It wasn't pretty, but Seahawks will take first win
After the way the first two weeks went, Pete Carroll's crew would take any sort of victory.
Ugly? That's not the phrase Carroll used Monday to describe the Seahawks' 13-10 victory over Arizona a day earlier. It certainly wasn't pretty, but how it looked meant little compared to its importance.
''I don't think that was an ugly win. That was a hard fought, tough win,'' Carroll said. ''Sometimes you screw it up and all. We played pretty solid football for the most part.''
Seattle at least put to rest the questions about when that first win was going to come. The Seahawks host Atlanta this week then travel back East to face the New York Giants before getting to their bye week.
Maybe a few questions about new quarterback Tarvaris Jackson will quiet down, too. He wasn't spectacular, but he avoided mistakes Seattle's rebuilt offense can't afford. He also provided Seattle's biggest highlight with an 11-yard touchdown run that proved to be the winning score.
It was a wild swing of fan reaction. In the first half, Jackson was getting booed and hearing chants for backup Charlie Whitehurst. By the third quarter, they were cheering wildly after Jackson scrambled for the score.
The amount of scrutiny Jackson has received hasn't gone unnoticed by Carroll.
''They're scrutinizing (him) very sharply at this point. From the very beginning people wondered why you would bring him in. There were those kind of questions. He's not wavered by it at all. I'm not, either,'' Carroll said. ''But it's going to take some time till everybody gets comfortable and sees what he's all about and sees his play. They didn't boo him in the second half. I think that second half was OK.''
Jackson acknowledged after Sunday's win that he realized he was coming into a difficult situation in Seattle replacing Matt Hasselbeck, who'd been with the Seahawks for a decade and was the face of the franchise for much of that time.
It hasn't helped that Jackson didn't do anything flashy or exciting the first two weeks. He's been a manager of the offense, leading the Seahawks to just three touchdowns in three games and averaging a mere 5.4 yards per pass attempt.
But for the 14 times he's been sacked, Jackson has yet to fumble. And both of his interceptions have come on desperation passes at the end of a half.
''That's a big part to Tarvaris' play because he's been hit, he's been exposed and he's taking care of it and the running backs are doing a great job of that,'' Carroll said. ''We've got to make sure that we keep that going.''
Jackson immediately reconnected with Sidney Rice on Sunday as the former teammates in Minnesota hooked up eight times for 109 yards. But lost in the receiving mix was last year's breakout player, Mike Williams.
Williams was targeted just once the entire game and was shut out for the second time since becoming a starter in Seattle for the 2010 season.
Both Jackson and Carroll said they need to get Williams more involved.
''He probably was open a couple of times, if I go back and watch the film, I'll probably see him open a couple of times on the pictures,'' Jackson said after Sunday's game. ''We just have to do a better job of making sure I look for him and making sure that we get some plays where we get him the ball.''
Defensively, Carroll continued to rave about the play of second-year safeties Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor. It was Chancellor who made the clinching interception with 1:04 remaining on Sunday, stepping in front of Todd Heap to intercept Kevin Kolb's pass.
Less noticeable was another youngster, rookie K.J. Wright, who was taking the starting spot from former No. 4 overall pick Aaron Curry. Wright wasn't credited with a tackle in the game, while Curry was in for only a handful of plays and finished with one stop.
Carroll wouldn't speculate on how the plan would work out this week, but said Wright did enough to earn his time.
''(He) just contributed fine. Did a very solid job,'' Carroll said. ''I don't think he had any negative plays in the game, so he did a good job for us.''
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