The Seahawks (7-7) had another disappointing day in their bid to stay atop the NFC West, with three turnovers the Jets converted into 14 points.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. Chad Pennington and Curtis Martin broke the New York Jets out of their recent scoring slump in a big way.
Pennington threw three touchdown passes and Martin had 134 yards and two touchdown runs of his own, helping the Jets keep their lead in the AFC wild-card standings with a 37-14 victory over Seattle today.
The Seahawks (7-7) had another disappointing day in their bid to stay atop the NFC West, with three turnovers the Jets (10-4) converted into 14 points. Shaun Alexander, who has a history of key fumbles, turned the ball over in the end zone early in the fourth quarter, effectively ending any chance to rally.
Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck injured his right elbow later in the quarter, and Trent Dilfer came on in relief.
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The Seahawks also were on the losing end of another call officials appeared to blow. Martin scored on a 3-yard run in the second quarter even though replays showed he never reached the goal line. Coach Mike Holmgren challenged the call, but referee Scott Green determined the TD should stand.
That play notwithstanding, the Jets looked nothing like the team that struggled last week in a 17-6 loss to Pittsburgh. The Jets had their highest output since a 41-14 win over Miami on Nov. 1, and second highest of the season. They never punted.
They also shut out an opponent in the second half for the seventh time this season. Linebacker Eric Barton had a monster day, with a sack, forced fumble and interception.
Pennington looked crisp and sharp after one of the worst games of his career against the Steelers. He completed one long pass play after another and finished 18-of-24 for 253 yards.
Santana Moss, who complained earlier in the week about not getting the ball enough, had two touchdown receptions, including a 32-yarder, and Justin McCareins had the other score from Pennington.
Martin had two first-half scoring runs and established a single-season team record with 12 TDs rushing. He also set the team mark for career TDs rushing with 53, passing Emerson Boozer (1966-75).
The Seahawks took an early 7-3 lead when Jerry Rice made a beautiful one-handed grab in the corner of the end zone for a 12-yard touchdown. The Jets then reeled off three straight touchdowns, including the questionable one from Martin on third-and-goal.
The blown call was reminiscent of the Seahawks-Jets game in 1998 at the Meadowlands, when officials mistook Vinny Testaverde’s white helmet for the football and awarded the Jets a fourth-down touchdown that won the game 32-31.
That play was a pivotal point of discussion at the league meetings the next March, when the owners brought back video replay as an officiating tool.
It was the second time in three games the Seahawks have seen a questionable call go against them. In a 43-39 overtime loss to Dallas on Dec. 6, Holmgren said replays and film showed Keyshawn Johnson was not in bounds when he made a pivotal TD catch, and the coach questioned why replay officials didn’t review the play that cut Seattle’s lead to 39-36 with 1:45 remaining.
Seahawks cornerback Bobby Taylor missed his fourth straight game with a strained right knee, while Darrell Jackson returned to the team after skipping practice this week to attend his father’s funeral in Tampa, Fla.