Arrowhead Stadium may have been freezing (10 degrees if you count wind chill!), but Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles was red hot. Without defensive tackle Brandon Mebane, the Seahawks had a hard time stopping Charles.
But that wasn’t the only struggle of the day. Read on for the nine biggest moments from the Seahawks’ 24-20 loss in Kansas City.
Kansas City strikes first
The Chiefs took advantage of a Mebane-less Seattle defense, putting together an impressive 9-minute, 86-yard drive that ended with Charles running into the corner of the end zone.
SEA 0, KC 7
Hawks march down the field to tie it up
The Seahawks answered with a 9-minute drive of their own — their longest of the year so far.
Starting on their own 10-yard line, Seattle gave the ball to running back Marshawn Lynch on the first four plays and were on the Kansas City 44 by the end of the first quarter.
The Hawks got a little lucky mid-drive: A penalty turned a third-down sack of Russell Wilson into a Seattle first down. Wilson made the most of it, hitting Jermaine Kearse to reach the 5 and Doug Baldwin for a touchdown.
Baldwin celebrated by miming firing an arrow into the crowd (channeling Fernando Rodney, perhaps?).
SEA 7, KC 7
Kansas City makes next TD drive look easy
The Chiefs went 80 yards in four plays to send Charles into the end zone again.
At one point during that drive, Kansas City TE Travis Kelce shot an invisible arrow of his own after making a nice catch, then looked at the Seahawks sideline. No taunting call, though.
SEA 7, KC 14
Seahawks get key turnover, then squander it
Safety Earl Thomas forced a fumble by Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce, negating what would have been a first down.
Seahawks defensive tackle Jordan Hill recovered and Seattle got it to the 9, but after what felt like a thousand incomplete end-zone passes, they settled for a field goal.
SEA 13, KC 14
Lockette thrown out
Seahawks wide receiver Ricardo Lockette was ejected from the game for a personal foul in the third quarter. After a tough battle with Chiefs safety Kurt Coleman during a long punt return, Lockette got in on the tackle and was on the ground when Coleman came over and shoved him. Lockette hopped to his feet and punched Coleman in the (helmeted) face, drawing the flag.
Moeaki’s first catch as a Seahawk is a go-ahead TD
In the first play after Lockette was ejected, Earl Thomas forced another fumble — this one by Charles. Byron Maxwell recovered it, setting up a 44-yard touchdown drive for Seattle.
A play-action pass to tight end (and former Kansas City Chief) Tony Moeaki in the end zone put the Hawks in the lead for the first time. It was Moeaki’s first possession as a Seahawk.
SEA 20, KC 17
Charles continues his big day
Seattle’s lead was short-lived. Jamaal Charles had a 47-yard run, leading to a 4-yard touchdown by fellow running back Knile Davis. That brought the Chiefs to 181 rushing yards, already the most against Seattle in more than a year.
SEA 20, KC 24
“We’ve got to go back to work and make sure we can figure out how to stop the run game all of a sudden,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said after the game. “We’ve been doing great, and it’s a strength of ours, so to see that happen is just out of character for us.”
Failed fourth-down attempts
On consecutive possessions in the fourth quarter, the Seahawks went for it on fourth down and came up short.
On the first, with 7:11 left in the game and snapping the ball at the Kansas City 2, Wilson attempted a fade pass to Baldwin that fell incomplete. Baldwin pleaded for a call, to no avail.
After forcing the Chiefs’ first punt of the game, the Seahawks faced a fourth-and-one from the Kansas City 36 with 3:38 to go. This time, Lynch was stuffed for no gain.
(They also lost the ball on downs on their final possession, with Wilson throwing an incomplete pass on fourth-and-18, pictured below. But at that point, it was all or nothing for Seattle.)
Hard not to admire their bravado (or hubris, depending on whom you ask) — and data suggests teams should go for it on fourth down much more often than they do — but in this case, it didn’t pay off.
“We need to do better,” Pete Carroll said of the passing game after the loss. But he still said he thought Wilson played a solid game and “did a lot of good things today.”
On that first failed fourth-down drive, Seahawks center Max Unger got a high ankle sprain in a pile during a run play and was carted off the field. Unger’s return last week from another injury had been key to Seattle’s run resurgence and more cohesive offensive line.
The Seahawks were on the Kansas City 4-yard line at the time. They soon decided to go for it on fourth-and-goal from the Kansas City 2, but biffed a touchdown pass attempt yet again and gave possession to the Chiefs. The Chiefs couldn’t get a first down and were forced to punt, but losing Unger again was still a huge blow and the Seahawks’ offense struggled through the end of the game.
FINAL: SEA 20, KC 24
Here’s a visual breakdown of the whole game: