Silver linings: Seahawks vs. Patriots

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

The facts: The Seahawks fell to 2-11 following a 24-21 home defeat to the New England Patriots in Week 13.

The upside: Even the worst defeats tend to feature a bright spot or two.

  • Deion Branch finally showed why the Seahawks acquired him from the Patriots. New England's injury-depleted defense couldn't handle him.

  • Rookie tight end John Carlson has already matched Itula Mili's single-season franchise record for catches by a tight end. He caught eight passes for 69 yards and a touchdown even though Seattle took him off the field five times in seven plays of third-and-3 or longer.

  • Defensive linemen Baraka Atkins, Darryl Tapp, Rocky Bernard and Brandon Mebane combined for 10 quarterback hits.

  • Cornerback Marcus Trufant played at a Pro Bowl level in his matchup against Randy Moss. An improved pass rush and Matt Cassel's occasional inability to deliver the ball accurately helped. Trufant also played aggressively and with confidence, a good sign for Seattle.

  • Seneca Wallace showed how much better he performs when healthy. A calf injury limited his game earlier in the season. When Wallace can move, he can make plays.

  • Seattle had early success running the ball from its one-back, three-receiver grouping.

  • The Seahawks played with tenacity. They seemed rejuvenated despite a poor record.

  • The offensive line, though far from perfect, outperformed expectations. New England played most of the game without four starting members of its front seven and the Seahawks took advantage.

Looking ahead: Seattle visits the Rams at the Edward Jones Dome in Week 15.