By John Boyle
So what did we learn from tonight’s Seahawks victory over the Raiders—well, aside from the fact that “Snoop Dogg and the Canadian punter” would make a fantastic buddy-cop movie?
Well for starters, we know almost for certain that Stephen Williams has played his way onto the team. Williams had just one catch, but it went for 50 yards and he left the game with a concussion. There is good news for Williams, however. When Carroll was talking about that injury, he said, “With 10 days to go, hopefully he’ll be all right, but it was concussion concerns.” You don’t talk about hoping a player is back for the season opener if that player isn’t going to be on the team for said season opener.
And speaking of injuries, the news was less encouraging about rookie Michael Bowie, who suffered a shoulder injury in the first half.
“He banged his shoulder pretty good, Carroll said. “We’ll have to wait and see what that is. It’s something we’re looking into, it might be more serious than we hope.”
The only other injuries were minor, Carroll said: an ankle injury for Alvin Bailey and a finger for Michael Brooks.
—The penalty situation isn’t quite fixed, but it’s getting better. A week after having 12 penalties, the Seahawks had 8 for 65 yards.
“It was way better tonight,” Carroll said. “There was a point in there where we hadn’t had one for a long time, and I didn’t want to put the jinx on anybody by saying it—like a no hitter—so it was a big step in a positive direction.”
—WR Chris Harper did himself no favors. The rookie, who is battling to make the team, dropped two passes, including one that was an easy touchdown.
“It’s unfortunate,” Carroll said. “Chris got way behind him, it was one of those balls you’re waiting forever on. It wasn’t a great hookup. Unfortunately he didn’t catch it. I know he’s really frustrated that second ball got away from him as well. He’s been a good solid competitor, he’s been tough and physical. You saw him make the good catch where he got pounded in the back—because he’s 235 pounds, he’s hard to knock around. He’s done a good job of competing for us.”
—K Steven Hauschka is no longer a long-range liability. Last year the Seahawks only let Hauschka attempt four 50-plus yard field goals, and he made just one of them. On Thursday alone, Hauschka was three for three from long range, making kicks of 51, 53 and 56 yards.
“He had a great night,” Carroll said. “… He had a fantastic night kicking the football. He seems to (have a stronger leg) and I think his confidence going after the 50-plus yarder is definitely there. I don’t think it could be any better for him.”