The Seahawks have a few hours hours before they have to have their active roster set for tomorrow's 1:25 p.m. game against Oakland at CenturyLink Field. Last week they signed wide receiver Phil Bates off their practice squad and put fullback Derrick Coleman on injured reserve on a Saturday, the day before the win at Carolina.
This weekend the needy position is safety. Seattle is down to three healthy safeties: Earl Thomas, Eric Pinkins and Steven Terrell. Terrell has been on a practice-squad shuttle for some of this season. Pinkins, a 6-foot-3, 220-pound rookie from San Diego State recently came off the non-football injury list after foot surgery this summer.
Kam Chancellor's groin injury leaves him a game-day decision to play Sunday, coach Pete Carroll said yesterday. That is on top of his painful bone spurs in both ankles and assorted other injuries Chancellor has been noticeably dragging through games.
"He's banged up. He'll be worked out on game day. We'll see what happens," Carroll said.
Chancellor's health remains a season-long issue. He considered surgery last month on his ankles and decided to play through the pain. He definitely hasn't looked like the same, thudding player that usually hawks ball carriers all over the field.
Jeron Johnson is already out with a concussion he got on the Seahawks' last kickoff late in the win last weekend over the Panthers. If the team doesn't want to make a roster move today listed cornerback DeShawn Shead can also play safety as Seattle shuffles its pass coverage in the back end of its defense.
All this matters in particular this weekend. Oakland throws on 67 percent of its plays. No team has run less often and for fewer yards this season than Oakland (133 total runs in seven games, for 69.6 yards rushing per game).
--Here's my story for today's News Tribune on the injury situation for tomorrow's game, including a side story on the Marysville-Pilchuck High School decals the Seahawks will be wearing on their helmets tomorrow.
--And here's one man's rankings of the NFL teams entering the Week 9 weekend:
- Denver Broncos (1):On to New England for Peyton Manning versus Tom Brady. Again.
- New England Patriots (5): Bill Belichick says Manning is best QB he’s faced in 40 years of coaching. For him, that’s a season’s worth of insight, in one sentence.
- Arizona Cardinals (8): OK, time to start believing. Yet still thinking they come back to the pack--starting today at Dallas. (Seattle’s counting on it).
- Detroit Lions (7): Sure, they got lucky at the end to beat Atlanta. But that thudding defense is more than lucky.
- Dallas Cowboys (2): Not sure Romo should have been in that Washington game at end after back injury. Status for today vs. Arizona is up in the air.
- Green Bay Packers (3): Scary how reliant they are on Aaron Rodgers, how static they became offensively after he got hurt at New Orleans.
- San Francisco 49ers (10): Rested after last week’s bye. Still say NFC West comes down to them and the Seahawks by season’s end.
- Seattle Seahawks (11): This Raiders game feels like last year’s Tampa Bay game. Seahawks say they won’t face plant early this time.
- Philadelphia Eagles (4): Only a defense as bad as theirs could give up long, winning TD at Arizona, lose a game when offense piles up 521 yards.
- San Diego Chargers (9): Secondary banged up – though may not matter next two weeks against Miami, Oakland.
- Cincinnati Bengals (15): Knee surgery for Pro Bowl LB Vontaze Burfict, so he won’t be twisting foes’ ankles under piles for at least next two games.
- Kansas City Chiefs (13): Beat Chargers, crushed Rams, should have beaten Denver, Santa Clara. Seahawks’ trip to KC in three weeks is going to be rugged.
- Pittsburgh Steelers (18): Chuck Noll would have disowned this team after Big Ben’s 500-yard, six-TD passing day beat the Colts.
- Indianapolis Colts (6): Andrew Luck can do almost everything for this team – except play defense.
- New Orleans Saints (23): Finally, the performances we’ve been waiting for all season beat Green Bay, Carolina. Look out, Drew Brees and Saints are about to roll.
- Buffalo Bills (14): OK, now what in the name of Joe Ferguson is going on? Kyle Orton winning two straight starts?
- Baltimore Ravens (12): Another R-rated alley fight in Pittsburgh will put the winner on even ground with Cincinnati in the AFC North.
- Cleveland Browns (17): Led Oakland only 9-6 deep into the third quarter before Raiders gave the ball, game away.
- Miami Dolphins (20): Two straight wins, now get the lowly Jaguars. Ryan Tannehill playing better with private QB tutoring from some guy named Marino.
- Houston Texans (21): J.J. Watt should start throwing the ball, too. Why not? Defensive end does everything else for this up-and-down team.
- Washington Redskins (26): Blitzing the bejeezus out of battered Tony Romo was a brilliant, game-winning decision by DC Jim Haslett at Dallas.
- Carolina Panthers (16): Seahawks were fortunate Cam Newton is banged up and didn’t take off running more on them.
- Minnesota Vikings (28): First win in a month, over Tampa Bay. Now they get Washington in RGIII’s return.
- New York Giants (24): Rested and threatening to get back into it in up-for-grabs NFC East. That tells you how bad that division is.
- Chicago Bears (19): Guys barking at Jay Cutler. But he’s merely one of this team’s problems.
- St. Louis Rams (22): So much for that: Followed up reviving upset of Seahawks with flat-lining loss by 27 at Kansas City.
- Atlanta Falcons (27): Five straight losses. It took going all the way to London for the Falcons’ defense to hold someone not named Tampa Bay under 24 points.
- Tennessee Titans (25): Even injured, maybe Jake Locker isn’t so bad, after all.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (29): Tell me again: How did they beat the Steelers in Pittsburgh?
- Jacksonville Jaguars (30): Defense that can’t stop anybody puts a starting cornerback on injured reserve. Yikes.
- New York Jets (31): Suddenly, all those Seahawks bubble screens don’t look so bad to Percy Harvin.
- Oakland Raiders (32): Derek Carr says he’s still be slingin’ it at Richard Sherman on Sunday. Sherman said: “He doesn’t know any better.”