2014 DRAFT GUIDE
At 6-1, Seahawks the class of NFC so far

    2013-10-18 15:34

(Eds: Adds details, quotes. Should stand. With AP Photos.)
By TIM BOOTH
AP Sports Writer

RENTON, Wash. (AP) - The Seattle Seahawks' dominance isn't just a home field thing anymore.

That point was emphasized on Thursday night after the Seahawks improved to 6-1 for the first time in franchise history after winning at Arizona 34-22. They've won as many road games this season - three - as they did all of last year when they won 11 games total. With New Orleans on a bye, the Seahawks can lay claim for at least a week to being the best in the NFC without question.

Most promising for Seattle, though they continue to show flaws, they find ways to overcome the mistakes and continue to win.

''It feels like we are still growing,'' Seattle coach Pete Carroll said after the win Thursday night. ''We are still a very young team and it feels that way. We have enough firepower in a lot of areas to overcome the things that are going in the wrong direction but we are playing good, solid football.''

Seattle's defensive line caused havoc with seven sacks of Arizona quarterback Carson Palmer and 13 QB hits. The seven sacks were the second-most for Seattle in any game since 2008. While Palmer was under siege most of the night, the Seahawks were just as good at stopping the Cardinals' ground attack. Arizona finished with 30 yards rushing and its longest run went for six yards. The 30 yards were the fourth fewest allowed by a Seattle defense in the past 25 seasons.

Offensively, Russell Wilson threw a trio of touchdown passes, Marshawn Lynch continued to run with the intent of battering defenders and Seattle converted 7 of 12 third-down opportunities after struggling to sustain drives recently.

''That is how we kind of separated ourselves,'' Wilson said. ''That is what we need and we did a great job in the red zone.''

Seattle came out of the victory with only a few injury concerns.

Wide receiver Golden Tate has a sprained foot suffered when he spun free for a 25-yard reception in the third quarter, but he returned to the game. Left guard James Carpenter suffered a shin injury and had to be taken to the locker room on a cart, only to return in the fourth quarter. Fullback Derrick Coleman and backup safety Jeron Johnson also suffered hamstring injuries.

What Seattle has on its side is rest. Carroll gave the Seahawks four days off with the team not congregating again until Tuesday when they'll start preparing for their Monday night matchup on Oct. 28 at St. Louis. The game against the Rams begins a favorable four-game stretch against opponents who currently are a combined 5-16. Then comes Seattle's bye.

While that stretch includes road trips to St. Louis and Atlanta, it's not unrealistic to envision the Seahawks being 10-1 or 9-2 by the time of their highly anticipated Week 13 matchup at home against New Orleans.

And the Seahawks are only going to get better during the upcoming stretch. Wide receiver Percy Harvin, whom the Seahawks traded for in the offseason but have yet to use due to hip surgery, could return to practice next week. Seattle has been cautious about a timeline with Harvin.

Carroll said after Thursday's game that should Harvin make it through his workouts this weekend, he could be back on the field Tuesday when the Seahawks resume.

Along with Harvin finally making his debut, Seattle could get its starting offensive tackles back in the next few weeks. Right tackle Breno Giacomini (knee) and left tackle Russell Okung (toe) could both return in the next month. Okung is on injured reserve with the designation to return and could be back on the field in Week 11 against Minnesota.

The return of Okung and Giacomini may prove more important than Harvin's addition. The Seahawks continued to struggle in pass protection against the pressure Arizona brought. Wilson was sacked three times, fumbled three times - losing two - and had nine quarterback hits registered against him.

That number would be higher if not for Wilson's knack for escaping trouble. It was apparent on Wilson's first TD pass where he escaped the rush in the pocket and allowed time for Sidney Rice to break past the secondary deep. Wilson, throwing off his back leg, laid the deep ball perfectly into Rice's arms to give the Seahawks an early lead they wouldn't relinquish.

''We have scramble drills once the quarterback leaves the pocket,'' Rice said. ''I had seen the defender run down behind me once he thought Russell was going to run. As soon as he ran down I just ran the opposite way and got behind and Russell threw it up and it was a perfect ball.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Giovani BernardOct 31 11:12a

Cincinnati Bengals RB Giovani Bernard (hip, shoulder) is unlikely to play in Week 9.

Trent RichardsonOct 31 10:32a

Indianapolis Colts RB Trent Richardson (hamstring) is not on the injury report for Week 9, and should be able to play Monday, Nov. 3.

Rashad JenningsOct 31 10:12a

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (knee) is aiming to return for the Week 10 game against the Seattle Seahawks.

Ronnie HillmanOct 31 09:12a

Updating previous reports, Denver Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman (shoulder) is expected to have his normal workload in Week 9, despite his limited practice repetitions.

DeAngelo HallOct 31 08:52a

Washington Redskins CB DeAngelo Hall (Achilles') tore his Achilles' again at home and had surgery to repair it Thursday, Oct. 30.

Ron JohnsonOct 30 08:22p

Seattle Seahawks CB Richard Sherman (back), DE Michael Bennett (toe), C Stephen Schilling (knee), CB Tharold Simon (knee), CB Byron Maxwell (calf), LB Malcolm Smith (groin), DT Jordan Hill [ More ]

Patrick WillisOct 30 07:52p

San Francisco 49res CB Tramaine Brock (toe) and LB Patrick Willis (toe) were limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Jimmie Ward (quadriceps) and CB Chris Culliver (hamstring) practiced in full.

Chris MatthewsOct 30 07:42p

The Seattle Seahawks re-signed WR Chris Matthews and TE Brett Brackett to their practice squad Thursday, Oct. 30.

Scott WellsOct 30 07:42p

St. Louis Rams OG Rodger Saffold (shoulder), CB Janoris Jenkins (knee), DT Aaron Donald (shoulder) and S Cody Davis (concussion) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Rodney McLeod [ More ]

Luke JoeckelOct 30 07:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars OT Luke Joeckel (concussion) has recovered nicely from the concussion he suffered in Week 8, and he could play in Week 9 against the Cincinnati Bengals. Joeckel [ More ]

Pierre ThomasOct 30 07:22p

New Orleans Saints RBs Khiry Robinson (forearm) and Pierre Thomas (shoulder) are both inactive in Week 9 against the Carolina Panthers Thursday, Oct. 30.

Arian FosterOct 30 07:12p

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (knee) was limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Johnathan JosephOct 30 07:12p

Houston Texans LBs Brian Cushing (knee), Brooks Reed (groin) and Jeff Tarpinian (knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. RB Alfred Blue (ankle), LB Jadeveon Clowney (knee), CB Johnathan [ More ]

David HawthorneOct 30 07:12p

The New Orleans Saints have declared LB Austin Johnson, LB David Hawthorne, C Jonathan Goodwin, RB Khiry Robinson, WR Nick Toon, RB Pierre Thomas, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste inactive for Week 9.

Amini SilatoluOct 30 07:12p

The Carolina Panthers have declared OG Amini Silatolu, CB Bene Benwikere, OT Byron Bell, RB Fozzy Whittaker, WR Philly Brown, FS Thomas DeCoud, OG Trai Turner inactive for Week 9.

Justin TuckOct 30 06:42p

Oakland Raiders TE David Ausberry (foot), WR Vincent Brown (hamstring), CB Chimdi Chekwa (hamstring), CB Keith McGill (groin), CB Carlos Rogers (knee) and WR Kenbrell Thompkins (non-injury) did not [ More ]

Anthony CollinsOct 30 06:42p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers OT Anthony Collins (foot) and LB Brandon Magee (knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. C Evan Dietrich-Smith (knee), WR Trindon Holliday (hamstring) and DE Michael Johnson (hand) were limited.

Brian RobisonOct 30 06:32p

Minnesota Vikings DT Shariff Floyd (ankle, knee), TE Chase Ford (foot), CB Jabari Price (hamstring), CB Josh Robinson (ankle) and DE Brian Robison (glute) were limited in practice Thursday, [ More ]

Louis VasquezOct 30 06:22p

Denver Broncos S Quinton Carter (hamstring) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. LB Lamin Barrow (concussion), TE Virgil Green (calf), LB Steven Johnson (ankle) and OG Louis Vasquez (illness) [ More ]

Ronnie HillmanOct 30 06:22p

Denver Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman (shoulder) was limited in practice for the second straight day Thursday, Oct. 30.

Billy WinnOct 30 06:22p

Cleveland Browns WR Rodney Smith (hamstring) and DE Phil Taylor (knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. DE Desmond Bryant (wrist), S Jim Leonhard (ankle), LB Barkevious Mingo (shoulder), [ More ]

Jordan CameronOct 30 06:12p

Cleveland Browns TE Jordan Cameron (concussion) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Chris JohnsonOct 30 06:12p

New York Jets RB Chris Johnson, who carried the ball just three times for seven yards in Week 8, said he's frustrated with his limited role in the offense. [ More ]

Tom CrabtreeOct 30 06:02p

The New Orleans Saints waived TE Tom Crabtree Thursday, Oct. 30.

Patrick PetersonOct 30 05:42p

Arizona Cardinals S Tony Jefferson (head) and TE Troy Niklas (ankle) were limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. DE Calais Campbell (knee), LB Kenny Demens (knee), S Rashad Johnson [ More ]

Cyrus GrayOct 30 05:22p

Kansas City Chiefs CB Jamell Fleming (hamstring) and LB Josh Martin (hamstring, knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Eric Berry (ankle) and CB Christopher Owens (knee) were [ More ]

Demario DavisOct 30 05:22p

New York Jets CB Darrin Walls (calf, knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. OT Oday Aboushi (shoulder), CB Phillip Adams (groin), LB Antwan Barnes (knee), OG Willie Colon [ More ]

Keenan RobinsonOct 30 05:12p

Washington Redskins S Ryan Clark (ankle, shoulder) and OT Trent Williams (knee) were limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. LB Ryan Kerrigan (wrist), LB Trent Murphy (knee), CB Tracy [ More ]

R. Griffin IIIOct 30 05:12p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) practiced in full for the second straight day Thursday, Oct. 30.

R. Griffin IIIOct 30 05:02p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) will start against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 9, barring any setbacks this week in practice, according to head coach Jay Gruden. [ More ]

Mike PounceyOct 30 05:02p

Miami Dolphins OG Daryn Colledge (illness, back) LB Chris McCain (foot) and TE Dion Sims (toe) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. OG Nate Garner (neck), LB Koa Misi [ More ]

Andre BranchOct 30 04:42p

Jacksonville Jaguars CB Will Blackmon (finger), DE Andre Branch (groin), DE Chris Clemons (non-injury), LB Geno Hayes (non-injury) and DT Roy Miller (non-injury) didn't practice Thursday, Oct. 30. CB [ More ]

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