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Keys to victory: Seahawks 34, Saints 7

12/3/2013

What were the biggest keys to the Seattle Seahawks' rout of the New Orleans Saints 34-7 on "Monday Night Football"?

Difference-maker: The deep ball

Drew Brees has made his money on being a great deep passer, but Russell Wilson was far better than he was in this game.

Wilson was 5-for-8 for 185 yards on throws that traveled at least 15 yards downfield. Though he didn’t have any touchdowns, he had a couple of notable throws to set up scores, including the 60-yarder to tight end Zach Miller.

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Brees was 0-for-8 on throws of that length. He had completed at least three passes of 15 yards or longer downfield in every game this season.

That’s one of the reasons why Brees’ streak of 43 straight games throwing for at least 200 yards came to an end. He came within two games of Dan Fouts’ record-long 200-yard streak.

The Saints finished with 188 yards of offense, their fewest in a game since Week 3 of the 2003 season, when they had 188 against the Tennessee Titans.

Rob Ryan’s blitz didn’t work

Wilson made the Saints look bad when they chose to blitz. Wilson was 22-for-30 for 310 yards and three touchdowns overall. He was 8-for-9 for 170 yards and two touchdowns against pass rushes of five or more men. He completed all three of his pass attempts when one of those rushers was a defensive back.

Wilson now has 22 touchdown passes this season. He’s the fourth player in NFL history with at least 20 TD passes in each of his first two seasons (Dan Marino, Peyton Manning and Andy Dalton).

The number 22 is also significant for Wilson in this regard: His 22 wins as a starting quarterback match the most by any quarterback in his first two seasons, among those who debuted since the merger. The other quarterback with 22 is Ben Roethlisberger.

Did you know?: Monday Night streaks

The Seahawks don’t just have a 14-game home winning streak. They have an eight-game winning streak on "Monday Night Football," including last year’s controversial win over the Green Bay Packers.

The Saints had their nine-game "Monday Night Football" winning streak snapped.