Missed call overshadows Seahawks’ defensive dominance
SEATTLE (AP) If K.J. Wright had simply fallen on the loose ball as it bounced, there would be no controversy hanging over the Seattle Seahawks.
Instead, Wright did as he’s been instructed, to make sure the ball didn’t end up back in the hands of the Lions. It was calculated and intentional and added another Monday night controversy to Seattle’s history.
Yes, the Seahawks received a break when a flag wasn’t thrown on Wright for illegal batting after he guided Calvin Johnson’s fumble out of the back of the end zone for a touchback, giving Seattle possession.
The Seahawks are freely admitting as much after their 13-10 win, with Pete Carroll saying on his radio show on KIRO-AM in Seattle on Tuesday morning that based on what he understood about the rule prior to Monday’s missed call, he would have ”done the exact same thing,” as Wright.
”I didn’t know the rule either,” Carroll said. ”I’ve never seen it come up and I’ve been coaching for – I don’t even know how many years it is and how many games it possibly could be. I don’t see how anybody would have known that one. If they did, they did.”
Had Wright been flagged, the Lions would have gotten possession back at the Seattle 1. Instead, things went Seattle’s way but the non-call overshadowed the performance of the Seattle defense.
For the second straight week, Seattle did not allow an offensive touchdown. The Lions were held to 256 total yards with 90 of those coming on Detroit’s final possession.
The Seahawks have allowed one field goal in their opponents’ past 18 offensive possessions, including their Week 3 shutout of Chicago. Sixteen of those 18 possessions have ended in a punt and that defensive dominance of the past two weeks coincided with Kam Chancellor ending his holdout and returning to the team.
It just seemed appropriate Chancellor would be the one making the game-saving play.
”I just realized that I could get the ball out,” Chancellor said. ”It just happened to be in a situation where I saved the game, but I saw a lot of brown of the ball, and I saw it loose, so I just punched at it. We practiced that all the time.”
This isn’t the first time one of Seattle’s stellar safeties has made a unique play at the goal line to force a turnover. In Week 17 last season against St. Louis, with Seattle trying to hold the lead in the fourth quarter, Earl Thomas chopped the arm of Rams running back Benny Cunningham as he stretched for the goal line. The ball came free and bounced into and out of the end zone for a Seattle touchback.
Carroll said he’s shown that play at least 50 times to his team to reiterate the point that every yard matters.
”We’ve seen it before – Earl made the play last year against the Rams – and we understand that somebody is going to make a play,” Seattle linebacker Bobby Wagner said. ”The saying is, `Give us an inch of grass.’ That’s all it is. We’ll make the play.”
The north end zone of CenturyLink Field has seen its share of wackiness. Wright guiding the ball out of bounds for a touchback just adds to a history that includes the ”Fail Mary,” Tony Romo’s dropped field-goal snap in the closing minutes of a playoff game in January 2007 and Terrell Owens pulling a pen from his sock and autographing a football on a Monday night against the Seahawks in 2002.
All four of those moments happened in prime time – three on Monday nights – leading Carroll to crack that’s where fans should sit if they’re coming to a Monday game in Seattle.
”That little corner, there’s some crazy stuff on Monday night,” Carroll said.
NOTES: Carroll said on his radio show that RB Fred Jackson suffered what appears to be a high-ankle sprain, but had no update on how much time Jackson might miss. … Carroll said they expect to get back WR Ricardo Lockette, who left the game with what was announced as shortness of breath.
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