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Seattle slips past Atlanta

©Associated Press
December 16, 2002

ATLANTA -- Michael Vick came through, then Shaun Alexander did him one better to win the game for Seattle.

After Atlanta's Jay Feely missed a 36-yard field goal in overtime, Alexander ran 27 yards for a touchdown, giving the Seahawks a 30-24 victory Sunday.

"I have to shoulder this burden," said Feely, from Tampa Jesuit. "That's my job, to make field goals."

Vick, who did little right through 31/2 quarters, helped the Falcons tie the score with a 12-yard touchdown to Trevor Gaylor with 17 seconds left in regulation. He then drove his team to the 18 in overtime to set up Feely's try.

After the miss, Matt Hasselbeck completed a 21-yard pass to Koren Robinson on third and 6 and Alexander did the rest. On second down, he broke through the middle and easily outran the defense.

"Mack Strong, who is probably the best fullback in the NFL, hit the linebacker and gave me a good angle, and I had the easy part," Alexander said. "I just had to run."

Vick was 21-of-38 for 240 yards, and he ran for 40 yards on 13 carries. He injured his throwing hand in the second quarter, hitting a helmet on his follow through, but stayed in.

Hasselbeck, listed as questionable because of a sprained foot, finished 22-of-31 for 298 yards and a touchdown.

"I feel Matt is getting into the comfort zone," Robinson said. "It's his offense now and we are rolling with him."

Until the final drive of regulation, Vick had completed 12-of-24 for 117 yards. A 43-yard field goal by Rian Lindell with 1:55 left in the fourth gave the Seahawks a 24-17 lead.

But Vick directed a nine-play, 77-yard drive to force overtime. He completed 5-of-9 for all the Falcons' yardage on the possession.

He showed remarkable poise, calmly gathering his teammates as they faced fourth and 8 with the clock running and 30 seconds left. With the sellout crowd buzzing with anticipation, Vick took the snap, paused in the pocket, then hit Gaylor on the numbers.

Alexander ran for 127 yards, helping the Seahawks rally from a 17-7 halftime deficit. They outgained the Falcons 126-12 in the third quarter and took the lead when cornerback Willie Williams poked the ball out of Vick's hands and ran 25 yards for a touchdown.

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