SEATTLE – The Seattle Seahawks didn’t lose to Kansas City on Sunday. They submitted.
Trailing by 18 points and down their starting center, Matt Hasselbeck took a knee with a minute remaining. Then he took another one, concluding a 42-24 defeat in which Seattle couldn’t even figure out how to lose right.
“I’m not very familiar how to finish games like this,” coach Pete Carroll said.
As far as defeats go, this was a doozy even for a team that went 9-23 the past two seasons. The Seahawks gave up 270 rushing yards, the most they’ve allowed in 10 years. The Chiefs’ 42 points stand as the second-most scored by an opponent at Qwest Field. The defeat dropped the Seahawks to 5-6 and into a tie with St. Louis atop the NFC West.
The Seahawks blocked a field-goal attempt, scored one touchdown on a blocked punt and scored another when the Chiefs neglected to defend receiver Ben Obomanu altogether. Despite all that, Seattle still lost by 18 points. By the end, there was nothing left to do but cringe at the wreckage.
“We don’t ever want to come into this stadium and perform like that and let people knock us around like that,” Carroll said.
The Seahawks gave up more than 40 points only once in a regular-season game in the first eight years Qwest Field was open. They’ve now surrendered that many in each of their past two home games.
But in many ways, this defeat stung more than the 41-7 whuppin’ the Giants hung on the Seahawks three weeks ago. Charlie Whitehurst was starting his first NFL game, and Seattle’s offense hadn’t found any rhythm. This week, Seattle was returning home after gaining more than 300 passing yards each of the past two weeks, while the Chiefs entered the game 6-4, the worst record for any division leader other than Seattle. Kansas City had lost its last four road games and gave up 49 points in Denver two weeks ago.
Kansas City’s Jamaal Charles ran for 27 yards on his first carry; the Seahawks rushed for 20 yards all game. The Chiefs had 302 yards at halftime; the Seahawks had 71. And given all that, it was rather remarkable Seattle only trailed 21-10 after Olindo Mare’s 43-yard field goal on the final play of the half.
“Not good,” Hasselbeck said of the first-half performance. “It was not good enough.”
The most important player for Seattle on Sunday was receiver Mike Williams, and he didn’t play – which tells you what kind of game it was for the Seahawks. Williams was out with a foot strain, and suddenly an offense that passed for more 700 yards the past two games couldn’t do much of anything.
The Seahawks failed to gain a first down on their first two possessions, they were stopped once on fourth down, and their only touchdown in the first half was scored when defensive back Kennard Cox blocked a first-quarter punt and rookie Earl Thomas returned it for a touchdown.
After gaining 71 yards in the first half, the Seahawks gained 52 on the first play of the second half, a deep pass to Obomanu. Seattle scored on Hasselbeck’s 13-yard touchdown pass to Chris Baker that cut Kansas City’s lead to four points.
It was as close as Seattle got, as the Chiefs simply ran over the Seahawks down the stretch. That was the play-by-play description of Charles’ 3-yard touchdown run to start the fourth quarter and the story line for that period. Kansas City scored twice in the first three minutes of the quarter that ended with Seattle on one knee, waiting for time to run out.
And when the game was over, Carroll stood in front of his team and urged silence.
“ ‘Be quiet,’ ” he said. “ ‘We’ll figure it out when we can.’ They don’t have any better ideas than I do about it right now. Let’s just be quiet and get together tomorrow and figure it out.”
Chiefs 42, Seahawks 24
KC—Bowe 7 pass from Cassel (Succop kick), 11:31.
Sea—Thomas 10 blocked punt return (Mare kick), :31.
KC—Smith 1 run (Succop kick), 7:18.
KC—Bowe 36 pass from Cassel (Succop kick), 1:12.
Sea—FG Mare 43, :00.
Sea—Baker 13 pass from Hasselbeck (Mare kick), 14:03.
KC—Charles 3 run (Succop kick), 14:54.
KC—Bowe 9 pass from Cassel (Succop kick), 12:43.
Sea—Obomanu 87 pass from Hasselbeck (Mare kick), 10:16.
KC—Moeaki 6 pass from Cassel (Succop kick), 3:36.
|Total Net Yards||503||288|
|Time of Poss.||41:03||18:57|
RUSHING—Kansas City, Charles 22-173, Jones 20-68, Cassel 5-28, Smith 1-1. Seattle, Lynch 7-20, Forsett 3-2, Hasselbeck 2-(minus 2).
PASSING—Kansas City, Cassel 22-32-0-233. Seattle, Hasselbeck 20-37-2-282.
RECEIVING—Kansas City, Bowe 13-170, Jones 3-14, Charles 2-3, Tucker 1-24, Cox 1-10, Copper 1-6, Moeaki 1-6. Seattle, Obomanu 5-159, Stokley 5-51, Tate 2-21, Lynch 2-13, Butler 2-9, Baker 1-13, Forsett 1-8, Washington 1-5, Carlson 1-3.
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