| | Seahawks Heavily Favored in Rematch vs. Skins
The Washington Redskins won earlier this season at home against Seattle, but the oddsmakers don’t see that happening again.
Seattle is a hefty 9-point home favorite against Washington, even though they lost the earlier matchup in overtime 20-17. The turning point in the Seahawk’s season can be traced back to that loss.
"We've had a lot of wins and not a lot of losses since then," NFL rushing leader and league MVP Shaun Alexander said.
"We were sort of at a crossroads after that game," quarterback Matt Hasselbeck said.
"We were 2-2," Hasselbeck said. "We felt like we were pretty good. We had some confidence in our offense to make plays, but we really hadn't done it yet."
Seattle won 11 straight in posting a franchise-best 13-3 record. "Looking back, I don't think anyone would have predicted such a good rebound after that game," Hasselbeck said.
Starting receivers Darrell Jackson and Bobby Engram went out with injuries during the earlier meeting against Washington, but the good news was that the injuries forced Joe Jurevicius into action. Jurevicius went from one reception for 17 yards receiving against the Redskins to a career-high nine catches for 137 yards and a touchdown the following week at St. Louis. Jurevicius went on to establish career highs with 10 TD catches — tied for second in the NFC — and 694 yards.
The Seahawks also began making Jerramy Stevens their main pass-catching tight end.
"He is definitely a threat that people are aware of at all times," Hasselbeck said.
Another factor for Seattle is that kicker Josh Brown, who missed a potential game winner in the overtime loss, has been nearly perfect.
"That was one of the best things that ever happened to me. Up to that point I had, knock on wood, never missed a game-winner," Brown said, "History's played out great for us. We're going into a game where the way our guys have been playing for the last 13 weeks, we should have no problem."