By Bill Coats
Sunday, Dec. 14 2008
Word of advice: Don't invite Seahawks linebacker Julian Peterson and Rams guard
Richie Incognito to your next dinner party. "In that last game, I felt like he
did a lot of dirty stuff," Peterson told The Associated Press, referring to
Seattle's 37-13 victory Sept. 21.

Peterson threw a couple of punches after a play in which he alleged that
Incognito deliberately twisted the foot and ankle of teammate Leroy Hill.

"There are just a few in the league who take cheap shots, go low at you when
they're not supposed to go low, like when you're not looking," Hill said. "We
know who they are. Yes, he's one of them."

So, the Seahawks are gunning for Incognito? "You know, like the FBI's 20 Most
Wanted? Yeah, he'd be on that list," Peterson said.

When made aware of the Seahawks' charges, coach Jim Haslett quipped, "That
could be any team in the league." Incognito declined to comment.


Eight-time Pro Bowl tackle Walter Jones underwent knee surgery Thursday,
becoming the 13th Seattle player to land on injured reserve. Several other key
Seahawks, including quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and wide receiver Deion Branch,
also have missed considerable time.

Coaches loathe using injuries as an excuse. Still, the Seahawks' tumble from
four NFC West titles in a row to 2-11 this season is no coincidence.

"Teams get hurt," coach Mike Holmgren said. "I've been trying to tell the fans
here that I understand their disappointment in this season ó and I think it's
fair ó but keep your heads up and keep your chins up, because this type of
injury situation will never happen again. It hasn't happened to me in 25 years
of being in the NFL."


In the first six seasons since the divisions were reorganized, the Rams and
Seahawks combined for five NFC West titles. "We were healthy, they were
healthy; we were clicking, they were clicking," Rams wideout Torry Holt said.
"We had some stability from a coaching and somewhat from an organization
standpoint, and the same for them."

Now, as new division champ Arizona prepares for the playoffs, the Rams and
Seahawks are just trying to salvage something from a season to forget.

"The way I look at it is, two 2-11 football teams that are in dire need of a
win," said Holt.


Haslett gives much of the credit for the emergence of Oshiomogho "O.J." Atogwe
to fellow safety and locker-room neighbor Corey Chavous, an 11-year veteran.

"Corey taught O.J. how to study, how to take notes, how to prepare to play,"
Haslett said. "And then O.J.'s athleticism has kind of taken him to where he is