Pete Carroll’s press conference on Monday covered a myriad of topics, but the most notable were injury related. Here are a few updates from Carroll as the Seahawks embark on the second half of their season with a 6-2 record.
1. Another devastating injury on offense
As expected, Justin Britt suffered a torn ACL on Sunday against the Falcons, and it sounds like there was some additional damage as well.
“He has to have major repair,” Carroll said.
Joey Hunt replaced Britt in the starting lineup and will be the team's starting center moving forward. He didn’t grade well, according to Pro Football Focus, with a 48.7 overall grade while allowing four pressures and a sack.
“He did fine,” Carroll said. “As Joey does, he does things right. Made good calls, good direction in what he was doing up front. There are things that he needs to improve on. Pass protection. All in all, he did a nice job."
Hunt is now one of the most critical pieces on Seattle’s already struggling offensive line. The entire group needs to take a massive step forward if the Seahawks are going to be a true contender.
2. More praise for Marquise Blair
Blair had a game-high 11 tackles in Atlanta and forced a critical fumble near the Seahawks goal line against Devonta Freeman. His coverage skills need work, but even for his mistakes, at least Blair has shown that he can make a few splash plays each game as well. That’s not something Seattle has been getting from its other safeties.
“He’s really active,” Carroll said. “Again, some really good hits. He’s got a lot of the details to clean up, just continue to get better. He’s certainly a ball player; you can see that.”
3. Injury updates
Tre Flowers (neck) is expected to be back this week against the Buccaneers after missing Sundays game in Atlanta.
Quandre Diggs (hamstring) seems much more unlikely to play, which is disappointing given the excitement around his acquisition.
“We uncovered that we need to take care of him to get him back fully,” Carroll said. “He’ll be running around this week. He was very controlled last week. We’ll see how far he can go. I can’t say that he’s for sure back yet for this weekend.”
The Seahawks may get a boost at tight end against the Bucs. Ed Dickson (knee) will practice this week with the intention of playing on Sunday. It would be a welcomed return for Seattle, a team desperately in need of help at the position since the loss of Will Dissly.
“He’s going to go this week," Carroll said. "We’re bringing Ed back in with the thought to give him a chance to practice with the chance to play. We’ve worked him really hard leading up to this time through his rehab and all. He’s been preparing for the workload. Very optimistic that he could, if he can make it through the week."
Dickson caught 12 passes for 143 yards and three touchowns in 10 games last season.
4. Still looking for a pass rush
Seattle’s two sacks on Sunday brings its total to 13 on the season. Nobody besides Jadeveon Clowney is winning on a regular basis. Ziggy Ansah, in particular, has been underwhelming. Carroll knows just how vital it is to get that group going in the back half of the season.
“We have to get that going," Carroll said. "That’s probably the biggest area that we would like to improve and see if we can continue to grow there.”