringing that energy" as they ready for next week's home game against the Cleveland Browns.
"I think we're definitely playing more confident, at a better level," Wilson said. "I don't know if my confidence has changed. I think ultimately we're just playing better, we're executing better, and that's what it really comes down to. That's the key.
"We've got to keep it going, it's one game. We have to move onto the next week."
Seahawks scored 29 or more points for the fourth-straight week, keeping the Ravens out of the endzone in a 35-6 win in Week 14.