They sure came close.
Matt Hasselbeck rallied the Seahawks from a 17-0 deficit with a franchise-record 39 completions, and Seattle held off Detroit 32-20 on Sunday to avoid the embarrassment of being the first home team to lose to the Lions in 25 months.
Hasselbeck threw an interception on his first play but finished with the first 300-yard passing game in two seasons for the Seahawks (3-5). He was 39 of 51 for 329 yards.
Josh Wilson returned an interception 61 yards for a touchdown with 22 seconds left, the last of five INTs by rookie Matthew Stafford, the top overall pick playing his second game since missing two weeks with a knee injury. That kept the Lions (1-7) from finally flying home happy.
Starting at his own 5 with no timeouts remaining and 2:03 left, Stafford completed four passes to get Detroit to midfield. Then came his final, decisive mistake.
Stafford walked to the sideline and stood with his hands on his hips. For a while, no teammate or coach came near him.
The Seahawks were coming off their first consecutive losses by more than 20 points since 2001, Hasselbeck’s first season as their starting quarterback. The week began with coach Jim Mora telling his team he would fire people, if necessary. Then he cut NFL active rushing leader Edgerrin James and veteran cornerback Travis Fisher.
His team’s answer: flopping to a horrendous start.
Seattle’s first six plays included an interception by Hasselbeck on the first play; a lost fumble by Justin Griffith forced by former Seahawks linebacker Julian Peterson on the second; two negative-yardage runs by Julius Jones; then another for no gain on a fourth-and-inches gamble in their own end by a desperate team.
Stafford turned the interception into a 7-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Pettigrew. Bryant Johnson made a diving, one-armed catch in the back of the end zone for a 29-yard score off Griffith’s fumble. Then, after Detroit’s Larry Foote denied Jones on fourth down, Jason Hanson atoned for missing from 34 yards at the end of a 14-play opening drive by making a field goal.
Faster than you can say “road kill,” it was 17-0 Lions.
Detroit had its largest lead on the road since Sept. 7, 2007, in the third quarter of an eventual 15-point win at Oakland. The Lions were poised for their first road win since Oct. 28 of that season, at Chicago.
And the Seahawks had their formerly lovable home fans booing them off the field.
But Seattle finally awakened. And Detroit began looking like the same old Lions.
Stafford woefully underthrew a pass that Deon Grant picked off at the Seahawks 16. Late in the third quarter, he overthrew 6-foot-5 Calvin Johnson by 5 yards for David Hawthorne’s second interception, and Seattle scored 25 consecutive points. Johnson caught just two passes for 27 yards in his first game since Oct. 11 following a right knee injury.
© 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed
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Tags: Brandon Pettigrew, coach jim mora, Consecutive Losses, Edgerrin James, Franchise Record, Home Game, Interception, Ints, Josh Wilson, Julian Peterson, Julius Jones, Matt Hasselbeck, Passing Game, Second Game, Touchdown Pass, Travis Fisher, Veteran Cornerback, Yard Touchdown
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