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Originally published September 26, 2005 at 12:00 AM | Page modified September 26, 2005 at 4:52 PM

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Seahawks

Alexander, Jackson get points across

Running back Shaun Alexander stood at the podium, leaned into the microphone and spoke away. He talked about his rock-the-baby, burp-the-baby...

Seattle Times staff reporter

Running back Shaun Alexander stood at the podium, leaned into the microphone and spoke away. He talked about his rock-the-baby, burp-the-baby touchdown dance. He dismissed speculation that he's running harder this season and providing better pass protection. Twice, he mentioned this could be his last season in Seattle.

Darrell Jackson, well, he said nothing.

Again.

Whatever works.

Silence has certainly been golden for the Seahawks wide receiver this season. He's politely declining interviews with local media, while not-so politely decimating opposing cornerbacks.

Together, Alexander and Jackson have the Seahawks offense moving with the NFL's elite. One talks only with his pass receptions. The other never met a microphone he didn't like.

And it's what they share — two straight games with more than 100 yards apiece — that matters more than what they say.

"I don't mind talking about it," Alexander said. "This is going to be a good year for us."

Alexander doesn't generally mind talking, and there was plenty to say yesterday. He gained more than 100 yards for the second straight week (140) and scored four touchdowns, making him the only person to carry the football into the end zone.

With five rushing touchdowns in three games this season, Alexander moved into 25th place all-time in the NFL with 67 rushing touchdowns. With his 24th career 100-yard game, Alexander tied Chris Warren for the most in franchise history.

It appears he's running harder up the middle — "aggressively running" Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren called it — and blocking better than in years past.

"Shaun is an incredible athlete," fullback Mack Strong said. "There's nothing he can't do when he really puts his mind to it. Pass blocking is no different.

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"You know what? He does so many things well, he's got to have a weakness. Just to keep him humble."

The question that always surrounds any comment about improvement from Alexander is whether or not that improvement comes from this being another contract year. Alexander isn't buying.

"It's not really motivation," he said. "It just is what it is. My wife and I got to talk about, like, 'Wow, this could be our last games here in Seattle.' We just look at the same thing — let's give everybody something to cheer about, let's make it big. Hopefully, it isn't. But it just is what it is."

Same with Jackson's situation. While Alexander cut one run back across the field yesterday — "beautiful" according to Holmgren — Jackson has cut off all interview access.

It's not like he won't speak to the media — he hugged more than one visitor yesterday — it's just that he's not answering questions. So what's gotten into Jackson? Your guess is as good as ours.

Thus the numbers have to do the talking. Yesterday, they said: eight catches, 125 yards. On the season, they say: 22 catches, 321 yards.

"Darrell is a great player, and he doesn't get the respect he probably deserves," quarterback Matt Hasselbeck said.

So here they are: different guys, playing different positions, taking different paths to the same destination. One talking. The other silent.

And here's what matters most: of the 1,197 yards the Seahawks offense has gained this season, Jackson and Alexander account for 678 of them.

Shaun and 24th century
Shaun Alexander had the 24th 100-yard rushing game of his career yesterday, tying him with Chris Warren for the most in team history.
No. Player Years
24 Shaun Alexander 2000-05
24 Chris Warren 1990-97
23 Curt Warner 1983-89
Running start
Shaun Alexander is off to his best three-game start in four seasons as the Seahawks' full-time No. 1 running back.
Year Yards Att. Avg. TDs Record
2005 357 64 5.6 5 2-1
2004 232 64 3.6 4 3-0
2003 217 51 4.3 2 3-0
2002 110 44 2.5 0 0-3

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