Giants back with more than just earplugs
Giants riding a four-game win streak while Seahawks are hurting
Seattle Times staff reporter
N.Y. Giants @ Seahawks, 1:05 p.m., Ch. 13
The Giants didn't believe their ears when they played in Seattle. They complained to the league before their game at Qwest Field in September 2006, insinuating the Seahawks' 12th Man was on PEDs: performance-enhancing decibels.
The Giants still drowned in the sound that game, falling behind 42-3 before losing 42-30. The Seahawks were the NFC heavyweights then. The reigning conference champs, and that win over the Giants was Seattle's 10th consecutive victory at home. It was also the high-water mark of the most successful era in franchise history.
Four years later, the Giants occupy that perch Seattle once held. New York is 5-2, tied for the best record in the conference, and the Giants are the ones with a Super Bowl championship to their credit. They've come a long way from that team that folded in front of Seattle on that September afternoon.
"We have certainly grown as a team," coach Tom Coughlin said.
Meanwhile the Seahawks are trying to regroup after two consecutive losing seasons and that 33-3 defeat against the Raiders last week. Seattle suffered such a one-sided beating in Oakland it could cost the Seahawks two games as they'll likely be missing four starters Sunday, including quarterback Matt Hasselbeck.
Seattle's offense has had a hard enough time holding its own this season even before this rash of injuries.
That offense is going to need some help. From the defense, from the special teams and from the crowd.
Playing at home offers Seattle its greatest hope against the Giants.
This is the place that goaded the Giants into committing 11 false-start penalties in 2005 and the very same stadium where Eli Manning threw three first-half interceptions a year later.
The Seahawks are a different team at home. They have forced 12 turnovers in three home games, as opposed to one in their four games on the road.
"Whoever designed Qwest did a great job," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. "And whoever put the hearts in the people of the Northwest did a great job because you combine the two and we have a heck of a factor here."
Coughlin had played in Seattle while he was the Jaguars' head coach, but that's when the Seahawks were nomads, playing at Husky Stadium. He came back with the Giants in 2005, and heard something totally new. Well, actually, he didn't hear much at all, that's how loud it was.
But this Giants team is quite a bit different.
They won seven consecutive regular-season road games in 2007, 10 if you include three more in the NFC playoffs.
The Giants enter this game having won four in a row, the longest active streak in the NFC. They have one of the league's better run defenses, the league's No. 4 rusher in Ahmad Bradshaw and what might be a prohibitive personnel advantage given all of Seattle's injuries.
The wild card is what will happen in front of Seattle's crowd. After all, this is a Giants team that has committed 21 turnovers, third-most in the league, and this is a stadium where New York has experienced struggles that remain burned into their collective hard drive. How did the Giants prepare to come back?
"We talk an awful lot about it," Coughlin said. "We certainly do have good recall."
And if they don't, the sound at the game Sunday will serve as an auditory reminder.
• The Seahawks promoted two practice-squad players to the 53-man roster Saturday, signing Zac Robinson to serve as the backup quarterback and tackle Breno Giacomini. Seattle released receiver Ruvell Martin and offensive lineman Chris Center — both of whom were signed this week — to make room.
Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or firstname.lastname@example.orgWhen Seattle beat New York 42-30 on Sept. 24, 2006, at Qwest Field, it was the Seahawks' 10 consecutive home win. They were 3-0 at the time, coming off a Super Bowl appearance and had won 18 of their previous 21 regular-season games. What happened since then is a bit of a role reversal:
Since Sept. 24, 2006/Seahawks/Giants