Seahawks fall to Vikings

  • By John Boyle Herald Writer
  • Saturday, August 20, 2011 12:01am
  • Sports

SEATTLE — Saturday night provided the first extended look at Seattle’s new-look offense led by quarterback Tarvaris Jackson.

It also showed that said offense still has a ways to go between now and when the regular season kicks off next month.

In their second preseason game,

which eventually ended as a 20-7 loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Seattle used its starting offense for the entire first half, and came away with little to show for it.

“I was disappointed the way this went tonight,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. “After a full week getting ready, I didn’t feel like we got very much done.”

The Seahawks punted on their first two possessions, then fell behind 7-0 on their third possession when Jackson was intercepted by Marcus Sherels, who scored on a 64-yard return. Jackson’s pass was on the money to Golden Tate, but the ball bounced off the hands of the second-year receiver and fell to Sherels.

On its fourth possession, Seattle was finally able to sustain a long drive, but it stalled out at the goal line when, with four tries from inside the 2-yard line, the Seahawks could not put the ball in the end zone.

Considering that Seattle used its top two draft picks in April — not to mention some money in free agency to sign guard Robert Gallery — on rebuilding the line, that was certainly not an encouraging sign for an offense that ranked 31st in rushing last year.

“As a whole offense, we just have to get better,” Jackson said. “We’re going to get it together. We’ve got a lot of guys learning right now, we’ve got a lot of young guys. So we’re just trying to teach so we can get everything going and get the offense clicking. … The first team, we didn’t put any points on the board last week as well as this week, so we’ve got a lot of work to do.”

Equally troubling for the Seahawks offense was the inability to protect Jackson, who despite not taking a sack, was constantly under pressure and getting hit. It was only Jackson’s athleticism and elusiveness that kept him from being sacked several times in his two quarters of action. With little time to throw, and with Tate dropping a pair of passes, Jackson finished the half 11-of-21 for just 75 yards and an interception as the Seahawks went scoreless with their starters on the field.

“He was fighting for his life a little bit,” Carroll said. “I need to see what happened, but they made it hard on him. I thought he did some very good things, showed he could get out of trouble and save a play. I’m not in any way disappointed with what he did. We need to help him. We need to protect him better, and we didn’t run the ball much either.

And with Jackson struggling, though largely through no fault of his own, it didn’t take fans long to get behind Charlie Whitehurst when the backup quarterback came out clicking in the second half. With a lot more time to operate than Jackson enjoyed, Whitehurst led the Seahawks on a 16-play, 89-yard touchdown drive in the third quarter. Whitehurst was 10-of-11 on the drive for 79 yards, including a 3-yard touchdown pass to tight end Anthony McCoy. Whitehurst finished the game 14-of-19 for 97 yards. That touchdown made it 13-7, and Whitehurst and the Seahawks’ reserves couldn’t score again.

Any hopes Seattle had of coming back went away when Minnesota’s Tristan Davis scored on a 35-yard run to make it 20-7 with just over two minutes left in the game.

By the third quarter, of their second preseason game, the Seahawks appeared to already have a quarterback controversy on their hands. Right after signing Jackson, Carroll made it clear that Jackson was his starting quarterback, and would be when the season opens in San Francisco. Yet for the second week in a row, Whitehurst was the one leading scoring drives, and as the third-quarter wound down with the Seahawks driving, the fans were chanting “Charlie, Charlie, Charlie.”

Even so, Carroll said right now he isn’t planning on opening up a quarterback competition.

“I need to look at the film and see why things happened, but I’m not in that mindset at all,” Carroll said. “I love that Charlie played well, and we need to give Tarvaris a chance to play well too with the guys around him playing well.”

And with preseason game No. 3 a week away, Carroll knows his offense has a lot of work to do in preparation for next month’s season opener.

“It’s a work in progress,” he said. “We’ve got a lot to do.”

Herald Writer John Boyle: jboyle@heraldnet.com. For more Seahawks coverage, check out the Seahawks blog at heraldnet.com/seahawksblog

Talk to us

More in Sports

Everett Community College’s Trojan mascot (left) poses with Everett Silvertips mascot, Lincoln. (Provided photo)
Silvertips, EvCC announce partnership to house players

Everett’s billeting program is on hold to respect health and safety protocols forced by the pandemic.

Gonzaga forward Corey Kispert (24), looks to drive against Pacific forward Jeremiah Bailey (13), during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Stockton, Calif., Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021. Gonzaga won 76-58. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Edmonds native Kispert named WCC player of the year

Former local hoops stars Paisley Johnson Harding and Jordyn Edwards also received All-WCC honors.

Everett High School graduate Jayden White (right), a University of Washington freshman, poses next to throws coach Andrew Ninow after breaking the Huskies' school record in the weight throw last Friday. (Photo by Jamie Mitchell)
Community sports roundup: Everett H.S. grad breaks UW record

Jayden White broke UW’s weight throw record, highlighting a success-filled week for local athletes.

FILE - Washington's Asa Turner (20) celebrates with Kamren Fabiculanan (31) after Turner intercepted a pass in the final minute of an NCAA college football game against Oregon State in Seattle, in this Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020, file photo. Washington won 27-21. Washington has pulled out of the Pac-12 football championship game due to COVID-19 issues in the Huskies program, and Oregon will now play No. 13 USC for the conference title on Friday instead.  Washington (3-1) announced Monday, Dec. 14, 2020, it is withdrawing from the championship game after determining the Huskies did not have at least 53 scholarship players available and did not meet the minimum number of scholarship athletes at specific positions.(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
Washington’s 2021 football schedule released

Huskies head coach Jimmy Lake is hopeful that fans will be allowed as soon as the spring game May 1.

Washington State running back Deon McIntosh (3) celebrates after scoring against Utah during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Dec. 19, 2020, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Washington State’s 2021 football schedule released

The Cougars open the season with three straight home games and six of their first eight in Pullman.

Granite Falls' Kaleb Roberts rushes with Sultan's Kaden Harwick closing Friday night in Sultan on February 26, 2021 (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Friday night lights finally back on

Granite Falls beats rival Sultan in OT in the area’s first prep football game in more than 15 months.

High School football teams across Snohomish County are closing in on their first game in over a year. (Herald file photos)
Prep football: Key games and the area’s complete schedule

The first H.S. football game in the county in over a year is set to take place this coming Friday.

A Marysville Pilchuck football player sports a spear on his helmet as the Tomahawks took on Snohomish in the Wesco 3A Championship Friday evening at Quil Ceda Stadium on November 1, 2019. School district leaders may soon need to consider dropping Marysville Pilchuck High School’s mascot, the Tomahawks. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Should Marysville Pilchuck High drop the name ‘Tomahawks’?

A state bill would ban Native American mascots and symbols from schools — unless there is tribal permission.

Dawn Trudeau (Seattle Storm)
13 years ago this month, they bought the Seattle Storm

Dawn Trudeau and her partners didn’t foresee the challenges — or the championships — that were in store.

Most Read