By Bill Swartz
“Angry runners” is the term Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell uses to describe Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch and Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson. Two of the top backs in the NFL will be featured front and center at CenturyLink Field Sunday.
Bevell has drawn up plays for both elite backs and says their teammates must assume both Peterson and Lynch will keep a play alive after the initial tackle attempt.
Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson leads the NFL with 404 yards after contact this season. (AP)
“They have many similarities in their running styles,” said Bevell, who came to Seattle from Minnesota. “If you’re blocking for them downfield, you have to assume they will break free from the first contact.”
The statistics support Bevell’s statement as Peterson and Lynch rank first and second in the NFL in yards after contact.
Receiver Sidney Rice, a former Viking, has helped both backs enjoy long runs by holding his block on a cornerback or safety. Rice said he’s pleased his former teammate Peterson has overcome injuries and is playing at a high level again.
Seattle linebacker K.J. Wright said seeing Lynch do his thing in practice every day should prepare him for his first attempt to tackle Peterson.
“Marshawn never quits on a run, and he keeps his legs churning just like Peterson,” Wright said. “They’re both great backs with different styles. It’s going to be a big challenge.”
Coach Pete Carroll said Lynch and Peterson remind him of some of the “throwback” runners in the old NFL. They’re “big, strong, tough, and hard to keep off the field. It’s going to be fun to watch them. Very few guys in the league are this good,” Carroll said.
Defensive lineman Jason Jones did not practice Wednesday because of a sprained ankle. He missed Sunday’s Detroit game.
Receiver Braylon Edwards did not participate due to his knee problem. Slot receiver Doug Baldwin was limited with his high ankle sprain. Both missed the Lions game as well. Bevell said he’s coming up with a couple schemes should neither man be able to play against the Vikings.
Former Washington Husky Jermaine Kearse was signed off the practice squad and switched jersey numbers from 8 to 11. Seattle also brought back two receivers they had in summer camp. Phil Bates and Lavasier Tuinei returned to the practice squad.
One injury of note from Vikings practice: former Seahawks tight end John Carlson did not participate due to a concussion.