Seahawks get TDs from rookies Smith-Njigba, Bobo and rely on defense to topple Arizona 20-10
SEATTLE, WA (AP) — Kenneth Walker III rushed for a season-high 105 yards, rookies Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Jake Bobo both caught first-half touchdown passes, and the Seattle Seahawks beat the Arizona Cardinals 20-10 on Sunday.
Seattle (4-2) rebounded from last week’s loss at Cincinnati that was filled with missed opportunities by relying on its defense to make key stops in the second half after a handful of mistakes by the Seahawks.
Geno Smith threw for 219 yards and connected with his rookie pass catchers on the day DK Metcalf missed the first game of his career. Smith-Njigba caught his first NFL touchdown on a 28-yard reception in the first quarter and Bobo made a terrific 18-yard TD catch in the second quarter.
But Smith’s performance was shaky at times and allowed Arizona (1-6) to hang around into the fourth quarter. Smith was intercepted at the Arizona 1 in the third quarter by Garrett Williams on an underthrown pass intended for Bobo. Smith later fumbled a snap and Arizona recovered at the Seattle 34 early in the fourth quarter. The Seahawks were able to avoid giving up points on the drive after Matt Prater missed a 34-yard field-goal attempt.
Arizona later attempted a fake punt on fourth-and-9 near midfield with 5:09 remaining, but Michael Wilson was tackled 4 yards short of the first down line on a pass from backup QB Clayton Tune. Seattle kicker Jason Myers hit from 48 yards from 2:17 left to put the victory away for the Seahawks.
Smith completed 18 of 24 passes. Smith-Njigba and Bobo each had four receptions and became the first set of Seattle rookies to catch TDs in the same game since 2015.
Arizona QB Joshua Dobbs was 19 of 33 for 146 yards and was sacked four times. On the week that Kyler Murray was activated from the physically unable to perform list and rejoined Arizona’s practices, Dobbs was unable to get anything working in the downfield passing game. Dobbs’ longest completion was 21 yards on Arizona’s final possession.
Dobbs did run for a 25-yard touchdown in the first half, the longest run play allowed this season by Seattle. That touchdown capped an 80-yard drive, but Arizona finished with 249 yards and 88 yards in the second half.
Arizona left tackle D.J. Humphries was ejected in the second quarter for making contact with an official following a wild play where Dobbs was intercepted by Devon Witherspoon in the end zone but the turnover was negated by a roughing the passer penalty against Boye Mafe.
At the end of the interception return there was a scrum where Humphries and Seattle’s Jordyn Brooks both swung hands at each other and made contact with an official. Humphries was ruled to be the guilty party and was disqualified.
Metcalf missed the first game of his career because of injuries to his ribs and hip. Metcalf had played in 71 straight games from the start of his career in 2019. Metcalf had been listed as questionable on the final injury report. Seattle was also without starting center Evan Brown (hip) and starting right guard Phil Haynes (calf) leaving rookies Olu Oluwatimi and Anthony Bradford to fill in.
Seattle coach Pete Carroll was 2 for 2 on challenges in the first half, the first time he won two challenges in a game since Dec. 15, 2016, vs. the Rams. The second challenge came on Bobo’s touchdown, which was initially ruled incomplete for being out of bounds.
The Red Birds will face off against the Baltimore Ravens at State Farm Stadium next Sunday at 1:25 p.m.
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