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WASHINGTON 27, SEATTLE 20

Spurrier Still Gets Last Call

November 10, 2003|From Associated Press

LANDOVER, Md. — Steve Spurrier benched himself, and it worked.

The Washington Redskin coach let someone else call the plays for a change -- a radical departure from his two decades of offensive genius -- and the result was a 27-20 victory over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday and the end of a four-game losing streak.

"Maybe I'm struggling calling plays right now. Shoot, it's not working as well as it should," said Spurrier, who handed the duties to offensive coordinator Hue Jackson. "He asked to do it this week, and I said OK....If I have to bench the play-caller, then I can do that. I benched myself a little bit."

But Spurrier made the two biggest calls himself. The game-winning score came when receiver Rod Gardner took a lateral and threw a 10-yard pass to a wide-open Trung Canidate with 1 minute 57 seconds to play. Spurrier also went for a fourth and inches at Washington's 25 on the game-winning drive with the score tied.

The victory will calm -- at least for a week -- the turmoil surrounding Spurrier's future. Spurrier and owner Dan Snyder have been vilified in the national media for the downturn of the Redskins (4-5).

"I'm just happy for my coaches and my owner, Mr. Snyder," said receiver Laveranues Coles, who caught five passes for 125 yards and a touchdown and who saved a touchdown by forcing a fumble after a first-half interception. "Hopefully, they can get a good night's rest tonight."

Seattle drove for a chance to tie the score after Gardner's touchdown pass, but Fred Smoot intercepted a bobbled pass by Darrell Jackson inside Washington's 30 with 39 seconds remaining.

The Seahawks (6-3) blew a 14-3 first-half lead and appeared to outthink themselves when it came to how to beat the Redskins. Washington had allowed an NFL-high 29 sacks because it couldn't stop the blitz, but the Seahawks decided to bluff the blitz rather than do it.

The Seahawks became the first team not to sack Patrick Ramsey this season.

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