Seahawks survive, staging comeback to beat Falcons 26-24

SEATTLE – Nobody said it was going to be easy.

The Seattle Seahawks earned a dramatic victory over the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday afternoon at CenturyLink Field, overcoming a big blown lead, a civil war among its defense, sloppy special teams play and a handful of injuries to head to the locker room with a 26-24 win.

The Seahawks’ top-ranked defense and the Falcons’ top-ranked offense battled to a near draw, with Atlanta managing several big plays but Seattle coming away with key turnovers that proved to be the difference.

Seattle improved to 4-1, while the Falcons dropped to 4-2.

The Seahawks jumped out to a 17-3 halftime lead, holding the Falcons’ vaunted offense to 86 yards in the first half.

But a Julio Jones touchdown in the third quarter left the Seahawks reeling, as Richard Sherman raged on the sideline after an apparent miscommunication on the play and the Falcons quickly scored two more touchdowns to grab their first lead of the game.

Seattle rallied, however, and an Earl Thomas interception late in the second half set up the go-ahead field goal, giving Steven Hauschka a chance to make up for an earlier missed field goal and missed extra point.

Defensive end Michael Bennett suffered an ankle injury in the third quarter, leaving for the locker room and not returning to the field. Carroll said after the game that Bennett’s knee was sore, but that he thought it would be OK.

Russell Wilson had an efficient game for the Seahawks, completing 25 of 37 passes for 270 yards, with no touchdowns and no interceptions.

Christine Michael scored two TDs, carrying the ball 18 times for 64 yards.

Matt Ryan had an up and down day for the Falcons, absorbing four sacks and countless hits but ultimately completing 27 of 42 passes for three touchdowns and an interception.  Julio Jones was his usual excellent self, catching 7 passes for 139 yards and a touchdown.