A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Dec. 14:
Next man up. Again. With Walter Thurmond being ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Bills in Toronto, Byron Maxwell and rookie Jeremy Lane will take over at right cornerback.
Thurmond stepped in two weeks ago to replace Marcus Trufant as the nickel back, and then slid to the right side last week after Brandon Browner was suspended four games for violating the league’s performance enhancement policy – with Lane moving in as the nickel back. But Thurmond injured a hamstring in practice on Wednesday. Trufant will miss his third consecutive game, also because of a hamstring injury.
“He’s not going to make it. Unfortunately he’s not going to be there,” coach Pete Carroll said after today’s practice when asked about Thurmond. “We’ll play those guys in rotation – that would be Jeremy Lane and Bryon.”
Both will play a lot, because the one who is not at right corner will be the third corner in the nickel defense.
Maxwell, a sixth-round draft choice last year, is ready – because he has to be; and prepared – because he got a lot of snaps in the second half of last week’s 58-0 win over the Cardinals.
“It was great just to get out there and help the team,” said Maxwell, who got time at cornerback in one game last season and his first game this season against the Cardinals. “We were up by so much that they took Sherm (left cornerback Richard Sherman) out and it was just the young guys in there – me and J-Lane – getting some experience under our belts.”
It allowed Maxwell to get into the flow of the game, which was important because in most games his contributions are limited to the one snap dash-and-bash that is playing special teams.
“Which is important,” Maxwell said. “There’s nothing like game-time experience.”
Outside? Inside? Does Maxwell have a preference?
“It doesn’t matter to me,” he said. “I just want to be on the field.”
MARTIN TO IR
Wide receiver Charly Martin has been placed on injured reserve and will miss the remainder of the season after pulling a calf in practice on Thursday.
Scott Chandler. Stevie Johnson leads the Bills with 61 receptions, but it’s Chandler who has caught a team-high six touchdown passes – on 37 catches. And the production by the sixth-year tight end has not escaped Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley.
“It’s another real threat, especially in third-down situations,” Bradley said. “He’s one of the top receiving threats on third down. It’s a matchup that we’ve got to take a look at and see the threat he is. You’ll see Chandler with a lot of special routes or a lot of deep-developing routes. So they obviously feel pretty good about him getting away from defensive backs and linebackers.
“The NFL is such a matchup league, and offenses are looking for matchups. So we’ve always got to be aware of that.”
The 6-foot-7, 263-pound Chandler also is averaging 13.2 yards, tops on the team among receivers with more than five receptions.
The official end-of-the-week status report, as issued by the team:
CB Marcus Trufant (hamstring)
CB Walter Thurmond (hamstring)
DE Red Bryant (foot)
SS Kam Chancellor (groin)
WR Sidney Rice (foot)
RB Marshawn Lynch (back)
Rice, Bryant and Chancellor practiced today for the first time this week and Carroll said he expected all the play against the Bills.
Linebacker Leroy Hill will return to the starting lineup after missing the past two games because of a sprained ankle, but Malcolm Smith also will play, Carroll said. Smith started the past two games on the weakside for Hill.
For the Bills:
RB Fred Jackson (knee)
C Eric Wood (knee)
LB Nick Barnett (knee)
S Jairus Byrd (shin)
DE Marcell Dareus (shoulder)
DT Spencer Johnson (knee)
CB Leodis McKelvin (groin)
DE Mark Anderson (knee)
OG Andy Levitre (knee)
CB Justin Rogers (foot)
WR Donald Jones (calf)
DT Kyle Williams (ankle)
DB Ron Brooks (hip)
TE Scott Chandler (groin)
OG Kraig Urbik (knee)
LB Chris White (thumb)
S Da’Norris Searcy (hand)
RB C.J. Spiller (shoulder)
CB Aaron Williams (knee)
DE Mario Williams (wrist)
STAT DU JOUR
Bobby Wagner, as we wrote last Friday, is putting up numbers worthy of NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year honors. The Seahawks’ middle linebacker is third among rookies in the league in tackles and tied for third in interceptions – the only player among the Top 3 in both categories:
Player, team No.
LB Luke Kuechly, Panthers 130
LB Lavonte David, Buccaneers 117
Bobby Wagner, Seahawks 108
Player, team No.
CB Casey Hayward, Packers 5
S Tavon Wilson, Patriots 4
LB Bobby Wagner, Seahawks 3
CB Alfonzo Dennard, Patriots 3
CB Janoris Jenkins, Rams 3
CB Leonard Jackson, Buccaneers 3
S Harrison Smith, Vikings 3
The team flew to Toronto after the players had a midday practice. Saturday’s walkthrough will be in Canada’s largest city.
YOU DON’T SAY
“They’re very explosive. There’s a little bit of an emphasis that we’re going to see (C.J.) Spiller more. If you look at his numbers, you can see why they would do that. He’s got great numbers in the running game and the passing game. That doesn’t help us any. So we have to really tune in to him. He’s the factor that can really change them. The perimeter stuff that he does is very dangerous. He has extraordinary speed and it shows up on the field. That’s a big deal for us.” – Carroll on Spiller becoming the feature back for the Bill with Fred Jackson out