1:00 PM ET, December 2, 2007
Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA
PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Lofa Tatupu joked about missing a tackle and a few defensive assignments. The way he caught the ball, the linebacker might want to play tight end, too.Tatupu set up Seattle's first two touchdowns by intercepting A.J. Feeley twice in the first quarter, and he sealed a 28-24 victory over Philadelphia with another pick at the Seahawks 4 in the final minute Sunday.Tatupu had three interceptions as a rookie in 2005, but only two since. He matched that total in the first six minutes, and capped off a career day by hauling in Feeley's pass with 23 seconds left."I'm just glad I didn't drop it," Tatupu said.Maurice Morris had a 45-yard touchdown run, helping the NFC West-leading Seahawks improve to 8-4. Matt Hasselbeck threw for two scores and Shaun Alexander had 65 yards rushing and one TD after missing three games with a sprained knee.By the time Donovan McNabb comes back, Philadelphia (5-7) might be playing for pride only. The Eagles are in danger of missing the playoffs for the second time in three years after making four consecutive appearances in the NFC championship game."It's frustrating the way we've lost some of these games," safety Brian Dawkins said.Playing their second straight game without the injured McNabb, the Eagles didn't have problems moving the ball on a cold, rainy day. But Feeley's interceptions cost Philadelphia again.McNabb hasn't played since spraining his right ankle and injuring his thumb in a win over Miami two weeks ago. Led by Jeff Garcia, the Eagles went 5-1 and won the NFC East after McNabb went down with a knee injury last year. But Philly is 0-2 without its five-time Pro Bowl quarterback this season. Coach Andy Reid said McNabb likely will start against the New York Giants next week.Brian Westbrook's 64-yard punt return put the ball at Seattle's 14 with under two minutes left, but Feeley threw his fourth interception on third down. He finished 19-for-42 for 220 yards."It's on me," Feeley said. "You don't force the ball."Feeley had career bests in completions (27) and yards passing (345) and threw three TDs in a 31-28 loss at New England last Sunday. He also had three interceptions, including one that was returned for a score.The backup picked up where he left off against the Patriots by tossing his third straight interception on the first play from scrimmage. Tatupu returned it 33 yards to the Eagles 18, and Seattle went ahead 7-0 when Alexander ran in from the 2.After Westbrook's 29-yard TD run in the third quarter gave the Eagles their first lead, Morris put Seattle ahead to stay. Morris took a pitch, ran untouched into the secondary, juked past a tackler and scampered into the end zone.Feeley already has thrown two more interceptions than McNabb in just 2 1/2 games. His seventh pick came on his 93rd pass of the season. McNabb has been intercepted just six times in 326 attempts."It's my job to see everything and protect the football," Feeley said. "The bottom line is it's me. It's going to eat on me for a while if Don comes back and I have to sit on this."The Eagles tied it at 7 when Correll Buckhalter burst up the middle for a 30-yard TD run. Later in the first quarter, Tatupu returned his second pick 49 yards to the Eagles 8. Hasselbeck fired a 12-yard TD pass over the middle to Bobby Engram on third down to put the Seahawks ahead 14-7.Tatupu had one of three defensive touchdowns in Seattle's 42-0 victory in Philadelphia on Dec. 5, 2005. Mike McMahon started that game for McNabb, who was out with a sports hernia."Tatupu had one of the great games I've ever seen a linebacker have," Seattle coach Mike Holmgren said. "He does have great instincts. He's got great ball skills. He can catch the ball. He was a former quarterback. He's very athletic plus he's a tough guy. He can make those plays that other linebackers can't."The Seahawks extended their lead to 21-10 on Nate Burleson's 43-yard catch-and-run TD. Burleson, who returned a punt 36 yards on the previous play, eluded Lito Sheppard with a nice move at the 20 and ran down the right sideline.Feeley connected with Kevin Curtis on a 24-yard TD pass to pull Philadelphia to 21-17.The Seahawks preserved that lead with a strong goal-line stand at the end of the first half. The Eagles had a first down at the 1, but didn't gain a yard on two runs by Westbrook and a pass. On fourth down, Rocky Bernard pushed through and stopped Westbrook for no gain.
The Eagles were also missing two starters on defense: DT Brodrick Bunkley and SS Quintin Mikell. ... Feeley's passer rating was 30.0. ... Seahawks CB Josh Wilson left with a leg injury in the first half.
Simply put, the difference in this game was the Eagles' four turnovers. Seahawks MLB Lofu Tatupu did a great job in his pattern recognition. While keying off Eagles QB A.J. Feeley, he had three interceptions in the short underneath zones and keyed the Seahawks' victory. It was obvious that Feeley was keying in on his primary receivers, and that allowed Tatupu to jump underneath routes, which resulted in game-changing plays. Tatupu also was highly productive within the box versus the run, using his instincts to time up blitzes that helped contain RB Brian Westbrook in certain running situations. Tatupu nearly single-handedly disrupted the Philadelphia offense and led the Seahawks to a big road win.
-- Keith Kidd, Scouts Inc.
Team Stat Comparison
Passing 1st downs
Rushing 1st downs
1st downs from penalties
3rd down efficiency
4th down efficiency
|Yards per play||4.8||5.0|
Yards per pass
Yards per rush
|Red Zone (Made-Att)||2-2||0-3|
|Defensive / Special Teams TDs||0||0|
|TD||13:53||Shaun Alexander, 2 yd run (Josh Brown kick is good)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 18 yds, 0:51
|TD||12:04||Correll Buckhalter, 30 yd run (David Akers kick is good)|
Drive info: 5 plays, 65 yds, 1:52
|TD||7:25||Bobby Engram, 12 yd pass from Matt Hasselbeck (Josh Brown kick is good)|
Drive info: 3 plays, 8 yds, 1:23
|FG||5:17||David Akers 31 yd Field Goal|
Drive info: 7 plays, 53 yds, 2:07
|TD||11:26||Nate Burleson, 43 yd pass from Matt Hasselbeck (Josh Brown kick is good)|
Drive info: 1 plays, 43 yds, 0:00
|TD||9:13||Kevin Curtis, 24 yd pass from A.J. Feeley (David Akers kick is good)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 60 yds, 2:10
|TD||12:51||Brian Westbrook, 29 yd run (David Akers kick is good)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 40 yds, 1:23
|TD||9:22||Maurice Morris, 45 yd run (Josh Brown kick is good)|
Drive info: 3 plays, 53 yds, 1:26