Geno Smith makes first NFL start since 2017 in wild game vs. Steelers

Gold and Blue Nation

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) keeps his injured hand in a pad as he runs through a warmup drill with backup quarterback Geno Smith (7) behind him during NFL football practice, Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, in Renton, Wash. Wilson had surgery on his hand last Friday, and Smith is expected to be the starting quarterback Sunday when the Seahawks play the Pittsburgh Steelers on the road. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

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December 25 2021 12:00 am

Geno Smith’s first NFL start in five seasons was a rollercoaster.

The former Mountaineer star started at quarterback Sunday for the Seahawks, making his first pro start since 2017. 

Smith completed 23 of his 32 passes for 209 yards and a touchdown in a 23-20 overtime loss against the Steelers. He hit tight end Will Dissly for a score in the third quarter:

After falling into an early 14-0 hole, Smith and the Seahawks rallied to tie the score at 17-17 in the third quarter. The Steelers regained the lead in the final two minutes with a field goal, giving Smith an opportunity to orchestrate a game-tying drive in the final 90 seconds. 

That’s ultimately what happened: Smith got the Seahawks into field goal range on a nine-play, 50-yard drive that concluded with a 43-yard boot by Jason Myers to tie the score at 20-20. 

But, Smith fumbled on Seattle’s second overtime possession, giving the Steelers the ball in field goal range. They won the game three plays later on a Chris Boswell field goal. 

Smith is likely to remain Seattle’s starting quarterback for the next two weeks as Russell Wilson recovers from a finger injury. The Super Bowl XLVIII winner had previously started in 149 consecutive regular season games, which was the longest active streak in the NFL and sixth all-time among quarterbacks. 

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