Dropped passes are a nuisance, not a disaster. Fans offer their encouragement, not contempt. And the Seattle Seahawks find ways to win despite their mistakes.
Welcome to Darrell Jackson's world.
Jackson scored a fourth-quarter touchdown on a 14-yard pass play from Matt Hasselbeck and set up another late score with a 43-yard catch-and-run in Seattle's 23-16 victory over the slumping Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.
"I did well for myself in the second half," Jackson said.
The fourth-year receiver had a rough start, dropping six consecutive passes through three quarters. One would have been a certain touchdown, because Jackson found an open seam to the end zone in the first period.
"At halftime, he was very emotional in the locker room," Coach Mike Holmgren said. "He cares about the team, and he felt he let people down in the first half."
Jackson delivered when the Seahawks (6-2) needed it, though, making two big plays in the final 12 minutes. His touchdown catch put Seattle ahead 16-6, and his long gain moved the ball to the one to set up Shaun Alexander's touchdown run and a 23-13 lead.
"You've got four quarters to make up for those mistakes," Jackson said.
The Steelers (2-6) lost for the fifth time in a row, their longest losing streak since dropping six in a row in 1999.
"These guys have been working their tails off," Coach Bill Cowher said. "The effort has been good. Right now, we're just not putting together a complete game."
This time, they were in it to the end.
Pittsburgh's blitzing defense pressured Hasselbeck all game, producing five sacks. And the offense left Seattle guessing in the fourth quarter, when a slow-paced field goal contest turned into a wide-open shootout.
"We got after the quarterback," Steeler linebacker Joey Porter said. "He gave us opportunities to blitz. We took advantage. But when it counted in the fourth quarter, we didn't get off the field."