Thursday, November 17, 2011
Around the NFC West: Carpenter's ACL
By Mike Sando
First, the Seattle Seahawks lost starting right guard John Moffitt to a season-ending injury featuring multiple torn ligaments, but not to the anterior-cruciate ligament.
Now, the team has lost starting right tackle James Carpenter to a torn ACL.
ESPN's Adam Schefter had the report Thursday morning. Note: Moffitt's injury affected the posterior-cruciate (PCL) and medial-collateral (MCL) ligaments. Carpenter, who incurred the ACL tear during pass-rush drills, suffered a more conventional knee injury. The net effect is the same for Seattle. Its two rookie starters on the line will not get valuable work together over the final seven games. Instead, both will be rehabbing injuries in an effort to return for training camp, presumably. Seattle has good enough depth on the line to weather these injuries. Carpenter and Moffitt were experiencing the usual rookie growing pains. They were probably the fourth- and fifth-best starting linemen on the team at this point. These injuries set back the line's development.
Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com says the team is going with Paul McQuistan, not Lemuel Jeanpierre, as the replacement for Moffitt at right guard. Coach Pete Carroll: "He’s played before. He has a little more experience. Also, we have a situation where Lem is the backup snapper in this game. We've got to make sure that with only two snappers available to us we have got to make sure he’s available to us if we need him."
Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times says quarterback Tarvaris Jackson paid a physical price for the across-the-body throw he made to Doug Baldwin against Baltimore. As a result, Jackson is not practicing much. Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell: "He's fighting through it. To watch him play on Sundays, sometimes you wouldn't even know there's anything wrong with him. You can always tell when he comes back to practice and the adrenaline's worn off and all those things, but he's being a trooper for us. He's showing toughness, he's leading the team and I think he's doing very well." Noted: Jackson would not be dealing with this injury if the team had called something other than a quarterback option against the Giants.
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune says Heath Farwell has added punch to the Seahawks' special teams.
Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic does not expect Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb to play against the 49ers in Week 11. Coach Ken Whisenhunt: "You saw that he (Kolb) still has a little pain, he can move, do some things, other things bother him. We've got to make sure he can get through all the movements, plant and throw as well as move out of the pocket if he needs to."
Darren Urban of azcardinals.com revisits the team's winning touchdown drive against the Eagles. Urban: "Whisenhunt sees the recent successes (John Skelton also led a fourth-quarter touchdown drive against the Rams, although it wasn’t up against the clock like Philadelphia) as a function of a couple of factors: A better understanding of what was needed after failing in similar circumstances earlier this season, and a re-emphasis on late-game urgency after the team reached the bye week. The late-game scenarios were one of the parts of the game practiced less than normal in training camp as the team tried to catch up after the lockout, Whisenhunt said."
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch takes a closer look at Sam Bradford's rough second season in the NFL. Bradford: "I think my performance so far has been a little disappointing, especially from my perspective. I expect a lot out of myself. I expected to come in and have a great year, and obviously I've struggled at times. But we're continuing to get better, I'm continuing to get better. And I feel more comfortable in this offense each week."
Kathleen Nelson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Rams are plugging holes in their roster with practice-squad players, including one from the Kansas City Chiefs.
Roger Hensley of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch asks colleagues whether the Rams would have been better off drafting Ndamukong Suh over Bradford in 2010. Noted: The Rams rank last against the run this season and wouldn't be any better in that area with Suh, but their pass-rush would be phenomenal. Chris Long might have double-digit sacks already simply through better matchups. Bradford hasn't done much to win games lately, but his long-term value still gives him an edge over any defensive tackle.
Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com says the 49ers and Alex Smith are in no rush to get a new contract done. Noted: Smith isn't going anywhere anytime soon. The trust between Smith and coach Jim Harbaugh is high. I see no reason the team shouldn't be able to reach agreement on a reasonable deal.
Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle says national media are descending on 49ers headquarters for stories on the team's turnaround.
Jon Saraceno of USA Today rounds up thoughts on the 49ers' success this season. Mike Mayock: "Everybody loves Green Bay, but I think this thing is wide open. The (49ers) are playing the way you win in the playoffs. They rarely beat themselves."
Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News says an 8-1 record makes it tough for the 49ers' wide receivers to complain about catching so few touchdown passes.