By John Boyle
Seahawks up 29-16 and driving
Sorry for the lack of updates, busy working on stuff for tomorrow’s paper. But unless something really crazy happens, Seattle’s going to hang on to start their title defense with a victory.
Be back later tonight with updates and quotes.
Maxwell interception leads to FG
The Seahawks’ first possession of the half ended with their first punt of the game (they were stopped once, but a penalty on the punt gave them a first down). The defense wasn’t on the field long, however, because Aaron Rodgers’ first pass of the ensuing Packers possession was intercepted by Byron Maxwell, who Rodgers has been picking on a bit today.
Seattle’s offense couldn’t do much with it, but did get a 20-yard field goal to make it 20-10.
Jeremy Lane was injured on the return however, and is still on the trainers table with the defense getting ready to come back out.
UPDATE: Lane has a groin injury and will not return
Seahawks lead 17-10 at halftime
The Seahawks are still on top by a touchdown at halftime, and will open the second half with the ball looking to extend that lead.
Seattle has a pretty big advantage in total yardage, 221 to 131, though the Packers do have an extra 44 yards on the pass interference call that set up a field goal.
Marshawn Lynch had seven carries for 59 yards and a touchdown to lead the Seahawks in first-half rushing, while Percy Harvin had 22 yards on two carries.
Harvin was also Seattle’s leading receiver with 48 yards on five catches.
Russell Wilson was an efficient 10 of 14 for 121 yards and a touchdown, good for a 121.4 passer rating.
Eddie Lacy was the Seahawks’ leading rusher with 29 yards on eight carries. Aaron Rodgers completed 14 of 18 passes for 86 yards. Jordy Nelson was Green Bay’s leading receiver, gaining 31 yards on four catches.
Marshawn Lynch gives Seahawks another lead
When Pete Carroll said earlier this week that Marshawn Lynch looked as good as he has since coming to Seattle, it might not have been hyperbole. Lynch, despite missing a week of camp, looks incredibly quick and nimble in this first half, and he punctuated a strong half with a 9-yard scamper for a score. Earlier in the drive, Lynch had a 21 yard run, and that came a couple plays after Zach Miller started the drive with an impressive diving 24-yard catch.
Lynch currently has 59 yards on just seven carries.
The only question now is if the Seahawks scoring with 3:41 left on the clock gave the Packers too much time.
Penalty sets up Packers field goal
The Packers tied the game lead thanks in part to a 44-yard pass interference penalty. To be fair, however, it wasn’t entirely a gift, as Aaron Rodgers recognized that Randall Cobb was being covered by a linebacker down field and chucked it deep accordingly. Bobby Wagner, a good athlete to be sure, but not exactly a defensive back, tackled Cobb before the ball got, giving Green Bay the ball at the 7.
Seattle’s defense held up from there, but the Packers still got a 23-yard field goal to tie the game.
Wilson to Lockette puts Seahawks back on top
The Seahawks didn’t need much time to answer Green Bay’s touchdown with one of their own thanks to a couple of big plays. First Russell Wilson hit a wide-open Percy Harvin for 33 yards, then on a beautifully designed play, Wilson faked a handoff to Marshawn Lynch in a read-option formation, feigned a run himself, leading to Ricardo Lockette getting wide open. Lockette made one tackler miss, then sprinted to the end zone for a 33-yard score, his first touchdown since the last game of the 2011 season.
Earl Thomas fumble leads to Packers touchdown
Well, plenty of Seahawks fans didn’t want All-Pro safety Earl Thomas returning punts this year, but that was mostly because people fear an injury. Instead Thomas as a punt returner has proven costly early because he fumbled a punt, leading to an eventual Packers touchdown. Thomas wanted kick-catch interference call, but it appeared Richard Sherman blocked a player into Thomas, and also Thomas did himself no favors by not calling for a fair catch in traffic.
That gave the Packers the ball at Seattle’s 34-yard line, and after Aaron Rodgers picked on Byron Maxwell several times to get near the goal line, fullback John Kuhn punched it in from 2 yards out to give Green Bay a 7-3 lead.
Seahawks take 3-0 lead
Steven Hauschka gave the Seahawks their first lead of the season with a 35-yard field
The Packers ran the ball well on their first drive, including a 15-yarder by Eddie Lacy, but eventually had to put following an O’Brien Schofield sack.
That stop gave the Seahawks decent field position, which they turned into a field goal thanks in part to two catches and a 13-yard run by Percy Harvin, and in part because of a Packers penalty that extended the drive.
The Packers are a bit of a mess on special teams right now, having committed three mistakes on four special teams plays. On the opening kickoff, DuJuan Harris brought the ball out from six yards deep, costing his team field position. When the Packers forced Seattle to punt, they were flagged for running into the kicker, giving the Seahawks a fresh set of downs and eventually three points. And on that Seahawks field goal attempt, the Packers had to burn a timeout because they had 12 on the field.