The Seahawks lost Sunday on what head coach Pete Carroll described as "a very difficult day, obviously," falling 27-13 to the Arizona Cardinals.
And unfortunately for the Seahawks, the bad news didn't end with the final score. As Carroll outlined after the game, the Seahawks lost their top two running backs, likely for the season, and will be without left tackle Duane Brown for at least another week due to knee surgery that will take place on Monday.
Running back Chris Carson, who has rushed for a career-high 1,230 yards this season, has a hip injury, and while further tests are needed, the fear is that he is done for the season. C.J. Prosise, who stepped into the No. 2 role following Rashaad Penny's season-ending injury in Week 14, broke his arm and is out for the year. That left the Seahawks with only one healthy running back for two-plus quarter, rookie Travis Homer.
In addition to Homer, who Carroll noted "worked his tail off" as Seattle's only back for much of the game, the Seahawks also have Xavier Turner on the practice squad. But as Carroll noted, he and general manager John Schneider will have to get to work this week to add help at that position.
"We did get both our running backs banged up today," Carroll said. "Chris and C.J. both got hurt. They're out, so we've got to get to scrambling. Johnny's got to get to work and figure out what we're doing next. That was a lot of game for Homer to have to play by himself, so obviously we'll make some moves here and figure some stuff out."
Asked more about Carson's injury, Carroll compared it to the season-ending injury sustained by Lano Hill late last season.
"He did something to his hip. It's a similar injury to what Lano Hill had… He's getting his tests right now."
Carroll said, "I don't have that definitely," when asked if Carson was out for the year, but added, "But our docs are telling that yes, it looks like that. We'll get the final tests back tomorrow."
Left tackle Duane Brown, who was downgraded from questionable to out on Saturday, needs surgery on his knee.
"He needs to get his knee fixed," Carroll said. "He tried like crazy to get through it this week and just couldn't. he did everything he could during the week and couldn't get it to quiet down. He just needs to get his knee cleaned up. It's not a major surgery, but the discomfort is just—he can't play. He's going to get operated on tomorrow."
Carroll said there is hope that Brown could return at some point in the postseason: "It's a couple week deal here if we're lucky, so that's why we went ahead rushed to it to try to get him back, because it was not showing signs of improving."
The Seahawks went with Jarmarco Jones at left tackle on Sunday, in part, Carroll said, because there was hope that Brown could play until late in the week, and as a result they wanted to keep George Fant in his usual jumbo-tight end role.
Carroll didn't say if the Seahawks will stick with Jones for their Week 17 game against the 49ers or go with Fant, who started in place of an injured Brown in two games earlier this season.
"It was the plan this week," Carroll said of going with Jones. "We were kind of holding out hope that Duane might be able to shake it and be ready to come back at the end of the week and he didn't make it, so that just turned us to the next circumstances. He just needs to get fixed up. We declared that on Saturday, and Jamarco was the next guy up so we could keep George in his role. We'll figure it out next week. I can't tell you what's going to happen."
The Seahawks were without cornerback Shaquill Griffin (hamstring) and defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (core) on Sunday, and asked about those two, Carroll said, "Both of those guys were not right. They couldn't make it back. They both tried and they weren't right, they couldn't pass the tests with the trainers, so really it wasn't even a tough call when we got down to it. We held out hope that maybe they could turn a corner, but neither one of them did… We'll just see how that goes next week."
Left guard Mike Iupati left the game in the first half with a stinger, but was able to return.
"He just sucked it up and was able to play," Carroll said. "They checked him out and said he was OK, but he really did suck it up though."