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Wednesday in Hawkville: Richard Sherman accepts honor for the defense

Posted Sep 18, 2013

Richard Sherman was named NFC Defensive Player of the week on Wednesday, but the Seahawks’ All-Pro cornerback said his selection was a testament to the way the entire defense played against the 49ers.

A recap of the events at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Sept. 18, when the players began practicing for Sunday’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at CenturyLink Field:

WORD OF THE DAY: SHARING

STAT DU JOUR: MARSHAWN LYNCH “TRIPLE” THREAT

Tuesday, we told you about Marshawn Lynch’s run of success against the 49ers’ usually stingy defense. Today, it’s time to look at another of Lynch’s runs – since the start of the 2011 season, no back in the NFL has more 100-yard rushing performances. Here’s a look at who’s chasing Lynch:

Player, team 
100-yard games since 2011
Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks
16
Arian Foster, Texans 
14
Adrian Peterson, Vikings
14
LeSean McCoy, Eagles
10
Ray Rice, Ravens
10

And that’s what Richard Sherman did after the Seahawks’ All-Pro cornerback was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week on Wednesday.

“I think that’s more a testament to our entire defense,” Sherman said. “We as a whole played well and that award could have gone to anyone of the players who played a great game. It could have gone to Kam (Chancellor, the strong safety who had an interception). It could have gone to Earl (Thomas, the free safety who also had an interception). It could have gone to gone to Mike Bennett (the Leo end who had a sack while on the ground with a 325-pound tackle sitting on him).

“A lot of guys played out of their minds.”

But the award went to Sherman, who also was honored in Week 10 last season. His biggest play in Sunday night’s 29-3 victory over the defending NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers was a leaping interception of a Colin Kaepernick pass that was intended for tight end Vernon Davis along the sideline to set up a field goal in the fourth quarter.

But the stats that really told the story of how well Sherman played where those not compiled by the 49ers’ Anquan Boldin. After catching 13 passes for 208 yards in the 49ers’ season opener, Boldin had one catch for 7 yards against the Seahawks. Sherman was on Boldin roughly 75 percent of the time, and Boldin’s one catch came against zone coverage in the fourth quarter.

“I’m grateful for the award,” Sherman said. “It’s a great award and I appreciate them naming me player of the week. But I think it’s more of a team award.”

Marshawn Lynch was nominated for NFC Offensive Player of the Week for his 98-yard, three-touchdown effort against the 49ers, but the award went to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

INJURY REPORT: BRANDON BROWNER STILL LIMITED IN PRACTICE

The first official report of the week, as issued by the team:

Out
OT Russell Okung (toe)

Did not practice
DT Jordan Hill (biceps)
SS Jeron Johnson (hamstring)
LB Malcolm Smith (hamstring)
OG J.R. Sweezy (back)
RB Spencer Ware (ankle)

Limited in practice
OT Breno Giacomini (knee)
CB Brandon Browner (hamstring)

Full participation
DE Chris Clemons (knee)

Sweezy sitting out and Giacomini being limited caused even more shuffling on the offensive line. Lemuel Jeanpierre stepped in at right guard for Sweezy while rookie Alvin Bailey got some reps with the No. 1 line at right tackle for Giacomini. Paul McQuistan already was playing left tackle for Okung, who was away getting a second opinion on the toe injury he got against the 49ers. McQuistan was replaced at left guard by James Carpenter.

On defense, O’Brien Schofield was at strong-side linebacker for Smith, while Walter Thurmond continued to replace Browner at right cornerback.

Browner has missed the first two games after injuring his left hamstring the week of the season opener.

“Brandon’s never had a hamstring (injury) before, so he’s coming back from it and we’re cautious that he doesn’t know what it feels like yet because he’s never been through this,” coach Pete Carroll said.

Clemons, meanwhile, is getting closer to returning after having knee surgery in January.

“I’ve told you from the very first time I talked about Clem, we’re going to be cautious and wait until the time is right,” Carroll said. “And hopefully we’ll know that. If it’s this week, great. If it’s next week, great. And we’ll just take it when we can. … The tough part would be to hold him out at this point. I think he’s going to be that close to ready.

RIP KEN NORTON, SR.

Condolences go out to asst. coach Ken Norton, Jr. And his family on the passing of his father, Ken Norton, Sr. seen here almost 40 years to the day against Muhammed Ali at the Forum in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo)

For the Jaguars:

Did not practice
DE Jason Babin (not injury related)
CB Alan Ball (groin)
WR Mike Brown (back)
CB Dwayne Gratz (ankle)
RB Maurice Jones-Drew (ankle)
TE Marcedes Lewis (calf)
C Brad Meester (not injury related)

Limited in practice
WR Stephen Burton (hip)
QB Blaine Gabbert (right hand)
DT Roy Miller (knee)
OG Uche Nwaneri (knee)
OG Will Rackley (knee)
WR Ace Sanders (ribs)
LB J.T. Thomas (hamstring)

Jones-Drew said during a conference-call interview that he is preparing to play.

“I always plan to play,” he said. “Right now things are going well and we’re on schedule. So we’ll see how things go throughout this week and we’ll see come a couple of days.”

OPPONENT WATCH: JASON BABIN

UP NEXT: TURNOVER THURSDAY

Thursday practices are “Turnover Thursday” on the Carroll calendar, and this week it’s very appropriate because the Seahawks have the best turnover differential in the NFL, and lead the league with seven takeaways. Here’s a look at the leaders:

Team
Takeaways Giveaways
Differential
Seahawks
7
2
plus-5
Chiefs
4
0
plus-4
Titans
4
0
plus-4
Broncos
6
3
plus-3
Patriots
6
3
plus-3
Cowboys
6
3
plus-3
Eagles
5
2
plus-3

When Gus Bradley left the Seahawks after four seasons as their defensive coordinator to become head coach of the Jaguars, he didn’t have to search for a player to fill the Leo end spot in his defense. Jason Babin already was on the roster.

“He’s a really good football player. He plays the Leo spot and he’s got a bunch of sacks in his career,” Carroll said of Babin, who appeared in two games in 2007 and two more in 2009 for the Seahawks before Carroll arrived with his hybrid defense that features a small, faster end on one side of the line.

Make that 56 sacks, including 12.5 in 2010 while playing with the Tennessee Titans and 18 the following season while with the Philadelphia Eagles. Not surprisingly, the 6-foot-3, 267-pound Babin was voted to the Pro Bowl each season. The Jaguars claimed him last season after Babin was waived by the Eagles.

“He’s a natural pass-rush guy,” Carroll said. “He’s disrupter. He’s quick off the edge. He’s got good instincts. He gives you all the positives the good edge guys do and they put him in exactly the right spot to feature that kind of rush ability.”

YOU DON’T SAY

“He just made me feel comfortable from Day One. He was like an uncle to me. I was just sad to see him leave.” – Seahawks’ All-Pro free safety Thomas on his relationship with Gus Bradley, the Jaguars’ first-year head coach who was the Seahawks defensive coordinator the past four seasons

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