A recap of the Seahawks’ 20-7 loss to the Minnesota Vikings at CenturyLink Field on Saturday night:
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Charlie Whitehurst. A somewhat odd choice from a game that definitely was odd. But the Seahawks’ No. 2 QB was 10 of 11 for 79 yards on the team’s lone scoring drive, which ended with his 3-yard TD pass to tight end Anthony McCoy.
It was enough to ignite visions of a competition for the starting job with Tarvaris Jackson in the minds of many fans. But coach Pete Carroll doused that notion by offering, “I’m not in that mindset at all.”
Still, Whitehurst did what he was supposed to do while working against the Vikings’ backups in the second half. He was accurate and decisive in shoving the offense into a higher gear.
“That’s kind of what you’re trying to do,” Whitehurst said. “You’re trying to get in and out of the huddle and put pressure on the defense. That’s part of it. I think it helps.”
PLAYS OF THE GAME
Offense: Mike Williams’ 17-yard reception at the end of the first quarter. Faced with a third-and-5, and in a three-wide alignment, Jackson had ample time for one of the few times in the first half. He went to the 6-5 Williams, who went up and over Vikings safety Jamarca Sanford to make the catch at the Minnesota 2-yard line.
Defense: The only touchdown in the first half came when Vikings cornerback Marcus Sherels picked off a pass that went off wide receiver Golden Tate and returned it 64 yards for a touchdown.
Special teams: Matt McCoy forcing Sherels to fumble at the end of a 16-yard punt return. Aaron Curry recovered, but the Seahawks couldn’t capitalize as Sherels got his pick-six four plays later.
Each of the Seahawks’ starting linebackers “got banged up a little bit,” as Carroll put it. Carroll said he wasn’t sure of the injuries to Leroy Hill, David Hawthorne and Curry were serious.
Eleven injured players did not participate in game: tight end John Carlson, left tackle Russell Okung, wide receiver Ben Obomanu, defensive end Chris Clemons, cornerback Walter Thurmond, defensive ends A.J. Schable and Pierre Allen and the four players who are on PUP – wide receiver Deon Butler, tight end Cameron Morrah, defensive tackle Colin Cole and cornerback Roy Lewis.
THIS ’N THAT
No. 3 QB Josh Portis was the game’s leading rusher with 46 yards on four scrambles. The Seahawks’ defense held Vikings running back Adrian Peterson to 16 yards on six carries, for a 2.7-yard average.
Tight ends Dominique Byrd and McCoy and rookie wide receiver Kris Durham each had four receptions to share game-high honors. McCoy also caught his second TD pass of the preseason.
Defensive end Raheem Brock, who started for Clemons, had the Seahawks’ only sack.
Rookie cornerback Malcolm Smith, cornerback Kelly Jennings and middle linebacker David Hawthorne led the Seahawks in tackles with four each.
Safety Josh Pinkard turned what looked like a sure Vikings’ touchdown into a touchback when he poked the ball from the grasp of Vikings wide receiver Emmanuel Arceneaux at the 2-yard line and it went out of the back of the end zone.
The Seahawks had more yards (331-322), first downs (22-17) and time of possession (33:40-26:20) than the Vikings.
YOU DON’T SAY
“Talent. Talent. Smarts. Quickness. I think they brought a great group of guys in here. The future linebackers are right here now in this locker room for the Seahawks. They’re going to make a lot of plays. They’re going to do their job. They’re going to perform well.” – Hill, when asked what he sees out of rookie linebackers Malcolm Smith and K.J. Wright