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Seahawks Hurt Vikings Defense Through the Air

Posted Aug 19, 2017

SEATTLE — The Vikings spoke this week about the importance of being able to contain Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson on the ground.

Wilson instead beat the Vikings with his arm Friday night as Minnesota’s pass defense endured a frustrating night.

“He’s able to create and get out of adverse situations and help receivers get open,” said Vikings cornerback Terence Newman. “He’s a guy that’s tough to bring down and is a very accurate passer and can throw it a long way.”

Wilson was 13 of 18 for 206 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. The quarterback completed 72.2 percent of his passes and had a passer rating for 147.0.

The Vikings first-team defense gave up an 11-play, 77-yard scoring sequence on the opening drive as Wilson threw for 56 yards on five completions. 

“We gave up a touchdown, so (we didn’t play) well enough,” said Vikings safety Harrison Smith. “That’s what we expect to do [shut them down] no matter who we play, where we play, wherever.”

Wilson had three completions that went for at least 27 yards, the longest of which was a 37-yard completion across the middle to Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin that seemed to confuse the Minnesota secondary.

“We didn’t cover him,” said Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer. “The [defender] didn’t go with him.”

Zimmer said Seattle’s first scoring drive was a combination of subpar defense from the Vikings in the most crucial of situations, as Seattle converted three times on third downs, including a 1-yard touchdown pass.

“Early they made a couple of great catches and got us on a couple of scrambles, but I just didn’t — the third downs were not good,” Zimmer said. “I didn’t think we were particularly sharp in some of the other areas.” 

Added Newman: “Not getting them off the field on third downs allows them to keep drives going. They’re getting closer and closer to the red zone. They took a chance and scored.” 

The Vikings gave up 282 passing yards on the night and allowed three Seahawks quarterbacks to post a combined passer rating of 115.3.