Hawks pick up win

Questions were answered and statements made Saturday night in San Francisco, when the Seahawks delivered a convincing 28-18 win over the 49ers.

Head coach/ GM Mike Holmgren wanted to play the first team offense and defense into the second half to give younger guys more time to develop and also so that the coaching staff could evaluate some of the players that they haven't had a good look at yet.

Return specialist Charlie Rogers played wideout with the first and second team offenses and scored Seattle's first touchdown - a fly pass down the left sideline from starting quarterback Matt Hasselbeck on Seattle's first offensive possession of the game. On third and five from the 21-yard line, Hasselbeck threw a pass right on the money and in tight coverage that arched over Rogers' shoulder and into his hands.

San Francisco returned the ensuing kickoff to the 34-yard line but went three-and-out. They punted deep to the Seattle eight-yard line, where Rogers called a fair catch. From there, Hasselbeck led another touchdown scoring drive that featured a 15-yard gainer from Shaun Alexander on a counter trap and a 23-yard reception along the right sideline by James Williams.

The Seahawks faced second down and 14 from the 46 and Hasselbeck released right of the pocket to avoid pressure. He hit Alexander on a dump pass to shorten the markers and on the next play – a third and five, he hit Williams for a first down. The drive was capped off with a touchdown pass to Darrell Jackson that gave the Seahawks a 14-0 lead.

San Francisco went three-and-out on their next offensive series. Seattle received a huge break when the 49ers' punter Chad Stanley fumbled the snap. Karsten Bailey was the first to pressure him on the rush, followed by linebacker Marcus Bell, who made the tackle and fullback Heath Evans, who was close by. This gave Seattle the ball on the San Francisco 14-yard line.

After a holding call, the Seahawks faced a first-and-20 from the 24. A two-yard completion to Koren Robinson made it second-and-18. Seattle took advantage of an obvious passing situation and handed the ball off to Mack Strong, who converted a nine-yard run. On third and nine, they ran a backside screen to Alexander that he converted into a 14-yard touchdown run after faking inside several times, getting a couple of key blocks and releasing outside. The P.A.T. by kicker Shayne Graham was good.

San Francisco scored on their fourth possession of the game when Terrell Owens beat cornerback Ken Lucas on a fly pattern. Lucas and Ike Charlton played impressively as the starting corners, giving up a handful of short slant and out routes while guarding against the deep ball.

Chad Eaton limped off the field with the help of trainers on the next defensive series. They were looking at his right knee but he returned two possessions later, where the 49ers advanced the ball inside the 10-yard line. Again, the Hawks caught a break when on second and goal, running back Garrison Hearst ran right and fumbled the ball. Strong safety Reggie Tongue recovered and just as he was being tackled, he tossed a forward lateral pass to free safety Marcus Robertson, who advanced the ball, but the play was called dead at the point of infraction and Seattle took over on the four-yard line.

Matt Hasselbeck then led a drive that ended with an interception. On second-and-nine, he scrambled left to avoid the rush and threw a sidearm pass across his body to Koren Robinson. But Robinson was tightly covered and rookie Rashad Holman stepped in front of the ball to make the pick.

Charlton missed an interception that hit him in the hands when the defense returned to the field, but it didn't hurt because the Seahawks got the ball back and backup quarterback Trent Dilfer came in with the first team. Alexander was replaced by fifth-year running back, Jay Graham, who carried six straight times before the team punted to San Francisco, who ran out the final seconds of the first half.

On the 49ers' first possession of the second half, Lucas stripped the ball from Owens after the catch and Seattle recovered. A penalty hurt Seattle's chances on the next offensive drive, despite Dilfer dumping a pass to Alexander on third-and-15 that nearly converted. On the punt, special teams guru Fabien Bownes helped down the ball inside the five-yard line. Throughout the evening, Bownes made an impact on several special teams plays and always seems to have a nose for the ball.

The 49ers got on the board again with a field goal early in the third quarter to make the score 21-10. Rookie safety Curtis Fuller had a chance to halt the drive when he stepped in front of a pass near the goal line but couldn't hang on.

Dilfer's third series on the field wasn't much better. After two pressures and an offensive penalty, he couldn't keep it going and Seattle was forced to punt. Dilfer managed to lead a scoring drive that gave Seattle its fourth touchdown, on his fifth series of the game. Taking the ball over on the San Francisco 47, he mixed run plays with passes to Lloyd Garden; an overthrown ball to tight end James Hill, who was open across the middle; and to Robinson on the left side for an 11-yard gain. On third down, Dilfer hit Hill across the middle for a touchdown that was tipped into his hands by safety Pierson Prioleau.

For the Seahawks, this was a performance that was needed on all fronts. If Seattle's offense can light up the score board and the defense put pressure on the passer like they did against the 49ers, then the seats at Husky Stadium could be overflowing.

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