That’s the question the Seahawks’ offensive line will answer, one way or the other. The Seahawks’ next opponent, the Cardinals, sacked Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers nine times Sunday.
RENTON — It was such a tough game physically for Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson that his coach, Pete Carroll, had to answer how it was that Wilson managed to always stay healthy.
“He’s got some ninja in him or something,” Carroll said.
Wilson was hit a season-high 13 times in Sunday’s loss to the St. Louis Rams. He took a couple of shots that left him moving gingerly. He took a couple others that were troubling.
That was the way it went for Wilson, and Carroll made no secret about how his offensive line played.
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“We didn’t play very well, obviously,” he said. “For whatever reason, it wasn’t like the last bunch of games.”
The offensive line until then had managed a remarkable turnaround. It was one of the season’s feel-good narratives.
That improvement showed up in a number of ways: Wilson was hit and sacked fewer times, and he had time to throw from the pocket. And the running game kept churning, even without running backs Marshawn Lynch or Thomas Rawls.
But against the Rams, the offensive line looked eerily similar to the group from the beginning of the season. Wilson didn’t have much time to throw. He got hit. The line’s struggles, combined with the Rams gaining an early lead, made it impossible for Carroll to evaluate how the running backs played.
The Seahawks were without starting left tackle Russell Okung, their most experienced lineman. Carroll admitted the Seahawks felt Okung’s absence, but he also said the Seahawks just “missed stuff.”
“It just wasn’t clean,” Carroll said. “On the first five runs, we made a mistake on every one of them. That’s just uncommon for us. It was really out of the norm.”
Carroll opened his weekly news conference Monday by making this point: As bad as the Seahawks looked, they had done enough in the five or six weeks before that to make him believe those games represented the real version of his team.
And that’s the question the Seahawks’ offensive line will answer, one way or the other. The Seahawks’ next opponent, the Cardinals, sacked Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers nine times Sunday, although Green Bay was without three starting linemen.
But the point is the Seahawks will face good pass rushes the rest of the way Contenders New England, Denver, Carolina, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Green Bay, Cincinnati and Minnesota are all in the top 11 in sacks.
Wilson was hit 13 times against the Rams, which came a week after he was hit 11 times. Those are the two highest totals of the season. Whether that’s a trend or an aberration is the question.
“I didn’t see it the last couple weeks,” Carroll said. “I just saw this last week. He’d been getting out of games getting hit once or twice up until this one. This was out of the ordinary, for sure, for all of the obvious reasons, I think.”