By Bill Swartz
Seahawks fans will see plenty of number 41 Byron Maxwell and number 20 Jeremy Lane when their team is on defense Sunday against the Buffalo Bills.
Both young defensive backs will be pressed into primary roles because Marcus Trufant and Walter Thurmond III are out Sunday with hamstring injuries.
Head coach Pete Carroll said it was important both Maxwell and Lane saw action in last week’s blow-out win against Arizona. He expects Buffalo quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to test the young corners by throwing often to Steve Johnson.
Seattle receiver Sidney Rice had a good Friday practice, according to the coach. The team’s leading pass catcher did not practice Wednesday or Thursday while nursing a sore foot. Rice is listed as probable on the Seahawks official injury report. So are defensive end Red Bryant (foot), safety Kam Chancellor, (groin), and Marshawn Lynch, (back and foot).
Carroll said receiver Charly Martin injured his calf in practice this week and is out.
Veteran Leroy Hill returns to starting outside linebacker, but Malcolm Smith will play lots according to Carroll, especially in pass coverage.
The coach said steps were taken early in the week to put the 58-0 win over Arizona behind the team and immediately focus on a 5-8 Bills team with plenty of weapons. Buffalo running back C.J. Spiller is averaging more than 6.5 yards per carry, and is a threat to score on screen passes.
Carroll said the Bills have a unique offense and because Seattle doesn’t play them very often, present a bigger challenge of game-planning and preparation.