In final tuneup before season opener, Seahawks and Raiders use backups almost the entire way. Seattle came alive late to earn a 23-21 victory.
OAKLAND, Calif. — Jeremy Lane sat before the game and Thomas Rawls ran during it.
Otherwise, there was little memorable about Seattle’s preseason finale at Oakland Thursday night, as the Seahawks rallied lead to beat the Raiders 23-21 with 20 points in the fourth quarter.
Lane, a fifth-year cornerback, sat during the anthem, saying later he wanted to show support for San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who sat during the anthem last Friday sparking a weeklong debate. Kaepernick said he sat to protest the treatment of people of color.
“I’m just standing behind Kaepernick,’’ Lane said.
After the anthem, Lane then took his usual spot at cornerback during Oakland’s first series and then retreated to the sideline for the rest of the game, as did most of the rest of the team’s starters, the usual routine for a final preseason game.
Taking the field just after Lane left it was Rawls, who had not played since last Dec. 13 when he suffered a broken ankle as well as dislocated ligaments in a game at Baltimore.
Entering on a series that began at Seattle’s 14, Rawls got two carries.
On his first carry, Rawls got the ball out of the I formation but the Raiders got good penetration and Rawls was hit for a 1-yard loss.
On his second carry Rawls was able to peck his way through the left side for 8 yards before he was tackled by former Seahawk Korey Toomer.
Rawls came out on third down in favor of C.J. Prosise — the team’s designated third-down back.
That was all Rawls played.
But that was enough for Seattle to feel good about how Rawls enters the regular season having made an on-time recovery from a devastating injury that ended a fabulous rookie season in which he rushed for 830 yards and 5.6 yards per carry.
“It’s fantastic,’’ said Carroll, who said Rawls looks like he can play in the opener against Miami on Sept. 11 with no limitations. “It’s an incredible comeback. … I think he looks like he is ready to rock and roll. We are not worried about it.’’
Said Rawls: “It was good. I wasn’t worried about it. I’ve been practicing hard and banging boys and I roll against the greatest defense in the league every day. So no problem.’’
Seattle trailed most of the game before breaking loose in the fourth quarter.
The Seahawks grabbed the lead when defensive end Ryan Robinson returned an interception of a Connor Cook pass 42 yards for a touchdown to put Seattle ahead 9-8 with 10:29. The ball pretty much fell into Robinson’s hands after Cook threw a hurried pass on a bootleg as he was hit by Seattle linebacker Eric Pinkins.
The Seahawks went for two and didn’t get it.
Later in the quarter, the Seahawks added a 5-yard touchdown run by Troymaine Pope to make it 16-8 to cap a 63-yard drive propelled mostly by running from Pope and Alex Collins.
And then after an Oakland touchdown, Collins added a 1-yard touchdown that made moot an 81-yard TD return by Oakland’s George Atkinson on the ensuing kickoff.
Seattle ended the preseason 3-1.
If there was a reason for worry it was the play of backup quarterback Trevone Boykin, who was 7 of 15 for 72 yards and was sacked twice, and also gave up a safety on an intentional-grounding call and could have had a pass picked off that was dropped.
“He had some problems tonight,’’ Carroll said. “He had some trouble with some stuff. … I’m not sure where it all came from. He’s not as sharp as he has been.’’
Asked if Boykin had done enough in the preseason to emerge as the backup to Russell Wilson, Carroll said, “We’ll find out.’’
But after the second series, it was almost nothing but backups for each team, and the to-be-expected sloppy play ensued from there.
There were 10 punts in the first half, with the Seahawks moving past midfield just once and never threatening to score.
The Raiders scored in fitting fashion when Boykin was hurried while attempting to throw from out his end zone and was called for grounding, officially ruled a safety and giving Oakland a 2-0 lead.
That’s where it stood until the third quarter, when each team got a field goal.
The Raiders added another early in the fourth quarter to make it 8-3.
Seattle rushed for 86 yards in the fourth quarter to then put the game away, aided by the Robinson defensive TD, with Collins gaining 40 yards on nine carries and Pope 52 on eight as each battled for what might be one final spot as a tailback on the roster.
“I thought the runners did a nice job,’’ Carroll said. “Both Alex and Rawls.’’
The Seahawks will have to cut their roster from its current 75 to 53 by Saturday at 1 p.m. and then begin preparing for the Miami Dolphins.