CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Russell Wilson threw for 286 yards and two touchdowns, Chris Carson ran for 133 yards and two scores, and the Seattle Seahawks defeated the Carolina Panthers 30-24 on Sunday to inch closer to clinching a playoff spot.
The Seahawks (11-3) can wrap up a postseason berth for the seventh time in the last eight seasons with a Rams or Vikings loss. Both teams play later Sunday.
It was the 100th regular season win for Seahawks coach Pete Carroll.
Seattle scored on its first three possessions as Wilson completed 8 of 10 passes for 175 yards, with 19-yard touchdown passes to DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett for a perfect 153.8 QB rating. Chris Carson added a 16-yard TD run as the Seahawks built a 20-7 lead at halftime.
But Seattle had to hold on after nearly surrendering a 30-10 lead with 7:28 left in the game.
Carolina got two touchdowns as Christian McCaffrey scored on a 15-yard run and Kyle Allen found Curtis Samuel for a 5-yard score to make it a one-possession game with 3:19 left. But the Seahawks overcame two holding penalties and Wilson connected on a 14-yard pass to Lockett on a third-and-11 to help the Seahawks run out the clock.
Despite the loss, McCaffrey continued his impressive season for Carolina (5-9), racking up 165 yards and two more touchdowns, giving him a league-high 18 for the season. McCaffrey also became the first Carolina player to eclipse 2,000 yards from scrimmage in a season.
Turnovers continued to plague the Panthers.The Panthers are now a minus-14 in turnover differential during their current six-game losing streak. Allen added to that total on Sunday as the Seahawks intercepted the second-year QB three times — two by K.J. Wright and one by Bobby Wagner.
For Allen, it was another case of trying to do too much. Under heavy duress and his team trailing 20-10 in the third quarter, he tried to force a pass and he was falling to the ground and was picked by Wright.
Wilson, on the other hand, was poised in the pocket, repeatedly making the right decisions as well as making big throws when the Seahawks needed them. Carolina’s only takeaway came when the Seahawks tried to get tricky and wide receiver Josh Gordon threw an interception off a reverse.
Wilson repeatedly targeted Panthers second-year cornerback Donte Jackson in the first half, beating him for two scores and a 58-yard pass play down the seam to Gordon, who stretched out to make a sensational grab.
Lockett had eight catches for 120 yards.
Seahawks: The Seahawks have some healing to do. They played without defensive ends Ziggy Ansah and Jadeveon Clowney, cornerback Shaquill Griffin and tight end Luke Wilson, and safety Quandre Diggs (ankle) left in the third quarter and Wagner (knee) in the fourth.
Panthers: Tight end Greg Olsen (concussion) did not play.
Seahawks: return home to face the Cardinals next Sunday. Seattle beat Arizona 27-10 earlier this season.
Panthers: travel to face the Colts on Sunday, their final away game of the season.