Seahawks vs. Chargers: Thoughts From Qwest

Down to the Wire

It’s come to the last possession. Chargers, trailing 27-20, take over on their own 45. Two completions and San Diego’s down to the 12. There’s 26 seconds left. Chargers have no timeouts. Delay of game moves ball back to the 17. Third down: incomplete. Gates triple-teamed. Fourth down: Thomas intercepts Rivers’ pass at the 5. That’s two picks for the rooke and the Seahawks are going to win, 27-20.

Un (blankety blank blank) Reel!

Leon Washington just retrned a kickoff 98 yards for his second touchown. And they’re not even going to review it and do it over. Seahawks are back on top: 27-20. 6:24 left.

Biggest Play So Far

Chargers call a timeout before a 3rd-and-goal at the 2. The Seattle linebackers have done a nice job covering TE Antonio Gates in the redzone. Let’s see if the can keep No. 85 from catching a TD pass. Wow. A wild, wild, wild scramble by Rvers resulted in him floating a TD pass to Gates, but San Diego is called for holding on the play. It’s now 3rd-and-12. And guess what? Rivers goes right back to Gates, hitting him 2-yards deep in the end zone over the middle. A two-point play ties it up. Will they go back to Gates? Nope, they got to Naanee. He catches it, but it doesn’t countl Naanee stepped out of bounds and came back into the field. Time for another do-over. This time, Rivers (yeah, you guessed it) goes back to Naanee. That’s two touchdown passes to Gates and two two-point conversion passes to Naanee. But it only counts for eight points.

It’s tied folks: 20-20 with 6:39 left.

That’s Why He’s a No. 1 Pick

Safety Earl Thomas, Seattle’s rookie from Texas, just picked off a pass that somehow  slipped through the hands of Antonio Gates and into his. The 34-yard return set the Seahawks up on San Diego’s 11. We’ll see if they can cash in. Nope. They had to settle for a 24 yard Mare FG. Seattle 20, San Diego 12. 11:30 left.

End of Third Quarter

Seattle 17, Chargers 12. Chargers got a FG late in the quarter. Seahawks are at midfield after Leon Washington’s nearly broke another kick return for a TD.

Sack! Safety!

Linebacker Brandon Siler just blew past the Seahawks left tackle Tyler Polumbus and dropped Matt Hasselback for a safety. Seattle leads 17-9 with 4:31 left.

Clemons Time

Seahawks defensive end Chris Clemons just picked up his second sack and third tackle for loss on the day. He could be the speed pass-rusher the Hawks have lacked for a while. He plays in Seattle’s 4-3 alignment, lining up opposite the Chargers tight end. He was a linebacker at Georgia and had a career-high 7 sacks for Oakland in 2007 and the Seahawks got him in the trade with Philadelphia for Darryl Tapp.

Rivers, Chargers Respond

Good thing about down 17-0 when you have Philip Rivers on the your fantasy team. You figure the Chargers are going to come out and wing it and they did. Rivers needed 3 passes to cover 80 yards (the payoff was a 3-yarder to Malcom Floyd) and the Chargers are back in it, 17-7, with 12:33 left in the third quarter.

Record Run

Leon Washington returned the opening kickoff 101 yards for a touchown. Seattle’s old record was 97 yards by Maurice Morris on Oct. 22,  2002. Hawks up 17-0.

End of Half

Seattle 10, San Diego 0. On a 3rd down play, Seattle called a QB draw. Hasselbeck gained 2 yards for a first round, and the Hawks rushed the kicking team onto the field to try and field goal but time expired. Don’t know about you but the final 1:38 of this half has left me a little dazed and confused.

Seattle’s held San Diego to 139 total yards, forced two fumbles, sacked Rivers three times and hurried him a lot. Seattle’s passing game generated 199 yards, but just one TD.

Another Review

That’s three inside the final 1:38. this one comes on the San Diego kickoff return. Darren proles appeared to be stripped of the ball by Kam Chancellor, but officials ruled the SD returner down on the field before he lost the ball. And the ruling goes … to Seattle. Seahawks ball at the 24 with 0:47 left.

Seattle TD, and It Stays on the Board

After a 3-and-out, Seattle got the ball back. Golden Tate’s 13-yard return plus holding on San Diego before the punt gave Seattle the ball at the 41 with 1:13 left. A pass interference call moved it to the 9 and Hasselbeck connected with TE John Carlson for a TD with :53 left on the next play. This one was also reviewed, but Carlson was in the end zone and Seattle leads 10-0.  Drive: 3 plays, 41 yards in 22 seconds.

Call Goes San Diego’s Way

Paul Oliver punched the ball out of Deion Branch’s arms before he reached the end zone at the end of what looked to be a 42yard TD. The ball rolled out of the end zone for a touchback, so San Diego takes over at the 20. Seattle still leads, but it’s 3-0 instead of 10-0. We’ll see if this play comes back to haunt ’em. You get the feeling the game’s going to come down to the last possession.

Touchdown or Not?

Hasselbeck gets the ball to a wide-open Deion Branch for a 42-yard TD with 1:38 left, but the the play is being reviewed. Did Branch lose the ball before he crossed the goalline? After seeing the replay, I think he did. This one should come back. We’ll see if the officials in the booth see it the same way.

Defense Rocking

San Diego finally got a drive going but David Hawthorne’s bone-rattling tackle on RB Mike Tolbert forced a fumble and the Hawks recovered at the 7. A couple plays before, Raheem Brock sacked Rivers (that’s three so far in the first half for Seattle’s defense) and Junior Siavii popped Rivers’ helmet off with his shoulder pads as the Chargers’ QB was headed to the turf. Seattle’s really attacking on defense. San Diego lost starting RG Louis Vasquez with a knee injury in the opening quarter and don’t have a lot of depth up front.

Hasselbeck Picked Again

First play after Tate’s punt return, the Seahawks got for it all but Hasselbeck pass is underthown and picked off in the end zone. He’s now been intercepted five times.

It’s Golden

Rookie Golden Tate, who made his debut a week ago, has caught three passes for 24 yards and just returned a punt 31 yards to give the Seahawks the ball at San Diego’s 46. Tate’s looking more and more like the real deal. His 8-yard catch , following a 25 yard by Justin Forcett and a 37-yard pass to John Carlson, set up Seattle’s FG.

Defense Gettin’ It Done

Seattle’s defense is flying around and making things difficult for the Chargers. Chris Clemons and Brandon Mebane have sacks and the Chargers are making QB Philip Rivers rush his throws.

Pre-Game

Portland Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan, a Seattle icon duirng his days as a player and coah with the SuperSonics, raised the 12th Man Flag.

A Chargers’ fan dressed in a headless costume with gigantic arms and Jinx 1 scrolled across his back, was a big attraction as he walked in front of the stadium. You had to see it.

Pete Carroll was throwing 40-yard spirals before the gae. He took a couple shots at the goal post. His first was wide right, the second one hit the goalpost and bounced back.

Olindo Mare kicked a 56-yard FG in pre-game. His career-longest is a 54-yarder.

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