Seahawks snap counts vs Jets: Spiller steps in, Lockett gets a break
C.J. Spiller’s touchdown catch in Seattle’s 27-17 win on Sunday capped a week of long flights and late nights for the new Seahawks running back.
Before he signed with Seattle midway through last week, Spiller took a free-agent visit to the same Jets team he would end up playing against in his Seahawks debut. That meant flying from his home in South Carolina to New York before heading to Seattle. He arrived at the Seahawks’ facility on Wednesday and practiced for the first time with his new team on Thursday, which gave him only a few days to get up to speed for Sunday’s game back at MetLife Stadium.
Spiller played nine snaps on offense, stepping in for the injured C.J. Prosise as Seattle’s third-down back. He also returned a kickoff 22 yards, getting three snaps on special teams with Seattle wanting to limit Tyler Lockett’s workload due to his knee injury.
Pass-protection is a big part of the job of a third-down back, so Spiller had to learn his assignments in a hurry.
“Some of the protections I was able to relate it to some other places that I’ve been, but it was still a lot to try to cram in,” he told reporters after the game. “But like I said, my coaches and my teammates did a great job of making sure that I was prepared and understood what was going on. It was a lot of nights that I stayed up late … I was trying to get it down as quick as I can because I knew it was a possibility that I would play. I just wanted to make sure I knew what I was doing when I was out there.”
Spiller touched the ball on four of his nine offensive snaps, gaining 12 yards on two carries and 5 yards on two catches (the second of which lost yardage). His 8-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter put Seattle ahead 7-3. He got a one-on-one matchup with a linebacker and won it.
“That’s like the cherry on top,” he said of his score. “It’s been a crazy week, man, especially flying from different time zone to different time zone and trying to learn the plays that was going in for this game. You couldn’t ask for nothing better, and then on top, you come away with a win. That’s the most important thing for me.”
Christine Michael again got the bulk of the work in Seattle’s backfield, playing 44 of 60 offensive snaps. Rookie Alex Collins played six snaps.
Here are a few other notes on Seattle’s snap counts vs. the Jets:
• Lockett only played 14 snaps on offense, which meant more playing time for Seattle’s fourth and fifth receivers. Paul Richardson got 39 snaps while rookie Tanner McEvoy got eight, scoring a 42-yard touchdown on one of them. Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse led the way as usual with 45 and 44 snaps, respectively.
• Backup tight end Luke Willson played 40 offensive snaps, the same number as starter Jimmy Graham. Some of those came as a fullback, a role in which Willson has been used the last two games following Will Tukuafu’s release.
• Four Jets wide receivers played between 62 and 94 percent of their team’s offensive snaps, which left Seattle’s defense in nickel for much of the game. That’s why the snap counts were lower for strong-side linebacker Mike Morgan (nine of 71) and defensive tackle Ahtyba Rubin (28), who are starters in Seattle’s base defense but come off the field in nickel situations. Nickelback Jeremy Lane (62 snaps) was on the field for most of the game. It was also a busy day for nickel pass-rushers Frank Clark (48) and to a lesser extent Cassius Marsh (26).