Russell Wilson threw a 2-yard pass to Ed Dickson with 7:31 left for his third touchdown strike, Chris Carson rushed for two scores, and the Seattle Seahawks clinched an NFC wild-card berth with a 38-31 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday night.
Wilson got the better of Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes and helped lead Seattle back to the postseason after missing the playoffs a year ago. Seattle’s now made the playoffs in seven of the nine seasons with Pete Carroll in charge, and six of seven with Wilson at quarterback.
The Seahawks (9-6) can wrap up the No. 5 seed and a matchup with Dallas by beating Arizona in Week 17.
Wilson was 18 of 29 for 271 yards, and the No. 1 running team in the NFL put the game on the arm of its quarterback in the fourth quarter. Leading 31-28, Wilson hit David Moore for 7 yards to convert a key third-down and after Kansas City used its first timeout with 3:04 left. He followed with a 45-yard strike to Tyler Lockett, and Doug Baldwin added a one-handed catch for 29 yards to the Chiefs 1. Carson capped the decisive drive with his second TD run with 2:29 left gave Seattle a 38-28 lead.
Carson rushed for 116 yards, while Baldwin had seven catches for 126 yards and an acrobatic 27-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter.
Mahomes had a few of his own magical moments that will enhance his MVP candidacy. But for the second straight week the Chiefs (11-4) were unable to come through with a victory that would have wrapped up the No. 1 seed in the AFC and will go into Week 17 with the chance of being division champs for find themselves on the road for the opening weekend of the postseason.
Mahomes was 23 of 40 for 273 and three TDs. Mahomes had only 83 yards passing in the first half. He had 76 and was 6 of 6 on Kansas city’s first possession of the second half, finishing the drive with a scrambling, sidearm fling to Charcandrick West for a 25-yard touchdown that pulled the Chiefs even at 17-all midway through the third quarter.
That was the last time they would be even. Harrison Butker’s 32-yard field goal with 1:20 left pulled the Chiefs within seven, but the onside kick went out of bounds and Seattle ran out the clock.
Damien Williams rushed for 103 yards and caught a 2-yard touchdown pass in the first half. But Seattle managed to keep Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce from taking over and the Seahawks pass rush did enough to disrupt the Chiefs passing attack. Mahomes was sacked only once but was hit 11 times. Kelce had five catches; Hill had four. Neither scored.
Carson became the first Seattle running back since Marshawn Lynch in 2014 to have 1,000 yards rushing. … Kelce passed Tony Gonzalez for most yards receiving in a single season by a tight end in Chiefs history. … Mahomes has 30 touchdown passes on the road, most in NFL history. Tom Brady had 29 in 2007.
Kansas City running back Darrel Williams suffered a hamstring injury in the first half and did not return. Seattle’s banged up offensive line saw J.R. Sweezy go down with an ankle injury in the second quarter and he did not return. D.J. Fluker, who was only supposed to play a limited number of snaps filled in and played the entire second half.
Seattle had kicking concerns arise after Sebastian Janikowski was roughed on a field goal attempt in the second half. He was able to hit a 28-yard field goal later in the drive, but it was punter Michael Dickson handling the next two kickoffs with drop kicks. Dickson has done it in special situations this season.
Chiefs: Kansas City hosts Oakland in Week 17.
Seahawks: Seattle hosts Arizona to close out the regular season.
More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP—NFL