SEATTLE, Wash. — What we saw during the Indianapolis Colts’ 46-18 loss to the Seattle Seahawks Sunday night at CenturyLink Field. The Colts saw their record dip to 1-3 as a 15-10 halftime lead was erased by a dominant second half by Seattle. The Seahawks closed the game with 28 unanswered points and set a franchise record with 36 points after the break.
Poof! Game over
Where and when did it all go wrong for the Colts on their trip to the Great Northwest? In the third quarter and in the span of 13 seconds. Adam Vinatieri’s 40-yard field goal produced an 18-18 tie at the 4:53 mark of the period. It remained that way until J.D. McKissic slipped outside to the right and gouged the Colts defense with a 30-yard touchdown run. That came with 1:59 remaining.
Thirteen seconds later, it was Seattle 32, Indy 18.
On the first snap of the Colts’ subsequent drive, Seahawks’ defensive end Marcus Smith whipped right tackle Joe Haeg with an outside rush and forced a fumble by Jacoby Brissett. Linebacker Bobby Wagner scooped up the loose ball and returned it 21 yards for a touchdown and second defensive score of the game.
The second half collapse/rally all depends on which sideline you were on continued in the fourth quarter when Russell Wilson tossed a pair of TDs (6 yards to Luke Wilson, 27 yards to McKissic).
So much for a stellar first half by the Colts. Anyone remember they led 15-10 at the break? Didn’t think so.
The ol’ switcheroo
What a difference halftime made. The Colts did the near-impossible by quieting the sellout crowd with a pretty good first half. There was the major mistake Justin Coleman returning a Brissett interception 28 yards for a touchdown but the rest of the first half belonged to Indy.
The Colts dominated time of possession (19:56-10:04), total yards (205-140) and first downs (13-5). It was a totally different story after the break as the Colts were unable to sustain their early success or slow the onslaught.
The offense got virtually nothing done in the second half: 32 yards on 21 plays, 3 first downs. It’s second half possessions: punt, field goal, fumble/TD, punt, punt, end of game.
As a result, the defense wore down and was at Seattle’s mercy. The Seahawks hummed for 337 total yards in the final two quarters and finished with 477.
The wheels could have come off early in the second quarter for Brissett. Making his first career start on the road, he delivered the Colts’ third pick-6 in four games. Brissett looked to his left, stared down Kamar Aiken and paid the price. Coleman undercut Aiken and returned the interception 28 yards for a touchdown and a 10-2 Seattle lead.
Instead of wilting, Brissett gathered himself. Indy’s bounce-back possessions: TD, TD. Robert Turbin capped a 12-play, 80-yard drive with a bullish 1-yard run while Brissett and Donte Moncrief collaborated on an 18-yard TD pass on the ensuing 9-play, 55-yard possession.
On those two crowd-quieting drives, Brissett completed 8-of-10 passes for 88 yards and the TD to Moncrief. He also rushed twice for 27 yards.
As we’ve mentioned, Brissett was unable to sustain the early success. For the game, he completed 16-of-29 passes for 157 yards with one touchdown, one interception and one lost fumble.
The two turnovers cost the Colts 14 points.
Brissett also was sacked three times and hit on another eight drop-backs. He appeared to suffer some type of injury late in the fourth quarter, but remained in the game.
Replays were in vogue at CenturyLink. The Colts’ Chuck Pagano went 2-for-2 in the first half while Seattle’s Pete Carroll finished 1-for-2.
The defense twice was rewarded for Pagano tossing his red hanky. When cornerback Nate Hairston pulled down Wilson in the end zone in the first quarter, the ruling on the field was Wilson had released the football. Replay disagreed, showing Wilson¹s left knee down. Sack for Hairston, safety for the Colts.
On the final play of the first quarter, the Wilson flipped the football to Jimmy Graham as he was being pulled down by Jabaal Sheard. Officials allowed a 19-yard completion. Replay disagreed, ruling Wilson was down before releasing the ball.
Carroll was denied in the second quarter when he challenged the spot on Brissett’s 13-yard completion to T.Y. Hilton. Then he was correct when he challenged Wilson was down short of the goal line on a 22-yard scramble. The review showed he successfully stretched the football across the goal line.
The Colts entered the game a banged up group and the hurts kept coming. Early. On the second play of the game, rookie center Deyshawn Bond suffered an injury to his left quadriceps. The Warren Central High School standout had to be taken off the field on a cart. Bond was replaced by Adam Redmond, a natural guard, had appeared sparingly in three previous career games zero snaps on offense, 18 on special teams. In the second half, tight end Jack Doyle was evaluated for a concussion. He was diagnosed with a concussion and did not return.
This and that
Rookie safety Malik Hooker and free safety Matthias Farley came up with interceptions of Wilson. That’s three for Hooker, which is tied for the league lead, and six for the Colts. They had a total of eight in 2016. . . . The defense entered the game ranked tied-for-10th against the run, allowing 81 yards per game. The Seahawks piled up 194. . Linebacker Jon Bostic led the Colts with 12 tackles and Farley finished with 10.
You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @mchappell51