Monday roundup: Seahawks hang on to down Bills

Associated Press
Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, left, signals no good after Bills kicker Dan Carpenter failed to kick a field goal in the first half on Monday in Seattle.

Seattle — Jimmy Graham needed only one hand to catch two first-half touchdown passes from Russell Wilson, and the Seattle Seahawks held off a late rally for a 31-25 win over the Buffalo Bills on Monday night.

Seattle won its 11th straight Monday night game behind a huge game from its tight end. Still less than a year removed from a major knee injury, Graham used his right arm to catch a 17-yard touchdown from Wilson on the first play of the second quarter and later used the same arm to cradle an 18-yard TD pass in the final moments of the first half.

But the Seahawks had to hold on in the final seconds as Buffalo quarterback Tyrod Taylor led the Bills inside the Seattle 10 in the final seconds. Taylor was sacked by Cliff Avril on third-and-goal from the 8 and on fourth-and-goal Taylor’s pass into the end zone fell incomplete.

Buffalo would not have needed a touchdown if not for mistakes by the officiating crew at the end of the first half that cost the Bills a chance at a shorter field goal. Dan Carpenter eventually missed a 54-yard attempt on the final play of the half, only after Seattle’s Richard Sherman got away with an unnecessary roughness penalty that wasn’t called and a delay of game caused in part by the officiating crew standing over the ball.

NFL head of officiating Dean Blandino tweeted during the game that Walt Coleman’s crew did not make the correct call.

“Ridiculous. … From an officiating stand point, I think they can do better than that,” Bills coach Rex Ryan said after the game.

Graham caught all eight of his targets for 103 yards. It was his third 100-yard receiving game of the season. Wilson was 20 of 26 passing for 282 yards.

Wilson and Christine Michael both added 3-yard touchdowns runs, but Seattle’s run game was again absent. The Seahawks attempted just 12 running plays and wide receiver Tyler Lockett was Seattle’s leading rusher taking a fly sweep 13 yards.

Buffalo lost its third straight to drop below .500, but it wasn’t due to its quarterback.

Taylor was outstanding, nearly matching Wilson’s performance, except for one miscommunication with a wide receiver that led to Sherman’s end zone interception in the third quarter. Taylor threw for 289 yards. He kept plays alive with his legs and made smart reads and smart throws.

Robert Woods was his favorite target with 10 catches for a career-high 162 yards.

Taylor was 6 of 7 for 73 yards on a drive that carried into the early stages of the fourth quarter and was capped by Mike Gillislee’s 1-yard TD run. Taylor then sneaked in on the 2-point conversion to pull Buffalo within 28-25.

Thanks to a key penalty keeping the drive alive, Seattle got a 49-yard field goal from Steven Hauschka to extend the lead to 31-25 with just under 10 minutes remaining.

Taylor drove the Bills inside the Seattle 35 but a tripping call on Cordy Glenn on third-and-10 pushed Buffalo back and McCoy was stopped for a loss of 2 yards on the next play. Buffalo punted with 3:14 left and got a final chance driving inside the 10 before the Seahawks made a stand.

Vikings audition kicker

Blair Walsh might have kicked his last ball for the Vikings.

After Walsh missed a league-leading third extra point and had a field goal blocked in a game the Vikings lost in overtime to the Lions, their third straight defeat, team officials began arranging visits for free agents to evaluate as possible replacements.

Coach Mike Zimmer confirmed the tryouts would take place, but he was noncommittal whether Minnesota would sign a kicker before the next game at Washington.

Questioned by a reporter Monday about the reasons for considering a change this week, Zimmer quipped, “You haven’t been watching all year?”

Personnel dept.

► Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick has a sprained left knee and his status for Sunday against the Rams is uncertain.

► The Bengals re-signed defensive end Wallace Gilberry, who was released by the Lions last month.

► Receiver Josh Huff was signed to the Buccaneers practice squad less than a week after he was arrested on gun and drug charges and subsequently released by the Eagles.

► Giants guard Justin Pugh will be sidelined indefinitely with a sprained right knee.

► Washington placed tight end Niles Paul on injured reserve with a shoulder injury.

► General manager Thomas Dimitroff signed a three-year extension with the Falcons.