2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Defense, run game why Seattle will beat Denver

By TIM BOOTH - AP Sports Writer
    2014-01-31 16:05

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - In the midst of being reclusive for most of the week leading up to his first Super Bowl, Marshawn Lynch spoke a truth about his Seattle Seahawks.

What they might lack with a roster void of Super Bowl experience, they make up for with an attitude and approach that Pete Carroll has instilled from the moment he landed in Seattle.

''I stay ready,'' Lynch said. ''So there ain't no getting ready.''

If there is an overbearing quality Carroll has produced in his four seasons in charge of the Seahawks it's a continuous trend of always being competitive. They don't get blown out. They don't get overwhelmed. They don't succumb in the moment. They treat each week as an individual, singular event.

The Seahawks are trained to operate in this manner and it's why even against Peyton Manning, even against the most prolific, pass-happy offense in NFL history, Carroll's team will not be astounded by what they walk into Sunday night at MetLife Stadium.

''You don't see nervousness in guys' eyes,'' Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman said. ''You don't see guys acting any different than they would on any other day or any other week of the season. They're going out there and following the same routine as they have all season long. You just get the sense that guys are comfortable in the situation and comfortable in the moment because you don't really think about the moment.''

Seattle's been on this stage once before, eight years ago with a completely different style of team that was unable to match the physicality of Pittsburgh.

Thing is, this version of the Seahawks look awfully familiar to that Steelers team.

Ben Roethlisberger was in his second season as the Steelers' quarterback, just like Russell Wilson is with Seattle. Roethlisberger was less of a passer at that time because the Steelers had a running game led by Willie Parker and Jerome Bettis that was in the top five in the NFL during the regular season. The Steelers also had a defense that was No. 4 in the league during the regular season.

It might be a painful comparison for Seattle fans, but the similarities are notable.

Wilson can win the game with his arm if needed but Lynch and the running game is always Seattle's priority. The Seahawks defense was the best in the NFL in scoring, total yards allowed and turnovers forced. They are unlike anything Manning and the Broncos have seen this season. Denver faced only two teams all season with total defenses that finished ranked in the top 10 when the regular season concluded.

''This is something that we've been looking forward to. Us being the No. 1 defense, them being the No. 1 offense, I think it's fitting,'' Seattle linebacker Bobby Wagner said. ''It's our time to prove why we're the No. 1 defense.''

Also not to be overlooked it Seattle red zone defense that was the best in the NFL. It's inevitable that Manning will move Denver's offense. He's one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history because he's been able to find quick solutions to problems defenses present.

But those drives that he converted into 55 touchdown passes during the regular season will be far more difficult to achieve against the Seahawks. The Seahawks allowed 36 red zone drives during the regular season and touchdowns on only 13 of those possessions. The 132 red-zone points allowed by Seattle is the fewest by any team since 2006.

''They pretty much just line up, and say, `Hey we are better than you, and we're going to beat you,''' Denver wide receiver Wes Welker said. ''They do a great job (in different) situations, and getting pressure on the quarterback.''

That is where this game will be won. The Denver defense Wilson and Lynch will face is not on the same scale as the problems San Francisco posed in the NFC championship game and that's without mentioning the availability of Percy Harvin and what that could add to Seattle's offense.

Meanwhile it's unrealistic to think Seattle will be able to stop Manning. Thinking otherwise is foolish. But while Manning will be able to lead some drives, Seattle's defense inside the 20 is suffocating. They will force Denver to settle for field goals.

Ultimately, the strength of the Seahawks is greater than the strength of the Broncos:

Seahawks 27, Broncos 22

---

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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