The Seattle Seahawks have been the most dominant team in the NFL this season, especially at home, but the division rival Arizona Cardinals were sick of hearing it, went into Seattle and beat the expected team to win the NFC in their house.
Well, it wasn’t pretty, but the Cards got the job done. Despite four Carson Palmer interceptions, Arizona’s big bad defense led them to a 17-10 victory over the top dog not only in the NFC, but in the entire league. Doing this, they are still in the hunt for a wild card spot and can grab that spot if they beat the San Francisco 49ers next weekend.
When you really think about it, Arizona beating Seattle isn’t much of a surprise. Sure, the ‘Hawks have been unbeatable at home this season with the 12th man cheering them on, but a strong defense is the key to beating this team. It was on the road, but Seattle almost fell to the Carolina Panthers earlier on in the season, with the Seahawks edging the Panthers out 12-7. Seattle does have a very good defense of their own, but you’ve got to score somehow, and Arizona’s offense was just better Sunday. Even though Palmer did throw four picks, Russell Wilson threw for 108 yards and a pick himself.
Looking at the stats, it really doesn’t seem like the Cards outplayed them enough to what you would expect in beating the Seahawks, but then you look at the time possession. Arizona barely edged Seattle out in passing and rushing yards, but they held the ball for 37:24, while the ‘Hawks only had it for 22:35. Also, three sacks from Arizona’s big front line (one from a cornerback) helped.
Seattle should still be the favorite in the NFC, but in order to get to the Super Bowl, it will have to get through Carolina and maybe Arizona, which could cause some problems for its average offense.