DENVER—The Seahawks opened their season with a back-and-forth game at Denver, but ultimately were unable to come up with one final score, losing to the Broncos 27-24 at Broncos Stadium at Mile High.
Here are six rapid reactions to Seattle's season-opening loss:
1. There were a lot of big plays by both teams.
The Seahawks offense had its ups and downs in Sunday's game, but it also came up with some big plays, most notably a 51-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Lockett, a 66-yard pass to Will Dissly, and a 24-yard run by Chris Carson that featured the second-year back hurdling a defensive back, landing and sprinting down the sideline.
Unfortunately for the Seahawks they were also on the wrong end of too many big plays, with Denver capitalizing on some miscues in coverage to pick up huge chucks of yards. The Broncos, who finished with 470 yards of offense, scored on a 43-yard pass to Emmanuel Sanders, as well as on a 29-yard pass to running back Paul Lindsay, who found himself wide open down the sideline.
2. The safeties came up big.
Earl Thomas has been back with the Seahawks for less than a week, but it didn't take the All-Pro safety long to make his mark on the game. On Denver's opening possession, Thomas broke up a pass over the middle, tipping the ball up and nearly causing a turnover (Bradley McDougald's diving effort came up short). The next time Denver had the ball, Thomas intercepted Case Keenum and returned the ball 26 yards to the Denver 15-yard line. One play later, Russell Wilson hit Will Dissly for a 15-yard touchdown.
And while McDougald couldn't come up with that early interception, he had a pair of interceptions later in the game, including one he returned 39 yards to immediately negate a Seattle turnover that happened one play earlier. The Seahawks turned that interception into a score as well, with Wilson connecting with Brandon Marshall for a 20-yard score. As a reminder of how much turnovers can affect the game, the Seahawks were being outgained by 100 yards when Marshall hauled in the touchdown to tie it.
3. Von Miller is really, really good.
This isn't exactly breaking news, but Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller showed again Sunday that he is one of the NFL's most disruptive defensive players. Miller, who came into this season with 83.5 career sacks, added three more to that total, but his most impressive play came in run defense, when after Chris Carson picked up a first down, Miller ripped the ball loose and held onto it for a forced fumble and recovery.
4. Will Dissly is more than just a blocking tight end.
When the Seahawks selected Will Dissly in the fourth round of this year's draft, one of the first things general manager John Schneider noted was that the Seahawks considered him the best blocking tight end in the draft. Schneider later went on to praise Dissly's hands, and the University of Washington product showed that side of his game off in a big way during the first half, catching three passes for 105 yards, including a 15-yard touchdown and a 66-yard catch and run that featured a couple of nasty stiff arms.
5. Brandon Marshall had a good return to Denver.
Sunday's game wasn't just Marshall's first as a Seahawk, it was also his first game back in Denver since he played for the Broncos during the first four seasons of his career. Marshall welcomed himself back to Denver with a 20-yard touchdown reception, his first since the 2016 season. Marshall finished the game with three catches for 46 yards.
6. Michael Dickson at altitude is fun.
Seattle's rookie punter became a fan favorite in the preseason with his booming punts and uncanny placement, and in his first regular-season game, Dickson did nothing to quiet the hype. Dickson averaged 59.0 yards on six punts, four of which were downed inside the 20, including a 69-yard boot that went out of bounds at the 6-yard line, a 59-yarder that was downed at the 2-yard line, and a 57-yard punt that went out at the 13-yard line.
Fan photos from the Seahawks' 2018 regular-season opener against the Broncos in Denver.