The Seattle Seahawks were dealt a surprising Week 1 loss to the St. Louis Rams on Sunday, thanks in part to a horrible decision they made in overtime.
Tied 31-31 after four quarters, the Seahawks kicked off to the Rams in overtime.
However, instead of a normal kick-off, the Seahawks kicked what appeared to be an onside kick — a baffling choice in that situation.
Perhaps the only argument for this kind of kick was to avoid the Rams’ Tavon Austin, who splintered the Seahawks defence earlier with a lightning quick punt return:
The Seahawks nearly got a do-over that could have changed the course of the game. Immediately after the kick, the refs called for a do-over, claiming that a team can’t rule for a fair catch after the ball had hit the ground. However, replay showed that the ball never hit the ground, so the Rams got to keep the ball at the Seahawks’ 49.
Though the Rams didn’t score a touchdown, they did get into easy field goal range where they nailed the kick to go up 34-31. The Seahawks got their chance to score, but couldn’t get their offence going, and lost.
After the game, things only got more confusing for Seattle. Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said the kick was a “mishit”:
“We just didn’t execute that. That’s not what was supposed to happen. We just didn’t execute properly on the kick. We were kicking the ball in a certain area of the field. We didn’t hit it right, and so we just mishit it. … We were kicking the ball way down the field.”
Kicker Steven Hauschka also said it was a mistake:
“The result wasn’t planned there. I mishit that kick. We were supposed to kick it downfield further than that, but yeah I mishit it. I take the responsibility on that, putting our team in a bad situation there starting overtime.”
Unfortunately for the Seahawks, the two lasting memories of their last two games will be calling for a pass over a run at the 1-yard line, and going for an onside kick to start overtime.
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