Tyler Lockett grabbed another touchdown pass. He then looked up into Wembley Stadium at a sea of Seahawks fans from back home, from the United Kingdom, from Europe — heck, it seemed from darn near everywhere.
“Amazing. It felt like we were playing another home game,” Seattle’s touchdown-making wide receiver said.
“I flew nine hours all the way out here. And all I saw was green and blue.”
Bob’s your uncle, indeed.
The Seahawks would be all set if they played every game in England. Or if they played the malfunctioning Oakland Raiders every time.
Lockett caught one of three touchdown passes from Russell Wilson. On his second one Wilson had time to drop a snap off England’s famous pitch and throw an improvisational touchdown pass to David Moore. Pass rusher Frank Clark chimed all night like Big Ben for 2 1/2 sacks and two sack fumbles that Seattle converted into 10 points.
And tens of thousands of Seahawks fans from the Pacific Northwest, the UK, Germany and across Europe roared inside famed Wembley throughout Seattle’s cracker of a Sunday night in England, a 27-3 whupping of Oakland in the Seahawks’ first-ever game outside the United States.
And it wasn’t really that close. Seattle led 17-0 at halftime, battered Raiders quarterback Derek Carr on 16 of his 37 drop backs to pass, and cruised while rushing for 155 yards and allowing Oakland just 185. Total.
“What we can be. Where we are going,” Wilson said of what this thorough whupping of the Raiders indicated.
After the blowout win and jolly-good time, the Seahawks jumped and roared over the rap music blasting in their locker room. They made the walls shake at the bottom of this historic stadium, which soccer legend Pele called “the cathedral of football” (not the Seahawks’ kind). In its original edition Wembley hosted the Olympics, the World Cup, the Live Aid concert, a Nelson Mandela tribute and so much more.
Coach Pete Carroll alluded to after this whitewash that if not for a holding penalty last week on guard D.J. Fluker that pushed Seattle (3-3) out of field-goal range in the two-point loss to the Rams, this could have been the Seahawks’ fourth straight win.
“This is the best game we’ve had to date. The best game we’ve had this year,” Seattle left tackle Duane Brown said. “A total team effort. The defense played lights out. The offense racked up points...
“And just dominated.”
The spectacle attracted 84,922 fans, the largest crowd for an NFL game in the 22 games over 11 years the league has staged them in London.
“It was awesome,” Lockett said of his London experience. “I want to come back.”
Lockett caught his fifth touchdown passes in six games this season, one off his career high. That made it 27-0 on the first play of the fourth quarter, and the Seahawks (3-3) got to .500 before their 10-plus-hour flight home into Monday then their bye week.
The Seahawks continued their emphasis on running the ball by rushing on the game’s first seven plays, starting a 14-play, 86-yard opening thrust that took half the opening quarter. The trucking march ended with Wilson’s third touchdown pass to Moore in two weeks. Moore, the seventh-round draft choice in 2017, pushed further ahead of 34-year-old six-time Pro Bowler Brandon Marshall in the receiver rotation. Marshall was even more mothballed on Sunday.
“It’s a tone setter,” Wilson said of all the running, after he completed 17 of 23 passes for 222 yards with three touchdowns and one interception.
“That’s how we want to be.”
Moore had two catches in his career before last week. Now he has three touchdowns in two games. He celebrated this score by joining Lockett and other teammates in air drumming to honor the movie “Drumline.”
That was after he tumbled rear-end first over the European football-style advertising boards beyond the back of the end zone on his follow through from the catch.
Moore laughed at that.
“I didn’t see that coming, at all. I don’t know what it was even back there,” he said.
“It hurt a little bit, but I looked up and just saw the whole thing, and I was like, ‘Oh, shoot, just take it, just take it.”
Doug Baldwin returned to the Seahawks after injuries to both knees, then a one-target game last week against the Rams. The Pro Bowl wide receiver had six catches for 91 yards, which included two, twisting grabs for 65 yards in the third quarter.
Asked the difference between this week and last, besides a nine-hour flight, an eight-hour time difference from Seattle and a new continent, Baldwin smiled wryly.
“What changed?” he said. “We threw the ball in my direction.”
Clark and the Seahawks’ defensive line dominated Oakland’s offensive line, the one coached by Tom Cable. The Snohomish High School graduate was the coach of Seattle’s maligned line until January.
Clark sacked Carr 2 1/2 times, and two of those resulted in fumbles the Seahawks recovered and turned into 10 points. Clark also hit Carr three other times, and had four tackles.
So the Seahawks enjoyed Cable’s work for another team on this night. They had six sacks and hit Carr 10 other times.
Seattle was 24th in the NFL averaging two sacks per game entering Sunday.
The pass rush kept the Raiders from throwing the ball down the field. Meanwhile, All-Pro Bobby Wagner and Seattle’s defensive front also throttled Marshawn Lynch in the former Seahawk cornerstone’s first game against them since he left after the 2015 season. Lynch had 45 inconsequential yards on 13 carries.
Seattle led 17-0. The only drama left was to see how many more chants of “SEA!HAWKS!” would echo through the historic stadium that proclaims itself “The Home of England” for all its world-class national soccer fixtures.
“It felt like a home game, honestly,” Moore said.
“When I was a young kid growing up, I never thought I’d be playing football in London,” Wilson said.
“It was an amazing experience. Just an honor to play here and get a huge win for our team.”
The entire London night was for Seahawks savoring.
“As we got closer to the game, we realized how much energy there was for the Seahawks here,” Carroll said. “That was a great crowd. Somebody said it was the biggest crowd ever (for an NFL game in London).
“Playing at Wembley was great. Anybody that says anything different, I don’t think they know. The turf was really taken care of, and there’s been a lot of issues talked about that, and the turf was great. Even with some rain today, it held up fine.
“So the whole experience culminated with the game that we played a really complete football game. Just makes it a special week.”