Seahawks roll on, KC makes playoffs, Pats denied
By Larry Fine
EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Reuters) - The Seahawks hit the mark for what they hope was their Super Bowl rehearsal by posting a shut out, the Chiefs reached the playoffs and the Patriots were denied clinching a spot in NFL action on Sunday.
Twelve games on the hectic Week 15 schedule had playoff implications as teams jockeyed for positions with just two weeks' worth of games left on the regular season calendar.
Seattle, who have already reached the playoffs with an NFC-best mark of 12-2, cut down the hosting New York Giants 23-0 at the winter-weather site of Super Bowl 48.
The Seahawks coolly closed in on securing a first-round bye as West Division winners as their top-rated defense stole the show, intercepting two-time Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Eli Manning five times in shutting down the hosting Giants (5-9).
Seattle are aiming to return to the Meadowlands for a Super Bowl appearance on February 2.
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who completed 18 of 27 passes including a touchdown and ran eight times for 50 yards, notched his 23rd win - a record for a quarterback in his first two seasons. He said Sunday's win could pay further dividends.
"I think the biggest thing that we can learn from playing here and getting a win is we'll just have a great feel for the stadium," said Wilson. "We've been here before, we were successful here. That's a positive thing."
Also in a cheery mood were the Kansas City Chiefs, who clinched a berth in the playoffs with a 56-31 road victory over the Oakland Raiders. Continued...