Seahawks stun Packers on final play, 14-12
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SEATTLE — In a bizarre ending that capped a tough weekend for replacement officials, the Seattle Seahawks beat the Green Bay Packers, 14-12, Monday night.
Russell Wilson threw a disputed 24-yard touchdown pass to Golden Tate on the final play of a game that ended 10 minutes later when the extra point was attempted.
Wilson scrambled from the pocket and threw to the corner of the end zone as the clock expired. Tate shoved Green Bay’s Sam Shields out of the way, then wrestled with M.D. Jennings for possession. It was ruled on the field as a touchdown and after a lengthy review, referee Wayne Elliott announced ‘‘the ruling on the field stands’’ and CenturyLink Field erupted in celebration.
‘‘From what I understood from the officials it was a simultaneous catch. Tie goes to the runner. Good call,’’ Seattle coach Pete Carroll said.
‘‘Very hard to swallow,’’ Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. ‘‘I have never seen anything like that in my time in football.’’
In a weekend filled with disputed calls by the replacement officials, none will be debated more than this one.
Seattle (2-1) won its second straight, while Green Bay (1-2) and saw its six-game win streak in road openers snapped.
Wilson’s heave came at the end of a final frantic drive after Seattle had previously missed on a fourth-down attempt from the Green Bay 7 with two minutes left. The turnover on downs appeared to end Seattle’s hopes and cap an impressive second-half comeback by the Packers and Aaron Rodgers, who was sacked eight times — all in the first half.
Green Bay averted disaster when John Kuhn fumbled on the first play following the change of possession but center Jeff Saturday recovered. The Seahawks forced Green Bay to punt from the 4 with 57 seconds left. Seattle set up at the Green Bay 46 with 46 seconds remaining.
Wilson hit Sidney Rice for 22 yards on a slant then went for Tate in the end zone but the ball was batted away with 18 seconds left. He threw over the head of Evan Moore on second down, leaving 12 seconds remaining, and missed Tate again at the 5.
Wilson took the final snap with eight seconds to go. He rolled left and threw for Tate, who was in a crowd of three defenders. His shove of Shields was obvious and it was never clear who had possession between Tate and Jennings. One official signaled touchdown and another next to him began to signal interception.
Seattle celebrated while the Packers argued with anyone in a striped shirt. Both teams were eventually shoved to the sidelines as Tate stomped through the end zone in celebration.
Following the review, Elliott’s announcement sent the stadium into delirium and even more confusion ensued until the teams finally returned to the field for the extra point.
McCarthy was measured in his postgame remarks.
‘‘Most unusual football game I have been a part of,’’ he said. ‘‘I know it’s been a wild weekend in the NFL and I guess we are part of it.’’