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Classic Rewind: Kicking Game Sinks Giants against the Seahawks

Posted on November 03, 2010 by A.J. Foss


In week 12 of the 2005 NFL season, the Seattle Seahawks and the New York Giants met in an important match-up between NFC division leaders seemingly on a collision course for the post season.

The New York Giants entered this game as leaders of the NFC East division with a 7-3 record, thanks in large part to the number one overall pick of the 2004 NFL Draft, quarterback Eli Manning, who the Giants traded for after Manning refused to go to the San Diego Chargers.

In his first full season as the starting quarterback, Manning led a potent offense that included running back Tiki Barber and wide receiver Plaxico Burress, who the Giants acquired from the Pittsburgh Steelers in the offseason.

Their opponent, the Seattle Seahawks entered the game on a six-game winning streak and an 8-2 record.

Like the Giants, the Seahawks had a potent offense, which was the league’s best, lead by quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and running back Shaun Alexander who had scored 19 touchdowns prior to this game.

At this point in time, the Seahawks had been a team that had the talent to be among the best, but just could get over the hump.

Seattle had made the playoffs the previous two years, but lost in heartbreaking fashion to the Green Bay Packers and the St. Louis Rams, respectively.

Shaun Alexander rushed for 110 yards and a touchdown against the Giants.

Winning this game would go a large way for both teams but especially for the Seahawks as if they could get the top seed in the NFC, they would have the home field advantage throughout the playoffs as they bolstered one of the loudest stadiums in the NFL, Qwest Field, where this game with the Giants would be played.

The Seahawks scored the first points of the game when Hasselbeck threw down the middle for Joe Jurevicius, who out jumped Giants cornerback Corey Webster for the ball, and came down with a 35-yard touchdown that put Seattle ahead 7-0 with 43 seconds left in the first quarter.

The score remained that way until the middle of the second quarter when the other Giants cornerback, Will Allen, stripped Seahawks wide receiver Bobby Engram of the ball and recovered it at the New York 43-yard-line, leading to a seven play, 36-yard drive culminating with a 39-yard field goal by Jay Feely that trimmed Seattle’s lead to 7-3 with 4:23 remaining in the half.

After forcing a three-and-out, the Giants got the ball back at their own 21-yard-line and drove down the field for a touchdown when Manning found Jeremy Shockley in the end zone, who was hit by cornerback Marcus Trufant, jarring the ball loose just as Shockley’s feet were touching the ground.

The play was reviewed but upheld giving the Giants a 10-7 lead as the first half came to a close.

The Giants punted on their opening possession of the second half but forced another turnover on the Seahawks’ opening drive when free safety Brian Alexander intercepted a Hasselbeck pass that was intended for tight end Jeremy Stevens, giving New York the ball at the Seattle 26-yard-line.

But the Seahawks defense held the Giants to just one yard and forced another field goal attempt, which Feely made from 43 yards out, increasing New York’s lead to 13-7.

The Seahawks defense forced a turnover of their own on the Giants’ next offensive possession when strong safety Michael Boulware picked off an overthrown pass and returned it 40 yards to the Seahawks’ 44-yard-line.

Following the Boulware interception, Shaun Alexander, who was held to just 16 yards on seven carries in the first half, carried four times for 40 yards, setting up a 16-yard touchdown pass from Hasselbeck to Jurevicius that put the Seahawks back in the lead at 14-13 with 4:36 left in the third quarter.

Eli Manning tossed for 344 yards and two touchdowns against the Seahawks.

In the fourth quarter, the Seahawks put together their best drive of the day, a 13-play, 80-yard drive that included three catches by Jurevicius that resulted in 1st downs, with two of them coming on 3rd downs, as he finished the game with eight catches for 137 yards and two touchdowns.

On 4th-and-inches from the four-yard-line, Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren decided to go for the first down and was rewarded when Alexander took the handoff from Hasselbeck and a 360-degree spin move at the line of scrimmage, and ran in for the touchdown that increased Seattle’s lead to 21-13 with 4:36 left in regulation.

The Giants got the ball back at their own 39-yard-line and used a no-huddle offense to drive down the field in eight plays, culminating when Manning found Amani Toomer in the back of the end zone, for an 18-yard touchdown to put the Giants to within two points.

Following the touchdown, the Giants converted a successful two-point conversion when Manning hit Shockley in the end zone to tie the game at 21-21 with 1:59 left in regulation.

The Seahawks were unable to move the ball on their ensuing possession as Hasselbeck threw three incomplete passes, leading to a Seattle punt, and giving the Giants the ball at midfield with 1:23 to go and two timeouts in New York’s pocket.

Needing just a field goal, Manning completed two passes for 19 yards and Barber carried the ball twice for nine yards, putting the ball at the Seahawks’ 22-yard-line with four seconds left.

Feely came in to attempt the potential game-winning field goal from 40 yards out that would put the Giants in first place in the NFC.

Feely had been 21-for-23 on field goal attempts this game and had been successful twice on his two kicks in this game.

Jay Feely (#2) and the Giants missed three potentially game-winning field goals against Seattle.

But Feely would not make this kick, as his 40-yarder went wide left as time expired, sending the game into overtime tied at 21.

The Seahawks won the overtime coin toss but went three-and-out and having to punt the ball back to New York, who got the ball at their own 49-yard-line.

On 3rd-and-13 from the 46, Manning found Plaxico Burress for a 23-yard-gain to the Seahawks’ 31-yard-line, putting the Giants once again in range for a Feely field goal.

However, the drive stalled when tackle Luke Pettigoat committed his fifth false start of the game, the 11th overall for the Giants, forcing a long try from Feely, this time from 54 yards.

Feely’s kick was on target but short, and the Seahawks were still alive with 10:43 left in the overtime period.

After Feely’s second miss, the Seahawks drove into Giants territory but were forced to punt again, with this punt going into the end zone for a touchback.

On the very next play, Barber ran 49 yards to the Seattle 31-yard-line and after three more plays for four yards, Feely came in to try to win the game for the third time.

But once again, Feely was unsuccessful as his 45-yard kick was his worst as the ball sailed wide right and fell short, as the Seahawks dodged another bullet and got the ball back at their own 35-yard-line.

The Seahawks’ next drive did not get off to a good start as Hasselbeck was called for intentional grounding on the first play of the possession, but he redeemed himself on the very next play when he found D.J. Hackett for a 38-yard gain, putting Seattle at the Giants’ 38-yard-line.

Then, Alexander carried the load as his next two runs gained 21 yards, putting the Seahawks in range for a game-winning field goal of their own.

Seattle ran three more plays before they called on kicker Josh Brown to come on to attempt a 36-yard field goal for a Seahawks victory.

Was Brown fazed by Feely’s struggles? The answer was no as Brown’s kick sailed through the uprights, giving the Seahawks a 24-21 overtime victory.

The win was the Seahawks’ seventh in a row, a streak they would run up to 11 as Seattle finished with the NFC’s best record at 13-3 and clinched home field advantage throughout the playoffs where they defeated the Washington Redskins and the Carolina Panthers, respectively on their way to Super Bowl XL where the Seahawks would fall to the Pittsburgh Steelers 21-10.

The Giants would still go on to win the NFC East with an 11-5 record but they would be defeated by the Carolina Panthers 23-0 in their NFC Wild Card Game.

As for Feely, he would remain kicker of the New York Giants through the 2006 season until he was released by the team.

Currently, Feely is the kicker of the Arizona Cardinals.

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