NFL Game Summary - San Diego at Seattle|
(Sunday, September 26th)
Final Score: Seattle 27, San Diego 20
Seattle, WA (Sports Network) - Leon Washington returned a pair of kickoffs for
touchdowns, including the go-ahead 99-yard burst with 6:24 remaining in the
fourth quarter, as the Seattle Seahawks held off San Diego, 27-20, at Qwest
Washington, who was traded to Seattle from the New York Jets in April, rumbled
a team-record 101 yards for a score in the third quarter for the Seahawks,
who forced five turnovers. Two of those were interceptions by rookie Earl
Thomas, including a pick of Philip Rivers inside the Seattle 10-yard line in
the waning seconds.
Matt Hasselbeck completed 19-of-32 passes for 220 yards with a TD and an
interception for Seattle (2-1), which upended the Chargers for the sixth time
in the last seven meetings.
"It's important for us to show that we can play against a team like this,"
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "Leon was just magical today."
Rivers threw for a career-high 455 yards, going 29-of-53 with two scores and
the two interceptions. Antonio Gates had seven receptions for 109 yards and a
TD for the Chargers (1-2), who played a good portion of the game without
star linebacker Shawne Merriman. He suffered a calf injury in the first
"Every team has issues, we have issues, we have to protect the football and
cover kickoffs," Chargers coach Norv Turner said. "We have some young guys who
have not been as consistent as they should be. We need to make some personnel
changes. If you turn the ball over you are underachieving, we cannot make
that many turnovers."
Thomas' first interception of the day led to Olindo Mare's 23-yard field goal
with 11:27 left in the fourth quarter, expanding the Seahawks' lead to 20-12.
The Chargers then overcame a pair of penalties to tie the game. Rivers
engineered a nine-play, 65-yard march, finishing it with a 12-yard TD pass to
Gates in the middle of the end zone. The catch came after Gates made an end
zone reception from two yards out, as offensive tackle Brandyn Dombrowski was
whistled for holding. On the two-point conversion try, Legedu Naanee made the
end zone catch, but was ruled to go out of bounds first. On the next play
though, Rivers hooked up with Naanee in the right side of the end zone to even
the score with 6:39 remaining.
Washington, though received the ensuing kickoff and stayed on his feet despite
being hit by Jacob Hester while running up the middle. Washington then raced
past defenders for his sixth career kickoff return for a touchdown.
On the ensuing San Diego possession, Rivers led the Chargers to the Seattle
19, but a fourth down pass to Patrick Crayton was knocked away in the end zone
by cornerback Roy Lewis with 2:28 left.
The Chargers, though, forced a punt and got the ball back with 1:38 left.
Rivers moved his team from the San Diego 45 to the Seattle 17, but the drive
stalled. On 4th-and-15, Rivers threw toward the end zone for Naanee, but
Thomas came up with the ball at the five and was tackled at the Seattle 26 to
seal the outcome.
Naanee fumbled the ball away on San Diego's first possession of the game and
Seattle broke on top early in the second on Mare's 23-yard field goal.
San Diego had another miscue, this time costing the Chargers points in the
second quarter. David Hawthorne stripped Mike Tolbert of the ball at the
Seattle five and Red Bryant recovered for the Seahawks.
Deion Branch then scored on a 42-yard pass play from Hasselbeck with 1:38 left
in the half, but the Chargers challenged the call as free safety Paul Oliver
punched the ball away just as Branch was crossing the goal line. San Diego won
the challenge and got the ball at the 20, as it went out of the back of the
After a punt, though, Seattle did expand its lead to 10-0 on Hasselbeck's
nine-yard TD connection to tight end John Carlson with 53 seconds left in the
The Seahawks forced another fumble on the ensuing kickoff, but ran out of time
for a field goal try while at the San Diego two.
After Washington ran back the second-half kickoff for a score, Rivers got the
Chargers within 17-7 on a three-yard TD pass to Malcolm Floyd. It came one
play after a Buster Davis 49-yard catch.
Brandon Siler sacked Hasselbeck in the end zone for a safety with 4 1/2
minutes left in the third and Nate Kaeding split the uprights from 29 yards
away to get the Chargers within five points going to the fourth.
Mare extended his team record with his 24th straight made field
goal...Seahawks cornerback Marcus Trufant left the game with an ankle injury,
while Chargers guard Louis Vasquez departed with a knee injury...Floyd had six
catches for 97 yards...Tolbert rushed 17 times for 73 yards, while Justin
Forsett led the Seattle ground game with 63 yards on 17 attempts...San Diego
had 518 yards of offense...The two kickoff returns for TDs ties an NFL record.
09/26 20:58:02 ET