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Sunday, November 28, 2021

Seahawks Blow Lead, Lose To Titans 33-30 In Overtime

(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

By Khalid Bennett, The Seattle Medium 

The Seattle Seahawks, coming off a road win over the Indianapolis Colts in week one, were in front of the 12s for the first time in a regular season game in over a year as they hosted the Tennessee Titans Sunday at Lumen Field. With the covid pandemic still a concern nationwide, strict vaccination protocols were put in place to ensure fans of a safe experience as they return to in-person football action. The theme of the day was “Welcome Home.” The Tennessee Titans were surprised in week 1 by the Arizona Cardinals giving up 6 sacks in the loss. The key defensively for Seattle would be to try and stop Derrick Henry, one of the top running backs in all of football. Offensively, the Seahawks would look to feed off and build on the success they had last week with Russell Wilson who was able to connect on 4 touchdowns and 0 turnovers.  

Tyler Lockett, who was on the other end of 2 of Wilson’s touchdowns, was able to strike early by hauling in 51-yard bomb in the first quarter that led to a Seahawks field goal and the first points of the ball game. While the defense did a great job suppressing Henry, chunk plays in the passing game by Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill set up an opportunity for Tennessee to tie the game. The first quarter would end with both teams knotted at 3. 

Tennessee started finding success in the passing game. Ryan Tannehill found his big target Julio Jones downfield for a big 51-yard play putting the Titans deep in Seahawk territory. With Tennessee knocking on the door, Seahawks’ linebacker Bobby Wagner charged up the middle for a sack on 3rd down holding the Titans to just a field goal. Seattle wasted no time on their next possession, going 3 plays and 83 yards later as the Seahawks took the lead when Russell Wilson hooked up with Tyler Lockett once again. This time for a 63-yard touchdown. 10-6 Seahawks.  

The Seattle defense got into the mix and came up with another big play of their own. A sack fumble caused by defensive end Alton Robinson was recovered at the 6-yard line by defensive end Kerry Hyder, Jr. Two plays later Chris Carson gets in the end zone to give the Seahawks a 17-6 lead.  

Tennessee would go 63 yards on the next drive and what looked like a touchdown catch by Julio Jones was overturned leaving the Titans to settle for their third field goal of the game by Randy Bullock. With just over a minute left in the first half, Seattle went to their uptempo offense. It took them only 48 seconds to move the ball 73 yards setting up for another Chris Carson plunge giving the Seahawks a 24-9 lead at halftime. At the half, the Seahawks were able to hold Henry to just 35 yards on 13 carries which was a win for the Seahawk defense, but containing Julio Jones in the secondary was going to be a chore. The question was whether or not Tennessee could stop Seattle’s big play offense in the second half. 

Tennessee came out in the second half with plans to take advantage of the miss matches in the passing game. Seattle’s secondary had trouble with Julio Jones and AJ Brown. Their opening drive went for 80 yards in 8 plays mostly through the air. Henry took advantage of an over pursuing defense that had kept him at bay in the first half, and reversed field for a 9 yard touchdown run cutting the lead to 8 at 24-16.  

Tennessee stopped Seattle’s offense in the third quarter and held the ball on offense for the majority of the period. Another long drive by the Titans came up empty in the end as Bullock sent his field goal attempt wide right and prevented Tennessee from making it a one possession game. The Seahawks would continue to dial up the big plays on offense. Russell Wilson hit Freddie Swain with the deep ball for a 68-yard touchdown pass. However the Seahawks missed the extra point attempt making it 30-16 Seahawks.  

After being corralled for most of the game, Henry was able to break loose for his longest run of the season, a 60-yard scamper down the left side to bring the Titans to within a touchdown at 30-23.  

Late in the fourth quarter, Titans as they methodically moved the ball down the field in an attempt to tie the game. The Seahawk defense was able to force a fourth down situation in which they came up big with pressure from the defensive line to force an incomplete pass from Tannehill. The Titans weren’t done yet, trying frantically to get into the end zone as they came up on the 2 minute warning. After Henry’s long run, Tennessee seemingly leaned on the all-pro back to wear down the Seattle defense. A 12 play, 64 yard drive spearheaded by Henry doing it all. Running the football, screen plays, and making catches out of the backfield, Henry virtually took over the football game. His one-yard touchdown run tied the game giving the ball back to the Seahawks with just 24 seconds left in regulation which was not enough time so the Seahawks and the Titans would go into overtime knotted at 30.  

In overtime, Tennessee won the coin toss and elected to receive. Seattle looked to have them stopped on fourth down but a roughing the passer penalty kept the drive alive for the Titans. Seattle’s defense stepped up once again and forced a punt giving Russell Wilson and the offense a chance to win the game with just a field goal. Not only did Seattle fail to get a first down, but Russell Wilson took a sack on the half yard line which forced a punt out of the shadow of their own goal post. Tennessee took over with great field position and only needed a few positive plays to set up what would be the game winning field by Randy Bullock. Tennessee pulls out the come from behind victory over Seattle 33-30.  

Russell completed 22 of 31 passes for 343 yards and two touchdowns in a losing effort for the Seahawks. 

The Seahawks will travel to Minnesota to take on the Vikings next Sunday. 

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