Who knew? Kansas City ‘s victory over San Diego in Week One really did provide the blueprint for Seattle’s victory over the Chargers yesterday: Get outplayed by your opponent, but then win anyway by returning kickoffs for touchdowns..
It is not normal for a return man to take over a game the way Leon Washington did yesterday.
His first kickoff return TD—the one that went for 101 yards—was a total team effort. His blockers executed perfectly, and the ex-Jet’s speed and agility did the rest.
Washington benefited from good blocking on the second return, too, but he made the difference with an astonishing individual effort. A normal returner would have been down around the 20-yard line, where Jacob Hester got a piece of his leg. Or at the 25, where the hole momentarily closed, and Washington—still off-balance—stumbled into one teammate, then pinballed off another, but nevertheless managed to keep his feet with an improbable combination of iron determination and freakish coordination. From there, it looked relatively easy for him to torch the placekicker and outrun the rest of the Chargers for a 99-yard score.
The little man simply refused to be tackled.
Our defense showed similar determination, hitting hard, forcing fumbles, and shutting down San Diego’s vaunted offense. Until an injury sidelined Marcus Trufant. At that point, Phillip Rivers started shredding our secondary. Once again, the loss of Josh Wilson appears to have hurt the Seahawks.
For the second consecutive week, the weakest link was our offense, which managed only one touchdown. When the Seattle defense handed them five Chargers turnovers, our offense failed to capitalize, scoring only three points from those five bonus possessions. After a decent first half, our offense virtually disappeared: in the second half, we gained only one first down, held the ball for a mere eight minutes, and surrendered a safety.
After Washington restored our lead, Earl Thomas saved the day with his last-minute interception.Still, we got away with one yesterday.