2013 DRAFT GUIDE
Seahawks getting to full strength for stretch run

By TIM BOOTH - AP Sports Writer
    2013-11-13 19:18

RENTON, Wash. (AP) - It almost seems unfair to the rest of the league that the best team in the NFC might be the closest it's been to being fully healthy all season going into Week 11.

The Seattle Seahawks are just fine with the possibility that offensive linemen Max Unger, Russell Okung, Breno Giacomini, defensive end Red Bryant and wide receiver Percy Harvin will all be on the field Sunday when they host Minnesota.

That's three-fifths of Seattle's expected starting offensive line for the season, their run-stuffing defensive end and their dynamic new wide receiver, who has yet to play a snap, that could all be rejoining the team heading into the most important time of the season.

Seattle has played the entire season without Harvin due to hip surgery in early August. Okung suffered a toe injury in Week 2 against San Francisco and Giacomini injured his knee a week later. Unger missed two games earlier in the season with an arm injury before sitting out last week with a concussion, the same injury that caused Bryant to miss last week as well.

They are five important pieces the Seahawks were counting on being major contributors throughout the season. And it makes their 9-1 record missing those five for part or all their season more impressive.

''We've had a lot of success and we haven't had 100 percent of our best players out there,'' Seattle safety Earl Thomas. ''No discredit to the guys that have been getting it done for us because they've elevated their game.''

There are still questions about whether all five will play on Sunday, most notably Harvin who was a limited participant in practiced on Wednesday. There was another concerning addition to the Seahawks lengthy injury report on Wednesday with cornerback Richard Sherman sitting out with a listed hip injury, coupled with what coach Pete Carroll has already called a ''significant'' groin injury suffered by Brandon Browner.

Unger and Bryant were both limited participants, as was safety Kam Chancellor with a hip injury. Giacomini was full and Okung was not listed on the injury report as he is not currently on the active roster but allowed to practice.

Seattle's decimated offensive line has improved dramatically the past two weeks, giving up just one sack in the past two games after allowed 10 in the two weeks prior against Arizona and St. Louis. At the same time, Seattle's run game has found a rhythm with Marshawn Lynch coming off season-high performances of 125 yards against the Buccaneers and 145 yards last Sunday against Atlanta.

The Seahawks also added the unique wrinkle of altering the structure of its line by the situation. Against the Falcons, when Seattle would insert rookie Alvin Bailey at left tackle, slide Paul McQuistan from left tackle to left guard and bring James Carpenter off the field on certain downs. McQuistan started the season at left guard before moving to out to tackle when Okung got injured. Bailey, who went unselected in April's draft, also played a brief stint at right guard against Atlanta.

The idea of changing the line on the fly came from offensive line coach Tom Cable. It's odd because offensive linemen and line coaches usually strive for as much continuity as possible.

''There's no doubt that we've had issues and so we had to figure out a way to help the team so if that meant moving those guys in and out last week then it worked,'' Cable said. ''It was good. It's a credit to them. They were ready to play, so we were able to do that. If they're not then you are stuck with what you've got.''

Because three starters are expected to return on Sunday doesn't mean the reserves that have played well recently will go back to the bench. For Okung and Giacomini especially, they have practiced for only two weeks and haven't played in a game since September. They're expecting breaks to come against the Vikings as they both try and build back to full endurance.

''I get the point. You don't want to come back and just rush into things and maybe hurt something else,'' Giacomini said. ''It's fine. We all prepare like we're the starters. We could dress every guy in our (offensive line) room and plug them in. Kind of like a hockey deal, five and five.''

Both Okung and Giacomini said it was beneficial they were going through the rehab process at the same time.

''We're both guys that love the game and we couldn't wait to get back,'' Okung said. ''We were both encouraging each other the whole time along the way.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Matt FlynnApr 16 10:01a

Green Bay Packers QB Matt Flynn is expected to compete with QB Scott Tolzien for the backup quarterback job, but head coach Mike McCarthy anticipates keeping three QBs on [ More ]

Rolando McClainApr 16 12:03a

Retired LB Rolando McClain (Ravens) worked out for the Baltimore Ravens Tuesday, April 15, as he attempts a comeback. The workout wasn't a smooth one in terms of conditioning, [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 16 12:03a

The New York Jets are sticking to their budget/value system. While they want free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans), they will not 'overpay' for him. The depressed running back market [ More ]

Aldon SmithApr 16 12:03a

San Francisco 49ers LB Aldon Smith hasn't only lost the benefit of the doubt with the team, but he probably won't play with the team in 2014, according to [ More ]

Malcom FloydApr 15 11:53p

San Diego Chargers WR Malcom Floyd (neck) continues his rehab from a neck injury, but his status is still uncertain. When the team begins voluntary workouts April 22, Floyd [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 15 07:53p

Free-agent RB Chris Johnson's (Titans) visit with the New York Jets reportedly went well Tuesday, April 15, but he left without a deal. Other teams are involved with him, too.

Rolando McClainApr 15 07:53p

The Baltimore Ravens worked out LB Rolando McClain, and it reportedly wasn't a success. McClain didn't finish his conditioning test and didn't perform drills.

Terrell ManningApr 15 05:43p

The Minnesota Vikings claimed LB Terrell Manning off waivers from the San Diego Chargers Tuesday, April 15.

Adam PodleshApr 15 05:13p

The Pittsburgh Steelers signed free-agent P Adam Podlesh (Bears) to an undisclosed one-year deal Tuesday, April 15.

Allen ReisnerApr 15 03:53p

The Minnesota Vikings announced Tuesday, April 15, that they've signed free-agent TE Allen Reisner (Jaguars) to an undisclosed deal.

Daniel KilgoreApr 15 03:23p

San Francisco 49ers OG Daniel Kilgore was found not guilty of public intoxication related to his arrest in January in Tennessee. His case was dismissed following his appearance in [ More ]

Matt FlynnApr 15 02:23p

The Green Bay Packers agreed to terms on an undisclosed deal to re-sign QB Matt Flynn Tuesday, April 15, according to a source.

Dion JordanApr 15 01:53p

Miami Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey is expecting big things from DE Dion Jordan in his second season this year. He's a very talented player and this is a [ More ]

Brandon LloydApr 15 01:33p

The San Francisco 49ers signed free-agent WR Brandon Lloyd (Patriots) to an undisclosed deal Tuesday, April 15.

Chris JohnsonApr 15 12:23p

The Buffalo Bills have shown some interest in signing free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans), according to sources.

Duron HarmonApr 15 10:57a

New England Patriots SS Duron Harmon is the leading candidate to take over as the Patriots' top strong safety now that Steve Gregory has been released.

Eli ManningApr 15 10:23a

Former New York Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride said it's 'ludicrous' to think that Giants QB Eli Manning is in decline. 'There's been no deterioration of his arm strength, [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 15 09:33a

The New York Jets are visiting with free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans) Tuesday, April 15.

Will MontgomeryApr 14 11:52p

The Denver Broncos' offseason conditioning program begins Monday, April 21. It's not known whether C Will Montgomery or C Manuel Ramirez will start at center.

Sidney RiceApr 14 11:52p

The Carolina Panthers might show an interest in free-agent WR Sidney Rice (Seahawks), but only at the right price.

Manuel RamirezApr 14 11:52p

The Denver Broncos' offseason conditioning program begins Monday, April 21. It remains unclear whether OT Orlando Franklin, OG Ben Garland or C Manuel Ramirez will be the team's left guard.

Terrell ManningApr 14 05:32p

The San Diego Chargers have released LB Terrell Manning.

Nate IrvingApr 14 05:12p

Denver Broncos LB Nate Irving appears to be the leading candidate to start at middle linebacker at this time, but the team is expected to select a middle linebacker during the 2014 NFL Draft.

Leon HallApr 14 04:12p

Cincinnati Bengals CB Leon Hall (Achilles') has been cleared for all football drills as part of his rehab.

Jamarca SanfordApr 14 04:12p

Minnesota Vikings SS Kurt Coleman will likely be a contributor on special teams this year and enter the year competing with SSs Jamarca Sanford and Andrew Sendejo for a backup safety spot.

Dustin KellerApr 14 03:42p

The New England Patriots could show interest in free-agent TE Dustin Keller (Dolphins) at some point this offseason.

Jermichael FinleyApr 14 03:32p

Updating a previous report, the Miami Dolphins have told the agent of free-agent TE Jermichael Finley (neck) that they could be interested in signing Finley if he is cleared [ More ]

Von MillerApr 14 03:32p

Denver Broncos LB Von Miller (knee) said his surgically repaired knee is feeling good and hopes to play better than he did before he suffered his injury. 'I'm a [ More ]

Kurt ColemanApr 14 03:22p

The Minnesota Vikings have agreed to terms with free-agent SS Kurt Coleman (Eagles). Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Sidney RiceApr 14 02:52p

Free-agent WR Sidney Rice (knee) has been cleared to participate in football activities by Dr. James Andrews, according to a source. The Seattle Seahawks, New York Giants, New Orleans [ More ]

Chris CulliverApr 14 02:22p

San Francisco 49ers CB Chris Culliver has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor hit-and-run charges and felony possession of brass knuckles. Culliver was arrested March 28 for allegedly hitting a [ More ]

C.J. SpillerApr 14 01:12p

The Philadelphia Eagles tried to land Buffalo Bills RB C.J. Spiller before they traded for RB Darren Sproles this offseason, according to two league sources familiar with the situation. [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group