O-line changes helped Seattle on Sunday

November, 4, 2013
11/04/13
2:05
PM ET
After getting sacked seven times at St. Louis, quarterback Russell Wilson wasn’t sacked in Seattle’s 27-24 overtime victory over Tampa Bay on Sunday.

That’s the good news, but there is a dark side.

Wilson still was put under duress a career-high 55 percent of his dropbacks (16-of-29) against the Bucs. He entered the game as the most pressured quarterback in the NFL at 39 percent of his dropbacks.

However, the Seahawks coaches finally made some changes during the game that seemed to improve things . Left guard James Carpenter was taken out of the game for a while. Paul McQuistan, who has been playing out of position at left tackle for injured Russell Okung, was moved back to guard to replace Carpenter. Rookie Alvin Bailey was brought in to play left tackle for a few plays.

“We wanted to get Alvin going a little bit,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. “We’ve waited a long time to give him a shot. We’d like to get him a little bit more time as we go and see if we can bring him along.”

That move meant the Seahawks had rookies at both tackle spots, including Michael Bowie at right tackle. Bowie hurt his knee during the game, but returned to the field. And the Seahawks had Lemuel Jeanpierre in at center because Max Unger left the game with a concussion.

Unger's condition for this weekend’s game at Atlanta is uncertain, but this could be the lineup Seattle goes with on the offensive line against the Falcons. Okung and starting right tackle Breno Giacomini will return to practice this week, but Okung can’t return until Nov. 17 for the home game against the Minnesota Vikings, and that also may be Giacomini’s return date.

If so, the Seahawks will need to make do up front at Atlanta, but even with two rookie tackles on the field, it seemed to work a little better than the lineup Seattle was using before the change Sunday.

Terry Blount

ESPN Seattle Seahawks reporter

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