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Game at a glance: Colts 34, Seahawks 28
INDIANAPOLIS – A recap of the Seahawks’ 34-28 loss to the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday:
PLAYER OF THE GAME: JERMAINE KEARSE
But the Seahawks lost. Yes, they did. But not because of anything their second-year wide receiver and special teams player did. In fact, Kearse made two plays that should have made the difference, but didn’t.
“It was scheme that we had worked on this whole week,” Kearse said. “Coach (Brian) Schneider does a tremendous job putting in good scheme out there for us to make plays and that was another one of his good schemes. I went in and I was open, so I went for the block and I was fortunate enough to go get it.”
It also was Kearse who made a leaping grab of a pass from Russell Wilson along the sideline, despite tight coverage from Colts cornerback Vontae Davis, landed on one foot at the 3-yard line and lunged to the pylon for a 28-yard touchdown in the second quarter.
“Russell just gave me a chance and that’s all I can ask for,” Kearse said. “When I got my chance I just tried to make the best of it.”
So while others made more plays, and a few made bigger plays, no one had as many impactful plays as Kearse.
“Jermaine made an unbelievable catch,” Wilson said. “He showed up and gave us a lift when we needed one. He just continues to get better and better.”
PLAYS OF THE GAME
Offense: It’s tempting to say just pick one of the Colts’ third-down conversions, because they had seven in 12 attempts – including three of four in the fourth quarter and five of six in the second half. But the play that won’t go away is Andrew Luck’s 73-yard touchdown pass to T.Y. Hilton on the Colts’ final play of the first quarter.
The Seahawks had dominated the quarter. But quicker than you could ponder who was supposed to be covering Hilton, he was wide open at the Seahawks’ 37-yard line and then ran up the sideline – stopping for half-a-blink to let a fast-closing Earl Thomas fly past him and out of bounds – for a touchdown that made it 12-7. Of all the woulda, coulda, shoulda plays that will haunt the Seahawks from this one, that one will be at the top of the list.
Clemons slapped the ball from Luck’s grasp as he was looking for a receiver and Cliff Avril recovered at the Colts’ 30-yard line. But as with many things on this day, the rest of it didn’t go the Seahawks way as they settled for a Steven Hauschka field goal rather than punching it in for a touchdown. So rather than going up 29-17, it was 25-17 and that four-point swing ended up costing the Seahawks in the end.
Special teams: There’s was Kearse’s big punt block and Hauschka did kick four field goals. But it’s the Hauschka attempt that was blocked by Lawrence Guy – a 48-yarder in the second quarter – that wins out because it was returned 61 yards for a touchdown by Delano Howell.
You know that kicking-themselves list we mentioned for the Seahawks? This one is right up there, as well.
The Seahawks got out of this one with only bumps and bruises, Carroll said. But they also played without All-Pro center Max Unger (arm) for the second consecutive week and he was joined on the inactive list by tight end Zach Miller (hamstring).
“It was going to be a miracle if they made it through,” Carroll said. “We needed to wait. We just need to wait. It’s a long season … so we’re trying to take the conservative route.”
Marshawn Lynch had his first 100-yard rushing performance of the season with 102, including 76 in the first half. Wilson matched Lynch’s total for the first 100-yard rushing game of his career, with 54 in the first half and 48 in the second half. As a team, the Seahawks a season-high 218 rushing yards.
Thomas had nine solo tackles, and now has 35 total tackles to take over the team lead from middle linebacker Bobby Wagner (34).
The last time the Seahawks lost a regular season was in Week 12 last season – 24-21 to the Dolphins in Miami. The loss to the Colts snapped a nine-game winning streak.
Time of possession pretty much told the tale of this game. The Seahawks dominated in the first half – 19:40 to 10:20 – when they scored 19 of their 28 points. The Colts dominated even more in the fourth quarter – 12:11 to 2:49 – when they outscored the Seahawks 11-0.
And the Colts also were dominant when it came to converting third downs. Each team had 12 third-down situations. The Colts converted seven (58 percent). The Seahawks converted two (17 percent).
Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate each caught five of Wilson’s 15 completions – Baldwin for 80 yards and Tate for 61, including a 10-yard touchdown.
With his four field goals, Hauschka has kicked seven in the past two games.
YOU DON’T SAY
“This was a terrific football game. Two good teams going at it and battling. I think the tale of this game will come down to the big plays that they made and they came through and we had our shots we didn’t get the ones we needed.” – the first words from Carroll’s mouth in his post-game interview session