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5 Key Moments That Led to Seahawks' Crushing Loss to Saints

The Seahawks lost by three in prime time for a second straight week. This time, they couldn't finish at home on Monday Night Football against the New Orleans Saints. Several moments swung the game in New Orleans' favor.
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Suffering another gut-wrenching defeat, the Seahawks dropped to 2-5 on the season and are reeling after losing Russell Wilson a few weeks prior. The Saints took advantage of a hapless Seattle offense and won 13-10. 

Here are five moments that decided this wet game on Monday night.

Third quarter: Jason Myers misses 44-yard field goal

This was more of a sign of things to come. With Seattle trailing just 10-7, this kick would have tied the game and given the team immense momentum on their first drive of the second half. Instead, Myers misses the kick and the Saints' lead remained intact.

Myers would go on to miss another field goal later in the game. Perhaps this miss was in his mind and led to the second kick going wide left.

Fourth quarter: 3rd and 11, Geno Smith sacked for -11 yards back to New Orleans 35

With the game still tied at 10 in the middle of the fourth quarter, Seattle was driving to try and take the lead. They got all the way down to the Saints' 24-yard line, which would have set up a manageable 41-yard field goal for Myers.

However, Smith got sacked for a huge loss, pushing Seattle back to the 35-yard line. This forced Myers to attempt a much longer field goal at 53 yards in rainy, windy conditions. It was his second miss of the day.

If the Seahawks were able to maintain their good field position inside the Saints' 25-yard line, the field goal would have been much shorter and maybe Myers would not have missed. The sack and the impending miss gave New Orleans good field position to drive down for the game-winning kick.

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Fourth quarter: 3rd and 9, Marquise Blair called for roughing the passer after Seattle sacked Jameis Winston

The Seahawks tried desperately to stop the Saints as time was winding down in the fourth quarter. The defense seemed to have stuffed New Orleans on 3rd and 9 when Bobby Wagner and Marquise Blair got to Jameis Winston and brought him down for what would have been a five yard loss to bring up fourth down, forcing the opponent to punt.

Instead, Blair went too high on Winston on an obvious helmet-to-helmet hit, which yielded a personal foul penalty and automatic first down for the Saints. Later in that drive, they would kick the go-ahead field goal that ended up being the difference in the game. 

Fourth quarter: Al Woods called for encroachment on a 41-yard field goal attempt

Later in that same drive, the Seahawks had stopped the Saints again, forcing their rookie kicker into a long field goal to try and give them the lead. Inexplicably, Al Woods jumped offsides and drew an encroachment foul, gifting the Saints a first down. This play not only got the Saints closer for an easier field goal, but it also allowed them to chew another one minute and nine seconds off of the clock, which ended up being critical as the Seahawks had just one timeout remaining.

Had Woods been able to hold his water, at worst the Seahawks would have had three minutes, plus a timeout and the two minute warning to try and mount a response. At best, Johnson misses the kick and gives Seattle a chance to win the game.

Fourth quarter: Geno Smith sacked for -8 yards, bringing up 3rd and 18

Seattle was gasping for life, down by three with less than two minutes left. On 2nd and 10, Smith was sacked for a back-breaking eight-yard loss, setting up 3rd and 18. 

This was indicative of how the game went for Seattle's offense. They were once again behind the sticks with a limited playbook to work with. It forced the Seahawks to look downfield out of desperation and Smith could not get it done for a third straight week.

Had Smith been able to unload the ball for a modest gain on 2nd and 10, the playbook would have opened up. Instead, Seattle went into a shell and ended the game with a whimper, turning the ball over on downs to all but seal the defeat.