Missed FG ends Hawks’ comeback hopes against Falcons
SEATTLE — Matt Ryan did plenty with his arm and his legs. Atlanta’s star was still stuck having to watch a 61-yard field-goal attempt fall short in the waning seconds to avoid a huge Falcons meltdown.
Ryan threw for 291 yards and a touchdown and came up with key scrambles all day to keep Atlanta’s offense moving, but he had to wait out Steven Hauschka’s miss of a long kick with 13 seconds left as the Falcons escaped with a 30-28 win over the Seahawks on Sunday.
Ryan completed a touchdown pass to Tony Gonzalez on Atlanta’s opening possession. Michael Turner ran for two scores in the first half, and Matt Bryant made three field goals for the Falcons (2-2), who remained perfect on the West Coast under coach Mike Smith.
The second of Bryant’s three kicks gave the Falcons a 27-7 lead early in the third quarter. They had dominated the first half and, outside of a blown coverage on a 52-yard TD pass from Tarvaris Jackson to Sidney Rice, had kept Seattle’s offense floundering.
But Seattle (1-3) got a spark in the second half, going with a no-huddle offense, and quickly trimmed the Falcons lead. Jackson threw two more touchdown passes, the second one an 8-yard toss to Ben Obomanu with 8:13 left that cut the Falcons’ lead to two.
Atlanta didn’t get any points on its next drive but ran more than six minutes off the clock. Ryan converted three third downs, including a 10-yard run on third-and-7 that helped run an extra two minutes. Seattle had just one timeout left after burning a pair on defensive lapses earlier in the half.
Ryan completed 28 of 42 passes and added another 26 yards with his legs. His favorite target was rookie Julio Jones, who had 11 catches for 127 yards.
Jackson had his best game with the Seahawks. But he couldn’t make up for a miserable first half offensively, when Seattle managed just five yards rushing. Jackson was 25 of 38 for 319 yards and had his first three-touchdown game since 2008 with Minnesota. He was intercepted twice and nearly got Seattle in position for a game-winning kick.
Seattle got the ball back at its 15 with 1:49 left and quickly moved toward midfield. The Seahawks caught a break with 41 seconds to go when referee Walt Anderson was buzzed to review the previous completion to Doug Baldwin and stopped the clock. Jackson then hit Zach Miller for 13 yards to the Atlanta 45.
After a completion to Miller got Seattle to the Atlanta 43 with 16 seconds remaining, Jackson was hurried on third down and threw incomplete. Instead of going for it on fourth down, Seattle coach Pete Carroll sent out Hauschka for a 61-yard attempt that was short and wide left.
Hauschka’s career long is 54 yards.
Atlanta had plenty of chances to put this one away, getting caught off guard by Seattle’s decision to go no-huddle for much of the second half.
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