Seahawks rout Jags, increase division lead

SEATTLE — Russell Wilson got well, then he rested.

A week after one of the worst statistical games of his career, the Seattle quarterback rebounded with one of his best to lead the Seahawks to an expectedly easy 45-17 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in front of 68,087 on Sunday at CenturyLink Field.

Wilson tied a career-high with four touchdown passes, all in the first 34 minutes of the game, completing 14 of 21 attempts for 202 yards before departing with his team—which entered as a 20-point favorite, the largest spread in franchise history—comfortably ahead.

Seattle is now 3-0 and has a two-game lead on the rest of the NFC West after the 49ers were upset at home by the Indianapolis Colts and has won 10 straight home games.

Wilson threw three touchdown passes in the first half as the Seahawks led 24-0 at the break. He tossed another to Sidney Rice with 11:41 left in the third quarter to make it 31-0 and shortly after headed to the bench.

Wilson’s only real mistake was a pass under pressure out of the end zone that was tipped and picked off by Paul Posluszny and returned to the Seahawks’ 2-yard line, leading to Jacksonville’s first touchdown of the game.

Seattle added another TD late in the third quarter when backup QB Tarvaris Jackson connected with Doug Baldwin, who made a highlight-reel one-handed catch as he slid into the end zone to complete a 35-yard play. That made it 38-7 with 1:28 left in the third quarter. Jackson added another score on a 5-yard run in the fourth quarter as the Seahawks rolled to their eighth straight regular-season win.

Jacksonville’s lax defense proved the perfect tonic for a Seattle offense that had struggled last week despite beating the 49ers 29-3. The Seahawks piled up 479 yards against the Jaguars.

The rout started early as the Seahawks drove 71 yards for a touchdown the second time they had the ball, and scored on four of their seven first-half possessions.

Seattle’s first two scores came on passes from Wilson to tight end Zach Miller, each on play-action passes, an offensive play that proved effective for the Seahawks all day. The first covered one yard and the second went for four yards.

Steven Hauschka kicked a 21-yard field goal to make it 17-0 with 9:40 left.

If there was any quibble with the Seattle offense, it was a line—playing its first game without injured left tackle Russell Okung—that allowed a little too much pressure on occasion.

On one such occasion, Wilson was sacked and fumbled late in the first half, with Jacksonville recovering at the Seahawks 44 with 2:30 left.

Jacksonville then drove to the Seattle 18, where on first down Cecil Shorts III couldn’t handle a pass in the end zone.

On second down, Chad Henne’s pass bounced off Jacksonville center Brad Meester, and then was tipped once by Seattle linebacker Bobby Wagner, who then dived and caught it to stave off the threat.

That gave Seattle the ball at its own 21 with 44 seconds left.

From there, coach Pete Carroll, turned aggressive, with Wilson hitting Golden Tate for 30 yards on first down, powering a drive that ended with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Sidney Rice with 10 seconds remaining.

Seattle had a 275-52 edge in yards at halftime with Wilson completing 13-17 passes for 179 yards.

It quickly became 31-0 as Seattle’s Brandon Mebane recovered a Denard Robinson fumble at the Jacksonville 33 on the first series of the second half, with Wilson needing just three plays to find Rice for a 23-yard touchdown.

The tests get tougher for Seattle now as the Seahawks travel the next two weeks to Houston and Indianapolis.