Though you’d hope Seattle’s qualifying for the playoffs would be cause for celebration, RB Shaun Alexander prefered to discuss how he narrowly missed out on the NFL rushing title to New York’s Curtis Martin. From the Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s Clare Farnsworth.

“This is the first time I’ve ever been back-stabbed in my life,” Alexander said in the Qwest Field locker room after the Seahawks won the NFC West title by outlasting the Atlanta Falcons 28-26.

The focus of Alexander’s frustration was what proved to be the game-winning touchdown in the fourth quarter. Faced with a second-and-goal from the Falcons’ 1-yard line with 4 1/2 minutes to play, the call was for a sneak by quarterback Matt Hasselbeck.

Not a handoff to Alexander.

As a result, he finished with 80 rushing yards in the game and 1,696 for the season. The Jets’ Curtis Martin, who began the day 72 yards behind Alexander, rushed for 153 in New York’s overtime loss to the St. Louis Rams to finish with 1,697.

The difference?

“Are you kidding me? You know the play,” said Alexander, who is in the final year of his contract. “We all know what it was. Stabbed in the back.”

Alexander is the NFC rushing champion, joining Curt Warner and Chris Warren as the only to win conference rushing titles. He didn’t become the first player in Seahawks history to win the NFL rushing title, but the Seahawks did win the NFC West title and will host the Rams in the opening round of the playoffs on Saturday.

“We were going to win, anyway,” Alexander said. “We were on the freakin’ goal line, and I got stabbed in the back.

“That’s it.”