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OAKLAND — The Seahawks concluded their 2017 preseason with a 17-13 win over the Raiders at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum to finish the preseason 4-0 for the first time since 2013.
Here are five rapid reactions to what happened in the final exhibition where a majority of Seattle’s starters did not play:
1. A Night Off For Key Players
The Seahawks prepared for their regular season opener against the Green Bay Packers by resting several key players in the preseason finale against the Raiders, including starters such as Russell Wilson, Richard Sherman, Doug Baldwin, Jimmy Graham, Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, K.J. Wright, Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril, and Bobby Wagner. With so many inactives, this gave players fighting for a spot on the 53-man roster a greater chance to showcase what they have.
2. Where Does The Backup QB Job Stand?
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider are going to have a decision to make at backup quarterback between Trevone Boykin and Austin Davis. The Seahawks could keep both quarterbacks, but in recent years they've only kept two heading into the regular season.
Boykin had an up-and-down performance against the Raiders. Although he passed for 166 yards on 13-of-21 passing with one touchdown and racked up 42 yards with his feet, he also threw two interceptions, with one of them coming near the red zone.
"He threw the ball behind the guy down by the goal line and he chucked the other one, he just kind of threw it up for grabs, which was really something that you don’t see us do very often," Carroll said of Boykin's performance against the Raiders before later adding, "He’s had a terrific offseason and preseason for us all in all. Obviously he was stronger, I think, in his first two games than his last two, but he shows us he can do a lot of stuff for us."
Davis went 10-of-16 for 123 yards in the second half, leading what proved to be the game-winning touchdown drive as he connected with Kenny Lawler for a fourth-quarter score. Davis finished with a 107.0 rating to Boykin's 62.9.
"He’s right in the middle of the competition of it," Carroll said of Davis. "He’s done very well. He’s had good outings. This was really a great showing for him, a great opportunity. Really, we always talk about the opportunity, he had a terrific opportunity and was able to come through. He was 5-for-5 on the drive, a big touchdown pass, he handled the clock and everything beautifully and very poised and all, so a really good showing for him.”
3. DeAndre Elliott Goes Down
A difficult moment happened in the second quarter as cornerback DeAndre Elliott was carted off the field after sustaining an ankle injury. The second-year pro was surrounded by the entire Seahawks team as they ran onto the field and offered him support, patting him on the shoulder one-by-one and wishing him well. Postgame, Carroll revealed that Elliott suffered a broken ankle. Elliott was in the mix for one of Seattle’s cornerback roster spots behind Sherman, Jeremy Lane and rookie Shaquill Griffin.
4. The WR Competition Continues To Grow
The Seahawks got several contributions from their group of wide receivers against the Raiders. Kasen Williams capped off his impressive preseason by catching two passes for 57 yards, ending his four-game stretch with a total of nine catches for 208 yards and one touchdown. Rodney Smith was on the receiving end of Boykin’s touchdown pass that went for 34 yards. Second-year wide receiver Kenny Lawler hauled in three passes for 49 yards, including the game-winner, while rookies Amara Darboh and Cyril Grayson each made their first receptions of the year. All of these wideouts could see action behind the Seahawks’ primary receivers, and Seattle has to be happy with the growth this group took in the preseason, and with what it has to choose from.
5. As A Whole, The Seahawks Have Tough Cuts To Make This Weekend
The fourth preseason game typically goes the same route the Seahawks and Raiders both took tonight of resting their key players. This gave all of Seattle’s young players an extended look and allowed many of them to get time on the field. The Seahawks feel extremely confident about the depth of this roster and this was an opportunity for many of them to get better and get reps they might not have in the regular season. It also helped new additions like Marcus Smith and David Bass make a mark, too.
“John and I have been looking at it for a long time as we’re coming into camp thinking we have a chance to have one of the best (rosters) we’ve had, indicated by the competition of the spots,” Carroll said earlier this month. “You can see it. There’s a number of guys that have playability that we’re going to have to sort out. There’s competitive opportunities for guys to make space for themselves too, and all that adds to making us better and so we’re really fired up about that.”