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Moss, Redskins Played to the Finish

It was a play that showed Santana Moss's resiliency and toughness.

In the fourth quarter of Saturday's playoff game at Seattle, the 5-10, 190-pound receiver found himself in tight coverage in the end zone. He could only watch as Mark Brunell's pass appeared to fall into the eager hands of Seattle cornerback Andre Dyson.

Moss kept his eyes on the ball as it bounced off Dyson's hands. He snatched it, making an acrobatic catch while falling backward in the end zone.

"It was one of those plays I think a little angel was out there with me, gave me a chance to catch it off a tip," Moss said of his touchdown catch. "That's how it is in postseason, man, that's how it is in this game."

The touchdown pulled the Redskins to within 17-10. Washington could get no closer, though, and the Seahawks won 20-10 at rain-soaked Qwest Field to earn a spot in the NFC Championship Game.

Appropriately enough, the Redskins' last offensive play of the 2005 season came on a deep pass from Brunell to Moss in the end zone. The pass was batted away by Seahawks' safety Michael Boulware at the last second.

"He did a good job defending it," Moss said of Boulware. "He stuck his hand in there at the right time. But you can count on me to want a pass like that again in that situation. You try to make a play, and if you don't, you just don't. Chalk it up and try again next time."

For Moss, the 20-10 loss was a disappointing finish to what amounted to a breakthrough season in Washington. He established himself as an elite receiver in the league and earned his first Pro Bowl nod after catching 84 passes for a franchise record 1,483 yards and nine touchdowns.

On Saturday, Moss led the passing offense with seven catches for 103 yards.

The Santana Moss-for-Laveranues Coles trade with the New York Jets was one of the blockbuster deals last offseason. As soon as Moss arrived, he saw positive signs in the team's camaraderie, character and work ethic.

"We have a lot of character on this team, and guys who play real hard football," he said. "Tough football. Regardless of how it looks, or how fluid it looks, we find a way. That's what I like about playing here. The coaches up there are working their behinds off to try and find a way for guys to make a play or get open and have a chance to make a play. You've got to like that. You've got to be thankful for that.

"When I first came here, I saw the character in all these guys. Everyone wanted to do something. They've been waiting so long to be a team in this position. I saw that when I first got here. Now I'm just privileged to have an opportunity to be playing with these guys."

With the season over, Moss said the team is dedicated to getting back to the postseason, with one change. Next year, the Redskins want what the Seahawks have: home field advantage through the playoffs.

"Every player on this team is trying to get to that game that Seattle is going to be in next weekend," Moss said. :If you're not there, you can pat yourself on the back and say a job well done, but there's always going to be some emptiness in your heart knowing you got so close and didn't make it."

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