SEATTLE – With a muffled voice and a downcast gaze, Bobby Wagner mixed frustration and perspective during his post-game press conference on Sunday.
The 10th year veteran and Seattle Seahawks defensive captain has been around long enough to know that seasons aren’t made or interrupted in Week 2. He’s also been around long enough to know that the Seahawks typically don’t. not what they did. in a 33-30 overtime loss to the Tennessee Titans.
It’s not just that they fell at home as six-point favorites.
The real surprise was how they lost – faltering in the fourth quarter.
“It’s certainly not a good feeling,” said Wagner, who wasn’t in the mood to celebrate his franchise record of 20 tackles, “but it’s something we can learn from. start of the season, so we have to watch this movie and get better. “
The Seahawks (1-1) have been one of the best finishing teams in the NFL under Pete Carroll, especially since the arrival of Wagner and Russell Wilson in 2012. That’s what made it so surprising to see them award. 17 unanswered points to end the game, looked like a shattering victory in overtime loss.
“We’ve done so many good things and then we’ve really hurt ourselves too many times when you play against a good team,” said Carroll.
The collapse started when Jason Myers missed the extra point after Wilson’s touchdown pass to Freddie Swain gave the Seahawks a 30-16 lead early in the fourth quarter. It continued when they allowed Derrick Henry to escape for a 60-yard touchdown, the second of his three scores.
And this time, they had no late Wilson magic to bail them out, either on the last throttle order – when they took over with just 24 seconds left after Carroll oddly refused to use. one of their last two timeouts as Tennessee set the clock back en route to the tying score – or when they obediently went to three and away on their sole possession of OT.
Carroll admitted that his handling of the clock at the end of regulation could have been better.
Lots of things could have been better.
“You know, sometimes it happens, man,” said Jamal Adams, a solid Seattle security. “Sometimes it goes like that. It’s a phenomenal group. You talk about their offense on paper: Julio [Jones], Derrick Henry, AJ Brown, [Ryan] Tannehill. I mean, the list goes on and on of phenomenal great players on this side. So let’s not act like we haven’t played a good offense. They executed. We did not do it.”
Things happen against good teams. It doesn’t often happen to the Seahawks like this.
According to ESPN Stats & Information research, Henry’s 182 rushing yards were tied for the most allowed by the Seahawks in a game under Carroll, equaling what Adrian Peterson won in 2012.
And this was only the second time the Seahawks have lost at home as they led by at least 14 points in the fourth quarter since moving to their current stadium in 2002. The only other time was a loss to the Rams in 2004, six years before Carroll. took over.
These would have been the St. Louis Rams. And that would have been at the old Qwest Field, which has since undergone two name changes.
Yes, it’s been a long time since the Seahawks lost a game like this.
Adding to the disappointment of that fourth-quarter meltdown: It ruined what should have been Seattle’s home opener wellness story as fans – 68,585 of them – returned to Lumen Field after COVID-19 kept them away last season.
It’s fair to wonder if the Seahawks weren’t a little over-motivated on Sunday, as they played their first regular-season game in front of their home crowd in 630 days. They committed 10 penalties for 100 yards, including three for 29 in the fourth quarter. Adams was reported for brutalizing Tannehill on an incomplete third try in overtime. Jordyn Brooks was briefly benched after a late off-limits shot in the third quarter.
“I hate it,” Carroll said. “[It was] 24-9 at halftime. Go on. We looked after the ball all day, did a great job with the football and finished on top of that [in turnover differential] and get the game going. There had to be some other really important things that happened, which were the penalties and … the quarterback’s two hits. They were huge coins for them. And the off limits [hit] is unnecessary. It was just unnecessary things that happened. We have to be better than that. I need to be better. I have to help our guys be better than this. “
Despite those mistakes, the Seahawks got what they wanted in their last practice: one more chance with the ball in the hands of the quarterback who has led more fourth quarter or overtime returns than anyone since 2012.
The second play of their three-and-outs was an incomplete pitch to DK Metcalf, who was too physically compromised to make a play on the ball. Carroll said after the game he may have hit his knee. Right tackle Brandon Shell was sidelined at the time, sustaining an ankle sprain of unknown severity near the end of regulation.
If one bad loss and two potentially serious injuries weren’t enough, it all came on a day when the Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers and Arizona Cardinals all won to improve to 2-0. The first two weeks did nothing to dispel the belief that NFC West could be the toughest division in the league.
A non-conference loss in Week 2 won’t sink the Seahawks’ season. But given how difficult their division is, giving up on a game they should have won decreases their margin for error the rest of the way.
“I don’t think any of us expected to lose a game like this, especially with the history of being right here and the fourth quarter wins and the way we fight,” said wide Tyler Lockett, who continued his strong start with eight catches for 178 yards and his third touchdown in two games.
“I think for us, like I said, it’s a learning experience. Everything isn’t going to turn out your way. Sometimes you’re going to be knocked down.”