"It's not how you start, it's how you finish" held true Sunday for the Seattle Seahawks in their Week 6 matchup against the Atlanta Falcons.
The Seahawks survived a missed field goal and a blocked extra point in the fourth quarter en route to defeating the Falcons 26-24 inside CenturyLink Field. Kicker Steven Hauschka's kick was wide left with Seattle trailing 24-17, while the block came on the Seahawks' next offensive drive that ended in a 1-yard touchdown run by running back Christine Michael. The extra point would've tied the game at 24 all.
Luckily for the Seahawks, creating a turnover on the ensuing drive gave them new life. An Earl Thomas interception of Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan eventually led to Hauschka setting up shop for a third field goal attempt. This time it helped Seattle re-gain the lead, 26-24, with roughly two minutes to go. And not surprisingly, again, it was the defense that delivered for the Seahawks when they needed it most, preventing the Falcons from scoring and ending any late-game heroics on downs.
The Falcons trailed the Seahawks 17-3 at halftime and struggled to keep Ryan upright. Ryan, who finished the game 27 for 42 with 335 yards and three touchdowns, was hit eight times in the first half and sacked three times. Even without defensive end Frank Clark and strong safety Kam Chancellor, who were both inactive because of injuries, the Seahawks defense generated constant pressure in the first half and held the Falcons' No. 1-ranked offense in check.
That flipped around in the second half, however. Atlanta scored touchdowns on their first three offensive drives and eventually took that 24-17 lead, their first of the game, in the third quarter after a Mohamed Sanu 10-yard touchdown reception. Each of the three drives lasted five or more plays and gained 75 yards or more.
The Seahawks (4-1) return to the Virginia Mason Athletic Center on Monday to begin preparation for a primetime matchup against Arizona Cardinals next Sunday at Glendale's University of Phoenix Stadium.
Here are some 12s supporting the Seahawks during Week 6 vs the Falcons at CenturyLink Field.