Al Harris retires as a Packer, nine years too late for Seahawks

Al Harris

Al Harris has decided to retire as a member of the Packers, according to this report on the team website.

That’s about nine years too late for Matt Hasselbeck and the Seahawks. Harris, you surely remember, is the Pro Bowl cornerback who was involved in one of the most infamous plays in Seahawks history.

It came on the sixth snap of the Seahawks’ second overtime possession in a wild-card playoff game at Lambeau Field on Jan. 4, 2004. The temperature was 20 degrees, with a wind-chill of 7, and it was Harris who iced the Packers’ 33-27 victory.

On a third-and-11 play, Hasselbeck went to wide receiver Alex Bannister along the left sideline, but instead found Harris, who returned the interception 52 yards for a touchdown.

Harris’ pick-six followed Hasselbeck’s even-more infamous line after winning the coin-toss to open the overtime period: “We want the ball and we’re going to score.”

Hasselbeck intended the line to be heard only by Packers kicker Ryan Longwell, who he had become friends with while playing in Green Bay. But the official’s microphone was on, so the whole world heard what he had to say.

And yes, the announcement on the Packers’ website regarding Harris’ retirement includes a picture of him making his memorable play.


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On this date: Shaun Alexander scores three times in Pro Bowl

Shaun Alexander

A look at a memorable moment in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb. 8:

2004: Shaun Alexander runs for 66 yards and two touchdowns and also scores on a 5-yard reception to help the NFC take a wild 55-52 victory in the Pro Bowl. Matt Hasselbeck (4 of 9 for 51 yards), Alex Bannister (one special teams tackle), Steve Hutchinson and Walter Jones also represent the Seahawks in the game.


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And the best fifth-round pick is …

The fifth round of the NFL Draft has been special for the Seahawks.

Special in that they have used those picks to select a couple of Pro Bowl special teams players – return man Bobby Joe Edmonds, who was drafted in 1986 and voted to the AFC all-star team as a rookie; and coverage man Alex Bannister, who was drafted in 2001 and voted to the NFC all-star team in 2003. The fifth round also delivered kick returner Charlie Rogers in 1999.

There also have been a couple of standout defensive players who came to the Seahawks in the fifth round – tackle Rocky Bernard, who was selected 2002 and started 55 games in seven seasons; and strong safety Kam Chancellor, who was selected in 2010 and went to the Pro Bowl last season.

But the best of the fifth-round bunch played on offense – left guard Edwin Bailey, who was drafted in 1981, stepped into the lineup as a rookie and started 120 games through the 1991 season.

Bailey’s run with the team began under coach Jack Patera and spanned the tenure of coach Chuck Knox (1983-91). He opened holes for Sherman Smith, Curt Warner, John L. Williams and Derrick Fenner, and provided pass protection for Jim Zorn, Dave Krieg, Kelly Stouffer and Jeff Kemp. Bailey was a key component in the Seahawks’ advancing to the AFC title game in 1983, posting a 12-win season in 1984 and winning their first division title in 1988.

Until Steve Hutchinson was selected in the first round of the 2001 draft, Bailey was the best left guard in franchise history – as evidenced by his selection to the Seahawks’ 25th Anniversary team.

We caught up with Bailey recently, and you can find out what the player his teammates called “Pearl” has been up to here.


On this date: Alexander propels NFC

A look at a memorable moment in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb. 8:

2004: Shaun Alexander runs for 66 yards and two touchdowns and also scores on a 5-yard reception to help the NFC take a wild 55-52 victory in the Pro Bowl. Matt Hasselbeck (4 of 9 for 51 yards), Alex Bannister (one special teams tackle), Steve Hutchinson and Walter Jones also represent the Seahawks in the game.


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