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(Sunday, October 2nd)
Final Score: Atlanta 30, Seattle 28
Seattle, WA (Sports Network) - Michael Turner ran for 70 yards and two touchdowns and Matt Ryan threw for 291 yards and one score, as the Atlanta Falcons escaped with a 30-28 win over the Seattle Seahawks.
Trailing by two with less than two minutes to go in the game, Seattle began its the final drive from the 15-yard line. The Seahawks moved the ball up to the Atlanta 45 and looked to be in good shape to steal the game, with 22 seconds left and still holding on to one timeout. On 2nd-and-10 however, Sidney Rice was flagged for a false start penalty, knocking the Seahawks back five yards to midfield.
They would get down to the Falcons 43 before head coach Pete Carroll brought out kicker Steven Hauschka to attempt a 61-yard field goal that would have won the game. Hauschka's kick was short with eight seconds left.
"We had some struggles out there in the second half," Turner said. "They made some adjustments and we have some things to work on. We need to work on the killer mentality, it could have been ugly today. It was nice for us to get this win. We really needed it"
Julio Jones hauled in 11 passes for 127 yards, while veteran tight end Tony Gonzalez caught seven balls for 56 yards and one touchdown for Atlanta (2-2).
Tarvaris Jackson completed 25-of-38 passes for 319 yards and three scores, while Marshawn Lynch picked up 24 yards and a touchdown on eight carries.
Mike Williams, Rice, and Ben Obomanu all caught touchdown passes for the Seahawks (1-3).
After Seattle went three-and-out on the opening possession, Atlanta took over on its 28-yard line and Ryan led his team on a 12-play, 72-yard march, capped by Ryan's one-yard touchdown pass to Gonzalez.
Early in the second quarter, the Falcons defense came up with a big play, when Curtis Lofton intercepted Jackson on a 3rd-and-4 pass intended for Williams, turning the ball over to the offense at the Seahawks 37-yard line.
From there, Atlanta needed only four plays to score, capping the short drive with a 21-yard touchdown run by Turner through the left side of the line and into the end zone for a 14-0 lead.
Seattle got on the board on its next possession when Jackson connected with Doug Baldwin for 30 yards, putting the ball on the 48 and on the next play, the quarterback found Rice deep down the right sideline for a 52-yard touchdown strike.
Atlanta began the ensuing drive from its own 28 and used 11 plays to go 72 yards before Turner punched the ball into the end zone from the one for a 21-7 lead with 2:48 left in the half.
Following a three-and-out by the Seahawks, Ryan moved his team down to the 29-yard line and Matt Bryant connected on a 47-yard field goal with 25 seconds remaining to give his team a 24-7 lead heading into halftime.
Ryan connected with Jones on a 45-yard pass on the first play of the second half, leading to Bryant's 50-yard field goal.
On the ensuing Seattle drive, Jackson took his team on a 10-play, 61 yard march to the six-yard line and hooked up with Williams for a six-yard touchdown strike to make it a 27-14 contest.
A punt return of 33 yards by Leon Washington set up the Seahawks at the Atlanta 11 with just over three minutes left in the third. On the next play, Lynch busted off left tackle for an 11-yard touchdown run, pulling the Seahawks within 27-21.
The Falcons extended their lead to 30-21, with just over three minutes gone in the final quarter when Ryan led a 13-play, 57 yard drive before Bryant connected on his third field goal of the day, this one from 42-yards out.
But the Seahawks came right back on their next possession, going 60 yards in nine plays, including a huge 12-yard completion to Baldwin on 3rd-and-9 to keep the drive going. Jackson found Obomanu uncovered in the end zone for an eight-yard touchdown pass, pulling Seattle within two with 8:13 left.
"The one thing I am happy about is we get on fighting and plugging away," Jackson said. "I feel like we are coming together as a team, not just offense and defense but special teams as well. I am looking forward to the future with this team. There are some things we need to work on and we will."
The Falcons were able to grind out three first downs and chew up better than six minutes off the clock before giving the ball back to the Seahawks for one last chance with 1:49 left.
Falcons head coach Mike Smith has a career record of 5-0 in games played on the west coast...Seattle leads the regular season series, 8-5...Atlanta converted 9-of-16 third down opportunities, while Seattle went 6-for-11 on third down...Atlanta outgained Seattle, 412-372 and had possession of the ball for 40:10.
10/02 20:23:31 ET