Lynch, Rice limited, probable

don.ruiz@thenewstribune.comJanuary 12, 2013 

RENTON — Seattle Seahawks leading rusher Marshawn Lynch was limited in practice Friday due to a sprained foot, while leading receiver Sidney Rice was held out entirely with a knee problem.

Both are listed as probable for Sunday, when the Seahawks visit the Atlanta Falcons in an NFC divisional playoff game.

“(Lynch) looked fine,” coach Pete Carroll said between the Seahawks’ practice and their flight to Atlanta. “We’re going to give him a really good chance to play. He’s probable, or something.”

Asked what it would take for Lynch to miss the game, Carroll said, “Miss the flight. He’s fine. He’ll be all right.”

Lynch led the Seahawks this season with 1,590 yards on 315 carries. Rice led the team with 50 receptions for 748 yards.

Others showing up on the Seahawks’ injury list are cornerback Byron Maxwell (hamstring), who did not practice Friday and is listed as doubtful; and safety Jeron Johnson (hamstring), whose work was limited and who is listed as questionable.

“Jeron got to work (Friday),” Carroll said. “We put him down as limited, but he worked through the practice. He looked fine. Byron is still a little bit hampered.”

Meanwhile, Carroll was encouraged by the work of three players who will step into new roles this week: rookie defensive end Bruce Irvin, who is expected to start in place of Chris Clemons (knee); defensive end Patrick Chukwurah, who will be in uniform Sunday after signing Wednesday in the wake of Clemons’ injury; and veteran kicker Ryan Longwell, who will assume kicking duties from Steven Hauschka (calf).

“(Longwell) hit his kicks and fit together nicely with (holder) Jon Ryan to get the timing down,” Carroll said. “Looks like everything was the same as normal for us. He got the ball up real quickly. That was a good job by him. We’ll have to check him out at game time, but he’s a seasoned vet. If anybody can handle it, he will be able to handle all of the buildup to it with a limited amount of work.”

Carroll said Longwell’s field goal range is comparable to Hauschka’s, whose longest of the season was from 52 yards.

EXTRA POINTS

Falcons defensive end John Abraham (ankle) and safety Charles Mitchell (calf) are both listed as questionable. … Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley interviewed Thursday for the San Diego Chargers’ head coaching position, according to the NFL Network. … Carroll said once again that the travel to Atlanta and three-hour time difference should not be a factor in this game. Seattle has won two consecutive games in the Eastern Time Zone. … As the Seahawks’ bus traveled from the practice facility to the airport, the route once again dotted by fans holding banners and showing support for the team. “It reminds us who we are representing and it reminds us of the extraordinary fan base that we have in the 12th Man,” Carroll said. “It’s just fun. It’s fun for us.” … Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire are putting aside party labels for a fun wager over the game. Deal, a Republican, has put a case of Georgia peaches on the line. Gregoire, a Democrat, countered with a case of Washington apples.

Don Ruiz: 253-597-8808 don.ruiz@thenewstribune.com blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks

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