The Seahawks hoped to continue their five-game winning streak with a Christmas Eve game against the San Francisco 49ers at CenturyLink Field. Santa hats were everywhere, but the 49ers played the part of the Grinch and escaped with a hard-fought 19-17 victory, essentially eliminating the Seahawks from playoff contention.
Seahawks fans were both in the Christmas spirit and the Skittles spirit as they hoped for a big day from Skittles-loving running back Marshawn Lynch.
In the locker room, Lynch prepared a new pair of Skittles-themed Nike shoes for the game.
Seahawks receiver Golden Tate is introduced to a raucous crowd at CenturyLink Field.
Rookie wide receiver Ricardo Lockette was active for the first time in his young career, and wasted no time making his mark by hauling in a deep ball from Tarvaris Jackson.
San Francisco defensive back Carlos Rogers didn't make it easy, fighting for the ball as Lockette landed with a 44-yard reception on the second play from scrimmage.
Receiver Doug Baldwin celebrates after scoring on a 13-yard touchdown reception from Tarvaris Jackson, giving the Seahawks an early 7-0 lead.
Richard Sherman kept San Francisco's Michael Crabtree from making a catch on a deep ball in the first quarter.
Doug Baldwin flies towards the first down marker after a reception from Tarvaris Jackson.
Shoes were a hot topic but not these cleats as Marshawn Lynch (right) tried to stretch the ball over the goal line just before halftime. After an official's review, the ball was placed at the one-yard line.
Seattle's defense, including Chris Clemons, chased San Francisco quarterback Alex Smith all afternoon, but Smith's ability to buy time kept many 49ers drives alive.
Linebacker K.J. Wright tackles 49ers running back Frank Gore from behind for one of his four tackles.
Seattle's special teams came up big when Heath Farwell blocked a punt by San Francisco's Andy Lee in the fourth quarter.
Marshawn Lynch made sure the Seahawks capitalized on the turnover as he raced into the end zone from four yards out to give the Seahawks a 17-16 lead.
Lynch celebrated with Ricardo Lockette as Skittles rained down into the end zone after the touchdown.
Members of the Seahawks grounds crew used blowers in an effort to remove the Skittles from the field.
After a San Francisco field goal gave them the lead at 19-17, Seattle tried to rally but a fumble by Tarvaris Jackson ended hopes.
Doug Baldwin sat alone on the bench in the waning minutes.
Earl Thomas walks dejectedly towards the Seahawks locker room after the game.
Seattle's locker room was somber after the defeat, but head coach Pete Carroll reminded them how far they'd come this season and that they still had the opportunity to finish strong next week in Arizona.
The surging Seahawks landed in the Windy City to face the Chicago Bears at Solider Field for the third time in two seasons. Seemingly no longer affected by 10:00 am Pacific time kickoffs, the Seahawks scuffled through the first half before waking up to score 31 unanswered points on their way to a 38-14 victory.
Overnight snow in Chicago forced the Seahawks to audible their walk-thru plans, and instead of heading to a nearby outdoor field, the team walked through the hotel to the adjacent McCormick Convention Center.
Offense, defense and special teams all went through the motions during indoor walk-thru, held in a ballroom of the convention center adjacent to the team's hotel.
Lesson one for rookies: Don't mess with the head coach. Wide receiver Doug Baldwin learned the hard way after the team's walk-thru on Saturday. Having never seen snow before, Baldwin grabbed a snowball and looked for a target while Pete Carroll stood by, chatting. Unbeknownst to Baldwin, the crafty coach had a snowball behind his back and smashed it on his player's head before dashing into the safety of the hotel lobby, leaving Baldwin to laugh off a head full of cold wet snow.
On game day, strong safety Kam Chancellor makes his way down the narrow tunnel leading from the visitors locker room to the turf at Soldier Field.
Seattle's defensive backs huddled and got pumped up before taking the field for pregame warmups.
David Hawthorne, Golden Tate and Max Unger wait for the signal to lead the team onto the field during pregame introductions.
Earl Thomas celebrates after recovering a fumble by Chicago's Johnny Knox in the first half.
Chicago receiver Johnny Knox gives teammates and fans a "thumbs up" as he is taken off the field on a cart after being hit hard after fumbling in the first half. Knox had surgery on his back and is expected to make a good recovery.
Tight end Cameron Morrah stretches for the end zone but comes up just short after a 21-yard reception to set up Seattle's first touchdown.
Running back Marshawn Lynch wasn't given much room to run by the Bears stout run defense, but gained enough yardage to eclipse the 1,000 yard mark for the season.
Roy Lewis continued his strong contribution in the Seahawks nickel and dime packages, knocking a ball away from Chicago's Dane Sanzenbacher.
Earl Thomas comes out of the end zone after intercepting a pass that was tipped by teammate Kam Chancellor in the second quarter.
Marshawn Lynch reaches over the goal line for his second touchdown of the afternoon, giving him 11 touchdowns for the season.
Red Bryant high-steps untouched into the end zone leaving a trail of Bears in his wake on a 20-yard interception return for a touchdown. Bryant's play resulted in Seattle's second touchdown in the first two minutes of the second half.
Bryant starts his touchdown dance as teammate K.J. Wright leaps for joy. Wright tipped the pass that resulted in Bryant's interception.
Chris Clemons jumps on Bryant's back in celebration, but even that can't topple the 323-pound defensive end.
Raheem Brock chases down Chicago quarterback Caleb Hanie as the defense kept applying pressure on their way to a second half shutout.
Chris Clemons' smile is visible through his shaded facemask as he takes down Hanie for a nine-yard sack in the fourth quarter.
Justin Forsett took a swing pass from Tarvaris Jackson down to the three-yard line in the fourth quarter.
Michael Robinson celebrates with tight ends Anthony McCoy and Zach Miller after scoring a two-yard pass from Jackson, giving the Seahawks a 31-14 lead.
Flanked by teammates David Hawthorne (57), Kam Chancellor (31) and Chris Clemons (91), cornerback Brandon Browner heads for the end zone following his team high sixth interception of the season extending the Seahawks lead to 38-14.
Seahawks defenders Leroy Hill, left, and Clinton McDonald, right, sandwich Bears backup quarterback Josh McCown in the final minutes.
Cornerbacks Brandon Browner, left, and Richard Sherman celebrate after Sherman joined the interception club with the team's fourth pick of the game.
A jubilant Pete Carroll congratulates Sherman after the interception.
Red Bryant is all smiles in the Seahawks locker room as he is singled out during the postgame meeting for his interception and touchdown.
Everything was beautiful for the Seahawks in Chicago, including the sunset as they departed the Windy City for flight home to Seattle.
The Seahawks returned to CenturyLink Field after only a four day break to face the visiting Philadelphia Eagles in front of a national television audience in prime time. Seattle did not disappoint, thumping the Eagles 31-14 to improve their record to 5-7.
Seattle's 12th MAN was loud and proud on Thursday Night Football, filling CenturyLink Field with noise and passion all game long.
Tarvaris Jackson, center, and his offensive teammates wait to be introduced during pregame.
Marshawn Lynch was the final Seahawks starter to be introduced, and he proudly waved the 12th MAN flag amid the smoke and fog as he entered the field.
Paul McQuistan (67) and the offensive line protected Jackson all night, who achieved his highest quarterback rating of the season.
Marshawn Lynch escaped from a pileup that looked to be a rush for no gain and turned it into a touchdownn a run that observers say nearly compares to last year's "Beastquake" run against the New Orleans Saints.
Lynch poses for the fans after his touchdown run.
Wide receiver Ben Obomanu, starting in place of injured Sidney Rice, leapt high to make this catch in the first half.
Seattle rookie linebacker K.J. Wright makes a diving tackle on Philadelphia's LeSean McCoy.
Marshawn Lynch outraced everyone to the corner on a 40 yard touchdown run to give the Seahawks a 14-0 lead in the second quarter.
Golden Tate also stepped up, catching four passes for 47 yards.
Tate obeyed NFL rules after his leaping touchdown catch in the third quarter, and gave a celebratory dance instead of falling to the ground that cost him an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against Washington.
Brandon Browner comes back to the sidelines and receives congratulations from K.J. Wright and Richard Sherman after Browner picked off his second pass of the game.
Wright came up the middle on a blitz and leveled Philadelphia quarterback Vince Young, who fumbled only to recover it as he went to the ground. Wright had five tackles and a sack on the night.
Seattle's defensive backfield was tough all night, including this play in the end zone in which Richard Sherman deflected away a pass intended for the Eagles' Jason Avant.
The Eagles drove deep once more into Seattle territory, but David Hawthorne stepped in front of a Vince Young pass for an interception.
With nothing between him and the end zone, Hawthorne raced untouched 77 yards to put the game away.
On the sidelines, coach Pete Carroll let out a yell as Hawthorne strode into the end zone.
Seattle's victory was soured in the final minutes when Philadelphia's Trent Cole flipped Seattle's Russell Okung to the ground after the whistle. Okung suffered a season-ending injury as a result.
General manager John Schneider greets David Hawthorne in the locker room after the win.
In the postgame locker room, Carroll held up four fingers to signify the the four takeaways by the defense.
The Seahawks returned home to play their first regular season game at the renamed CenturyLink Field, hoping to turn around an 0-2 start to the season.
Rookie linebacker K.J. Wright readies for his first home game in front of the 12th MAN.
Head coach Pete Carroll strolls on the field under bright sunny skies before the game. However, two heavy squalls showered the field with rain during the first half.
Players gather in the shower for a pregame prayer.
Defensive end Red Bryant has inspiring words for the team before they take the field.
Wide receiver Sidney Rice "taps in" as he leaves the locker room to head to the field for pregame introductions.
Strong safety Kam Chancellor heads out onto the field amid fog, pyrotechnics and the roar of the 12th MAN.
As heavy rains drenched CenturyLink Field, offensive linemen James Carpenter, John Moffitt and Max Unger (blocking Arizona's Darnell Dockett) fought to protect quarterback Tarvaris Jackson.
Seahawks safeties Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas bring down Arizona's Chester Taylor.
Head coach Pete Carroll winds up the 12th MAN during the first half.
Running back Marshawn Lynch regained some of his "Beast Mode" swagger as the Seahawks rushed for more than 100 yards for the first time this season.
Leon Washington provided the lightning to Lynch's thunder, breaking off a 21-yard gain.
However, one of the best runs of the day game courtesy of Tarvaris Jackson, who on this run alternately wove then pounded his way into the end zone for Seattle's only touchdown.
Meanwhile, Seattle's defense was stout against the Arizona offense. Neither Alan Branch (99), Anthony Hargrove (94) or Clinton McDonald (69) were on the team last season, but contributed on this tackle.
Seattle's Chris Clemons swings Arizona's Alfonso Smith by the jersey for a tackle.
Arizona quarterback Kevin Kolb scrambled, only to be hammered by Seahawks linebacker Leroy Hill.
Seattle's Red Bryant celebrates a tackle for loss with teammate Clinton McDonald.
Special teams had their moments too, including downing this 66-yard Jon Ryan punt down inside the Arizona five-yard line.
Seattle's Sidney Rice heads up the sidelines on a 23-yard pass reception from Tarvaris Jackson in the fourth quarter. Rice finished his first regular season game as a Seahawk with eight catches for 109 yards.
Sehawks defenders including K.J. Wright (leaping) celebrate Kam Chancellor's late interception that killed a Arizona drive in Seahawks territory and helped seal the victory.
Tarvaris Jackson and Kam Chancellor congratulate each other in the locker room after the victory.
The Seahawks gather together in their locker room after head coach Pete Carroll's post game comments.
The Seahawks entered Sunday’s wild-card playoff game as vast underdogs to the visiting Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints, but Matt Hasselbeck, Marshawn Lynch and the 12th Man led the way to a victory and a trip to Chicago.
Hours before kickoff, cornerback Marcus Trufant enters the team's locker room at Qwest Field.
Before taking the field for pregame warmups, starting quarterback Matt Hasselbeck made some throws from his knees as he coaxed his body into gametime readiness.
Two recognizable faces of the franchise, future Hall-of-Famer Walter Jones and team owner Paul Allen greet each other on the field before the game.
Brandon Mebane fires up his teammates before they headed to the field.
Fans greet the players gathered at the entrance of the field before pregame introductions.
Running backs and best friends Marshawn Lynch and Justin Forsett have a final word before taking the field.
Under always-present eye of network cameras, quarterback Matt Hasselbeck lets out a yell as he's introduced before the game.
Two Navy EA-18 Growlers flew over the stadium at the conclusion of the national anthem.
Seattle's Raheem Brock sacks New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees.
Members of the 12th Man roar their approval during the second quarter.
Brandon Stokley came up big, scoring on a 45-yard touchdown pass from Matt Hasselbeck.
Pete Carroll gets pumped up after Stokley's touchdown.
Seahawks cornerback Kelly Kennings upends former teammate and current Saint's running back Julius Jones.
Seattle's 12th Man implores the defense to make a stop during the tense fourth quarter.
Defenders Colin Cole and Kentwan Balmer celebrate after stopping the Saints.
In a run for the ages, Marshawn Lynch takes on, stiff-arms and dumps Saints would-be defender Tracy Porter on the way to a 67-yard touchdown.
With Porter on on the ground, Lynch heads for the end zone for a touchdown to give the Seahawks a 41-30 lead.
All 11 of the Seahawks offensive players gathered in the end zone after Lynch's touchdown, with quarterback Matt Hasselbeck leading the cheers.
Fullback Michael Robinson and Lynch laugh on the sidelines after Lynch's big run.
Head coach Pete Carroll dances onto the field as the final seconds expire on the upset victory.
Leon Washington celebrates with fans in the south end zone after the game.
Pete Carroll shakes hands with fans on his way to the locker room.
Matt Hasselbeck leads his kids off the field after the win.
Hasselbeck shares a quiet moment with his son Henry after the postgame commotion had died down. At right are quarterbacks J.P. Losman and Charlie Whitehurst.