Finally, Seahawks' starting O-line is back together

todd.dybas@thenewstribune.comNovember 18, 2013 

Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch heads toward the end zone for a fourth-quarter touchdown Sunday after quarterback Russell Wilson, not pictured, flipped the ball to him.

LUI KIT WONG/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

— After missing several weeks and working out together, Seahawks tackles Russell Okung and Breno Giacomini returned to the field together Sunday.

The return of Okung, a Pro Bowl left tackle, and Giacomini, the starting right tackle, gave the Seahawks their entire starting line for the first time since Okung hurt his toe in Week 2. Giacomini was out after suffering a knee injury the next week.

Paul McQuistan slid from left tackle fill-in to left guard. Center Max Unger also returned after sitting out because of concussion symptoms last week.

“I think both tackles were, let’s call it rusty,” coach Pete Carroll said. “I don’t think they had their best games.”

Neither did Okung.

“I’m still working on it,” Okung said. “I really have catch up to the rest of the guys.”

But he and Giacomini said it was “great” to be back.

The group will get some quick time off before spending the bye week and all of the next week working together. The Seahawks don’t play again until Monday, Dec. 2, when they host the New Orleans Saints.

LYNCH, PETERSON HAVE PEDESTRIAN DAYS

The expected showdown between two of the NFL’s top running backs, Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson and Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch, turned into an anticlimax, as each averaged only slightly more than 3 yards per carry.

Lynch netted 54 yards on 17 carries to Peterson’s 65 on 21.

Once the Seahawks got a lead, the Vikings had to go more to the pass. Besides, Peterson conceded after the game that knee troubles continue to plague him.

“Actually, it was bothering me a lot,” he said, adding that he didn’t feel he was able to “explode” through the holes the way he normally does.

The Seahawks were stacked against the Vikings’ rush.

“You know these guys are going to try and stop the run,” Peterson said. “They’re going to have eight in the box no matter what. So they were coming in and holding on for dear life.”

The Vikings had the same approach to stopping Lynch.

“I thought we played the run well — well enough to be in the game,” Vikings defensive end Jared Allen said. “(Lynch) is a great player. You’ve got to try and keep tackling and limiting his touches.”

WILSON WORKS AROUND MINNESOTA DEFENSE

The mobility of Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson compounded the Vikings’ defensive concerns.

“This week, we had a different rush plan because of what he does both in and out of the pocket,” Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said. “His style of play makes you have to adjust your rush plan, but I thought for the most part, we did a pretty good job of containing him.”

While Wilson was mostly contained in the pocket and completed only 13 passes, he still threw for two touchdowns and a career-high passer rating of 151.4.

SPECIAL TEAMS COVER UP VIKINGS

One of Sunday’s subplots was the Seahawks’ coverage units against the NFL’s top returners, Marcus Sherels and Cordarrelle Patterson.

Sherels had zero punt return yards, extending one of the most impressive numbers from the Seahawks’ season. After allowing 10 yards to Carolina’s Ted Ginn Jr. on the first punt of the season, Seattle has allowed 5 return yards total on the 43 punts since.

Sherels acquiesced with three fair catches. Another punt was downed, and another went out of bounds.

Patterson was more effective. He averaged 29.3 yards per kick return, though that was below his league-leading average of 35.2.

The Vikings’ average starting field position was their 25-yard line.

EXTRA POINTS

Wide receiver and former Lakes High School star Jermaine Kearse left the game in the first half because of a concussion. He ran into guard J.R. Sweezy on a kick return. ... Walter Thurmond and Byron Maxwell filled in for injured cornerback Brandon Browner, trading corner and nickel duties. ... Rookie right tackle Michael Bowie was inactive after starting the previous seven weeks. ... The announced crowd was 68,235.

todd.dybas@thenewstribune.com blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks @Todd_Dybas

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