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Monday in Hawkville: Carpenter passes first big test

A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Oct. 1:

FOCUS ON

James Carpenter. Last year’s first-round draft choice not only made his 2012 debut in Sunday’s 19-13 loss to the Rams in St. Louis, Carpenter played longer and better at left guard than anyone could have expected.

“James played really well,” coach Pete Carroll said today during his weekly day-after Q&A session. “He did a very, very good job. He had a couple errors in the game, which you just about have to anticipate. But we ran a lot to the left. He did a really good job of covering his guy up.”

While the Seahawks were playing their fourth regular-season game, this was basically Carpenter’s first preseason game because he missed the entire preseason while completing his rehab from the severe injury to his left knee that he got during practice last November.

“He did a really good job for his first time out,” Carroll said. “We were ready to rest him, but he hung in there well. So his conditioning was pretty good for his first time out. We’re real pleased with his first effort.”

Carpenter did miss a few plays after tweaking his right knee, but returned.

And Carpenter’s return was – and remains – timely, because right guard John Moffitt is expected to miss at least another week with the knee injury he got in the Monday night game against the Packers. So Paul McQuistan was able to move from left guard to relieve Moffitt, with Carpenter stepping in on the left side.

BARBRE RELEASED

Offensive lineman Allen Barbre is eligible to return from his four-game suspension this week, but it won’t happen with the Seahawks. The club released him today.

STATS ’N STUFF

Marshawn Lynch leads the NFL in rushing with 423 yards, and the NFC in most yards from scrimmage with 473. He also is tied for eighth with 21 first downs.

Jon Ryan is second in the league in net punting average (44.2) and sixth in average (50.3), while Leon Washington is second in kickoff return average (37.7).

Chris Clemons is tied for third in the league with five sacks, and all have come in two quarters.

Linebacker K.J. Wright continues to lead the team in tackles (30), while strong safety Kam Chancellor is second (28).

STAT DU JOUR

The Seahawks remain the only team in the NFL that is averaging more yards rushing than passing. Here’s a look the other teams that are closest to a 50/50 split:

Team                    Avg. rush yds.   Avg. pass yds.     Differential

Seahawks                  150.8                130.8                 minus-20

49ers                          167.0                179.3                 plus-12.3

Jaguars                       108.0                146.3                 plus-38.3

Bills                             158.0                229.8                 plus-71.8

Chiefs                         173.5                 246.0                plus-72.5

Vikings                        122.8                 199.0                plus-76.2

Buccaneers                  91.0                 185.0                plus-94

Texans                         136.5                 233.8               plus-97.3

UP NEXT

The players are off on Tuesday, when the coaches will compile the game plan for Sunday’s game against the Panthers in Carolina. They will return Wednesday to begin a condensed week of preparation, as the team will fly to Charlotte on Friday.

YOU DON’T SAY

“It’s the most difficult position to play in sports.” – Carroll on the quarterback position while being quizzed about the play and progress being made by rookie Russell Wilson


Saturday in Hawkville: Sherman follows his own suggestion

A recap of the activities at the Seahawks’ Bing training camp for July 28:

FOCUS ON

Richard Sherman. At one point during the initial practice of camp, the second-year cornerback turned to the somewhat docile crowd that was watching from the berm that is adjacent to the practice fields at Virginia Mason Athletic Center and coaxed them to make some noise – especially for the defense.

A few minutes later, Sherman gave the fans something to cheer by picking off a Tarvaris Jackson pass and returning the interception up the sideline for a touchdown.

“That’s just how it is. If you don’t give them anything to cheer about what are they out here for?” a smiling Sherman said after the two-hour practice. “Everybody cheers for offense, because they think football is an offensive game.

“So if your defense doesn’t make any plays, then they have a great point.”

That, however, was not the point of today’s practice, when Sherman and his defensive mates made plenty of plays. And the fans, especially those bellied up to the fence that separates the fields from the berm, showed their appreciation.

“It’s incredible. It’s something you can’t describe,” Sherman said of the fan reaction. “It’s almost like game day. It kind of pushes you to another level, makes you strain a little harder. It’s not that you’re pushing for them necessarily; it’s just so exciting and fun to be out there. So your body does a little more, you go a little harder, you go a little faster.”

And sometimes you go all the way to the end zone with an interception, with the fans cheering your every stride.

“I study a lot of football,” Sherman said. “You get to the point where if you show me something once, the second time you show me I’m going to make the play. They showed it to me twice. That’s all that was.”

PLAYER WATCH

Ricardo Lockette. His rookie season was all about flash and dash, as evidenced by his 52.5-yard average on two receptions in the final two games. This season, Lockette wants to change the focus to consistency and precision – and he did just that today.

Sure, Lockette ran down a deep pass from Jackson – and ran over falling cornerback Ron Parker in the process. But he also caught everything else thrown his way.

Which was better: The acrobatic grab, or the fact that he did not drop a pass?

“The fact that I got every single route right, and I didn’t drop any passes,” Lockette said. “I expect myself to make big plays, and they come when they come. But the most important thing is being where I’m supposed to be making the catches when the ball is thrown to me.”

That definitely was the case on his big catch along the sideline of the big throw from Jackson.

“We’ve been training for a whole month straight, every single day,” Lockette said of his pre-camp routine with the Jackson. “So I expect that one. But my goal is to go through camp without dropping a single ball. I know that’s kind of unheard of. But I guess they say, ‘Shoot for the stars, forget the clouds.’ That’s what I’m aiming for.”

PLAYS DU JOUR

Offense: It would be easy – and perhaps correct – to go with Lockette’s eye-opener. But later in practice, wide receiver Golden Tate got behind Pro Bowl cornerback Brandon Browner to take a long pass from Jackson for the touchdown.

Defense: Again, the obvious choice would be Sherman’s pick-six. But let’s go with the less obvious. In one of the first full-team plays of practice, rookie running back Robert Turbin bobbled a handoff from Jackson. Rather than give up on the seemingly “dead” play, defensive end Chris Clemons stripped the ball and Sherman recovered the fumble.

THREE ON PUP

Offensive lineman James Carpenter (knee), cornerback Walter Thurmond (ankle) and wide receiver Jermaine Kearse (foot) have been placed on the physically unable to perform list while recovering from injuries.

Kearse is really close to returning, Carroll said, but there is no timeline for the returns of Carpenter and Thurmond in their recoveries from season-ending injuries last year.

Also, offensive lineman Allen Barbre was excused from practice because of what Carroll called “a family thing.”

UP NEXT

The players will have a walkthrough this afternoon, and tomorrow’s practice starts at 10:15 a.m.

JOIN THE CROWD

A crowd of 2,180 attended today’s practice. The remaining 12 practices of camp also are open to the public and you can register here to attend one.

YOU DON’T SAY

“I’ve kind of been reflecting on, we wait to start the season and to get to camp to get going. It’s a really big deal to us. And it’s not just us. Of course the guys that put their livelihood on it, it’s a big deal. But for our fans and for everybody around the country that loves the NFL, it’s great to get this thing rolling. I’m excited to be – and really honored to be – part of it. There’s a feeling of – whatever that is – a little sentimental about it. We work so hard to get here and sometimes we get focused in and we just can’t get to the big picture. The big picture is, the NFL is awesome and it’s great to be part of.” – Carroll


Thursday in Hawkville

A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Nov. 24:

FOCUS ON

Second helpings. Not just on Thanksgiving dinner, but Thanksgiving.

Punter Jon Ryan is Canadian, so he’s on his second Thanksgiving today. He celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving, which was Oct. 10. Today, he’ll sample the U.S. version.

“My girl friend was down and we had a whole deal for Thanksgiving, and we had a couple guys come over,” Ryan, who is from Regina Saskatchewan, said of Thanksgiving No. 1.

As for Thanksgiving No. 2, he said, “I’m going over to some friends’ house. Double dipping. You have to.”

Whatever works, and Ryan has been working it this season and especially in the past few games. His average of 48.7 yards ranks fifth in the league. He repeatedly punted the Rams into poor field position in last week’s victory in St. Louis, when he averaged 49.7 yards on nine kicks, with a net of 44.9 and a long of 71 yards.

What could be better than two Thanksgivings? “If there was three of them, I’d do the third one, too,” he said.

PENALTY POULTRY

In his quest to eliminate penalties, coach Pete Carroll had the unit that committed the most against the Rams purchase turkeys this week for the unit that was not penalized.

So today’s turkey dinners for the linebackers are on the offensive linemen.

“I got my turkey,” middle linebacker David Hawthorne said. “It’s in the oven as we speak.”

Speaking for his penalty-free unit, Hawthorne added, “Linebackers just don’t get penalties. We’re just bred to be the smartest guys on the field.”

A rather cool way to penalize one unit and reward another, right?

“It’s not cool at all,” center Max Unger said with a laugh. “We don’t want to get penalties. But we decided to sponsor the other group with turkeys.

“But it’s not cool at all.”

ON THE FIELD

The players practiced for an hour and 40 minutes today in the indoor practice facility. But they used wet balls, because the forecast for Sunday’s game against the Washington Redskins at CenturyLink Field is calling for rain and wind.

SURGERICALLY REPAIRED

Rookie offensive linemen James Carpenter and John Moffitt had surgery on Wednesday to repair ligament damage in their knees. The procedures were performed by team doctors Ed Khalfayan and Mike McAdam at the Seattle Surgery Center.

Moffitt was injured in the victory over the Ravens 11 days ago, while Carpenter went down in practice last week.

IN ’N OUT

Offensive lineman Allen Barbre has been re-signed to fill Carpenter’s spot on the 53-man roster. Barbre was with the team for seven games last season.

After being limited in practice on Wednesday, QB Tarvaris Jackson took part – and threw – in every phase today. Working on Thursday has been his normal routine the past few weeks because of the strained pectoral in his right shoulder.

Wide receiver Ben Obomanu practiced today, on a limited basis, after sitting out Wednesday.

 Official injury report:

Did not practice

WR Sidney Rice (knee)

DT Alan Branch (ankle)

CB Byron Maxwell (ankle)

Limited participation

WR Ben Obomanu (knee/ankle)

Full participation

QB Tarvaris Jackson (pectoral)

S Atari Bigby (hamstring)

DE Anthony Hargrove (hamstring)

For the Redskins:

Limited participation

LB London Fletcher (ankle)

OT Jammal Brown (groin)

S DeJon Gomes (knee)

OG Maurice Hurt (knee)

OT Sean Locklear (ankle)

OT Trent Williams (knee)

CB Josh Wilson (hamstring)

WR Niles Paul (toe)

WR Donte Stallworth (foot)

Full participation

LB Keyaron Fox (infection)

S LaRon Landry (Achilles)

WR Santana Moss (hand)

STAT DU JOUR

Speaking of Ryan, in his fourth season with the Seahawks he’s already punted his way to the top of several statistical categories. Here’s how he stacks up on the club’s all-time lists:

Career Average

Punter                        Avg.

Jon Ryan                   45.1

Rick Tuten                43.8

Jeff Feagles              42.1

Season average

Punter (year)           Avg.

Jon Ryan (2011)      48.7

Jon Ryan (2009)      46.2

Jon Ryan (2008)      45.6

Game average

Player (year)           Avg.

Jon Ryan (2011)      61.0

Rick Tuten (1996)   55.2

Jon Ryan (2008)      53.4

Season net average

Player (year)           Avg.

Jon Ryan (2011)     39.8

Rick Tuten (1992)  38.7

Jon Ryan (2009)     38.7

Longest punt

Player (year)                       Distance

Jon Ryan (2011)                     77

Rick Tuten (1995)                  73

Ryan Plackemeier (2006)     72

UP NEXT

The players will have their final full practice for Sunday’s game on Friday morning. After the game, they will have only a three-day period to prepare for Thursday night’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles – also at CenturyLink Field.

Tickets are available for both games and can be purchased here.

YOU DON’T SAY

“The bottom line is winning, and whatever the formula is the formula right now is working.” – offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell when asked if he was looking to get more pass attempts this week after the Seahawks have run the ball season-high totals of 42 and 39 times during the current two-game winning streak


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