Steven Hauschka #4 of the Seattle Seahawks kicks the game winning field goal in overtime against the Houston Texans on September 29, 2013 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images)
by Curtis Crabtree
RENTON - The first quarter of the 2013 NFL season is in the rear-view mirror and the Seattle Seahawks are 4-0 for the first time in franchise history.
Head coach Pete Carroll said Monday that while they have started the year strong, they have plenty of things to clean up and much more to do to get where they want to be.
"I was trying to be really clear with the guys today that it doesn’t mean anything other than the fact that we had a good start. That was last week already, what are we going to do now. That’s really what’s at hand," Carroll said.
"We couldn’t have done any better in terms of the wins and losses. We have a lot of football out there that we have to improve, and we have a long haul. Probably the most significant thing is that after all of this there are still 12 more games until we even get close to playoff time. We’re a long ways from home right now."
The Seahawks have to find a way to make their offensive line more functional in the coming weeks. T Russell Okung, T Breno Giacomini and C Max Unger were all sidelined against the Texans. In their absence, the line struggled against a very good defensive front in Houston.
QB Russell Wilson was consistently under siege and was sacked five times by the Texans defense. Wilson completed just 12 passes for 123 yards with an interception.
Carroll said the issues were numerous.
"It was a little bit of everything. Technique wise we got in trouble some, we got overanxious a little bit. It got kind of crazy for a while in the first half and we made some mistakes too you know. We made some mental mistakes which did come from communication issues, and identification issues," Carroll said.
"We had to struggle through that, and then we made some technique errors where we got whipped on some stuff by poor sets and things like that. It mounted to us having issues and not being able to move the football in the first half."
Unger could be back this week from a triceps issue but Okung won't be back for another six weeks at least and Giacomini will miss some time after a minor knee surgery on Monday.
With the first four weeks in the books, LB Bruce Irvin is now eligible to return from the suspended list. He was forced to miss the first four weeks after being suspended for a violation of the league's performance-enhancing drugs policy this offseason.
The Seahawks have a one-week roster exemption for Irvin that allows him to practice with the team this week. If Seattle wants him to play Sunday, they will need to release a player to put Irvin on their 53-man roster by 1 p.m. Saturday.
DE Michael Bennett is expected to be fine after being forced to leave Reliant Stadium on Sunday with a lower back injury. Bennett was awkwardly bent backward late in the second quarter when he fell into Texans' QB Matt Schaub.
Bennett was taken to the hospital for evaluation but returned to the stadium and was able to return with the team to Seattle last night. Carroll said Bennett will practice this week and they think he can play this week against Indianapolis.
T Breno Giacomini had a cleanup procedure on his injured knee Monday morning. Carroll said the doctors believe he can get back quickly from the surgery. Though Carroll didn't provide a timeline, similar surgeries have kept players out 2-4 weeks or so.
C Max Unger is expected to practice this week but Carroll said he hopes by the end of the week he'll be ready to play.
Carroll also said CB Jeremy Lane has a hamstring strain coming out of the game.
LB K.J. Wright dealt with a shoulder issue in the game but played through it and is expected to be fine.