Seahawks fortunate they’re not missing more from defence

Banged-up Seattle side meets Rams in key divisional showdown

A Seattle Seahawks staff member tries to remove Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson, left, from the field as an object thrown from the stands hits them during the closing moments of an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. Jacksonville won 30-24. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)

A Seattle Seahawks staff member tries to remove Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson, left, from the field as an object thrown from the stands hits them during the closing moments of an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. Jacksonville won 30-24. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)

RENTON, Wash. (AP) — The good news for the Seattle Seahawks is that no one on their defence was suspended for the chaos that ensued at the conclusion of their trip to Jacksonville.

They still could be significantly undermanned heading into the most important game of the regular season to date.

The Seahawks might be down as many as five starters on defence from the start of the season going into Sunday’s NFC West showdown with the first-place Los Angeles Rams. Seattle has learned how to play without defensive end Cliff Avril, cornerback Richard Sherman and safety Kam Chancellor as all three have been out for more than a month.

But last Sunday’s loss at Jacksonville cost the Seahawks two of the more important remaining pieces. Linebackers Bobby Wagner (hamstring) and K.J. Wright (concussion) are both in question for the matchup with the Rams.

Seattle coach Pete Carroll said Wright is still going through concussion protocol, while Wagner wants to play but won’t test the injury until later in the week.

It’s a challenging scenario for Seattle to be facing going against the No. 2 scoring offence in the NFL.

“We’ve been under it before many times. This doesn’t seem that much different. We’re not taking it any different. Our approach isn’t any different. Next guy up and away we go,” Carroll said Wednesday. “The guys have to rally around those guys as they step in and that’s part of what you’re calling for. Everyone has to rally.”

It could have been far worse.

Seattle escaped potential major punishment against defensive linemen Michael Bennett, Sheldon Richardson and Quinton Jefferson for their actions at the conclusion of last Sunday’s loss to the Jaguars. Richardson and Jefferson were ejected, while Bennett’s personal foul instigated the mayhem. The trio will likely be receiving large fines from the league but avoiding suspensions was a major boost for the Seahawks.

Jefferson’s actions drew the most attention because of his brief attempt to climb a wall to go after fans who had thrown bottles at him as he was leaving the field following his ejection. Jefferson said Wednesday that the bottles plus a specific comment he heard about his mother set him off.

“It was even worse because my kids have seen it, my wife has seen it,” Jefferson said. “She was upset about it and I felt even more upset for them because they had to watch that.”

Jefferson met with Carroll on Monday and said it was difficult to watch the video of the incident.

“We talked some about it,” Jefferson said. “It’s just one of them things. It’s unfortunate. You know you wish it didn’t get that far, wish it didn’t happen. But it’s one of those things that happened. We’ve got to learn from it and we’ve got to move on from it, getting ready for LA.”

While the Seahawks will have three key defensive linemen, the uncertainty surrounding Wagner is significant.

Wagner was in contention for defensive player of the year despite playing through a nagging hamstring injury that was aggravated in the first minute of the second half against Jacksonville.

Almost immediately after Wagner left the field, the Seahawks became vulnerable. Seattle trailed 3-0 when Wagner left; it allowed 27 points over the final 29 minutes with Wagner on the sideline. While there were a number of breakdowns that led to the scoring outburst by the Jags, the loss of Wagner was substantial.

Wagner has talked extensively in recent weeks about the importance of communication with Chancellor and Sherman out and trying to making sure their replacements are in the correct coverages. There appeared to be more breakdowns against the Jags after Wagner went out.

Veteran Michael Wilhoite would step in if Wagner isn’t available.

“He’s very upbeat and very positive,” Carroll said of Wagner. “He’s planning on getting ready. That’s what he’s doing.”

NOTES: Carroll is hopeful DE Dion Jordan (neck) will be back this week, but DT Nazair Jones (ankle) is still in “rehab mode,” and likely will be out again. … RB Mike Davis (ribs) is expected to play after leaving Sunday’s game early. Davis had 66 yards rushing prior to his injury.

___

For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

Tim Booth, The Associated Press

NFLSeahawks

Just Posted

Terry Keogh, an RDN Transit driver, used his paramedic skills the morning of Jan. 22 after coming across an unconscious woman along his route in downtown Nanaimo. (RDN Transit photo)
RDN Transit driver stops his bus and helps get overdosing woman breathing again

Former EMT from Ireland performed CPR on a woman in downtown Nanaimo on Friday

Jimmy Fallon joked that a woman’s 4.5-star review of a Langford jail is “the most Canadian thing you could do” in The Tonight Show Jan. 21. (Screenshot/YouTube)
VIDEO: Jimmy Fallon jokes Canadian jails are basically hotels following woman’s 4.5-star review

Woman gave handwritten card to police following stay in Langford cells

Black Press file photo
Investigation at remote burned-out Vancouver Island cabin reveals human remains

Identity of victim not released, believed to be the owner of an SUV vehicle found parked nearby

The District of Saanich’s communications team decided to take part in a viral trend on Thursday and photoshopped U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders into a staff meeting photo. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Bernie Sanders makes guest appearance at Saanich staff meeting

Sidney firefighters jump on viral trend of photoshopped U.S. senator

Dog owners, from left, Marlyn Briggs with Nayla, Marjory Sutherland with Effie and Mick, and Christina Godbolt with Conon walk their pets frequently at the Chemainus Ball Park but are growing increasingly concerned about drugs being found discarded in the area. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Puppy rushed to emergency 3 times after ingesting drugs in Vancouver Island public spaces

Dog owners walking in Chemainus parks urged to take caution

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

An Atlantic salmon is seen during a Department of Fisheries and Oceans fish health audit at the Okisollo fish farm near Campbell River, B.C. in 2018. The First Nations Leadership Council says an attempt by industry to overturn the phasing out of salmon farms in the Discovery Islands in contrary to their inherent Title and Rights. (THE CANADIAN PRESS /Jonathan Hayward photo)
First Nations Leadership Council denounces attempt to overturn salmon farm ban

B.C.’s producers filed for a judicial review of the Discovery Islands decision Jan. 18

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

A fire broke out near the Willow Point Bottle Depot early on Jan. 22. Photo courtesy Ashley Laycock
Two injured in early-morning fire in Campbell River

Sailboat fire also attended by Campbell River fire crews

A worker covers up racist graffiti along the West Shore Parkway. (Courtesy of Anna Young)
RCMP investigating racist graffiti spotted off West Shore Parkway

Hateful vandalism is rare, says Langford bylaw enforcement

Greater Victoria Emergency Response Team and Victoria police executed a high-risk warrant arrest on Jan. 22. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria police arrest man wanted on multiple warrants

Warrants include drug trafficking, theft and possession of firearms

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Police in Vancouver looking for male suspect who allegedly spat and attacked a store manager for not wearing a mask, at 7-Eleven near Alma Street and West 10th Avenue just before noon on Dec. 17, 2020. (Vancouver police handout)
VIDEO: Man spits on 7-Eleven manager over mask rule, sparking Vancouver police probe

‘Unfortunately, the store manager sustained a cut to his head during the assault’

Most Read