The sun busted through for the Seahawks’ player
introductions and the fans are waving white, 12th Man towels. There
was a fly-over, and Walter Jones just raised the 12th Man Flag.
It’s game time: Saints won the toss and will receive.
It didn’t take Drew Brees long to put Seattle’s defense on its
heels. He engineers an 8-play, 52-yard drive that ends in a 26 yard
FG by Garrett Hartley. Reggie Bush dropped a pass on third down or
the Saints likely would have come away with a TD.
11:43: Saints 3, Hawks 0.
Following a Hasselbeck interception (it wasn’t his fault; ball
skipped out of Obamanu’s hands and Jabari Greer picked it off and
returned in 10 yards to the 35. Eight plays later, Brees hit
fullback Heath Evans with a 1-yard scoring pass. 6:21: NO
10, Seattle 0.
My thought? Who needs a running bame? Brees is picking apart the
Seattle answers. Hasselbeck looks share in a 7-play, 57-yard
drive that ends with 11-yard TD to wide open TE John Carlson on a
play-action pass. 3:38: NO 10, Seattle 7.
New Orleans on the move as quarter ends. Saints held the ball
11:06 during the quarter and are in Seattle’s territory again.
Ex-Seahawk Julius Jones scores on a 5-yard draw to cap a 10-play
83-yard drive. 3 possessions, 3 scores for Saints. 13:38:
NO 17, Seattle 7. If Hawks can’t figure out a way to get
to Brees, it looks like it’ll be a long, long day. But that’s kind
of what we expected, right?
OK, it looks like Hasselbeck was the right call. He’s sharp. He
just lobbed a great touch pass to TE Cameron Morrah for 39 yards to
set up a 7-yard TD to TE Carlson, who was wide open. 11:00,
NO 17, Hawks 14.
Finally, the Seahawks defense forces a punt, but they don’t
capitalize. Seattle gets the ball and goes 3 and out. Hasselbeck
threw away passes on second and third down. He must have learned
that from Charlie Whitehurst. In the past, Matt might have tried to
force it, but not today.
Tie game: Raheem Brock forces a fumble on Julius Jones and LB
Hawthorne recovers for Seattle at the Saints’ 19. Mare’s 29 FG ties
it with 7:09 left. Seattle 17, Saints 17. Breaks
are going Seattle’s way.
Wow! Hasselbeck just lofted a perfect pass to Brandon Stokely,
who was wide open for a 45 yard TD. Hawks leads 24-17. 1:15 left in
the half. Seattle 24, Saints 17.
Saints kick a FG with :03 left after going 77 yards in a little
over a minute. End of the half: Seattle 24, New Orleans
There’s a lot of raised eyebrows at Qwest Field right now. Who’d
have thunk that the 7-9 laughingstock from the NFC West would be
leading the defending world champions at halftime? Hey, the party’s
still rocking. Wonder what the Football Gods have in mind for the
I guess Coach (com)Pete was right when he named Hasselbeck the
starter. I was in the other camp on that one, but what do I know.
Hasselbeck’s 13 of 18 for 169 yards and 3 TDs.
First possession important for Seattle and they knew what to do.
Hasselbeck’s 38-yard TD pass to Mike Williams, who made an
over-the-shoulder catch around the 7 and dragged two defenders into
the end zone. 11:48, Seattle 31, NO 20.
Seattle just scored on its fourth straight possession and sixth
of its last seven. Mare kicks a 39 FG. The score doesn’t surprise
me, but I thought the Saints would have the 34. 5:27,
Seattle 34, Saints 20.
New Orleans gambles on a 4th and 1 from its own 36 and
comes up short. Seattle takes over. Another score here and it just
might be (dare I say) … over. No, it’s too early for that. A delay
of game just took the Seahawks out of field goal range. With 2:53
left, the Hawks still have a 14-point cushion.
Quarter ends with Saints on the move. First down at Seattle 37.
Seattle leads: 34-20.
The statistics are fairly even. Seattle has 332 yards (75
rushing, 257 passing); New Orleans 312 (57, 255).
Seattle’s not giving the Saints anything deep and Brees is
content to take the short stuff right now. Aided by a 15-yard
penalty on Chris Clemons, New Orleans pulls within a touchdown.
Jones scored a 4-yard rushing TD to cap a 12-play, 87 yard drive
that took 4:12 off the clock. 13:11 left, Seattle 34,
Saints 27. It seems like the Saints have gained the
momentum back. We’ll see. Biggest possession of the season for the
Seahawks right now.
Seattle go 3-and-out. Saints get the ball back with 12:40 left,
at their own 44. Buckle up. Looks like we’re headed to a wild
finish. Saints take 8 plays to go 53 yards and kick a 21 FG to pull
within four. 9:13: Hawks 34, Saints 30.
THE SPREAD: The outcome might be in doubt, but
those who took the Seahawks and 10 points are looking pretty good
5:18: Hawks linebacker Lofa Tatupu and Saints
RB Julius Jones both leave after a collision. Jones gained 11 yards
on a reception from the 6. NO’s Reggie Bush left hte game earlier.
The Saints are in trouble at the RB position. NO’s top two backs
were put on injured reserve earlier in the week.
HANG ON TIME: Seattle has the ball with 4:20
left at its own 33 after forcing a punt. Both teams are down to
their last timeut.
BEAST TIME: Seven New Orleans defenders got their hands on Marshawn
Lynch, but they couldn’t stop him from scoring on a 67-yard
touchdown run that should enough to get the much-maligned Seahawks
to the next round of the NFL playoffs. Unreal run. Lynch ran by LB
Scott Shanie (58), broke through two more defenders, shrugged off
Jabari Greer (33), tossed Tracy Porter (22) aside with a stiff arm
and ambled down the Seahawks sideline. Defensive end Jeff
Charleston (97) dove at him and got an arm on one of Lynch’s legs,
but it didn’t slow him. He cut back toward the middle of the field
and angled toward the end zone. Another Saint (didn’t catch him
number) got a hand on him at the goalline.
Somebody on Twitter reported that Lynch just broke 17
NO QUIT IN SAINTS: New Orleans scores but comes
up short on a run for two-points nd Seattleha sa 41-36 lead with
1:30 left. It was a 9-play, 70-yard drive with Brees connecting
with Henderson for a 6-yard TD.
MORE HANG ON TIME: Everybody in the stadium
knows it’ll be an onside kick. It was fielded by Seattle’s Carlson
at the 47. 1:29 left. Saints take final timeout with 1:23 left.