The Seattle Seahawks (9-6) kept their postseason hopes alive with a 21-12 win over the Dallas Cowboys (8-7), who will not be partaking in this year’s playoffs. It was another horrifying performance from the offense, as Seattle literally had more penalty yards (142) than total yards (136), but the defense forced three turnovers, prevented Dallas from getting to the end zone, and benefited from unusually inaccurate kicking from Dan Bailey late in the 4th quarter.
Dallas elected to receive the opening kickoff, and Seattle’s defense forced a three-and-out. Russell Wilson picked up the game’s first 1st down on a zone-read keeper, then extended Seattle’s opening possession with a great throw to Paul Richardson on 3rd and 8. A sack killed hopes of points, and the Cowboys got the ball back at their own 7. A few first downs put them at midfield, but Dak Prescott got drilled by Justin Coleman on a blitz and failed to convert 3rd and 6. Byron Jones made like Superman and rescued Chris Jones’ punt from going into the end zone, pinning the Seahawks at their own 1. Seattle gained zero yards and booted it back to the Cowboys.
Ezekiel Elliott wasn’t breaking out big runs, but he was consistently gaining yards and helping Dallas move the ball deep into Seattle territory. Dallas had the ball at Seattle’s 18 heading into the next quarter.
Another 3rd down blitz by Kris Richard worked for the Seahawks, as Prescott threw an incomplete pass and the Cowboys settled for a 34-yard field goal from Dan Bailey. 3-0 Cowboys.
Seattle’s offense sputtered as usual, and the Cowboys continued running it down the throats of the Seahawks. Jarran Reed stopped Dak Prescott on 3rd and 2, but a penalty on Dallas took them out of FG range. On 3rd and 17, a short throw to Rod Smith set up a 51-yard try for Bailey, who knocked it off the right goalpost and in. 6-0 Cowboys.
The Seahawks had another piss-poor drive, including a horrific 22 yard sack taken by Wilson. Need not worry, as when Dallas’ offense retook the field, Byron Maxwell channeled his inner Charles Tillman and punched the ball out of Dez Bryant’s possession, and K.J. Wright recovered in Dallas territory. A Mike Davis catch, a Thomas Rawls run, and Russell Wilson bootleg run sent Seattle into the red zone. Jimmy Graham was intefered with on a free play, so the Seahawks faced 1st and goal at the 1. A fumbled exchange with Mike Davis nearly proved disastrous, but Russell Wilson not only recovered the loose ball, he threw a touchdown to Jimmy Graham to give Seattle the lead. 7-6 Seahawks.
Dallas’ two-minute offense worked well, and they tacked on 3 more points courtesy of another 51-yarder from Dan Bailey. 9-7 Cowboys.
Seattle’s first drive lived and died off of Mike Davis. It lived when he caught a checkdown for a 1st down, it died when he got dropped for a loss on a run, then on a screen. No worries, as Dak Prescott threw a terrible interception to Justin Coleman, who ran it back for a pick-6. Prescott was looking for Ezekiel Elliott, but badly overshot him and the pass sailed into the arms of Coleman. 14-9 Seahawks.
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) December 24, 2017
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) December 24, 2017
Coleman was penalized for jumping into the Salvation Army Kettle, which was lame. Also lame? The “pass interference” called against him on a deep shot to Cole Beasley. Dallas was instantly in field goal range as a result, and after two sacks — one by Dion Jordan and one by Shaquill Griffin — they had to settle for 3 again. 14-12 Seahawks.
For reasons I don’t understand, Mike Davis got three straight carries and Seattle immediately and unsurprisingly punted. Ezekiel Elliott converted on 3rd and 1, and Dak Prescott evaded two Seahawks rushers to hit Dez Bryant downfield for a gain of 33. Two plays later, Prescott tried for Bryant again but it bounced off Dez’s hands and into the arms of K.J. Wright. Three turnovers forced by Seattle’s defense.
Russell Wilson avoided a three-and-out by scrambling for a first down, then completed a 20-yard pass to Doug Baldwin on another 3rd down to get Seattle into Dallas territory as the 3rd quarter neared expiration.
Thomas Rawls began the final quarter with a 15-yard run. A face mask (well, two happened but one was called) on a Tyler Lockett jet sweep set up an automatic 1st down at the Dallas 10. A pass interference in the end zone on Chidobe Awuzie sent the Seahawks to the 1. Rawls got annihilated for a loss of 4, but Doug Baldwin humiliated Awuzie for the touchdown. 21-12 Seahawks.
Dallas needed to save their season in a hurry, and they converted a 3rd down on a checkdown to Rod Smith, then got an iffy PI call on Byron Maxwell for 29 yards. Jason Witten caught an easy pass to set up 1st and goal. Holding on 2nd and goal backed the Cowboys up, and Frank Clark backed them up even further with a sack. 3rd and goal at the 23 led to a checkdown to Witten. Dan Bailey hooked his 34-yard field goal WIDE RIGHT to keep the score at 21-12 with 5:39 to go.
Faced with 1st and 20 after a Justin Britt holding penalty, Seattle chipped away to get to 3rd and 9, at which point Russell Wilson connected with Paul Richardson for a critical conversion. Dallas had to start using its timeouts, and when they got the ball back with under three minutes to go. They advanced to Seattle’s side of the field at the two-minute warning, then Michael Bennett sacked Prescott on a three-man rush. Dallas drove into FG range with 1:06 to go, and Dan Bailey attempted a field goal to try and cut it to 21-15. Having just missed from 34 yards, his 48-yarder went wide right, ending Dallas’ season and keeping Seattle’s alive. 21-12 Seahawks final.
Seahawks Injury Report
Earl Thomas received an IV in the locker room but returned later in the 3rd quarter. Other than that? It was pretty light in terms of injuries.
Next week’s opponent
The Seahawks end the 2017 regular season at home, against the Arizona Cardinals (7-8) at 1:25 PM PT on FOX.