Here's my weekly DVR analysis for the Cardinals/Seahawks game.
* Though we had more running yards, more carries, and the same yards per carry as in the Chicago game, the team faltered in the end zone and failed to capitalize on opportunities. We shot ourselves in the feet with penalties. Regardless, with a lead near the end of the game, we were able to burn the clock and take first place in the division.
The interior of the line deserves special mention. They showed clear improvement. Okung went out in the 1st quarter, and Polumbus subbed well. Locklear, on the other hand, probably had the worst game of his career.
Overall, our running backs had 133 yards on 34 carries for 3.9 ypc.
* Q1 - 57 yards on 10 carries for 5.7 ypc. Highlight: Lynch gets 39 yards going down the left sideline.
[15:00] The right side is perfect as Baker and Andrews open a nice hole. Locklear goes to the second level to take a linebacker as Lynch waits for the play to develp then pushes two defenders for eight yards.
[14:24] Robinson lines up in the I-formation, gets a quick handoff and powers for three yards and a first down. This time it was Okung and Spencer opening the hole with Hamilton taking a linebacker.
[13:43] The formation is tight. Robinson gets his man, falls and recovers. The line gets compressed and Lynch cuts outside - just beating Robinson's man. Lynch breaks one tackle and is off to the races with Butler clearing the way for 39 yards and a first down.
[13:07] Spencer and Hamilton double on one DT while Andrews takes the other. Spencer is late breaking to the linebacker, who is untouched. Meanwhile, Okung ignored the DE and went upfield. Bad teamwork overall. Forsett is met by both defenders in the backfield for a one yard loss.
[11:45] The line pushes to the right with Okung cutting his man to the ground. Lynch goes into the hole, is delayed by Hamilton, chooses a side and fights for four yards.
[11:04] The DL tracks Lynch to the right. Not much there as Lynch gets two yards. Okung went upfield to engage a linebacker, but TE Chris Baker falls forward on Okung's ankle. Okung comes out of the game.
[9:48] Locklear called for a false start on the Arizona one yard line. His game starts falling apart.
[9:29] Locklear and Andrews both go to the second level, allowing the untouched DT to hit Lynch in the backfield for a four yard loss.
[8:14] Locklear is slow to get to the DE. The DE blows by untouched. Lynch, meanwhile, is running to left tackle, but is caught from behind by Locklear's man.
[3:54] My DVR rebooted itself. Apparently Lynch got four yards off right tackle.
[:51] The line gets a nice push - especially Polumbus, Andrews, and Robinson. Lynch takes it up the gut for four yards.
* Q2 - 17 yards on 6 runs. 2.8 ypc. Highlights: None, really. Forsett's 11 yard run is 9 yards away from a first down.
[13:48] The line pushes to the right as Lynch draws the defense that way. Lynch cuts back as Carlson comes across to cut his man for a five yard gain.
[12:34] Lynch finds no hole and bounces to the right. Baker and Butler get bad angles on their matchups. Baker's man escapes and limits Lynch to one yard.
[11:16] The defense is spread with a 3-3 base. Some linemen go forward and hit the LBs perfectly. Forsett powers for eleven yards, but is far from a first down.
[7:57] Locklear and Carlson allow their men to shed. Lynch cuts and breaks two tackles, but barely makes it back to the line of scrimmage.
[1:46] Locklear blocks well. Spencer gets into a stalemate, but the defense pursues Forsett well and Spencer's man sheds to limit Justin to two yards.
[:56] On 3rd and 1, the D is stacked against the run and swamps the middle. Forsett loses two yards.
* Q3 - 11 yds on 4 runs. 2.7 ypc. Lowlight: Locklear holds, negating a 24-yard run.
[14:06] The lines flow to the right and there is no hole. Lynch stops moving, and Locklear can't hold his block any longer. Two yard gain.
[12:50] Andrews and Carlson both pull and take out their men perfectly. Forsett finds the hole, but it's sealed by LBs for a four yard gain.
[12:02] The D plugs the middle. Lynch cuts to the left, splits two defenders and fights for three yards.
[3:28] Locklear holds. A 24 yard run called back.
[1:37] Andrews and Carlson pull again, but confuse their assignments. A man gets free to limit Forsett to two yards.
* Q4 - 48 yds on 14 runs. 3.4 ypc. Highlight: Burn that clock! Forsett gets 14 yards and a first down then goes to the ground to keep the clock running.
[14:42] Hamilton pulls while Spencer and Andrews get their men. Lynch gets an ankle caught from behind, but is able to break forward and fight for six yards.
[13:31] The left side (Carlson, Polumbus, and Hamilton) get beat as the action flows to the right. The fall down like keystone cops. Meanwhile, Lynch runs to the right and is delayed by Andrews so Lynch cuts back and finds three unblocked men. No gain.
[11:34] Carlson whiffs on his block, but Lynch breaks the tackle, splits two guys and earns six yards.
[10:47] Polumbus loses his man and isn't called for a hold. Lynch cuts away from "Troy's" man for three yards.
[9:21] Lynch runs right while the line keeps their defenders to the left. Lynch runs around the edge for four yards and stays in-bounds for good clock management.
[5:43] The D stacks against the run. Lynch is hit by the MLB, who is unaccounted for.
[4:48] Obomanu is late on a block and holds but gets away with it. Hamilton gets a nice push. Lynch powers for two yards with the D stacked against him.
[3:26] Locklear holds again, killing a 15 yard run.
[3:17] The line is compressed, but Forsett goes low and sneaks around the left side then cuts inside Polumbus' downfield block. Forsett is grabbed and pulled as he powers for ten yards.
[3:09] The D is stacked again. The MLB is unmatched and trips up Lynch for a one yard loss.
[3:03] Williams is out of position to block his man, but Forsett has a quick first step to the left, blowing by the untouched cornerback. Justin then hits the safety, breaks the tackle, gets 14 yards and a first down then goes down to keep the clock running.
[2:18] The D overloads the run. Forsett is hit by one LB, spins away, is hit by another LB, spins away, and is met by a crowd for a one yard gain.
[2:00] The D overloads the run again as Lynch powers for two yards.
[1:18] Lynch is swamped for no gain.
[1:13] Lynch is met in the backfield, breaks the tackle and powers for three yards.
* Overall Blocking - Usually, our tackles are good and the interior is suspect. This week, the interior played their best game of the year, but Locklear had his worst. He gave up sacks, was caught for penalties, and made mental errors. I've seen this happen before and he typically plays flawlessly the following week. Spencer deserves credit for the most improved blocker. Hamilton looked stronger as well. Let's hope Okung comes back soon as he played well before his injury.
* Play calling - The personnel calls were VERY conservative. Almost all of Lynch's plays had two receivers, two TEs and one man in the backfield. Robinson was in the backfield with Lynch early in the game, but not in the second half. Even Forcett usually had just two receivers. I believe that we wanted to save some tricks for our trip to Arizona in three weeks. Two receivers on one side was about as creative as we got - aside from Robinson's run.
* Runners - No TDs. No fumbles. Lynch continues to see running to the outside as his safety valve. He continued to run hard and break tackles, getting 24 touches and 3.7 ypc. Forsett's average was down to 4.6 ypc this game, which is still solid with 41 yards on 9 runs. Robinson had one run on a 3rd and short. It's clear that Robinson is being developed as their short yardage guy.
* Overall - Because we didn't do well in the redzone, had penaltiels, and didn't capitalize with TDs on turnovers, the running game didn't feel as good as it did last week. The truth is that these 133 yards are the most we've earned all season. And give credit to Arizona. Their defensive ends played well and they often stacked the D against the run. Locklear was underwater this game and I expect him to bounce back strongly next week. Don't miss the fact that the interior - including Spencer - played very well.