ARLINGTON, Texas — It was a back-and-forth battle as the Seattle Seahawks fell to the Dallas Cowboys 24-22 in an NFC Wild Card Game on Saturday.
Seattle shattered preseason expectations — winning 10 games — when some in the national media predicted they would be a four-win team.
The playoff win by the Cowboys (11-6) was the first for Elliott and quarterback Dak Prescott on their second try after losing a divisional game as rookies two years ago.
The loss ended a run of nine straight victories in playoff openers for the Seahawks (10-7). The Elias Sports Bureau says it was the longest streak in NFL history.
Dallas’ defense, ranked in the top 10 most of the season, mostly kept quarterback Russell Wilson under control and handed him his first loss in four wild-card games.
“Our defense was great,” Prescott said. “They keep us in every game.”
It was the eighth win in nine games for the Cowboys.
The Cowboys never did lose control of the Seattle running game after allowing Chris Carson’s first 100-yard game in a Week 3 Seattle win that turned the season for the Seahawks, who finished the regular season with six wins in seven games.
Carson had just 20 yards on 13 carries. Wilson was 18 of 27 for 233 yards, with Lockett getting four catches for 120 yards.
Cowboys receiver Allen Hurns appeared to suffer a severe lower left leg injury in the first quarter. Hurns was being dragged down by Seahawks safety Bradley McDougald at the end of a 14-yard catch for a first down when his lower left leg appeared to buckle. The injury was announced as an ankle injury.
The Seahawks got off to a slow start with Russell Wilson passing for -8 yards in the first quarter. The Cowboys struck first with a 39-yard field goal.
But Seattle’s offense picked up some steam in the 2nd quarter with a pair of field goals by Sebastian Janikowski. Seattle led 6-3.
Dallas would respond in a quick drive capped off by an 11-yard touchdown pass to Michael Gallup.
Seahawks kicker Sebastian Janikowski suffered a thigh injury as the clock ran out in the first half. That meant All-Pro punter Michael Dickson would take over kicking responsibilities.
In the third quarter, Seattle took the lead on an impressive drive as Wilson finally connected with receiver Doug Baldwin for a 22 yard gain to the Dallas 17 yard line. Several plays later, Wilson carried the ball into the end zone untouched for the Seahawks’ first touchdown of the game.
With Janikowski out, Seattle opted to attempt a 2-point conversion. Wilson handed the ball to Michael Davis who was able to rush into the end zone. Seattle went up 14-10.
But Seattle’s lead wouldn’t last long. Ezekiel Elliott ran for a 1-yard TD to give Dallas a 17-14 lead.
K.J. Wright intercepted Dak Prescott’s pass in the end zone stopping a Dallas drive that was gaining momentum.
Inside the 2-minute warning, Russell Wilson did what he does best. On the first play, Tyler Lockett caught a pass for a 53-yard gain.
That would set up a 7-yard pass on 4th down from Wilson to J.D. McKissic.
Chris Carson successfully ran into the end zone for a 2-point conversion.
But it wasn’t enough. Seattle wasn’t able to get the ball on an onside kick attempt.
Dallas got into victory formation and ran out the clock to win 24 -22.