Playoffs?!? Can the Seahawks Still Dream?

Playoffs?!? Can the Seahawks Still Dream?

Playoffs? Playoffs!? That's right, even though the Seattle Seahawks are 5-7 and appear to be on the outside looking in down the stretch for the NFC playoff hunt, quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and the rest of his teammates have not given up on their season-long goal of reaching the postseason.

"That's absolutely what we're still playing for," the 34-year-old Seattle quarterback said. "The way to do it, though, is one game at a time, one practice at a time, one play at a time. Just doing all of the things that we said before the season is so important.

"It would be easy to look at all the mistakes we've made and the big mountain we've got to climb here to accomplish it, and get discouraged. So I think we've just got to stay focused. And if it happens, it happens. But we can control a good part of that."

After sputtering and stumbling through a tough early-season schedule, facing the likes of Indianapolis, Minnesota, Dallas and Arizona, the Seahawks' schedule turns softer down the stretch. Seattle faces only one team with a winning record in the last four games -- a Dec. 27 contest at Green Bay (8-4).

But to have any realistic shot at the playoffs, this team has to find a way to win on the road against Houston on Sunday. The Seahawks are 3-11 on the road over the last two seasons.

Coach Jim Mora said he hasn't thought about his team making a possible run at the playoffs. "No, not really," Mora said. "Every once in a while, sure, you give it a little thought, but really what we're trying to do is focus on the next game and getting better, and really, getting better the next practice. And this week is about preparing to do the best that we can to beat Houston."

PLAYER/PERSONNEL NOTES

--QB Matt Hasselbeck in his 113 regular-season starts since joining the team in 2001 has led the Seahawks to wins 19 times when Seattle was tied or trailing in the fourth quarter. He also has two postseason comebacks.

--RB Julius Jones has 25 receptions so far, the most he's had in a season since 2005.

--TE John Carlson has three receptions for 25 yards in his last three games.

--WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh has 61 receptions and is on pace to finish with 81. Since 2004, Houshmandzadeh has averaged 90 receptions a season.

--WR Nate Burleson is second on the team in receptions with 60 and leads the team in receiving yards with 792. Burleson is on pace to eclipse his career highs for receptions (68) and receiving yards (1,006).

--LB Aaron Curry is third on the team in tackles with 56, and also has two sacks.

--DE Nick Reed continues to see more time on the field and has two fumble recoveries on the year.

--DB Josh Wilson ranks second in franchise history for career interception returns for touchdowns with three, including two this season, against Detroit and St. Louis.

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