The Seahawks have passed the ball on almost 57 percent of their plays this season — 12th in run-pass ratio among NFL teams. They have been either first or second in run-pass ratio the past three years, not throwing it more than 48 percent of the time.
RENTON — The numbers, Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin says, definitely can deceive.
For instance, the Seahawks have passed the ball on almost 57 percent of their plays this season. That ranks 12th in run-pass ratio among NFL teams. They have been either first or second in run-pass ratio the past three years, not throwing it more than 48 percent of the time.
“It’s just because we’ve been down in a couple of games,’’ Baldwin said, citing defeats against St. Louis and Green Bay.
Detroit @ Seattle,5:30 p.m., ESPN
No question, as in each of those games the Seahawks took to the air hoping to rally from second-half deficits.
Still, the Seahawks were never behind — and seemingly never in danger — against the Chicago Bears in a 26-0 victory Sunday, but they finished with 30 passes to 29 runs. Add in four Russell Wilson sacks, and the ratio would be even higher.
In fact, at the midway point of the third quarter, the Seahawks had 21 passes to 12 rushing attempts before taking a 20-0 lead and then using the run to finish out the game.
“We really did come out throwing the football in the first half,’’ coach Pete Carroll said.
That made sense for two reasons: The Bears entered the game ranked last in the NFL in opponent passer rating (and are still last), and the Seahawks were uncertain how much they would get out of tailback Marshawn Lynch.
Lynch was listed as questionable because of a calf injury and then was unable to go through pregame warmups. He suffered a hamstring injury in the second quarter and was limited to five carries — the fewest he has had in a regular-season game as a Seahawk.
Lynch was scheduled for an MRI exam this week, but there was no word Tuesday about his status for the game Monday night against the Detroit Lions.
When Lynch was forced to leave the game Sunday at halftime, the Seahawks turned to undrafted rookie Thomas Rawls. After carrying the ball just once for 6 yards in the first half, he had 15 carries for 98 in the second. His 21-yard run helped jump-start a drive that made it 20-0 and effectively ended whatever suspense remained.
With Rawls carrying the load the last quarter-and-a-half, the run-pass ratio evened out — and no question, the Seahawks often have padded their run totals the past few years by using Lynch to salt away games well in hand.
Still, the Seahawks have thrown more than they have run in every game this season, almost matching the total of four games last season in which the Seahawks had more passes than runs. (They had more passes than runs in just three games in 2013.)
And with Lynch nursing several injuries, it’s worth wondering if the Seahawks might have to rely on the pass more often this season.
As well as Rawls played Sunday, it’d be premature to assume the team wouldn’t miss something if Lynch were sidelined for any period of time.
That’s not a theory Baldwin is eager to test.
“I think we have the talent that could take the torch if needed,’’ Baldwin said. “However, it would take a while. The transition would be difficult. I would just say I don’t want to see that happen any time soon.’’
It’s worth wondering as well, though, if the first three games have offered some small glimpses into what the offense might look like without Lynch.
When they have thrown it, the Seahawks often have used a quick passing game that has resulted in Wilson completing 70.3 percent of his attempts, seventh in the NFL. That has Baldwin on a pace for 90 receptions, and Jermaine Kearse and tight end Jimmy Graham 74 each. Seattle hasn’t had a receiver with more than the 66 Baldwin had last season since Carroll became the coach in 2010.
But the Seahawks have a long pass this year of just 32 yards (by Baldwin against Green Bay). That is tied with the Eagles for the lowest long pass gain of any NFL team through three games.
Pryor works out
Among the players the Seahawks worked out Monday was Terrelle Pryor, who was on the Seattle roster in training camp in 2014 as a quarterback but is trying to make it back into the NFL as a receiver. Pryor initially made Cleveland’s roster as a receiver this year before being released when the Browns signed running back Robert Turbin, who had been waived as injured (and then received an injury settlement) by the Seahawks.
But the Seahawks did not sign Pryor, and there was no indication anything was imminent.