Tonight I have the pleasure of finding the best play from the Seahawks and Lions game. This week will come as no surprise so I’ll get right into it. The game was a defensive struggle all the way through to the fourth quarter, where the Lions began to take control, forcing Russell Wilson to fumble twice on great defensive plays, one of which lead to a return for a Lions touchdown.
Although the Seahawks were still in the lead at 10-13, it didn’t look good. The Seahawks defense for the first time all game looked exhausted, they were giving up yards in a big way to the Lions who had driven from the Lions 9 yard line to the Seahawks 11.
Oct 5, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) throws the football during the third quarter in a game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks won 13-10. Mandatory Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports
The Lions setup in a shotgun formation with two backs flanking Stafford and three wide receivers. The Seahawks lined up in their classic set with Kam Chancellor sneaking up on the left side of the formation, the same side as Calvin ‘Megatron’ Johnson. Stafford takes a quick snap as soon as the offense is set, throws a quick 5 yard slant and out where Johnson ran what looked like a slant route and then made a cut to run back towards the sideline.
Johnson caught the ball at the eight yard line and immediately began heading for the end zone. Earl Thomas locked on the Johnson while standing on the end zone. Chancellor had broken out wide to cover the running back, Theo Riddick. Chancellor was approximately at the same yard line, just five yards closer to the sideline.
Both Thomas and Chancellor close quickly on Detroit’s best player in Calvin Johnson. Earl Thomas initiates contact at the two yard line while Cary Williams and Kam Chancellor make simultaneous contact, Williams hitting Johnson in the hip while Chancellor reared back and took perfect aim at the football. Chancellor punched the ball out of Johnson’s outstretched hand to force a beautiful fumble into the end zone.
As the football was rolling in the end zone K.J. Wright helped the football by giving it a love tap out of the back of the end zone. This resulted in a touch back, Seattle’s ball at their own twenty yard line with 1:45 remaining in the game. Turns out the ref, who was standing less than 5 feet from K.J. Wright wasn’t up on his rule book.
Apparently if a defensive player ‘bats’ the ball out of the end zone overtly, it is a 10 yard penalty and an automatic first down. However penalties (or lack thereof) are not review able, and this came down to a simple case of one ref not remembering that one specific rule.
Oct 5, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks strong safety Kam Chancellor (31) reacts after his tackle against Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) during the fourth quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Beyond the rule fiasco that has taken over the NFL news cycle, the game was not over. Seahawks had the ball with 1:45 to go and Detroit still had two time outs. The Seahawks needed one final first down to put the game on ice.
After two solid runs by Rawls they were still two yards shy setting up a 3rd and 2 from the Seahawks 28 yard line. Wilson snaps the ball and immediately rolls to his right. Wilson finds Jermaine Kearse for a huge gain to the Lions 18 yard line. Then the Seahawks went to victory formation to keel on the ball and end the game.
The Seahawks did what we are used to seeing them do, they found a way to win at home. Now they need to regroup, quickly, to travel to Cincinnati on a short week to face the undefeated Bengals.
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