Seven Make The Playoffs

RALEIGH, N.C. - As the NFL playoffs get underway this weekend, seven former NC State football players are on teams with hopes of finishing the season with a Super Bowl victory.

The Pack will be well represented in the Sunday afternoon contest, as three former NC State players are on the Seattle Seahawks squad that will face the Redskins in Washington. The Seahawks won seven of their final eight games to earn a Wild Card berth at 11-5.

Quarterback Russell Wilson finished fourth among starting QBs with a 100.0 passing rating during the regular season, and his 26 touchdown passes ties Peyton Manning for the most ever for a first-year signal caller. Placekicker Steven Hauschka was 24-of-27 with a long of 52 yards on field goals this season. Converted defensive lineman J.R. Sweezy saw action in 13 games, and made three starts at offensive guard including the season finale.

For the second straight year, Manny Lawson and the Cincinnati Bengals will travel to the Houston Texans on the first weekend of the playoffs. The Texans won last year's battle, 31-10. Cincinnati earned a Wild Card berth with a 10-6 record, as Lawson started 10 games and finished with 39 tackles and 2 sacks.

A pair of former teammates will face off this weekend in Green Bay, when rookie linebackers Terrell Manning (Green Bay Packers) and Audie Cole (Minnesota Vikings) both get their first playoff experience. Both players have seen game action in five contests this season, mainly on special teams.

The Packers won the NFC North with a 11-5 record, while the Vikings made it in as a wildcard at 10-6. The teams split their games this season, with each winning on their home field. The Packers won 23-14 in Green Bay in Week 13, and last week the Vikings earned their playoff birth with a 37-34 win.

For the second straight season, Nate irving and the Denver Broncos made the playoffs. The Broncos won 11 straight games, and claimed the AFC's top seed with a 13-3 record and will have a bye this weekend. On the season, Irving has appeared in 15 games and recorded 13 tackles.

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