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Coffee & Cigarettes: Seahawks links for Friday

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Steve Dykes

Thank GOODNESS it's TGIF, everybody.

As Alabama plays safe with schedule, college football misses Pete Carroll's fearlessness - Yahoo Sports
Alabama broke its commitment to play a home-and-home series against Michigan State during the 2016-17 seasons, and besides tongue-in-cheek cracks about the Tide running scared from traveling to "Beast Lansing," there's no practical reason to criticize the move.

49ers Blog and Q&A: Back to basics: Gore, 49ers beat Rams in romp
Frank Gore is over the hill. Colin Kaepernick is overexposed. And the 49ers' offensive line is overrated. Those story lines, which started to emerge during the team's two-game losing streak, were decisively dashed Thursday as the 49ers (2-2) halted their skid with a 35-11 win over the Rams.

San Francisco 49ers crush reeling Rams in St. Louis -
Facing the first crisis of the Jim Harbaugh era, the San Francisco 49ers turned back the clock to 2011. The quarterback was only a small part of their victory.

Seahawks are McDoubling down on defensive line - Seattle Seattle Seahawks |
Tony McDaniel and Clinton McDonald were basically battling for a roster spot in training camp. Maybe it was something about having only one McD so Pete Carroll wouldn’t confuse them.

FOOTBALL OUTSIDERS: Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis | Film Room: IND-SF, Hall-Cobb
When Alex Smith was the starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers last season, defending the offense was like fighting a bear. The 49ers relied on their running game to wear down and eventually overpower defenses. More often than not, it worked. When Colin Kaepernick replaced Smith as a starter, it was still like wrestling a bear, but now the bear was buffed up with more speed and had a sharper set of claws.

Turnovers will figure prominently in Texans-Seahawks - ESPN
Last Sunday in Baltimore, Houston Texans linebacker Brian Cushing was miked up, and overheard telling his defensive teammates they needed to get a turnover.

Seahawks’ No. 1-ranked defense built for speed
Of all the good things the Seahawks’ defense has done during the team’s 3-0 start, it all starts with the speed that was a priority when coach Pete Carroll was compiling these players who are playing so well.

Seahawks tackle Breno Giacomini uncertain to play vs. Texans | Seahawks | The Seattle Times
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said right tackle Breno Giacomini “got nicked a little bit’’ against the Jaguars and that “he’s got some more information to get in to see where he is’’ before the team will know if he can practice or play this week.

Texans’ J.J. Watt a natural wonder | Seattle Seahawks | The News Tribune
The legend of J.J. Watt parallels tales of Sasquatch. The trouble for the Seattle Seahawks is, Watt is real.

Ultimate Texans » Texans find out firsthand how pick sixes change games in a hurry
Interceptions that go all the way the wrong way — the “pick six” in modern football parlance — are continuing at a near-record pace this season after occurring more frequently than ever in 2012. Texans fans likely won’t find this trend surprising.

A side of Russell Wilson we don't often see -
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson tells 'Wyman, Mike and Moore' about his life away from the football field, including his worst habit and what used to land him in the principal's office as a kid. - Blog 710 ESPN Seattle at

Brock and Danny Blue 42 - Podcasts -
Why does the NFL want to expand to England? What does Seahawks coach Pete Carroll mean when he says Houston's defense is "very, very aggressive"? What idea did the Big Ten's commissioner propose regarding amateur athletes?

Richard Sherman glad to see Chris Clemons surly as ever - ESPN
Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman said defensive end Chris Clemons was his usual surly self when he got on the field for the first time this season last weekend against Jacksonville.

NFL roster stability usually equals success - Stats & Info Blog - ESPN
Your fantasy football team changes every year, but so do the players on real NFL teams. Their rosters turn over both in the offseason and in the regular season, usually due to injuries, though trades (like the recent one involving Trent Richardson) can happen.

Keys to Seahawks at Texans - Seattle Seahawks Blog - ESPN
Here are a dozen key statistics entering the Seattle Seahawks game Sunday against the Houston Texans:

What they said: Russell Wilson | Seahawks Blog | Seattle Times
As he does every Thursday, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson held his regular weekly meeting with the media today.

Video: Hugh Millen’s weekly breakdown | Seahawks Blog | Seattle Times
Here is this week’s video breakdown by former UW and NFL quarterback Hugh Millen of a key play in the previous week’s Seahawks game. This week, Millen reviews Sidney Rice’s second touchdown grab:

Russell Wilson: ‘Sometimes, when you got that much heat on you, you just got to make that play’ | Seahawks Insider - The News Tribune
Here’s everything Russell Wilson had to say Thursday:

News, notes and quotes Thursday: Sherman and Wilson take the mic | Seahawks Insider - The News Tribune
Richard Sherman said he thinks the key to Sunday is turnovers. Russell Wilson thinks his offensive line will be fine. No surprises there. The quick hits from talking with each:

Russell Wilson on his new wallet and facing J.J. Watt | - Seattle Sidelines
It's well known by now that Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and his wife spend part of every Tuesday visiting patients at Seattle Children's Hospital. Seriously, every Tuesday, his only day off during the season, it's pretty cool. Anyway, before Wilson began his Thursday press conference he wanted to show off something a young patient named Allison made for him.

Versatile Schofield a 'terrific addition' to Seahawks | - Sports
RENTON -- Let's get one thing clear, O'Brien Schofield hates seeing his former teammates in Arizona go down to season-ending injuries.But that...

It's Time for Sam Bradford to Put Up or Shut Up on Thursday Night Football | Bleacher Report
Prior to the season, pundits praised the St. Louis Rams and their offseason efforts, and through the first three games of the season, the fruits of that labor have paid off...

NFL Week 4 Predictions & Game by Game Analysis | Fanspeak NFL Blog
Each week of the NFL season, our resident expert Steve Shoup and writers will make their game picks for the week. Then Steve will give his analysis and breaks down his prediction for each game. And to make it fun, we have some superlatives so the writers can make some more bold predictions. Here's Fanspeak's Week 4 Predictions below. Enjoy Week 4 in the NFL!

Seattle Seahawks Blog - Hawk Blogger: An Early Look At The Odds Of A Seahawks Victory vs. Texans
This one is going to be tough, folks. You may have heard that Matt Schaub is overrated, and has thrown almost as many touchdowns to opponents (2) in his last two games than to his teammates (3). It would be easy to see the 30-9 stomping the Texans took in Baltimore as evidence of their weakness on defense. While it is true that Houston has not played their best football so far, underestimating this team would foolish. The shape of a Seahawks victory is a visible, but it will take Seattle's best game of the season to come away with it.

Sam Bradford extension talks welcomed by Rams -
St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford hasn't quite lived up to the expectations associated with a No. 1 overall draft pick. The Rams don't see it that way, though, and the team is willing to tie itself to Bradford for the foreseeable future.

Kyle Shanahan: Read option plays no longer 'easy' -
RGIII and the Washington Redskins took the league by storm with read option plays in 2012. It's not working so well anymore. Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan says the shock factor is gone.

NFP power rankings | National Football Post
The Bengals are on the rise while the Steelers and Giants begin to plummet.

Jaguars offer free beer for ticket buyers | National Football Post
Three hour window provides two free drinks for fans who bought tickets to Indy game.

NFL MVP Projection: Russell Wilson in discussion heading to Week 4 -
Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson is now on the NFL MVP projection list after throwing four touchdown passes in the Seahawks 45-17 win over Jacksonville.

NFL franchise in London is foregone conclusion | The MMQB with Peter King
Sunday marks the first of two games of the 2013 NFL International Series as the Minnesota Vikings “host” the Pittsburgh Steelers at Wembley Stadium in London (the Jacksonville Jaguars meet the San Francisco 49ers next month).

Justin Houston, Dontari Poe leading Kansas City Chiefs' pass rush revival | The MMQB with Peter King
The Chiefs finished the 2012 ranked 29th in the league with 27 sacks. Through three games this season, they are first with 15. They were dead last with a 99.8 defensive passer rating. Now, Kansas City is third at 63.1. Why the big change? Like anything else, it’s complicated.

The All-22: Tampa Bay must diversify schemes for quarterback success | Audibles -
After one full season, plus three games and a great deal of speculation, Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano has moved on from quarterback Josh Freeman and gone with rookie third-rounder Mike Glennon in his place. Whether the move was made because of Freeman’s inconsistent mechanics, inability to bond with Schiano, inability to show up for team photos, the simple preference for a coach to have his own guy under center, or a job-saving measure from a coaching staff, it’s a done deal. Barring injury or a serious turn of thought, Freeman will never play another down for the Bucs, and he’s already been lobbying for a trip out of town more actively then he was before.

Mac's Football Blog: 49ers pay LB Aldon Smith his full salary while he's in rehab
The San Francisco 49ers will pay linebacker Aldon Smith his full salary while he's on the non-football injury list as he seeks treatment for substance abuse issues, Jason La Canfora of reports.

Advanced NFL Stats: "Thursdays are 6.3 percent less exciting."
Friend of ANS Aaron Gordon used the Excitement Index (EI) and Combeback Factor (CBF) to find out if the Thursday night games really are more boring than most games. From Aaron's article at Sports on Earth:

Week 3 Game Scripts and Average Field Position
The 2013 season started with two weeks of extremely close games; week three brought on the blowouts. On Monday Night Football, Peyton Manning, Eric Decker, Wes Welker, Demaryius Thomas, and Julius Thomas decimated the Oakland Raiders, helping Denver jump out to a 27-7 halftime lead. Yet that comes in as only the fourth most lopsided game of week three, behind the NSFW Jaguars-Seahawks contest, the Panthers 38-0 shutout of the Giants, and the Cowboys lopsided win over St. Louis. The table below shows the week three Game Scripts for each game, along with data on the number of pass attempts, rush attempts, and run/pass ratio for each team. Sacks are included as pass attempts, but all scrambles are included as running plays, something I would like to eliminate when I have more time.

Week 4 Sleepers - Weekly Surprises -
Nick Mensio identifies a dozen possible Week 4 sleepers, touching on Danny Woodhead, Michael Floyd, Heath Miller, and nine others.

How NFL Teams Assume the Identities of Their Hometowns | Bleacher Report
It’s no accident that the Pittsburgh Steelers have always resembled the blue-collar, hard-nosed toughness of Pittsburgh's citizens. Nor is it a coincidence the Raiders have embodied the grit and intimidation common in both Oakland and Los Angeles...