Monday, October 24, 2011
Around the NFC West: A Seahawks first
By Mike Sando
Before Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks had been 42-0 when holding an opponent to six or fewer points in a regular-season game.
That should only make their 6-3 defeat to the Cleveland Browns in Week 7 additionally frustrating.
Eric D. Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune says injuries and questionable officiating also made this a tough one for Seattle. Walter Thurmond suffered a broken fibula and will be lost for the season. Running back Marshawn Lynch's back never loosened up enough for him to play. Williams: "The officials had about as good as day as the Seahawks, with several questionable calls. Two of the most blatant were a phantom block in the back called on defensive back Kennard Cox that erased an 81-yard punt return for touchdown by Leon Washington in the third quarter, and an unnecessary roughness call on Kam Chancellor’s sack of Colt McCoy, which gave Cleveland a new set of downs in the first half." Noted: I could see why officials called Chancellor for ducking his head and striking Colt McCoy in the back with it, albeit on a grazing blow. But the penalty against Cox during the kickoff return seemed marginal at best, and definitely inconsistent with how the same crew officiated last week.
Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com says Red Bryant played a great game for Seattle until losing his cool and getting ejected near the end. Bryant: "I lost my composure. I push a guy [tight end Alex Smith] and get kicked out of the game. You never know what’s going to happen if we give the ball back to our offense. It was just a dumb move on my part. I take full responsibility for it. ... He was talking [trash] the whole game. He was taking cheap shots at me. That’s what guys do when they can’t block you. He did a great job of getting in my head. I should play smarter than that."
Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times says Charlie Whitehurst suffered through a rough outing in a game that was, to a degree, a referendum on his worthiness as a starter. Noted: According to Pro Football Reference, Whitehurst joins Stan Gelbaugh as the only Seahawks quarterback to attempt at least 30 passes in a game without exceeding 97 yards. Gelbaugh completed 9 0f 31 passes for 66 yards during the 1992 season, when Seattle fielded one of the worst offenses in NFL history.