Seahawks crush Cardinals to take control of NFC West

Reuters News
Posted: Dec 22, 2014 12:51 AM

(Reuters) - Russell Wilson tossed two touchdown passes to Luke Wilson and ran for another as the Seattle Seahawks thumped the Arizona Cardinals 35-6 to take control of the battle for the NFC West division crown on Sunday.

With their fifth straight victory, the Seahawks improved to 11-4 and can clinch the division ahead of the Cardinals (11-4) with a win next Sunday against the St Louis Rams in their regular season finale or an Arizona loss at San Francisco.

The Seahawks and the injury-ravaged Cardinals stepped onto the field at University of Phoenix Stadium knowing they had already secured a playoff spots but with plenty at stake with a home playoff date on the line.

Seattle piled up a franchise record 596 yards of total offense against one of the NFL's top-ranked defenses as Wilson recorded the longest run of his career (55 yards) and Marshawn Lynch rumbled for a pair of scores, including a 79-yarder in the fourth quarter.

After a scoreless opening quarter, the Cardinals registered first in the second on a 27-yard Chandler Catanzaro field goal before the Seahawks replied on their next possession, Wilson finding tightend Luke Wilson with an 80-yard touchdown strike.

Seattle took control of the contest when Lynch capped off a short drive with a six-yard run to send the Seahawks into the break 14-3 ahead.

A 32-yard Catanzaro field goal accounted for all the scoring in the third before Seattle put the contest away with a 21-point explosion in the fourth.

Heading into the final week of the regular season, the Cardinals will try to regroup behind third string quarterback Ryan Lindley.

Lindley, getting the start due to injuries to Carson Palmer and Drew Stanton, came into the game having never thrown a touchdown pass and left it the same way completing 18-of-44 passes for 216 yards with one interception.

Taken in the sixth round of the 2012 draft, Lindley hold the dubious record of having thrown the most NFL passes (225) without a touchdown.

(Reporting by Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by John O'Brien)