Heartbreaker in Atlanta
January 13, 2013, 1:15 pm
After storming back from a 20-point deficit, Seattle still falls to Atlanta after Matt Bryant hits the game winning FG with 8 seconds left in the game.
Seattle found themselves in a similar hole they dug themselves into last week versus Washington. It just took them a little longer to find their way out.
They also did it with too much time left on the clock.
Atlanta would find points on their first drive, when Matt Bryant knocked through a 39-yard FG. Later in the quarter, Matt Ryan connected with Tony Gonzalez for a 1-yard pass, and for the seconds straight week Seattle ended the first quarter trailing by double-digit points.
Unlike last week, however, Atlanta's lead kept growing.
Another Bryant FG and a 47-yard TD pass from Ryan to Roddy White doubled the Falcons lead to 20-0 before the half.
On the first series of the third quarter, Russell Wilson drove the Seahawks 78 yards on 9 plays for their first score of the game when he found Golden Tate down the left sideline for a 29-yard TD pass.
Ryan and the Falcons would answer with a touchdown of their own later in the third to keep the deficit at 20 points.
After controlling the game for the first 45 minutes, Seattle thoroughly dominated the game for just about the final 15.
The Seahawks would rattle off two touchdowns in the first six minutes of the 4th quarter, one on a Russell Wilson keeper, and the second on a Zach Miller 3-yard catch.
Dormant most of the game, Seattle was quickly back in the game with plenty of time on the clock and trailing only 27-21.
The Seahawks defense would continue to keep Atlanta off the board, giving their offense a final chance to take the lead for the first time in the game.
And they would do just that when a Marshawn Lynch TD run capped a 7-play, 60-yard scoring drive that put Seattle up 28-27 with only 31 seconds remaining.
Jacquizz Rodgers would return the ensuing kick off to the 28, before two quick Ryan passes to Harry Douglas and Gonzalez had the Falcons positioned at the Seattle 31.
Atlanta then trotted out Matt Bryant for the game-winning attempt. Pete Carroll iced Bryant on his first attempt, which he ultimately missed. His second try he wouldn't, however, knocking it through the middle of the uprights.
The Falcons had reclaimed the lead, 30-28, with only 8 seconds remaining.
A final Hail Mary attempt by Seattle would be intercepted by Julio Jones and Atlanta moved one step closer to the Super Bowl.
Wilson finished the game throwing for 385 yards and two touchdowns. He was also the team's leading rusher with 60 yards.
142 of those passing yards went to TE Zach Miller. Another 103 went to Golden Tate.
The victory was both Matt Ryan's and Tony Gonzalez's first playoff victory in their careers.