SEATTLE — Geno Smith threw two more touchdown passes in the Seattle Seahawks‘ 27-13 win over the New York Giants on Sunday, then passed up an opportunity to throw it back in the face of his former team.
Smith was asked whether he feels any vindication or any sense of revenge in beating the Giants considering how he was treated during his lone season with them in 2017, when he took over for Eli Manning late in the year only for the team to reverse course one week later and reinsert Manning as their starter.
Smith said “not at all” and instead took the opportunity to show his gratitude to Ben McAdoo and Jerry Reese, at the time the Giants head coach and general manager, respectively.
“I’m happy to be here in Seattle,” Smith said. “I spent one year with the Giants. That year to me was like a blur and my life has moved on from them. I don’t have any remorse towards anyone there. In fact, to me, this game was for Ben McAdoo and Jerry Reese. They believed in me. So as far as any other thing, I don’t really care for it. I’m happy to be here in Seattle. It’s like a family here. It feels like home. And so I’m just enjoying my time here and continuing to work hard with these guys and just trying to be the best we can be.”
Smith similarly has taken the high road responding to what have become regular questions about how he’s disproving everyone who doubted he could play as well as he has this season after spending most of the previous seven as a backup. He entered Sunday with the NFL’s fourth-best Total QBR and turned in another strong performance in the Seahawks’ third consecutive win, which keeps them atop the NFC West standings at 5-3.
Smith completed 23 of 34 passes for 212 yards and no turnovers. He could have had a third touchdown pass had Tyler Lockett not dropped a would-be score on a perfectly thrown deep ball in the third quarter. That was despite being pressured 19 times by the Giants’ blitz-heavy defense. That’s a career high for Smith and the most pressures a quarterback has faced in a regulation win this season.
With the game tied at 13 early in the fourth quarter, Smith went 5-for-5 on a 75-yard drive that he capped with a 33-yard touchdown pass to Lockett. It was Smith’s third touchdown pass of 30-plus air yards this season, matching his combined total of such TD passes over his first nine seasons.
Smith’s other touchdown pass was to DK Metcalf, who was questionable heading into the game with a knee injury. Lockett (hamstring, oblique) was also questionable.
Smith also rushed for 26 yards on five attempts.
Coach Pete Carroll said Smith was “solid as a rock” again Sunday and noted how well he operated Seattle’s offense even with center Austin Blythe going in and out of the game in favor of backup Kyle Fuller after suffering a knee sprain in the first quarter.
“Right on point with the whole day’s work,” Carroll said. “Handled the line of scrimmage beautifully. They did all kinds of stuff at us and he dealt with it and handled it and checked off and did the things we needed to do in the game plan to keep it moving. They’re a tough team to deal with. They’re very high-tech in what they do on defense and the stuff they throw at you, and it called for the quarterback to really be in command. And even when Austin goes out and gets banged up and Kyle comes in, to keep that flow going and to continue to play winning football, it’s just a tribute to the guys doing the work and the players and everybody being on board and all that. There’s just praise to go everywhere.”
With 13 touchdown passes (to three interceptions) this season, Smith already has tied his career high from 2014 and still has nine games remaining.
Smith wasn’t even considered the favorite to beat out Drew Lock in Seattle’s quarterback competition after the Russell Wilson trade. Now he’s got the Seahawks in first place and, in Carroll’s words, in position to “make some noise.”
“He’s the real deal, we’re seeing it,” Carroll said. “There’s no mystery or, ‘Oh, he’s going to run out of gas or something.’ It’s not like that. He knows exactly what he’s doing and he shows you week in, week out, throw after throw after throw. There’s nothing for us to hold him but in the highest of expectations, really. What a thrilling story for the kid. He just hung in there so tough and outlasted it and now he’s enjoying all the fun of it. He did great.”