Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, March 21:
Coach Pete Carroll did an interview with 710 ESPN yesterday and discussed free-agent middle linebacker David Hawthorne: “ ‘We love what David gave to us and brought to us,’ Carroll said. ‘This is free agency time, and, man, it can get hard.’ ”
Not everyone was in all on Matt Flynn yesterday. Chris Burke at SI.com says the Seahawks went back to the future in acquiring the backup QB from the Packers: “Coming off a disappointing season in which they finished under .500 and missed the playoffs, the Seattle Seahawks found themselves in need of a starting quarterback. So they turned their attention to Green Bay, where a talented backup was stuck behind an entrenched starter. This all happened 11 years ago, of course, when Seattle pulled the trigger on a trade to snatch Matt Hasselbeck from Green Bay.”
Here at Seahawks.com, we look at why Carroll had a reason to smile even before the team got agreements over the weekend from Matt Flynn and Jason Jones: “ ‘Free agency for us was to get our own guys – that was the start of it,’ Carroll on Monday. And it started with the top two priorities: Retaining leading rusher Marshawn Lynch, without using the franchise tag; and getting an agreement with run-stuffing, kick-blocking defensive end Red Bryant before he could test the free-agent market. Check, and check. And check out what else Carroll, general manager John Schneider and vice president of football administration/salary cap guru/lead negotiator John Idzik were able to do before dipping into the pool of free agents from other teams. The club also reached agreements with Pro Bowl fullback Michael Robinson, versatile and valuable offensive linemen Breno Giacomini and Paul McQuistan; and linebacker/special teams standout Heath Farwell, who led the NFL in coverage tackles last season. ‘The fact that we were able to do that with Marshawn and come back with Red, Mike Robinson and on down the line, this has been really important to us,’ Carroll said.”
Mike Sando takes a look at the free agents who have visited each of the teams in the NFC West, including the Seahawks.
Jason La Canfora at NFL.com continues to track all the free agent activity around the league and you can follow along here.
It’s not all about free agency at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. The Seahawks also continue to prepare for the NFL Draft next month. Peter Schrager at FoxSports.com has a new mock draft this morning and he gives the Seahawks South Carolina DE/OLB Melvin Ingram with the 12th pick: “I loved the quiet re-signing of Red Bryant, one of the most underrated producers in the game, and picking up Jason Jones for one year was a “no-lose” move. Ingram solidified himself as a Top 20 pick with a dominant week of Senior Bowl practices in Mobile. Capable of playing either the outside linebacker or defensive end spot, he’s a pass-rushing force who can cover tight ends in the passing game, too. The Matt Flynn signing will steal all the headlines, but I love what Seattle’s doing with its D.”
The Seahawks had said their priority in NFL free agency would be taking care of their own players first, and that’s the first thing they did today in getting contract agreements with defensive end Red Bryant and linebacker/special teams standout Heath Farwell.
Bryant was expected to draw considerable attention on the open market when the free-agent period began at 1 p.m. PDT today after developing into a run-stuffing, kick-blocking force in his first full season as a starter. But Seattle is where Bryant wanted to continue his career, and Seattle is where he’ll stay after agreeing to a multiyear contract.
The 6-foot-4, 335-pound Bryant blocked three field goals and a PAT last season, when he also returned one of his two interceptions for a touchdown and registered 32 tackles.
Farwell didn’t join the Seahawks until October last season, but he led the NFL with 21 coverage tackles in only 11 games.
The Seahawks previously had re-signed leading rusher Marshawn Lynch and right tackle Breno Giacomini.
Here’s a look back at ten of the most memorable meaningful action photos of the season.
Marshawn Lynch Flips into the End Zone (Seahawks vs. Atlanta, October 2, 2011).
Seahawks defense forces Eli Manning to fumble (Seahawks at NY Giants, October 9, 2011)
Doug Baldwin’s Crowd Silencing Touchdown (Seahawks at NY Giants, October 9, 2011)
Brandon Browner’s Pick-Six Seals the Win (Seahawks at NY Giants, October 9, 2011)
Chris Clemons Smiling and Sacking (Seahawks at Chicago, December 18, 2012)
Big Red Heads to the House (Seahawks at Chicago, December 18, 2011)
“Feetball” (Seahawks vs. San Francisco, December 24, 2011)
Heath Farwell’s Blocked Punt (Seahawks vs. San Francisco, December 24, 2011).
D-Backs Double-Team (Seahawks at Arizona, January 1, 2012)
Rocket Launches (Seahawks at Arizona, January 1, 2012)
Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, Jan. 9, and was “out there” over the long weekend:
Dave Boling at the News Tribune checks out the Seahawks’ free agent class: “After a pair of 7-9 seasons rife with roster rebuilding, general manager John Schneider appears to have positioned the Seahawks for the next step by creating enough salary cap room to meet the most pressing needs. Consider what’s at stake. Seahawks fans might trigger a seismic event from outrage if running back Marshawn Lynch takes his beastly style elsewhere. And Red Bryant has likewise become an exemplar of spirited toughness for the Seahawks on defense. These two are at the top of the list of 18 unrestricted free agents with whom the Seahawks may exclusively negotiate.”
Also at the News Tribune, Eric Williams hands out grades for the just-completed season and the highest marks (B-plus) go to the running backs and offensive line: “They went through six starting combinations and finished the season with three-fifths of the team’s projected starting line on the injured reserve. Still, Seattle effectively ran the ball at the end of the season, a tribute to the teaching skills of offensive line/assistant head coach Tom Cable.”
John Boyle at the Everett Herald looks at who might be the Seahawks’ QB of the future: “Well, certainly there is plenty of time to discuss Seattle’s options. Should they make a play for Green Bay backup Matt Flynn, who will be a free agent? Should they trade up to draft Robert Griffin III? Should they draft a quarterback in the middle rounds and hope he develops behind Tarvaris Jackson? The best thing to do for the next couple of months is take a deep breath, wait, and trust that head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider will do what’s right for the franchise.”
Here at Seahawks.com, we passed out our honors for the season, including the obvious choice for MVP: “Marshawn Lynch. Beast Mode. Skittles-back. Free spirit. Call him what you will, but the hard-running Lynch proved his value week after week, game after game, down after down – especially in the second half of the season after the coaches decided that running the ball was the offensive identity. Lynch finished with career-highs in rushing yards (1,204) and touchdowns (13), and 941 of those yards and 10 of those scores came in the final nine games – when his totals were league-highs over that span. And with Lynch, it wasn’t so much what he did, but how he did it. The entire team followed his refuse-to-go-down lead.”
Mike Sando at ESPN.com has the word on the finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, who were announced Saturday: “Without slam-dunk candidates such as Emmitt Smith or Jerry Rice on the ballot this year, the door could open for some who have waited their turn recently. Cortez Kennedy, Charles Haley, Jerome Bettis, Chris Doleman and Kevin Greene are among the finalists with ties to franchises currently in the NFC West.”
Sando also has his selections for an All-NFC West team, with center Max Unger and running back Marshawn Lynch landing spots on offense, Chris Clemons, Kam Chancellor, Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman making it on defense and Heath Farwell making it on special teams.
Seahawks.com passes out its honors for the just-completed season:
MVP: Marshawn Lynch. Beast Mode. Skittles-back. Free spirit. Call him what you will, but the hard-running Lynch proved his value week after week, game after game, down after down – especially in the second half of the season after the coaches decided that running the ball was the offensive indentity. Lynch finished with career-highs in rushing yards (1,204) and touchdowns (13), and 941 of those yards and 10 of those scores came in the final nine games – when his totals were league-highs over that span. And with Lynch, it wasn’t so much what he did, but how he did it. The entire team followed his refuse-to-go-down lead.
Best offensive player: Doug Baldwin. All the rookie free agent did was lead the team in receptions (51), receiving yards (788) and touchdown catches (four). Not bad for a guy who was passed over by all 32 teams in the NFL Draft. In fact, coach Pete Carroll tabbed Baldwin as the player who most surprised him this season, offering, “I think that’s the biggest surprise – that he could take it that far.”
Best defensive player: Earl Thomas. This is a tough choice, despite Thomas’ selection as the starting free safety on the NFC Pro Bowl squad, because of the efforts of strong safety Kam Chancellor, who finished second on the team in tackles (94) and tied for second in interceptions (four); end Chris Clemons, who tied his career-high with 11 sacks; and end Red Bryant, who returned one of his two interceptions for a touchdown. But each of those players point to Thomas’ contributions in allowing the defense to rank No. 9 in the league, and the other players and coaches in the conference were impressed enough that they made Thomas the Seahawks’ first Pro Bowl selection since 2008.
Best special teams player: Jon Ryan. The Seahawks’ Canadian-born punter broke his own team records for average (46.6) and net average (39.3) and tied the mark for punts inside the 20 with a league-high 34. Oh, and his 77-yarder in the season-opener against the 49ers? Another club record, this time bettering a 16-year-old record that was held by Rick Tuten (73 yards).
Best offseason addition: Tom Cable. This just in: The former Raiders head coach can coach. Cable was hired on Jan. 18 with the title of assistant head coach/offensive line coach. But the running game was his baby, and boy did it deliver down the stretch when the Seahawks rushed for 100-plus yards in eight of their last nine games – a run that was capped by the season-high 178-yard performance in the finale against the Cardinals. And a lot of this was done with Breno Giacomini, Lemuel Jeanpierre and Paul McQuistan stepping in for the injured starting trio of right tackle James Carpenter, right guard John Moffitt and left tackle Russell Okung. It was Cable’s belief in his system that made believers of the players, and eventually even the skeptics.
Best free-agent addition: Brandon Browner. The 6-foot-4 cornerback wasn’t even your typical free agent. He was signed to a future contract in January after playing the past four seasons in the CFL. He stepped in on the right side during training camp because Walter Thurmond was out with a sprained ankle and stayed there. Browner led the team with six interceptions; and the conference in secondary intimidation. His 94-yard interception return for a TD in Week 5 not only iced the upset of the Giants, it broke a team record that had lasted since 1979 (91 yards by Sammy Green). Browner added a 42-yarder for a score against the Bears and a 68-yarder against the Eagles in racking up 220 return yards to demolish the team record (179 by Dave Brown in 1984).
Best rookies: It’s a Stanford thing, as it’s impossible to separate Baldwin and cornerback Richard Sherman. After Marcus Trufant and Thurmond were lost to season-ended injuries, Sherman was the third option on the left side. In 10 starts, the fifth-round draft choice produced four interceptions, 17 passes defensed and 53 tackles. In addition to his team-leading totals as a receiver, Baldwin had a five-minute span against the Rams where he popped a 37-yard kickoff return, downed a punt at the 6-yard line and then blocked a punt that Michael Robinson returned for the touchdown.
Best in-season addition: Heath Farwell. He not only led the Seahawks, but the league with 21 coverage tackles on special teams. And he wasn’t signed until Oct. 19. He had multiple tackles in eight of the 11 games he played and also blocked a punt against the 49ers.
Comeback player of the year: Bryant. After playing in only seven games in 2010, Bryant returned to start all 16 this season. In addition to intercepting two passes, he also anchored the stout run defense and blocked a club record four kicks (three field goals and a PAT). His teammates rewarded Bryant by voting him the Ed Block Courage Award and the Steve Largent Award.
What would they do without …: McQuistan. Like Browner, the versatile offensive lineman was signed to a future contract in January. Like Browner, McQuistan never was expected to start. But start he did, in 10 games – three at left guard for an injured Robert Gallery; three at right guard for Moffitt; four at left tackle for Okung. If Chuck Knox was still around, he’d present McQuistan with a symbolic lunch pail and a hardhat.
Best third-day draft choice: K.J. Wright. A bit of a contrived category, but the rookie linebacker deserves some mention. He started the season opener at middle linebacker because David Hawthorne was out with an injury. Wright started the final 12 games on the strong side because, well, he was too good to keep off the field – and good enough that former first-round draft choice Aaron Curry was traded to the Raiders for a couple of draft choices that could turn into another Wright. He finished fifth on the team in tackles (61), including two sacks. He’s just one of the many young players on this team that needs a pair of shades, because his future is so bright.
Best win: Week 5 over the Giants. The Week 10 upset of the Ravens also deserves mention, but the upset of the Giants came on the road, in a 10 a.m. Seattle-time start, when the Giants were 3-1. The game featured the Seahawks scoring a touchdown on their first possession, which they did only twice all season; Charlie Whitehurst stepping in for injured QB Tarvaris Jackson to throw a go-ahead TD pass to Baldwin in the fourth quarter; and Browner’s record-breaking interception return to snuff the Giants’ late bid to steal the game.
Worst loss: Week 12 to the Redskins. Again, the 6-3 loss to the Browns in Cleveland in Week 7 deserves consideration, but the Seahawks played without Lynch and Jackson that day. The loss to the Redskins came at home to a team that had lost six in a row. It also came because the Seahawks allowed a team that had been averaging 16 points a game to score 16 in the fourth quarter.
Best quote: It was the choice at midseason, and no one said anything better or more telling than this evaluation from general manager John Schneider after the team’s 2-6 start: “I always likened it to the ‘Three Little Pigs.’ You can build it with straw or sticks. Or you can work your tail off and know that you’re doing the right thing and kind of do it the old-fashioned way and have a big, strong, sturdy foundation. Then you can weather all the storms.”
A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Dec. 19:
The Pro Bowl. The Seahawks have not had a Pro Bowl representative the past two seasons. Will this third season be the charm as the players and coaches around the league cast their votes this week?
That won’t be answered until the NFC squad is announced next Tuesday on the NFL Network. But here’s a look at some worthy candidates for the Seahawks:
Marshawn Lynch – The Skittles-back is eighth in the league and fourth in the NFC in rushing (1,011 yards) and tied for fifth in the league in touchdowns (12, second among running backs in the NFC). But his late surge can’t hurt, especially his efforts in the team’s recent nationally televised victories: 148 yards, a 6.7-yard average and two TDs against the Eagles; 115 yards, a 5.0-yard average and a TD against the Rams.
The last Seahawks’ tailback to go to the Pro Bowl was Shaun Alexander in 2005, and Lynch just broke his club record for scoring in consecutive games by getting into the end twice against the Bears on Sunday – running Lynch streak to his past 10 games. Lynch also has become the first Seahawks since Alexander in ’05 to rush for 1,000 yards. The other tailbacks who have been to the Pro Bowl: Curt Warner (1983, 1986 and 1987), Chris Warren (1993-95) and Alexander (2003-05).
Brandon Browner – The extra-large cornerback from the CFL is fourth in the league and second in the NFC with six interceptions. He also has two returns for touchdowns, not to mention 220 total yards to break Dave Brown’s club record from 1984 (179). As with Lynch, Browner has been on a late-season run with five picks on his past four games.
The Seahawks corner who have been to the Pro Bowl: Brown (1984), Shawn Springs (1998) and Marcus Trufant (2007).
Chris Clemons – The “Leo” end is ninth in the league, and fifth among NFC ends, with 11 sacks. But he also has 40 tackles, 20 QB hits, four passes defensed and three forced fumbles.
The Seahawks ends who have been to the Pro Bowl: Jacob Green (1986-87), Michael Sinclair (1996-98) and Patrick Kerney (2007).
Kam Chancellor – The big-play strong safety has four interceptions, 76 tackles, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.
The Seahawks safeties who have been to the Pro Bowl: Kenny Easley (1982-85 and 1987), Eugene Robinson (1992-93) and Darryl Williams (1997).
Jon Ryan – The Canadian-born punter is ninth in the league in average (46.9, third in the NFC) and net average (39.9, fifth in the NFC), but he’s second in punts inside the 20 (28).
The only Seahawks punter to go to the Pro Bowl was Rick Tuten (1994).
We could go on, with defensive end Red Bryant, free safety Earl Thomas and even special-teamer Heath Farwell. But let’s worry about getting a first player to the Pro Bowl since tackle Walter Jones and linebacker Julian Peterson in 2008 before trying to match the seven who went in 2005 and 1984 or six who went in 2007.
STAT DU JOUR
Farwell, who wasn’t signed until Oct. 19, has a team-leading 18 coverage tackles in the nine games he has played for the Seahawks. Here’s how that total stacks up against the best seasons in club history:
Player (year) No.
Jay Bellamy (1996) 34
Josh Scobey (2005) 23
Michael Bates (1993) 22
Tim Hauck (1997) 22
Sam Merriman (1984) 21
Isaiah Kacyvenski (2001) 21
Lance Laury (2009) 21
Matt McCoy (2010) 19
Mack Strong (1995) 19
Heath Farwell (2011) 18
Don Dufek (1979) 18
Don Dufek (1983) 18
Tracy Johnson (1992) 18
James Logan (1999) 18
Alex Bannister (2003) 18
Another week that isn’t as it seems, as the players return from their “off” day to begin preparing Tuesday for Saturday’s game against the 49ers at CenturyLink Field. Except that it won’t be Tuesday, their usual “off” day. It will be Wednesday, which means Wednesday will be Thursday; Thursday will be Friday; and Friday will be Saturday.
Tickets are available for the Christmas Eve game against the 49ers and can be purchased here.
YOU DON’T SAY
“That’s a fat kid’s dream right there.” – the 330-pound Bryant after scoring on a 20-yard interception return against the Bears on Sunday
The Seahawks hoped to stretch their winning streak to three games against the visiting Washington Redskins, who traveled to Seattle losers of six games in a row. Seattle survived a rough first quarter to take a 10-point lead in the second half, only to see it snatched away in the fourth quarter.
A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Nov. 22:
Leroy Hill. The veteran linebacker played in all of one game in 2010 before going out with a season-ending calf injury. So second-year coach Pete Carroll wasn’t exactly sure what he was getting when the team decided to re-sign Hill in late July.
Carroll relied on scouting reports supplied by defensive coordinator Gus Bradley and Dan Quinn, the defensive line coach the past two seasons before leaving to become defensive coordinator at the University of Florida.
“They talked about him with high praise, about his toughness and his love for the game and that kind of stuff,” Carroll said.
Also in the coaches’ scouting report? “They said he’s one of the toughest guys on the team and if you’re going to pick one guy to go fight for you, a lot of guys would pick him,” Carroll said. “It was attractive when you talk about linebackers.”
Hill has gone out and walked their talk. Entering Sunday’s game against the Washington Redskins at CenturyLink Field, Hill is third on the team in tackles (61), second in sacks (two) and also among the leaders in passion and determination.
“He’s totally all of that,” Carroll said, referring to what Bradley and Quinn had told him about Hill. “He’s a really committed football player and loves the game.”
That was never more obvious than during the video review of Sunday’s 24-7 victory over the Rams in St. Louis. While showing the “great effort” plays, Hill was featured three times.
“Three plays that he had extraordinary effort running across the field to make a play,” Carroll said. “The first two times, he didn’t get there. The third time, he runs 30-40 yards and makes the play that he could have given up on because he didn’t get there the first two times.
“He’s got great nature about him and great competitiveness and toughness. Fortunately, he’s playing really well and doing a great job for us and we were able to get him back.”
ONE IN, ONE OUT
The club signed wide receiver Isaiah Williams to its practice squad today, and released wide receiver Patrick Williams to clear a spot.
Isaiah Williams (6-3, 200) signed with the Ravens as a rookie free agent in 2009. He also was with the Steelers in the offseason and training camp last year. He had been on the Cardinals’ practice squad this season. At his Pro Day workout at Maryland in 2009, Williams ran the 40-yard dash in 4.38 seconds and had a 41-inch vertical jump.
STATS ’N STUFF
The Seahawks rank 11th in the league in total defense, allowing an average of 333.0 yards; and eighth in rushing defense, allowing 100.0 yards.
Punter Jon Ryan is fifth in the league in average (48.7) and 11th in net average (39.8) – despite having two punts returned 55 and 56 yards for touchdowns and a 30-yarder that was partially blocked. He’s also tied for third in punts inside the 20-yard line (19).
Leon Washington is sixth in the league in punt return average (12.0). Chris Clemons is ninth in sacks (eight), and sixth among defensive ends.
Middle linebacker David Hawthorne and free safety Earl Thomas continue to share the lead in tackles (65), while Doug Baldwin and Sidney Rice continue to share the lead in receptions (32). Baldwin is tied for 10th in the league in third-down receptions (15).
Heath Farwell has taken the lead in special teams tackles (eight).
STAT DU JOUR
The Seahawks’ and Redskins’ defenses are among the stingiest in the NFL when it comes to allowing touchdowns. The Seahawks have given up 18, the Redskins 19. Here’s how they stack up in the league:
Team TDs allowed
The players return from their “off” day on Wednesday to begin preparing for Sunday’s game. The team also will practice earlier on Thursday to allow the players to celebrate Thanksgiving.
Sunday’s game is the first of three in a row at home for the Seahawks. Tickets are available for each game and can be purchased here.
YOU DON’T SAY
“When it’s over, and you’re sitting there winning championships. It doesn’t matter if you’ve won every game right now. You haven’t done anything yet. It ain’t over. You haven’t made it to the playoffs. You haven’t won a division. You haven’t done any of that stuff yet. All of that, you postpone that until they put an asterisk by your name and you’ve accomplished something.” – Carroll, asked when victories start to mean something
Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, Nov. 22:
Mike Sando at ESPN.com has “Five Observations” from Sunday’s victory over the Rams, including this one that also caught coach Pete Carroll’s eye after his video review of the game: “The Seahawks were the aggressors: Seattle delivered nearly all the big hits in this game: Roy Lewis on Austin Pettis, Heath Farwell on Pettis, Kam Chancellor on Steven Jackson, Chancellor on Lance Kendricks. Even the hit quarterback Tarvaris Jackson put on Rams safety Quintin Mikell following an interception packed more punch that most of the hits St. Louis put on Seattle. That was striking.”
Danny O’Neil at the Seattle Times looks at the Seahawks’ run defense and how it is altering the game plan for opposing offenses: “Seattle’s run defense is the starting point for Carroll’s blueprint for this football team. He wants to be unyielding against the run on defense, and unrelenting in the determination to run the ball on offense.”
Eric Williams at the News Tribune says now the Seahawks are running ball more effectively, it’s time for more explosive plays from the passing game: “The Seahawks have 18 catches of 25 or more yards this season, 20th in the league. Receiver Sidney Rice was signed to be Seattle’s deep threat, but the Seahawks have not consistently worked Rice into the offense. Despite missing two games with a shoulder injury, Rice is tied for the team lead with 32 catches for 484 yards and two touchdowns, an average gain of 15.1 yards per catch. But just seven of Rice’s catches have gone for 20 yards or more. Further, Rice has been targeted 55 times, which fails to crack the top 20 in the NFC.”
Scott Johnson at the Everett Herald continues his “The Game of my Life” series with a look at the player his teammates called “Dr. Dan”: “And in 1984, the Seahawks asked “Dr. Dan” (Dan Doornink) … to give the mighty Los Angeles Raiders some anesthesia (in their playoff game).”
Also at the Herald, John Boyle looks at the promising position the Seahawks find themselves in, despite their 4-6 record: “For the first time this season, the Seahawks are coming off of consecutive victories, and with their next three games at home, all against teams with losing records, it suddenly looks like the Seahawks can make something out of a season that looked lost less than two weeks ago.”
Here at Seahawks.com, our “Monday Metatarsal Musings” examines the Seahawks’ suffocating run defense and how it set the table for a feeding frenzy by the pass defense against the Rams: “Steven Jackson was coming off consecutive rushing performances of 159, 130 and 128 yards, and averaged 5.1 yards per carry as the Rams had won two of those games. Sunday, Jackson averaged 2.8 yards on 15 carries – and without his 19-yarder in the second quarter on the one run where the Seahawks allowed him to get his 6-foot-2, 240-pound body going in a positive direction, that average dipped to 1.6 yards on his other 14 attempts. So there’s no chicken-or-the-egg quandary here: This was defense the way it’s supposed to be played; stop the run and then pressure the passer into making mistakes.”
There’s also this response from Carroll to the final question during his day-after news conference about the Seahawks having won two in a row and now playing three games at home against teams with losing records: “I like the way you’re talking. That sounds good,” Carroll said when the 2-0/three-in-a-row scenario was presented. “It’s great to know that we’re going to be home for three weeks. It just has not felt like we’ve had that sense of playing at home with any kind of consistency.”
Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, Nov. 17:
Dave Boling at the News Tribune looks at Heath Farwell, a former Pro Bowler who was signed to help the Seahawks’ special teams and has done just that: “Both (Michael) Robinson and (Byron) Maxwell have been big hitters for the Seahawks, but they share awe over Seahawks newcomer Heath Farwell, the drone missile the team picked up four weeks ago. ‘Heath has been fantastic,’ coach Pete Carroll said. ‘He has jumped to the top of the charts on his production. He’s a real pro. We had our eye on him for a couple weeks and didn’t have the opportunity to get him; we were lucky to get him when we did.’ ”
Speaking of Robinson, John Boyle at the Everett Herald looks at his diverse – and unsung – role for the Seahawks: “And while Robinson’s impact on the offense was more noticeable Sunday, he has been a huge part of special teams play since coming to Seattle. As a captain of that unit this season, he was encouraged by the group’s play Sunday. Unlike last year, when special teams was the team’s biggest strength, the Seahawks have been up and down — mostly down — in that area this season. But on Sunday, the kick-coverage team forced two fumbles, one by Robinson, that played a big part in the win.”
Also at the Times, O’Neil sizes up the NFC West, where one team (the 49ers) has eight wins and the other three also have eight wins: “This season, the four teams that comprise the NFC West are 13-17 in games against the rest of the league. That matches the most non-division victories by NFC West teams in any of the previous three seasons.”
Mike Sando at ESPN.com looks at the fan balloting for the Pro Bowl in the NFC West, with punter Jon Ryan and strong safety Kam Chancellor each third at the respective positions. You can cast your votes here.
Also at ESPN, is this on-the-road, but-still-following-the-Seahawks report from musical 12th MAN Duff McKagan: “OK. Now it was time to check the NFL scores and, I thought, time to face the awful score I was sure to see. I mean, heck … the Seahawks were playing the (then-) AFC North-leading Baltimore Ravens, and we were sure to be getting our behinds handed to us. But, no. Somehow, and some way … running back Marshawn Lynch found his way around and through Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis and his crew of defensive bruisers. Seahawks win. Seahawks win! The drudgery and hustle of this tour somehow all seemed less overwhelming as I basked alone in my hotel room.”
Here at Seahawks.com, we look at Paul McQuistan, who steps in at right guard for the injured John Moffitt. McQuistan’s take: “It’s not that big a deal.”