RENTON — The Seahawks may be in full “move-on’’ mode with a playoff game now less than three days away.
But Thursday, they also took a few minutes to go over what was one of the most vexing and perplexing moments of last Sunday’s loss to the 49ers — the sequence that led to a delay-of-game penalty once Seattle reached the 1-yard line with 22 seconds left, needing only those 3 feet to beat San Francisco, win the division and get a home game to start the postseason.
Seattle, instead, got flagged for a delay-of-game penalty that moved the Seahawks back to the 5, where a controversial no-call on a possible defensive pass interference on third down, and then a fourth-down pass that was just a few inches short, led to one of the more frustrating defeats in team history.
During a walkthrough Thursday, the Seahawks practiced that exact scenario in case it happens again.
“Hopefully, we can use that if we’re in that situation again,’’ said quarterback Russell Wilson.
As offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said Thursday, it was “a really interesting situation’’ due to some unique factors — a situation the team may never really encounter again.
The fourth-and-10 play from the 12 included a personnel alignment of four receivers, one tight end and no running backs.
“A unique personnel grouping,’’ Schottenheimer said.
The play also was called with routes that the team assumed would basically be touchdown or bust, and there was some initial confusion over whether John Ursua had gotten in — as coaches and Ursua have said, his route was supposed to end with him in the end zone.
Seattle was out of timeouts, and Wilson hurriedly got the personnel that was on the field at the time up to the line to spike the ball.
But the play clock for the next snap started once the ball was reset. Everyone involved knows the rules, obviously. But in the chaos of the moment, there might have been a quick feeling that the spike was like a timeout.
One of the points made Thursday, Schottenheimer said, is that “when you spike the ball, the play clock keeps going.’’
Being at the 1-yard line meant trying to get a different personnel grouping on the field, and specifically Marshawn Lynch to try to run it in.
But Lynch had had just four practices with the team last week, and Seattle now has a different coordinator and some different play terminology than during his first tenure. Coach Pete Carroll said earlier in the week that the team hadn’t really had enough time to “smooth out the substitutions with the new guys.’’
Schottenheimer said that was one of the teaching points Thursday: “We got the thing (time clock) killed, but it’s just really more of, ‘OK, everybody take a deep breath, let’s get the personnel substitutions in.’’’
The delay penalty was the sixth Seattle was flagged for this season, tied for the third-most of any team in the NFL this season, according to NFLPenalties.com (with the Rams and Bucs, among other teams — Green Bay had the most, with 10.)
“We have never repped that (exact situation) before but we repped it today and we did some additional emphasis of things and some different answers that could come up. If that situation comes up (again) we’ll be better prepared for it next time.’’
Lynch ready to be bigger part of offense
Lynch played 23 of 75 possible snaps against the 49ers Sunday, with Travis Homer getting 50.
Not that the Seahawks will want to do anything to decrease the usage of Homer, whose play was something of a revelation.
But if Lynch is needed to do more this week, Schottenheimer says he’ll be ready.
“I think the playbook is a little bit more open with him in terms of the things that we can do,’’ Schottenheimer said. “I think he’s a little bit more comfortable. We kind of got what we wanted out of him in terms of the number of plays, but he’s much more comfortable this week. So there are things he can do from a pass protection standpoint, obviously some runs that maybe he wasn’t very comfortable with last week. So it’s week two, it’s a week that he’s more comfortable with the terminology and just playing the position with the guys that we’ve got and the blocking unit up front.’’
Clowney, Turner sit out but Diggs is a full participant
The good from the Seahawks’ practice report Thursday?
Safety Quandre Diggs was listed as a full participant, the clearest sign yet that he’ll be back this week from a high ankle sprain that held him out of the past two games.
The bad? Receiver Malik Turner was listed as sitting out again as he attempts to come back from a concussion that also held him out last week, and it’s unclear if he’ll have time to make it back in time for Sunday’s game.
Seattle still has Mychal Kendricks on the 53-man roster even though he is out with an ACL injury, so the Seahawks could make a move to add a receiver as depth if needed — Penny Hart and Jaylen Smith are on the practice squad.
And in the “it’s hard to know what it means’’ category, Jadeveon Clowney sat out for a second straight day with a lingering core muscle injury.
Before practice Wednesday, Carroll said of Clowney: “He’s fine. Well, he’s practicing and going. He’s doing the best he can so he’s ready to go again.”
So maybe the team is just being careful.
For what it’s worth, Clowney was a limited participant in practice last week before playing against the 49ers.
Seattle will have to give game status designations for players on Friday (Clowney did not have one last week, indicating he was cleared to play).
Others who sat out Thursday were left tackle Duane Brown (knee), receiver Jaron Brown (knee) and guard Mike Iupati (neck).
Iupati has dealt with that injury for a few weeks and played on Sunday.
Jaron Brown has already been considered out and Duane Brown is likely out though Carroll has held out some hope he could play.