By Alex Barth, 985TheSportsHub.com
It almost felt like the good old days. Almost.
In an absolute classic, the New England Patriots fell to the Seattle Seahawks 35-30 on Sunday night. It came down to the final play, when Cam Newton was stopped on a designed quarterback run on the goal line as the clock ran out.
With the win, Seattle improves to 2-0, the Patriots fall to 1-1.
The Patriots got things started almost immediately, when Devin McCourty got his hands on a deflected pass, taking it back for a pick-six. After scoring, McCourty shouted “we love you two eight.” ‘Two eight’ is number 28 James White, who didn’t play in the game following his father’s death earlier in the day.
Seattle replied with a 13-play, 75-yard drive that mostly took place on the ground. However, Russell Wilson capped it with his arm on an impressive scrambling dart throw to Tyler Lockett in the back of the end zone to tie the game at seven.
On the ensuing Patriots drive, New England got down deep into Seattle territory, before being faced with a fourth and three. Cam Newton found N’Keal Harry on a slant, with Harry holding onto the ball despite a massive hit from Quandree Diggs, who was ejected for the play. Three snaps later, Newton would punch the ball in on the goal line to give the Pats a 14-7 lead.
The Seahawks answered right back, with Wilson hitting D.K. Metcalf for a 54-yard touchdown. Stephon Gilmore was in near-perfect position on the play, but it was a perfect throw and catch to tie the game at 14. Each team would have one more possession in the half, both ending on punts.
Starting the second half, the Patriots had their best passing drive of the year to that point, with Newton completing a number of tight-window passes before a Jamal Adams sack halted things inside the 10. A Nick Folk field goal put New England up 17-14.
Wilson would strike again on the next Seattle drive, with a perfectly placed deep pass to David Moore in the front corner of the end zone. The 38-yard connection gave Seattle a 21-17 lead.
That score was followed by Newton’s first interception as a Patriot, after he left a pass on an out route behind Damiere Byrd. Five plays later, Wilson found Freddie Swain on a crossing route for his fourth touchdown pass of the game.
The third quarter ended with Seattle up 28-17, but not before Newton hit Julian Edelman on a 49-yard seam route. Another chunk passing play to tight end Ryan Izzo set up a Newton touchdown pass to fullback Jakob Johnson on the second play of the fourth quarter.
However, the gap wasn’t closed for long as Russell Wilson led Seattle right back down the field, throwing into the blitz on a third down, and then a few plays later for a touchdown to Chris Carson for his fifth scoring toss of the game.
Newton would connect on another deep ball with Edelman, then punch it in for his second rushing touchdown of the game. It put the Patriots down five with 2:16 to go.
After the defense forced a three-and-out, the Patriots drove 79-yards, setting themselves up with one chance to score from the one-yard line. Newton was dropped in the backfield on a similar play to the one he has scored on four times this year as the clock ran out.
There were some monster stats in this one. Newton was 30/44 for 397 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. 179 of those yards were to Julian Edelman – a career high for the 34-year-old.
The Patriots return home next week for a meeting with Jon Gruden and the Las Vegas Raiders. It will be the first time Jon Gruden coaches the Raiders against the Patriots since the 2001 AFC Division Round, also known as the Snow Bowl or Tuck Rule Game. Bob Socci and Scott Zolak on the call for 98.5 The Sports Hub, with kickoff at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at Alexander.Barth@bbgi.com