By John Boyle
(Opening…) Well, what a day here at the Stadium, at CenturyLink for the fans and our players. A fantastic event we just witnessed. I’m really proud of the way we played. It was a day when they were really doing a lot of good stuff, Tom was doing everything with the throwing game and their receivers were making plays, and you didn’t know if we were going to get to slow them down or not. I think with like 8 minutes left in the fourth quarter, it was 23-10, and then we get going. We made a play down there with Braylon, a big play, and then we did a great job to get the ball back on defense there at the end. The lift, you could see in our players, as we were finishing the game was really something to make you proud of as a coach. So, the finish was there. And we know that we have to, when you are going against one of the best groups you could ever go against. Down the stretch, I thought that Russell, who played a fantastic game today, made his plays. Darrell Bevell deserves a bunch of credit for the calls and to give us a chance to get back in it. Gus, everyone. Gutsy calls. It took a lot of stuff, it really took every play in this game, it took every kick, every rush and run, and everything that we did today had to happen like that for us to have a chance. I just loved the way we rallied on both sides of the ball and on special teams, knowing that we had a chance to win the football game. It’s a big statement for a young team, and it’s more so because of that staff, that coach, that quarterback, their team, the championship ways that they know and understand and everything about that. We take great pride in it, and we hope you guys enjoyed it.
(On whether today was a breakout game… ) We have been coming with the throwing game, and we’ve found that Russell really does throw the ball really well down the field. You saw last week that we started, and I think we started to move ahead last week in the plan and everything we expected to happen, and we just continued to go. We forget how long ago it was when Russell had that drive and he was running all over the place, and he scrambles around and hits Doug and the great play by Doug in the end zone, it was like it was another game almost. All day he was battling and making things happen. So hopefully, we keep moving ahead and we keep running the football and now take our shots when we get a chance and try to cause some more problems for our opponents.
(On the play of the defense…) They played tough the whole time. They got after it the whole time. They’re so good at throwing and catching; we did what we had hoped to do in the running game, and we didn’t think that was a factor. There was enough runs in there to peck away, but not enough to be a factor; what did they throw 58 times or something like that. That’s the game we were kind of hoping for. They just threw and caught the thing so darn well. I don’t know how many balls Welker caught, but we hung on and we hung in. When we had to finish, we finished really strong and we got the ball back for the offense. 6 points against that team is extraordinarily good, so whatever it takes to get that done. Turnovers were important.
(On whether he thought about going for it on Fourth and 3 with about 3 minutes left…) I was thinking about it. But we had all of our time outs, and the Two Minute Warning and all of that, and Jon had been kicking the ball so great, that we thought we could just go ahead and bomb it up there and take another shot at it. You hope to get them out of there in 30 seconds right there. I don’t know what burned off the clock, but I think we got it back with just under four, is that right?, so we got the job done. It was truly in my mind, we were thinking about it, and it was a four-down situation, just depending upon what it was and how long it was. I didn’t like our third down, I wish we had made something on third down to make it a shorter fourth down, but it worked out fine.
(On the play call on the Sidney Rice touchdown…) Darrell; we had some stuff in all week, that we were looking for some chances, and we were going to be very aggressive, so we used about everything we had. The reverse pass, and that got a big PI for us. It was just another play for us to get down the field. It was the throw and the catch and the finish and all that that was sort of marvelous about it.
(On the difficulty with the running game today… ) They played the line of scrimmage very aggressively. They ran through a number of times and discouraged us. It seemed like we weren’t getting started. Marshawn was running fine, we just couldn’t secure the line of scrimmage and the penetration. They took some shots at us and it worked out for them. Sometimes you make them pay for that, and it helped us on some of the play passes later on. We picked it up, and we had some spacing. Most of all, they were effective. They did a nice job of attacking us and we weren’t as good as we had hoped for.
(On the value of this win…) This is a huge game for us. There is no question, in terms of offense, because everybody knows. Receivers know, the O-line did a marvelous job of protecting down the stretch. All those plays they had to give Russell a chance to step up and throw those balls, they did a fantastic job for us. All of that is fed by the success of it. Hopefully, we can take the next step. We have a heck of a big game coming up this week early and we’re just going to keep moving ahead. Nothing enormous is going to change, there’s no moment that we’re going to turn things all around. We’re just trying to keep growing and getting better. We’re a young football team that knows how to hang, and we’re really tough. That’s going to give us a chance in every game.
(On stopping their no huddle offense…) That really was not even an issue. They did not up tempo it but a few plays; they didn’t go that way for whatever reason. We were ready for it, that was not an issue at all in the game. We were able to substitute, we moved our guys in and out. We had to see what was going to happen and as we gauged it, Gus had the guys ready to go and that was not a factor. It was their throwing and catching that was so good. There was already somebody that they were dinking around to. We rushed 3 guys a lot in this game to try to cover them down, and they continued to find openings. If you think about all of those catches that they made; they made a bunch of great catches in the game. To their credit; they’re a fine group.
(On the some interceptions that almost happened early in the game…) Yeah, that would have been a huge difference, and it was in the second half. Sherm gets one, and just to get the ball off, and Earl finally got one down in there deep, which was important. We could have had 4 or 5 today, we really could. We had the ball right in our hands, and it’s wet and all that. Not enough to overcome the first half production by them. We needed a couple more of those picks to land in our arms and keep it. It was great to get a couple in the second half.
(On whether it was extra special to win against New England…) I hadn’t even thought about that. That’s funny that you even bring that up. I hadn’t even thought about it. You know, that was a long time ago, and there have been a lot of games. I really love Robert Kraft, he’s a great man and he’s been great throughout the years about our separation, of sorts. I respect the heck out of him. But, I’m a competitor, and heck yeah I want to win against those guys. I’m not going to tell you I’m not. I wouldn’t. But I hadn’t thought of it until you brought it up there.
(On injuries…) It looks like Byron Maxwell aggravated his hamstring again. Kam Chancellor got banged on the elbow, we’ll see what that means. McQuistan had a little something going; they checked him out but he did finish, I think it was a knee thing. Not too bad, we were pretty fortunate again.
(On seeing Russell Wilson’s scrambling… ) This week, we made a big point to the whole receiving crew and the quarterbacks and everybody that is catching the ball, that we have not taken advantage of Russell’s movement. He’s been getting out, and he’s been running and making yards, and we made a big deal about it this week, that there are huge plays there for us if we just look and fight harder to get open, and right off the bat he finds Doug, which it was a great validation for the point that we had made. Guys are now running to get open when he moves, and Russell, we asked him to not be so quick to take off and run across the line of scrimmage. Get out there, and find time and see if you can find our guys. We’ll all get better. Because, we’ve been looking for explosive plays in the offense, and they’re just sitting there for us, when he gets out swinging. There was a tremendous validation of what we had pointed out, and it was a factor in the game. He moved beautifully, and the run where he scrambles and spins all around; jeez, that looked like Steve Young in the Vikings game. Maybe not that good. [laughter] But, it was pretty good on this day. I thought it was a fantastic play; pretty cool. I was coaching the Vikings at the time, so I’ll just tell you that all my guys missed him on that day.
(On how the Seahawks will handle the short week…) We already have a plan in mind on how we’re going to do this. It’s a very, very difficult turnaround for the NFL players to do this physically; both teams are in the same situation. They’re playing today, and they have to get turned around to. So hopefully, we’ll win tomorrow and Tuesday and Wednesday and it will set us up so that we can win on Thursday. We’re going to take care of our guys, though. We know they play hard, we know they give us everything they’ve got, and now we have to learn the plan, and get it done. Physically, we will really help them get ready for Thursday and then we’ll take advantage of the break on the next weekend, which will be huge for us.
(On what Russell Wilson’s scrambling brings to the offense…) When he scrambles, he really had his eyes down the field and took advantage of our emphasis this week. There’s another one that we’ve told you about, and he fixes things; he did it again. Right off the bat, we’ve only had the ball for 5 plays or something, and it was something that we had talked about doing, finding our guys on the backside coming across, all of the elements that come into scrambling; we had really pressed to get better at, and sure enough he hit one right off the bat, and it was a huge play for us.
(On Breno Giacomini’s play…) Breno didn’t send any signals back to his homies back there, through me, but I was sure he was going to try to. But, this was a big deal to him. You know; all the guys he grew up with and the people…he has great respect for where he comes from. It killed him the way the Red Sox played this year. I’m sure he’s going to take something special out of it.
(On the play of the defensive secondary…) I think both guys today continue to be active and make stuff happen. They went after us, a little bit, today and did a nice job of throwing underneath us, but our guys stayed on top all day long and got it done. We got beat on that one on two-deep coverage, but other than that, they played really effective again, and it was great to see Richard get a turnover, just to show them that we could get one, and all that. These guys are just growing up, they’re growing up right before our eyes, and they’re great competitors, and we’re lucky to have them.
We should mention, and I know it was a really big day here, but Felix Baumgartner made it today, too. That was awesome. That was ridiculously unbelievable that he could pull that off, and do it so well. We were watching, everybody was hanging because one of his coaches, Dr. Mike Gervais, works with us, and he was there at the launch, so we were all very tied to that. So, hats off to Felix, man, he did it.
QB RUSSELL WILSON
(On the win today… ) That was a great game. It was unbelievable just to be here in this atmosphere and playing the New England Patriots in CenturyLink. Our defense did a tremendous job making some plays when they needed to. Our offense clicked today, we made some plays. We got stagnant a little there for a little bit of time, but we got through it, we kept working. Coaches made great calls through the whole entire game; special teams did a good job there near the end and that’s what we needed, and it was a great atmosphere.
(On his thoughts on the last drive…) Let’s do it now. The goal is to win, obviously, so you have to capitalize and you got to be extremely sharp in those situations and we did a great job, the communication was awesome, guys were on the same page and we capitalized on those opportunities.
(On what the offense did to get going again…) We just focused in. Obviously, the New England Patriots are a good team, so they’re going to make some plays; we’re going to make some plays. I think the key is continue to stay focused on what we can control, and play one play at a time and stay in that moment, and stay in the now, and we definitely did that. The defense made some huge, huge stops there, and we got that opportunity and we came up big.
(On whether he is feeling in more control…) I definitely think it helps with guys making plays, and the offensive line did a tremendous job of blocking and giving me enough time to make decisions, go through my reads. That’s the key. In this league, you have to make plays. Guys definitely did that, not to mention Sidney Rice’s throw. That sure was pretty. It was probably prettier than the one I threw to him at the end. That’s pretty awesome that we can do that, and make explosive plays but also control the game with the running game too, as well.
(On the touchdown to Sidney Rice…) The key was that the offensive line did a great job of protecting me long enough for Sidney to get open. He ran a great, great route. He headed up his guy, and he ended up getting open. I just try to put it in a spot where only he could catch it, and he did a great job of coming up with that tremendous catch there. I think he squeezed it with four hands, even though he doesn’t have four hands.
(On whether he is more comfortable on last-minute drives…) I think I’m almost comfortable, no matter what the situation, I think I’m just more experienced. Being in those situations, you really have to trust what you see, and you really have to be quick with your decisions, but also believe in your decisions, and just be decisive with the football. Guys made some tremendous plays here, and I think it definitely helps with that experience. Obviously, I’m a rookie, but I’ve played a lot of football games in my lifetime and to get little experiences and little nuggets of information from every game, that has to be your goal. You have to understand those situations, so that when you go into those situations at the end of the game, just make plays, but also be smart with the football. We’ve got some explosive, explosive plays all because the offensive line did a great job and guys made plays catching the football.
(On whether there was something that was adjusted this week…) I think the biggest thing was that our focus this whole entire week was the red zone. We did a good job in the red zone this week, and today. Practice was just so sharp. And that’s the way we have to be all the time and we’re doing a good job of growing, and we have to continue to learn and continue to grow that way. I think the main thing is just coming out here and playing at a high level and just trusting what we’re doing. The coaching staff is doing a great job of putting us in great situations, and the defense is doing a good job of getting us the ball when we need it. We just have to go out there and make plays, and we’re doing a good job of that right now.
(On whether he was surprised that the team went for it on fourth down before the touchdown to Braylon Edwards…) We knew we were going to go for it on fourth down. That’s the type of situation where you have Tom Brady on the other side, and you have to keep the football and make a play, and we definitely did that.
(On whether he made a more concerted effort to look downfield…) Yeah, I guess so. I always look downfield. I wouldn’t say I don’t look down the field. I took a couple more chances than what I would normally do sometimes, and it came up big. Coach Carroll did a tremendous job of telling us during the week and talking to me and sitting me down, and just saying hey, ‘maybe we can get a couple of shots here and there when you extend the play’, and so we definitely did that. Guys really worked on it this week, we ran several drills with it, and it came up big for us. Obviously, Doug Baldwin early in the game twice, basically, and he came up with some great catches there, and that’s what we need.
(On whether he had his longest ever 9 yard run…) Pretty close to it, I’d say. I made a move and just decided to slide there at the end, because I knew they were coming pretty fast. I just wanted to make sure that I got down in time, and that was a big run for us.
(On whether New England’s emphasis on shutting down your rushing game opened up the passing game…) I think every team tries to slow down Marshawn and obviously he’s one of the best if not the best running back in the National Football League, and he did a good job of making some plays and it did open some things up for us, which is huge. That’s the great thing about our offense right now, when we have that balanced attack where we can run it and play-action it, and just drop back and throw it. That really helps both sides in terms of throwing the football and running the football.
(On whether this game showed that he can take more of the offensive workload…) I always believe that, I always trust in myself. My biggest fear is not being prepared enough, and that’s what I’ve always been like. I’m always going to prepare the right way and know that I can take as much as I can on my shoulders, but it’s not all on my shoulders. I’m just trying to help the other 10 guys play at a high level. I just call the play and trust what I see, and just facilitate the ball to the right guy at the right time, and that’s got to be the goal, and for us to get the ball in the end zone.
(On the importance of winning at home…) We have so much respect for our fans. There’s nothing like it. CenturyLink brings so much energy to us players and it just lifts us up. We always bring the energy on our own, but playing here is fascinating. There’s nothing like it. It’s an unbelievable situation for us because we get to come and play against some of the best teams in the National Football League and play them at home, and it’s a sight to see, that’s for sure. I’ve been a lot of places, and there’s nothing like here.
WR SIDNEY RICE
(On Russell Wilson’s capabilities…) “He’s done a heck of a job. He’s handling himself real well. The thing I like most about him is when something goes wrong out there, he’s not one of those guys that gets down, mopes around, things like that. He’s always on the sidelines coming up to us telling us to keep our head up, stay in the game and be ready to go out and make plays. That’s exactly what we did today.”
(On making plays once Wilson got out of the pocket…) “Yeah, it was definitely an emphasis coming into the week. We wanted to work on our scrambling drill. Those are huge opportunities and he (Wilson) hit a couple of big ones today.”
(On throwing the ball downfield and if that was a goal this week…) “Definitely. We studied film. First thing we said was we’d have opportunities to take chances down the field and all we had to do was take advantage of them.”
(On if the opportunity for the final touchdown play developed as the game went on…) “No, it was a read. I had another read on it. The defense should have had a different coverage but perfect play-call, perfect coverage, touchdown.”
(On being open and if it was a bust in coverage…) “It wasn’t a bust. It definitely wasn’t a bust. When I gave him the corner move, his job is to protect that half of the field and he bit down on it. Basically, it’s a double move and I was able to get back across his face.”
S EARL THOMAS
(On how tough is it to not get down on yourself when Tom Brady is continually driving down the field and completing first downs…) “I know in my mind, and I’m pretty sure in everybody else’s mind that at any moment we could make a turnover. I know at any time the ball can come our way and we can change the momentum so that that’s how we look at as a defense. We’re going to fight to the end.”
(On how big of a statement was today’s win…) “That’s big. We’re young, I think we’re moving in the right direction, and like I always said we just need to stay humble and give God all the glory for this win, and get prepared for this quick game coming up.”
(On if it’s too early to look ahead to San Francisco…) “It’s not too early, but I’m definitely going to enjoy this win, and we’re going to get ready for San Francisco because we know they’re a tough team also.”
WR BRAYLON EDWARDS
(On what this win says about the Seahawks…) “I just think it shows the league, the fans and audience that we are for real. We’re a good team, we have a good defense, we have an emerging offense that is starting to get behind this young guy, and he’s starting to make plays. He’s getting a little better each game. So if we can get this thing moving at this kind of clip, who knows what this team can be later on in January. So it’s a good statement and it lets you know we are for real.
(On the touchdown did him and Russell Wilson communicate at the line of scrimmage…) “No there wasn’t any communication at the line of scrimmage it was just a fade. It was just a fade and Russell saw where the defense was playing and he took a shot. That’s what the play was from the start.”
(On Russell Wilson and watching him grow week by week…) “It’s good to see. It’s showing that he has a lot of confidence, it shows that he’s not going to fold. I think that’s what you look for in young guys if things don’t go right. Do they fold, do they go in a shell? And he’s a guy who continually fights, continually comes in and studies film and knows the opponent. He’s making strides and you seen that in what he did today. He made some bad throws and then he came right back and made some good throws, and some even better throws after. That’s what you like to see in a good quarterback period, young or old, how you overcome adversity, and today Russell Wilson played well.”
CB Richard Sherman
(On today’s game and how the offense and defense worked together…) “Yeah that was a perfect scenario. There were some times where we got put in some bad positions and we needed to bail them out. They bailed us out of some tough situations so it works and in hand. Everybody did their part. Specials teams came through late; Leon had a great return to put us in position to score, and everyone did their part.”
(On the sort week they have ahead of them…) “We’re playing a great ball club next week. We’re playing a real great ball club who’s almost a mirror image of what we do. They’re a great defense and they run the heck out of the ball.”
WR Doug Baldwin
(On him getting back into action…) “It just felt great to be out there and to compete again and feeling healthy. Being able to move my body and adjust my body in the ways that I normally can. I’m not quite there yet, the full 100 percent, but I’m close and today was evident of that. I’m just excited to be apart of this win today.”
(On what it took to get him more involved in the game plan…) “It’s not necessarily anything in particular, it’s more so on what I can control. Being healthy, staying out on the field and being able to build that chemistry with Russell Wilson, and like I said before, in practice he as to know that I’m going to get open, he has to feel that I’m going to get open and I have to be in those particular spots where he likes to throw the ball.”
(On what a win like this says about his quarterback…)”There’s not enough words out there for me to say. The final play itself shows his poise, his calm nature and his ability to go out there and get it done especially when it counts in crunch time.”