GameBlog Final: Seattle 20, Washington 10

GameBlog Final: Seattle 20, Washington 10. Darrell Jackson and Matt Hasselbeck star on offense, and Lofa Tatupu defines his defense as the Seahawks end their 21-year playoff drought.

FOURTH QUARTER

Josh Brown kicks a FG at 14:20. Seahawks 17, Redskins 3. Thinking back to fourth-quarter collapses of years past – are we past this monkey?

Washington answers with a 4-play, 76-yard TD drive that includes a 52-yard pass from the Washington 4 to the Seattle 24 from Brunell to Cooley. Cooley gets a free release to the middle and rumbles for about 35 YAC. Either someone blew an assignment here, or there’s a defense that calls for a 30-yard gash in the middle of the field. My money’s on the former. The drive ends with a floober from Brunell that doinks off Dyson’s hands into Moss’ hands in the end zone.

That officially sucked.

Washington had 140 total yards in the first three quarters and 76 on this drive.

This just in: Prevent DOES NOT WORK.

Josh Scobey fumbles the subsequent kickoff – that’s the second special teams fumble of the day to go along with Jimmy Williams’ punt return muff in the first half. Seattle’s indifferent special teams come back to bite them yet again. Washington drives down the field again, taking it back down to the Seattle 18. Seattle catches a huge break when John Hall misses a 36-yard field goal wide left, keeping the score at 17-10.

With 11:42 left, referee Ron Winter made a very interesting call with an illegal contact call on Dyson. The replay showed Moss bowling Dyson over. Keep this in mind – Winter is one of the BETTER refs. We can only cross our fingers for Ed Hochuli in the NFC Championship game.

With 5:15 left, the play that pretty much sealed the deal: On 3rd and 6 from the Seattle 48, Matt looked to audible to a run at the line and handed off to Mack Strong, who rumbled for a career-high 32-yard run. Josh Brown kicked his second FG with 2:54 left, which makes the final score Seahawks 20, Redskins 10.

Washington would have one more drive, but the horse was in the barn.

The Seattle Seahawks end their 21-year playoff drought, and get ready to host either Chicago or Carolina in the NFC Championship game.


THIRD QUARTER

Announced at the beginning of the third quarter that Alexander would not return (concussion). Dyson questionable with an ankle injury. Walter Jones got nicked with 13:06 left in the 3rd quarter – returned quickly. Who’s next?

Morris rushed for his fifth first down in Seattle’s first drive of the second half. Not pretty stats (18 carries for 49 yards and a longest of 8) but he showed crucial movemet and toughness when it really mattered.

11:30 left, and Hasselbeck gets one to Jurevicius for 31 yards. That man was the best free agent signing of the 2005 season.

At this point, Redskins DC Gregg Williams still not blitzing a lot – Seattle able to move the ball towards their second touchdown on a Hasselbeck 6-yard run with 9:35 left in the quarter. That drive went 81 yards on 10 plays in 4:20. The kind of drive Seattle had been scoring on all year.

Seattle got good pressure quite a bit of the time with four up front– nice variety of loops and stunts. Brunell didn’t look comfortable in the pocket all day.

Cory Raymer replacing Ray Brown at right guard, and he looked very rough. There was one holding call, but at least two more went uncalled.

Washington was able to move the ball in the third quarter when Seattle started playing back in a two-deep. But in the season’s tradition, the Seahawk D went “bend-but-don’t break” on a Redskin drive that lasted 16 plays and almost eight minutes, and ended at the Seattle 33 with a really weird play call – on 4 th and 13, Joe Gibbs decided against the 3 points and went for it. Bryce Fisher fought through, sacked Brunell, caused the fumble, and Grant Wistrom recovered. Raymer appeared to blow a blocking assignment here.

One play in that drive highlighted one of so many Seattle’s unsung heroes. Wqith 2:58 left at the Seattle 30, Clinton Portis threw a halfback option to Chris Cooley, whoch was broken up in the end zone by Marquand Manuel. Manuel has done an incredible job in place of the injured Ken Hamlin, and it was great to see him laying it down here.

With 1:10 left in the quarter, Hasselbeck threw a 37-yarder to Jackson. This play showed Hass’ maturity and poise – he looked off to the left, left, left…and threw right. Totally pulled everyone off Jackson, and came back and found him. That’s a pro throw.

End of third quarter – Seahawks 14, Redskins 3.


FIRST HALF

That was a half of football like it was played in about 1937. Seattle has 152 total yards, and Washington has 74.

Seattle’s defense has been incredible. The only completed pass to Santana Moss was when Kelly Herndon was covering him – the oft-maligned Marcus Trufant is having one heck of a game.

Have to admit to goosebumps when Ken Hamlin raised the flag. What resiliency this team has, and how Hamlin’s recovery typifies that.

103 decibels from the crowd when Hamlin raised the flag.

On that initial SEA drive, Darrell Jackson just wasted Shawn Springs on a 37-yard gain. Later saw Springs blowing a zone handoff by about 5 yards.

Matt Hasselbeck has alternated between befuddled and brilliant. The first quarter saw him looking very hurried and rattled, but his work on the 2nd quarter TD drive was a thing of beauty. His runs for 7 and 9 yards on that drive were huge

Washington the best in the league at tipping passes at the line. Worth watching throughout the game…

Three major injuries for SEA – two have resolved themselves (D. Jackson – lower back – back in the game/L. Hill – liming – back in the game). Shaun Alexander has a concussion and is still on the sidelines. Maurice Morris ran for 18 yards and 4 first downs on 8 attempts in Alexander’s stead in the first half.

Jackson’s TD catch after coming back from injury was another testament to this team’s will. Much more on that drive later.

I hope everyone who voted for Shawne Merriman as DROY is watching this game. Watch how Tatupu calls a brilliant defense. Watch him stay 40 yards downfield with a receiver. Watch him JACK UP Ladell Betts and tell me who the defensive rookie of the year really is.

After going 13 of 18 on 3rd down conversions in that October win, Washington is 2 for 10 today. Defense has carried the teams.


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