Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck talked about the amount of speed Oakland has in the secondary and how his team’s offense will deal with that on Sunday.
“They’re secondary is very fast,” Hasselbeck said. “Their safeties, their corners, their nickel backs are all very fast. It seems like that’s partly how their team is built. But we’ve got some pretty good speed on our team as well, but not like that. We’ve got things that we do well, but they’re playing good football right now.”
Oakland’s speed allows the corners to play aggressive, bump-and-run coverage on the outside, a trademark of Raider defenses over the years. That scheme should allow for the Seahawks to spring some big plays in the passing game if they execute.
Hasselbeck also talked about the fact that guys like tight end John Carlson, who has struggled of late, should have a chance to make some plays against man coverage on Sunday.
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“He’s another guy that he just needs to maximize his opportunities and then you’ll get more opportunities,” Hasselbeck said. “There’s no doubt that everyone in the building loves him. We know that he can be a good player but we just have got to make it happen on Sunday.
“The scheme is a little different, but I think there’s still ways to get him involved, and I know that Jeremy Bates like him. I know that everybody likes him and they feel good about his abilities. We’ve just got to make it happen.”
Several players talked about playing Oakland on Halloween. The Oakland Coliseum isn’t called “The Black Hole” for no reason, as fans there regularly dress up in ominous looking costumes in order to cheer for the home team. So players expect Raiders fan to take it up another notch on Sunday.
“It should be interesting,” Hasselbeck said. “I think when you talk about fans around the league or stadiums around the league, I know our fans are kind of known for being loud and take a lot of pride in that. I think the Raiders fans are known for really getting into their costumes and really supporting their team that way. So I’m sure they’re just going to live it up even more so.”
Aaron Curry mentioned he’s pleased the game is being played while the sun is out.
“The fans always come dressed up and they’re enthusiastic,” Curry said. “The best thing is we’re not playing them at night time, which would make it even more freakier. But they’ve got a great group of fans that really get into it with their face paint and all of that stuff.”
Colin Cole hinted that things could be more festive in the stands on Sunday, but he used another word
“I was going to say liquored up, but I guess festive is a better word,” Cole said. “It’s going to be an extreme environment and they’re going to be excited for their team obviously after such a huge win last week. They’re going to want to see their team continue that type of play.”
Hasselbeck went on to say that even though Raider Nation can be rowdy at times, they also show some respect for the opponent when appropriate.
“They really are great fans,” Hasselbeck said. “You look back at a some of the games where they’ve had an opportunity to really show a lot of class, you think back to when the Packers went in there (when Brett Favre’s father passed) they showed a lot of class that night. And at the end of the day everyone’s a football fan.”