A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Jan. 16, when the Seahawks held their "No Repeat Friday" practice as they continued to prepare for Sunday's NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers at CenturyLink Field:
FOCUS ON: ALVIN BAILEY
Remember those five games the second-year lineman started during the regular season because of injuries to left tackle Russell Okung and left guard James Carpenter? That invaluable experience could come into play in Sunday's NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers, if Bailey is needed to play.
Rookie right tackle Justin Britt was limited in practice Friday and did not practice on Wednesday because of a knee injury he got in last week's playoff opener against the Carolina Panthers. So Bailey has gotten the majority of reps this week. Britt is listed as questionable and coach Pete Carroll said his status will be a game-day decision.
"We didn't know it during the game, and on Monday and Tuesday it showed up," Carroll said of Britt's injury.
Bailey started at left tackle in the Week 9 victory over the Oakland Raiders, and took over for Carpenter at left guard the next three weeks – including the Week 10 game against the New York Giants, when the Seahawks rushed for a franchise-record 350 yards and five touchdowns. He was at left tackle in the Week 16 victory in Arizona that prevented the Cardinals for clinching the NFC West title – which the Seahawks won the following week.
"Everybody we have is capable of stepping up and playing at a very high level, and we have confidence in everybody," right guard J.R. Sweezy said. "Alvin can play every position (guard or tackle on either side), so we're confident no matter who's out there. We've got a good game plan and we're ready to go."
INJURY REPORT: THAROLD SIMON SITS OUT PRACTICE BECAUSE OF ILLNESS
|STAT DU JOUR: EXTRA SPECIAL|
The Seahawks' special teams have been just that since 2010 under coordinator Brian Schneider, as their top-of-the-league rankings in these categories show:
The official end-of-the-week status report, as issued by the team:
OT Justin Britt (knee)
SS Jeron Johnson (elbow)
DL Michael Bennett (not injury related)
RB Marshawn Lynch (not injury related)
DT Tony McDaniel (shoulder)
TE Tony Moeaki (calf)
CB Tharold Simon (illness)
C Max Unger (ankle)
Simon, who is ill, was the only player who did not practice. Johnson has practiced all week, despite the elbow injury that forced him to miss last week's game. His status also will be a game-day decision.
For the Packers:
DT Josh Boyd (ankle)
RB Eddie Lacy (knee)
QB Aaron Rodgers (calf)
OG Josh Sitton (toe)
The Packers did not practice on Friday because they flew to Seattle. But before leaving Green Bay, coach Mike McCarthy said that Lacy "will be ready to play." In addition to his knee, the Packers' leading rusher also has asthma – which flared up in the first half of last week's playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys.
As for Rodgers and the world's most famous calf, McCarthy said, "Aaron's getting ready to play; looks good. Everything is on schedule. It'll be important to get on the field in pregame and get comfortable."
OPPONENT WATCH: EDDIE LACY
In the season opener between the Packers and Seahawks, Lacy ran for only 34 yards on 12 carries. But then the Packers averaged just 73.0 rushing yards during their 2-2 start. Lacy and the running game have picked it up and then some, with Lacy averaging 81.5 yards and the Packers 135.4 in the final 12 regular-season games.
|YOU DON'T SAY|
"On a scale of 1 to 10, 12."
All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman on how frustrating it was that Aaron Rodgers did not throw a pass to his side of the field in the season opener
"First and foremost, we've got to stop the run," defensive end Cliff Avril said when asked about defending quarterback Aaron Rodgers. "You've got to make tackles on the big guy, Lacy, and then try to make (Rodgers) move his feet in the pocket by putting pressure on him."
Asked about the increase in average rushing yards by Lacy and the Packers, Avril offered, "They're just running the ball more and Lacy making some things happen."
The Packers averaged 20 running plays in their first four games, and 29 in their final 12 regular-season games. In last Sunday's playoff opener against the Dallas Cowboys, Lacy ran for 101 yards on 19 carries and the Packers had 119 yards on 30 running plays.
THE 12s AT 12
Carroll joked earlier this week about what the team had to go through to get Sunday's kickoff set for noon to honor the 12s. But what the Seahawks' fans – those infamous 12s – bring to the mix on game day is no laughing matter. Especially to the opposing offenses that have to deal with the din generated by the 12s at CenturyLink Field.
"There's nobody as loud, that's for sure," quarterback Russell Wilson said. "There's a certain feeling when you step onto the field. Like I always say, "If you haven't been to a game here, you've got to go.' It's one of those bucket-list things.
"They'll be fired up. And we're going to need them. We need them to be loud and throwing their towels around and acting crazy. It's going to be a game that probably comes down to the wire and that's what you're looking for."
As for those towels, 60,000 NFC Championship game commemorative towels will be distributed on Sunday.
Added Carroll, "They care so much that they give so much. They're standing up and screaming. When we need them to be up there and screaming, they're doing it. And they're smart enough to understand when it's time to help the offense out, and they do that."
UP NEXT: THE DAY BEFORE THE DAY, AND GAME DAY COVERAGE
The Seahawks will hold their "Review Saturday" walkthrough, the final on-field session before Sunday's NFC title game.
On Sunday, ESPN's "Postseason NFL Countdown," which begins at 9 a.m., will include several segments that host Chris Berman did while at VMAC this week. In addition to a feature on Kam Chancellor, Berman interviewed the Legion of Boom, Russell Wilson and Pete Carroll.
"Thirty-five years since I started doing this, I'm still intrigued by those who play and coach the game and I enjoy getting to know them," Berman told ESPN's website. "I've known Pete Carroll a long time and we talk during the season, and I have really gotten to know this bunch of Seahawks. I enjoy how they play and it's interesting to talk to them as they are on the verge of perhaps going to back-to-back Super Bowls."
During the network's "NFL Matchup" show on Saturday, Merrill Hoge examines the possibility of the Seahawks' spying Rodgers and Ron Jaworski looks at Wilson's play-action passing.
12s turned out for an NFC Championship game rally at Seattle's Westlake Park two days before the Seahawks' conference title game against the Green Bay Packers at CenturyLink Field.