No-huddle gives Seattle juice
ERIC D. WILLIAMS; Staff writer
Looking for a spark offensively, the Seattle Seahawks finally sped up the tempo.
The Seahawks switched to their two-minute offense and went no huddle to open the second half with good results, completing a 14-play, 72-yard drive that quarterback Tarvaris Jackson finished with an 11-yard plunge for a touchdown.
Jackson said the no-huddle helped give Seattle some rhythm offensively in the second half.
“We talked about it during the week that we thought that we were going to do that,” Jackson said. “And we said we were going to do that in the first half. We had some success with it, so we stayed with it.”
Receiver Sidney Rice said he would like to see the no-huddle become a regular part of Seattle’s offense on game day.
“I like the no huddle,” Rice said. “The more we do it, the more I like it. I feel like we have the extra edge, we can get up on the ball fast, our tempo just rises and I’m looking forward to doing that throughout the rest of the season. It doesn’t give the defense time to get set.”
Seattle’s 324 yards was the most they’ve had in a game this season, and the 38 percent third-down conversion percentage also was a season high.
“We’ll continue to utilize it when it’s going to benefit us,” Carroll said. “We were able to go in and out of it, which is cool. We’ll get better at it.”
MCCOY TO THE RESCUE
Carroll called it the play of the game.
With 12:38 left in the game and the Seahawks up 13-10, quarterback Tarvaris Jackson mishandled a high snap from center Max Unger on third- and-five from Arizona’s 48-yard line.
But Seattle tight end Anthony McCoy hustled back for the ball and made a heady play, recovering the fumble 14 yards in the opposite direction at Seattle’s 28-yard line. Punter Jon Ryan boomed a 64-yard punt to flip field position.
“It’s something we practice every week – the cradle drill, and it just transferred out to the game today. It wasn’t nothing new to me, I just reacted,” McCoy said about the play.
Said Carroll: “That was a fantastic play right there. If that doesn’t happen, then everything is different. That’s something we do every week. He’s been doing it for years, making fumble recoveries like that. That was a huge play for us, and you don’t realize it.”
Arizona receiver Larry Fitzgerald has made a habit of torching Seattle’s secondary. In the past three seasons, he’s caught 45 passes for 575 yards against the Seahawks.
On Sunday, it appeared that Fitzgerald was heading for another big day, hauling in five passes for 64 yards in the first half. Then...nothing.
For only the eighth time in his eight-year career, Fitzgerald did not catch a pass after halftime.
“I think at halftime we said, ‘We can do this, we can deal with him,’” Carroll said. “The guys made some nice plays, big plays for us, that you wouldn’t see because he didn’t get the football.”
Not that Fitzgerald was completely shut out of the end zone. He scored a touchdown in the second quarter, making a nice grab over free safety Earl Thomas and cornerback Brandon Browner in the end zone on a 12-yard pass.
“It was good defense, better offense,” Thomas said. “It’s going to happen right there in the NFL, man. They’re pros, too.”
WRIGHT GETS HIS SHOT
Outside linebacker K.J. Wright didn’t make a tackle in his second NFL start, but that didn’t stop his teammates from being impressed with the rookie’s play.
Wright’s first start came at middle linebacker subbing for an injured David Hawthorne in the first game of the year.
“K.J. Wright is a great young player,” cornerback Marcus Trufant said. “He’s smart, tall, fast, making plays all over the place.”
“Smart kid,” free safety Earl Thomas added. “He has a future. He has a high football IQ. He wasn’t a weakness in our defense. He didn’t play like a rookie today.”
Wright was starting in place of Aaron Curry, the team’s first-round pick in 2009 who was demoted to the second team earlier this week, and saw most of his action in nickel packages.
“It was a new position for me,” said Wright, a fourth-round pick in the 2011 draft. “Thought I went out there and played pretty well.”
Seattle head coach Pete Carroll said receiver Sidney Rice’s shoulder held up well, and the only injury of note was linebacker Matt McCoy’s head injury. ... Seattle’s inactives included quarterback Josh Portis, receiver Kris Durham, fullback Michael Robinson, cornerback Byron Maxwell, offensive lineman Robert Gallery, offensive tackle Jarriel King and defensive tackle Al Woods.
Staff writer Doug Pacey contributed to this report.