By: Robert L. Porter Jr.

This Monday night game is a playoff rematch from last year where MVP Matt Ryan and his Falcons handed Russell Wilson and his Seahawks a devastating defeat on their way to a Super Bowl appearance. Atlanta’s offense hasn’t had the same explosion that they did last year and Seattle is minus 2 of the 3 main cogs of the Legion of Boom so this game will look a lot different than the meeting last January.


After a good opening kick off return the Falcons drive starts with a Julio Jones drop. The team is able to get past the mishap and continue drive the ball into Seahawks territory. A long Pass interference call puts Atlanta on the 1 yard line and Tevin Coleman punches it in for a quick 7-0 Falcons lead. Tyler Lockett nearly takes the Seattle kick to the house but is pushed out at the Atlanta 40. A Wilson completion to Lockett is followed by a Desmond Trufant interception that is returned to Seattle’s 35 yard line. Ryan is able to lead his team to a 14-0 lead with a 2 yard 1 handed grab by Mohammad Sanu in the back of the end zone. Seattle’s next drive found them in 3rd & long at the Falcons 31 yard line but a tripping call against the defense keeps the drive alive. Wilson would cap the possession off with a short TD Pass to Jimmy Graham to cut the deficit to 7 points. A good defensive series by Seattle ends the first quarter as the Falcons lead 14-7 but are set to punt when the 2nd period starts.


After the punt Wilson takes the field looking to tie the game up but rookie Tak McKinley had other plans as he sacked and stripped Wilson, Adrien Clayborn picked it up and ran for the TD making the score 21-7. On the following possession Seattle goes on A very impressive drive but some stout defense by Keanu Neal and his guys forces a Blair Walsh field goal from inside the 20 yard line. Seattle now trails 21-10. A bouncing kickoff by Walsh is recovered by the Seahawks giving them the ball back at the Atlanta 11 yard line. After what had to be the hardest 11 yards for the Hawks all year, Wilson runs a sprint out and keeps it for a 1 yard TD on 4th & goal making the score 21-17. With Seattle back in the game, the crowd noise ramps up to full blast as the momentum looks to be shifting. Two big Matt Ryan passes puts the Falcons inside The 30 yard line as we hit the 2 minute warning. Ryan is unable to muster anymore yards as they settle for a 44 yard Matt Bryant field goal to make the score 24-17 as we get close to the halftime break. Wilson uses his feet to move down the field with lightening speed as they are set up for points with 25 seconds left but they are looking for 7 not 3. Some good pass defense holds them out of the end zone and Walsh trots on for a what in thought would be a field goal attempt but an ill advised fake is snuffed out and we head to halftime with the score still 24-17.


Atlanta finally finds a way to hold Lockett in check on a kick return to open the 2nd half as he is held to an average return. A long P.I. call on Robert Alford puts Wilson and his offense in the red zone. A Grady Jarrett sack moves them back and makes it 3rd &12 for Seattle. They only gain 3 yards and Walsh kicks a 37 yarder to make it 24-20. Ryan’s next drive is a nice one, a big scramble takes them across the 50 and keeps the drive alive, a 25 yard TD to Levine Toilolo would come soon after and Atlanta retakes an 11 point lead at 31-20. Another Wilson possession end in points but again it 3 and not 7. The score is now 31-23. Ryan and his offense picks up a first down as the final play of quarter number 3 and things look to be setting up for a very exciting finish to this one.


The tandem of Coleman and Ward played a good role in the Falcons drive as they took time off the clock as well as got into position to make it a 2 possession game but a horribly timed false start moves them outta Matt Bryant range and they are forced to punt it. A 3 & out by The Seahawks sends the ball back to Atlanta with just under 9 minutes to go in this one. A long pass to Julio Jones and a handful of solid run plays moves the Falcons inside the 5 yard line. After a missed fade route to Julio, Tevin Coleman is stopped at the 1 and Dan Quinn takes the 3 and push the score to 34-23 but more importantly the clock is now just under 4 minutes to play in this one. Russell Wilson comes out and puts together a masterful drive where the went 75 yards in 45 seconds. He found Doug Baldwin down the middle for a TD then Jimmy Graham for the 2 point conversation to make the score 34-31.

On the drive that could close the game out with one first down, Matt Ryan is unable to get that first down as he is sacked by Sheldon Richardson on 3rd down and they are forced to put it back to Wilson and that now red hot Seahawk offense with 1:46 remaining. The drive starts with a slant to Graham for 11 yards. Two plays Later, Wilson gets the Falcons jumping for the 3rd or 4th time and has a free play. They are unable to complete the deep pass but a scramble by Wilson gives his team a new set of downs. Russell Wilson finds Paul Richardson then spikes it with 7 seconds remaining. They bring Blair Walsh on for a 52 yard field goal to send it into overtime. The kick was centered but didnt have enough Steam as it falls short and Atlanta leaves Seattle with a 34-31 win.


Matt Ryan – 19/27 195 yards 2 TDs

Tevin Coleman – 58 total yards 1 TD

Mohammad Sanu – 3 rec 34 yards 1 TD

Russell Wilson – 26/42 258 yards 2 TDs 1 INT, 86 rush yards 1 TD

Jimmy Graham – 7 rec 58 yards 1 TD