Seattle Seahawks 28-30 Atlanta Falcons

Updated: January 13, 2013

21 points in the fourth quarter wasn’t enough for the Seattle Seahawks, as the Atlanta Falcons defeat them at the Georgia Dome, 28-30, to advance to the NFC Championship game.

The Falcons started off with the ball and they got into a good position to score the first touchdown of the game. Seahawks CB Richard Sherman had other ideas as he broke up a pass on the 10th play of the drive from Falcons QB Matt Ryan intended for WR Roddy White, forcing them to settle for a 39 yard field goal.

When Seattle got the ball for the first time in the game, they were forced three and out so they had to punt the ball. However, Seahawks P Jon Ryan punted the ball only as far as the 50 yard line, giving the Falcons good field position.

Despite this field position, the Falcons were unable to capitalize. On the third play of their drive, the first turned over of the game occurred as a pass by QB Ryan intended for TE Tony Gonzalez, was intercepted on the Seahawks 29 yard line by Seahawks MLB Bobby Wagner, for a gain of four yards.

Three plays later though, the second turnover of the game occurred as Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch fumbled the ball on Atlanta’s 39 yard line and it was recovered by the Falcons DT Jonathan Babineaux.

Falcons took full advantage of Lynch’s mistake as on the 9th play of their following drive, Ryan threw a one yard pass to Gonzalez who managed to squeeze both of his feet in the back of the endzone for the first touchdown of the day.

On the next Falcons drive, just before the end of the first quarter, Falcons RB Jacquizz Rodgers ran an amazing 45 yard run to the Seahawks 42 yard line, breaking several tackles along the way.

The Falcons could not exploit the Seahawks defense for maximum points after this play and they had to settle for a 37 yard field goal kicked by Falcons K Matt Bryant, just inside the ‘RedZone’.

Four plays later on the Seahawks next possession, they came one yard shy of another first down and they were stopped twice by the Falcons defense on third and fourth down, causing the third turnover of the game.

For both of these plays, Lynch was never used. You would think in a situation like this, Lynch would be the first guy the Seahawks would turn to, to help them achieve the first down but he was not on the field.

Falcons White increased his team’s score by scoring a 47 yard touchdown pass from Ryan, getting the better of Seahawks Sherman.

Near to the end of the half, the Seahawks came close to scoring their first points of the game, but then Babineaux earned a 9 yard sack on Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, giving the Falcons their first sack of the game.

This stopped the Seahawks from scoring, making the half time score, 0-20 to the Falcons.

In the second half, the Seahawks started with the ball, but on the 7th play of their drive, Wilson was sacked for the second time in the game by Falcons DT Vance Walker.

Two plays later, the Seahawks finally scored for the first time in the game thanks to a 29 yard pass from Wilson to WR Golden Tate for a touchdown, making the score 7-20.

The Falcons responded by chewing up a lot of time on the clock and scoring another touchdown on the 14th play of an 80 yard drive. The touchdown was a five yard pass from Ryan to RB Jason Snelling, which allowed the Falcons to regain their 20 point lead.

When the Seahawks started with the ball in the fourth quarter, they added more points on the board as Wilson scrambled to the left to score a one yard touchdown, reducing the score difference to 14 points with just over 13 minutes remaining.

Three plays into the Falcons next drive, Ryan had a pass intended for White intercepted by Seahawks FS Earl Thomas on the Seahawks 38 yard line.

On the following drive after this interception, Seahawks added points to the board through a three yard touchdown pass from Wilson to TE Zach Miller, reducing the score difference to six points with just over nine minutes to play.

The Seahawks defense, the number one defense in the NFL, then forced the Falcons three and out, making them punt the ball back to the Seahawks.

However, five players later, the Seahawks had to punt back to the Falcons, giving them another opportunity to extend their lead.

Another outstanding stand by the Seahawks defense though, made the Falcons punt the ball back to the Seahawks, leaving them three minutes to score a touchdown to win the game.

They managed to score a touchdown through a one yard run by Lynch, making the score 28-27 to the Seahawks. This gave the Seahawks the lead for the first time in the game.

However, they left 31 seconds left on the clock for the Falcons to possibly snatch the game.

The Falcons responded by putting Bryant in good field position for a 49 yard field goal, restoring their lead and making the score 28-30, but they still gave enough time for the Seahawks to win the game.

On the kick-off, the Falcons squib kicked the ball and the Seahawks recovered it on their own 46 yard line, giving them the chance to perform a hail mary to win the game.

They executed the hail mary play one play later, but Wilson’s pass intended for Seahawks WR Doug Baldwin was intercepted by Falcons WR Julio Jones, which gave the Falcons their first ever playoff win with QB Matt Ryan.

This now means the Falcons will host the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game on the 20th January.

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Match report by Conor Porter

twitter – @ConorJPorter

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