Seahawks not expecting another slop-fest from Fitz, Jets
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. >> Pete Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks have seen the Jets' ugly game film from last week, when Ryan Fitzpatrick kept throwing the ball to the other team.
One interception after the other — six in all for the New York quarterback.
Carroll's not expecting anything close to that type of slopfest on Sunday when the Seahawks (2-1) take on the Jets (1-2).
"Well, there's three games, plus the preseason and last season, and we have all kinds of stuff we're looking at," the Seattle coach said.
"We're not looking at just that one. That was an outlier and we'd love to have a game like that ourselves, but that is probably once in a career. We know we're going to be up against it."
The Jets get the chance to prove they're more like the well-oiled offense that rolled up 493 yards in a 37-31 win at Buffalo two weeks ago than the mistake-prone unit that struggled in a 24-3 loss at Kansas City last Sunday.
"That would be crazy if I could sandwich two player of the week (selections) around that awful game," Fitzpatrick said, "but that's (six interceptions ) just something that can't happen."
New York will be facing a tough task Sunday against the NFL's No. 1-ranked defense.
"They've probably been the standard for the longest," Fitzpatrick said. "It's a lot of the same guys, same scheme and it's tough. It's tough to play against them."
The Seahawks have allowed just 37 points in three games, ranking them second in that category. San Francisco's 18 points last week are the most Seattle has given up this season, so Carroll's crew is stingy, as usual.
That doesn't mean the Seahawks, playing at MetLife Stadium for the first time since winning the Super Bowl in 2014, are taking anything for granted against the Jets.
"Very impressive so far," Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett said of New York. "Brandon Marshall is a first-ballot Hall of Famer. Matt Forte is a Hall of Famer, too, so there are a lot of good players. Ryan Fitzpatrick is doing a great job. Eric Decker always does a great job catching, so this is a very good offensive team."
Here are some other things to know about the Seahawks-Jets matchup:
RUSSELL'S HUSTLE: Despite spraining the medial collateral ligament in his left knee last Sunday against San Francisco, Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson is expected to start against New York.
Carroll said Wilson practiced fully Wednesday and didn't see any reason, barring a setback, that the QB would be able to play.
It's Wilson's second significant injury of the season, though, after spraining an ankle in the opener against Miami. Jets coach Todd Bowles doesn't anticipate Wilson changing his style of play in light of the injuries, with New York expecting the Seahawks star to still try to make plays with his arm and feet.
"No, he's a tough guy," Bowles said. "I'm pretty sure he'll take care of himself."
JETS RECEIVERS: New York's receiving group is a bit banged up heading into the game, with Decker uncertain to play with a shoulder injury that kept him out of practice.
Marshall was a full participant, but is still dealing with knee and foot ailments, while rookie Jalin Marshall will be sidelined a few weeks with a torn labrum.
That leaves Quincy Enunwa, the Jets' surprise leader with 17 catches, newly signed Jeremy Ross and rookies Robby Anderson and Charone Peake as the team's only fully healthy receivers.
RED-ZONE STRUGGLES: The Jets were one of the most efficient teams in the league last season in the red zone, ranking third overall (66.04 percent) on TDs inside the opponent's 20-yard line.
New York has been surprisingly inconsistent this season, with just six touchdowns in 16 drives into the red zone for 37.5 percent, including 0 for 4 last week.
THE AWAKENING: Christine Michael is going to be Seattle's primary ball carrier for the time being — with an opportunity to earn the starting job permanently.
Starter Thomas Rawls is out for a few weeks with a cracked fibula in his left leg. But Michael showed he can handle taking on the load last week against San Francisco rushing for 106 yards — his second career 100-yard game — and scoring the first two touchdowns of his career. But the most impressive part of Michael's first three games this season is his 5.2 yards per carry average.
"His eyes are wide open and he's kind of taking everything in," Carroll said.
FULLY LOADED: Seattle is expected to have rookie right guard Germain Ifedi in the lineup for the first time during the regular season.
Ifedi suffered an ankle injury the week leading up to the opener against Miami and missed the first three games. Carroll has no hesitation about putting Ifedi back into the starting lineup.
TALK TO US
If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.