Ryan's Place

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Seahawks Stomp 49ers 41-3



From NFL.com:

Matt Hasselbeck got up wheezing after throwing his first incompletion. San Francisco's Derek Smith had just buried his helmet into the Seattle quarterback's chest and drove him into the ground.

"I was just trying to breathe. I felt like I was underwater," he said.

A few welcomed running plays later, Hasselbeck found his breath -- and then flooded the futile 49ers. He completed 21 of 25 passes for 226 yards and a season-high four touchdowns in just three quarters to breeze his NFC-leading Seahawks past San Francisco, 41-3.

Bobby Engram caught two of Hasselbeck's scoring throws, as the NFC West champions (11-2) won their team-record ninth straight game. They also showed they might bring along a hot quarterback with NFL rushing leader Shaun Alexander into the playoffs.

"The biggest thing people are missing is, Matt's been leading us on this nine-game winning streak," said Joe Jurevicius, who caught one of Hasselbeck's TD passes.

The only other time Hasselbeck threw more than three scores in his 104-game career was a five-TD performance on Nov. 23, 2003, in an overtime loss at Baltimore.

"I really hate saying good things about him, because it goes to his head," center Robbie Tobeck said, almost laughing. "All you hear about is Shaun, which is great. He's deserved it. But Matt's done a great job leading this team."

Tobeck has been where this franchise never has gone: the Super Bowl. He went with Atlanta in 1998, when Falcons quarterback Chris Chandler got hot late in the season.

"You can't win in the playoffs if you don't have a quarterback who is playing well; it's impossible to do it without that," he said.

Alexander added 108 yards on 21 carries and his league-leading 23rd touchdown rushing late in the third quarter. He is four TDs from the league's single-season record of 27, set by Priest Holmes of Kansas City in 2003.

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