Seahawks Insider

Seahawks’ opener Thursday is the champs’ only home primetime game; “I’ll let you guys speculate those reasons”

Post by Gregg Bell / The News Tribune on Sep. 3, 2014 at 11:13 am with 24 Comments »
September 3, 2014 11:13 am

Happy NFL Opening Eve.

The Seahawks are finishing a light walk-through practice this morning here in Renton. Green Bay’s practice will presumably be more extensive, given the Packers did not practice at all yesterday as part of coach Mike McCarthy’s new practice plan this season of keeping his players off the field two days before every game.

I mentioned this on Twitter yesterday — and got a couple angry retorts from Packers fans: The Seahawks under coach Pete Carroll are 7-0 in home, primetime games with an average margin of victory of 18 points. Cornerback Richard Sherman barely had his tongue in his his cheek Monday when he mentioned how Thursday night is Seattle’s only prime-time home game this season “for various reasons,” a fact he found peculiar for the Super Bowl champion.

“I’ll let you guys speculate those reasons; you guys are incredible writers,” Sherman joked.

The inference, of course, is the NFL doesn’t want prime-time blowouts and audiences switching their TVs from the featured games to “The Bachelor” or whatever, so the league isn’t giving Seattle many prime-time home games. The Seahawks’ other prime-time games are Oct. 6 on a Monday night at Washington, Thanksgiving night against the 49ers in Santa Clara and Sunday night, Dec. 21 at Arizona.

–I will get more into the specific keys to tomorrow night’s game later today and tomorrow, but the biggest one I see for the Seahawks’ offense is how rookie right tackle Justin Britit handles Julius Peppers, Clay Matthews and the Packers’ varied edge rushes. As I was buried by finishing the News Tribune’s Seahawks and NFL special-section stories that will run tomorrow, TNT intern Evan Thompson stepped up with this story on Britt heading into his first NFL start. I’m sensing Green Bay sends every defender short of Ray Nitschke at the Seahawks’ second round draft choice. And as Thompson writes, he and his offensive line coach Tom Cable know it. This is why the Seahawks spent their second-highest draft choice on Britt in May.

–The News Tribune’s special Seahawks and NFL preview section will get your game day started tomorrow to begin the 2014 season. In it, I will profile what I’ve seen in the current Pete Carroll compared to when I last covered him, four-plus years ago during the first months after he arrived to the Seahawks from USC. Carroll is far more a CEO type now on the field than he was then, delegating and overseeing more and getting in every trench and cornerback-wide receiver battle he can find less. He told me that’s because he was trying to instill his “always-compete” message then and that the Seahawks have all internalized his message and ways now.

Those that haven’t are somewhere else.

In that story I also explain the roots of Carroll’s unconventional motivational tactics — as many of you likely know, they come from a basketball guru. The piece will also describe how this Pete Carroll is oh-so-much different than the one the New York Jets and then New England Patriots fired in the 1990s during his first NFL go-round as head coach.

The TNT’s special Seahawks preview edition tomorrow also includes columnist Dave Boling writing what Mike Holmgren, Ken Norton and others who have won Super Bowls say on why it is so difficult in this league to come back the next year and win it again. It will have fellow columnist John McGrath on Russell Wilson’s place among the all-time best quarterbacks at this point in his career, just two seasons in. I also wrote a feature on why Sherman says winning the Super Bowl, becoming a national flashpoint on race relations, being one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people, being President Barack Obama’s guest at the annual White House Correspondents’ dinner, even a new, $56 million contract extension, that none of that has changed him.

You’ll also see the my predictions and those from the rest of our staff for each division in the league, the playoffs and this winter’s Super Bowl in Glendale, Ariz. No, I don’t pick the Steelers to win it all. But I thought about it.

All that and more is coming tomorrow in our News Tribune special Seahawks/NFL preview section.

–The Seahawks liked this Wall Street Journal article so much they linked it on their Twitter account: How the Seattle Seahawks changed the NFL.

The premise: Sherman has become the prototype at conerback, tall enough, fast enough and with long enough arms to thwart the back-shoulder throw that has dominated the NFL for so many years.

“Then, last winter, came the Seattle Seahawks’ defense: a swaggering, boisterous group of trash-talkers led by Richard Sherman, the self-proclaimed best corner in the game.,” Kevin Clark writes. “Most fans just smiled at the sideshow and dismissed it as an act. But not rival teams. They were running the film back and forth, unable to believe what they were seeing.

“Rather than fielding the usual bunch of regular-sized speedsters in the defensive backfield to keep up with opposing receivers, Seattle decided to go big. By starting the tallest, largest cornerbacks possible …”

–Assuming by now you have read that those Seattle defensive backs won’t be facing Denver WR Wes Welker in the week-three Super Bowl rematch at CenturyLink Field. Welker was suspended for four games yesterday by the league for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs. Pro Football Talk cites a source for knowing why. Welker was going through the league’s concussion protocol this week following his latest head injury, but I’m guessing Denver was eyeing the Seahawks game, if not sooner, to have Peyton Manning’s favorite target back playing. Now Denver will be without Welker in Seattle.


Leave a comment Comments → 24
  1. 4 prime time games are enough for me. If the Seahawks want more than that, they can make the playoffs and go all the way.

  2. ChrisHolmes says:

    I think the point with the prime time games is not the number, but the fact that only the opener is at home.

    Four prime time games, as a raw number, makes sense, because it gives NBC a chance to flex Seattle into the Sunday night slot late in the season, for the 5th (and maximum) prime time game.

    But having Seattle’s prime time games on the road is sort of a slap in the face to the Superbowl champs and the 12’s. NFL laming it up there.

  3. Welker is lucky to not have to play vs the LOB. They flat whomp that guy. He of course is a badass competitor, and would love to play them. But with 36 concussions, does he really need another?! He should be grateful..

    Lost a lot of respect for him saying maybe his drink was spiked…c’mon, man, just admit you bought crappy street drugs. Since he claims he’s the clean guy we all thought he was, its utterly believable he made a single bad choice and since he isnt a regular user, he ended up with cheap, amphetamine-laced Molly, and the amphetamines are what he was busted for. That makes a lot more sense than someone spiking his drink and Welker not knowing he was high as three kites or choosing not to get hospital help after being dosed.

    The CBS needs reworked. Its ridiculous to have guys like RW making peanuts three years in; and I say that as a proponent of a rookie wage scale. BUt the scale needs adjusting. Also, the drug testing policy is crap, and so is the Domestic Violence policy (too vague). Its also ridiculous that the league cant say anything but the player and his agent can claim whatever they want regarding positive tests. Too many folks insisting they took Adderall when they took something else–weed, roids, etc…

    And too many silly stories like Welker getting dosed…

  4. You know the NFL was hoping the Monday Night Showdown between RW and RGKnee was going to be good. What were they thinking?! I can just see the face Goodell will be making….a lot like the one he was making during our SB beatdown of his Mannings–er, Broncos…

  5. Aren’t all Molly/Extasy laced with amphetamine, I think tha’s what keeps you going all night.

  6. Tru–Shows how little I know about drugs, eh?! My drugs of choice are legal–coffee and booze lol! The effects of whiskey are well-documented…

    Gregg posted that Simon is to undergo knee surgery (minor). That stinks! Maxwell must be breathing a sigh of relief…he’s got his job without competition for awhile…

  7. SandpointHawk says:

    If you haven’t noticed there is a lot of good info coming off the tweet feed from Gregg…if you have…never mind.

  8. RDPoulsbo says:

    Whiskey is truly the wonder drug. I went backpacking in the Olympics over the Labor Day weekend and sprained my knee 11 miles in. Once I got past the initial pain, I went for my first aid kit, which consisted entirely of a flask of bourbon, emptied it, then got up and hiked out. Remember that kids, whiskey saves lives…

  9. FleaFlicker says:

    I wouldn’t read too much into the scheduling.

    MMQB had a really interesting article a while back about the four guys who are literally locked in a room for three months running computer simulations to match up teams. When you adjust for bye weeks, games in London, road vs. home stretches, required division match-ups, international rugby games played at Soldier Field on Saturday of week 9, shared facilities (Raiders/A’s or Jet/Giants), network TV rights etc., it becomes almost mathematically impossible to outright favor or diss any one team.

    The runner-up schedule was actually thrown out because it had the Seahawks playing three consecutive road games.

  10. seahawk44 says:

    Has there been any news on Phil Bates?

  11. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I’ve been searching Seahawk44. So far nothing.

  12. Gregg great job so far. Love it! Can we get an official “season prediction” thread for the Insider Faithful? I don’t like to miss opportunities to document & later reflect on how little I know.

    If I’m game planning for the Packers offense this week I’m going to pound the ball time and time again towards Avril(assuming he really is “starting”) in the hopes that he wears down over the course of the game, diminishing our late game pass rush and setting the table for Mr. Rodgers to operate in a less molested way.

  13. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    Sounds like Lem is going to be for sometime. Hopefully not an IR situation especially with Unger being so fragile.

  14. mocarob says:

    Some funny comments from that PFT story:

    He probably caught a dirty test by drinking a Seahawks water bottle during the super bowl..

    Welker, Gronk & Manziel to star in Hangover 4.

  15. Dukeshire says:

    I couldn’t agree more with Gregg. I too expect to see stunts, blitzes (delayed, disguised, etc…) and straight rushes from the strong side vs Britt. Look for Miller to spend a lot of time on Britt’s shoulder.

  16. RD–Which trail did you hike? I almost died working in the Wilderness area South of Sequim once. I was 6-7 miles in, I left my raingear as it was sunny (really a dumb move–I knew better). Within 20 minutes of starting work, the wind blew in rain. I got soaked and kept working. When I was done, I began hiking out. I grew weaker and weaker and was sure I had pneumonia. Rest breaks became ever more frequent. I somehow made it to my truck, started it, turned the heater on high and passed out….three hours later, I woke up, and drove to Seattle…and attended a Beth Orton concert so my wife wouldnt miss it…I slept on a stool in the corner of the Showbox for most of it!

    Next day, I went to the Doctor. I was so sick, they said I had no red blood cells…just white. They thought I had AIDS…turns out, I had rampant C.Deficil, a bacteria in our stomachs that had utterly taken over. I’d been working in the woods for 6 months and just thought I was getting wimpy since I was always feeling weak…that stupid bacteria almost killed me lol! I havent been back there since lol!

    OK, back to football…

    FLea–I still think there was some meddling. The NFL obviously chose not to give us any prime time games at home past this week. They obviously chose to schedule almost all our Division games in the second half of the season, and they have us playing IN Carolina for the third straight time or something….

  17. Seattle’s linemen–especially Sweezy–have had trouble figuring out the delayed LB blitz up the middle. To be fair, Sweezy wasnt biting and had learned to keep his head on a swivel most of the time by the playoffs, but I still expect GB to run stunts and those delayed blitzes up the middle.

    I think we’ll handle it. Britt will give up some pressure, for sure, but we can gameplan around his struggles. The key is Okung has to be the Real Okung, not Injured Okung, and same with Carp. We also need to see that Sweezy not only is picking up where he left off, but has made improvement in the offseason. Unger will be fine.

  18. Ray_Maines says:

    I look for Lynch to spend a lot of time on Carpenters hip.

    And the best way to slow a pass rusher down is to throw a screen pass over him.

  19. Southendzone says:

    I don’t mind at all the lack of prime time home games. It’s fairly meaningless.

    Now if they try to send us off for one of those stupid as eff London games in place of a home game, then I’d be up in arms about it.

  20. RDPoulsbo says:

    STTBM, it was over Appleton Pass, almost to the Olympic Hot Springs. The Elwha trailhead is closed, so no one was around. A flask of bourbon, high pain tolerance and determination led the way. 11 miles straight back over the pass again with no breaks until I got back to the car. Didn’t want to give the knee a chance to swell up. Got home, changed and went out for a few beers and laughed about the whole experience with a few friends. I figured I could see the doctor Monday instead.

    That bacteria thing is crazy. They try to scare you to death about how the water is dangerous, but that’s the first time I’ve ever heard someone actually getting it.

  21. RD–Lots of people get their C.Def out of control, but not as bad as I had it. Mine was likely the result of years of taking antibiotics for sinus infections, which Im prone to. I dont take oral antibiotics except in rare instances now, Ive found other treatment so not as much gut issues thank God!

    Ive never been to that trail, but I spent 11 years working the Coast of Oregon, WA, and AK as a forestry technician, so Ive been all over that area. Wet, wild, dangerous and beautiful, but Im done with the rain and am staying in MT lol!

    Thats a crazy story! What did they have you do to rehab the knee?! I thought I sprained mine a month ago, I was worried I tore ligaments. Ive been babying it and hoping it will heal….

  22. RDPoulsbo says:

    My ligaments were fine. I was a little worried when I went to the doctor though. My main problem is the inflammation since you’re not supposed to work your knee so much right after you sprain it. Not like I had much other choice though. I just have to ice along with prescription anti-inflammation meds and vicodin while on crutches for a week mainly to keep the weight off and allow the swelling to go down.

    If you’re knee is still messed up after a month, you might have some damage in there. Probably not your ACL because you’d know it right away, but it could be your meniscus. The doctor was worried I tore my meniscus, but couldn’t tell with all the swelling. Since the knee is getting better with the swelling going down, it’s looking like I shouldn’t need anything additional.

  23. akmac61 says:

    Drinking on the trail is a great way to end up hypothermic and/or dead. Alcohol causes the blood vessels to dilate, increasing heat loss while giving an artificial sense of warmth and wellbeing. The effects on decision making are also not recommended.
    Lem is gone for the season, unfortunately. Unger has had his share of injuries but is hardly made of glass. Predictions of doom based on the number of WR’s are nothing more than paranoia, relax guys. If nothing else, it gives the team room to add depth in other areas while having to release only a surplus receiver or two without hurting overall depth.

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