BY Adam Lewis 06:52PM 10/29/2014

Seahawks: Coyle in at MLB, new FB impresses

Looking to boost the run game, the Seahawks signed a 285-pound fullback Wednesday. Rookie MLB Brock Coyle will start Sunday against the Raiders.

Rookie Brock Coyle, from the University of Montana, will get the first start of his NFL career Sunday against the Raiders. /

RENTON — Evidence is sufficient to give the Seahawks pause about overlooking the 0-7 Raiders when the teams play Sunday at CenturyLink Field (1:25 p.m., CBS).  A year ago, the 7-1 Seahawks met 0-7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers and fell behind 21-0 before winning 27-24  — at the Clink, no less.

The Seahawks sleep-walked through much of the first half before mounting the biggest comeback win in franchise history.

Surprisingly, the game hasn’t been a topic of conversation this week in the locker room, according to CB Richard Sherman, though it did provide the “one-game-at-a-time, each-week-is-a-championship opportunity” Seahawks a chance to get back to basics.

“That has been a really big example for us,” said coach Pete Carroll. “Not so much this week. That was a big wakeup call for us.”

If that wasn’t enough, the Seahawks can simply revisit film from their final game of the 2014 preseason, when the Raiders won 41-31 at Coliseum. Rookie QB Derek Carr went 11-for-13 for 143 passing yards and three touchdowns.

Granted, the final game of the preseason usually doesn’t include starters getting significant action. But Carr’s performance nonetheless impressed Carroll.

“He hit everything,” Carroll said. “He tore us up. Came in boldly. They didn’t just kind of dink it around. They showed that they had some belief that he could be a down-the-field guy. They certainly have gone that way. Their receivers have been on fire.”

Or as Sherman put it, when asked if he was surprised Carr tested him: “He doesn’t know any better.”

Coyle in at MLB

With MLB Bobby Wagner ruled out with turf toe, and LB Malcolm Smith questionable because of a groin strain, the Seahawks will start undrafted free agent rookie Brock Coyle at middle linebacker.

“It’s his position to lose. He’s in there right now. He could mess it up,” joked linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr.

K.J. Wright played middle linebacker the past two weeks, but he’ll now move back to his natural spot on the outside opposite LB Bruce Irvin.  Norton said the Seahawks feel comfortable playing Coyle, a University of Montana graduate, because of his performance during the summer and the preseason while Wagner was out with a hamstring injury.

“He’s a guy we have a lot of faith in,” Norton said. “He’s tough, smart, reliable, fast and he fits in well with K.J. (Wright).”

Seahawks welcome Marysville-Pilchuck football team

The Marysville-Pilchuck High School football team practiced Tuesday at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center, as they readied for Friday night’s playoff game against Meadowdale.

It was the Seahawks way of reaching out after Marysville student Jaylen Fryberg opened fire last week in the school’s cafeteria, killing two students and wounding two others before turning the gun on himself.

Marysville players toured the locker room and met members of the Seahawks.

“Both sides received a lot out of that exchange,” Carroll said. “Our guys were really moved by their energy and their enthusiasm.”

The Seahawks invited the Oak Harbor football team for a future visit to the VMAC after they voluntarily forfeited their playoff game against Marysville last week out of respect for a grieving community, allowing M-P to win the Wesco North Division title. The act of sportsmanship didn’t go unnoticed.

“It does speak to the power of sport,” Carroll said. “It is such a unifying element in our culture. It was very powerful.”

Sherman described the encounter.

“They were kind of shocked to see us a little bit,” he said. “But they seemed like some excited kids. They seemed like for a moment in time they forgot about everything that happened, everything that was going on, and were able to enjoy the moment and take pictures and smile and laugh and have a good time.

“Obviously, the reality of the situation is what it is. It’s going to be a tough road getting back to normality for them. I’m glad we could take a little stress off them.”

Seahawks sign massive fullback

Will Tukuafu doesn’t fit the profile of a fullback, but he could get snaps there Sunday after the Seahawks signed the 285-pound University of Oregon product to their 53-man roster Wednesday.

“I’ve seen him for about 30 plays,” joked offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. “He’s big, he has size. I know he can run up there and hit something hard. That’s what we’re looking for.”

When FB Derrick Coleman, 233 pounds. broke his foot while warming up for an Oct. 19 game against the Rams and was lost for the season, it forced No. 2 RB Robert Turbin, 223 pounds, to fill in at fullback the past two weeks. Bevell said Turbin will continue to see some time there, while cautioning that Tukuafu, 30, needs time to learn the Seahawks offense after spending the past four years with the 49ers, where he played fullback and defensive line. Carroll didn’t rule out him playing both ways for the Seahawks.

But their first priority is to have him help the run game.

“He’s a big man,” Carroll said. “Two-hundred and eighty pounds playing fullback. It’s why we wanted to do it.”

Other personnel developments

  • TE Zach Miller (foot) won’t play this week. He met with a foot specialist during the weekend in Charlotte and is improving, but there is no timetable for his return. This will mark the fifth game Miller has missed because of ankle surgery. He has six catches for 76 yards this season. “This is the best he’s felt by far,” Carroll said of Miller. “He made a big jump with the treatment that they did. It’s the first really good, positive sign we’ve had.”
  • CB Byron Maxwell didn’t practice Wednesday but he does have a chance of playing Sunday. He’s missed the past two weeks after straining his calf against the Cowboys. Meanwhile, backup S Jeron Johnson has yet to be cleared from the concussion he sustained against the Panthers.
  • C Max Unger (sprained foot) returned to practice Wednesday, as did WR Bryan Walters (concussion), who sat out the Carolina game.
  • In addition to signing Tukuafu, the Seahawks Wednesday moved LB L. J. Fort from the practice squad onto the roster. Fort hasn’t appeared in an NFL game since 2012, with the Browns. The Seahawks released Tuesday WR Phil Bates and TE Brett Brackett.


  • jafabian

    A quote from Sherman? Is he no longer boycotting local media for publishing his home address?

    Classy move by the organization to invite both Marysville-Pilchuck and Oak Harbor HS to visit them. Prayers to the Marysville community at this time.

  • Bayview Herb

    If a media type published a player’s home address, he/she should be kicked out of the fraternity. That is totally unprofessional.