The Denver Broncos still had an opportunity to win their 2022 season opener even if they failed in the red zone multiple times.
All they needed to do was to keep their drive going with time running out.
Getting another first down would have given kicker Brandon McManus a closer distance to cover.
But at fourth-and-five, Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett decided to try the field goal.
It was a head-scratching decision for several reasons, the first being that Russell Wilson is their quarterback.
He has had his fair share of fourth-quarter comebacks, and allowing him to cover the five yards is the better bet.
Yet instead of going for it, Hackett made McManus attempt what could have been the game-winner from 64 yards.
Converting that opportunity would have given the kicker the second-longest field goal conversion in NFL history.
However, the odds of getting it through the uprights were low.
Denver’s high altitude could have given the ball enough push to cover the distance.
But they played in Seattle, and McManus’ kick sailed wide left.
In retrospect, Hackett would have wanted to let Wilson get the first down.
#Broncos HC Nathaniel Hackett speaking today: "Looking back at it, we definitely should've gone for it.”
But… he reiterates that a 64-yard FG attempt was the mark they set for McManus. That's why they went FG in the moment.
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) September 13, 2022
Pro Football Focus writer Ari Meirov tweeted, “#Broncos HC Nathaniel Hackett speaking today: ‘Looking back at it, we definitely should’ve gone for it.’ But… he reiterates that a 64-yard FG attempt was the mark they set for McManus. That’s why they went FG in the moment.”
Broncos Will Try To Avoid An 0-2 Hole
As one of the favorites coming into the 2022 NFL season, the Broncos dropping their first two games would be alarming.
But more than the missed field goals, completing their drives with touchdowns should be their biggest concern.
The game against Seattle could have been a blowout if they made it through the end zone.
Instead, they will be staring at an 0-2 slate if they will lose to the Houston Texans in Week 2.