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Seahawks winning ugly but hardly complaining

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Dan Arkush

darkush@pfwmedia.com
Executive editor

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Posted Oct. 25, 2010 @ 6:51 p.m. ET
By Dan Arkush

Guess who’s sitting pretty atop the NFC West at 4-2 despite a pretty ugly victory in Week Seven? Hardly concerned about style points, Pete Carroll’s Seahawks snapped a four-game losing streak to the division-rival Cardinals, taking advantage of five Arizona turnovers and five field goals between 20 and 51 yards by PK Olindo Mare in their 22-10 victory.

Yes, the Seahawks are the only team at the moment right now with a winning record in the NFC West. But after scoring only one TD in seven possessions inside the red zone, getting called for 10 penalties for 95 yards and once again losing first-round Russell Okung with an ankle injury, it would be wise to not get too carried away over the team’s current first-place standing.

The PFW Spin

Okung limped out of the Arizona game with an injury to his left ankle less than halfway through the first quarter after missing the Seahawks’ first three games of the season with an injury to his right ankle. Head coach Pete Carroll tweeted Monday afternoon that Okung has “a “first-degree” ankle sprain, which makes his status for next Sunday’s game against the Raiders uncertain.

After Okung was replaced by Tyler Polumbus, the Seahawks averaged less than three yards on 30 subsequent carries. Okung’s latest injury is a definite concern, considering how good he looked in his first full game at left tackle against the Bears, holding Julius Peppers in check like a seasoned pro. Not helping matters was the shoddy play of Seahawks starting ORT Sean Locklear, who had a costly early false-start penalty against Arizona and two other holding calls that took away 39 rushing yards from  newly acquired RB Marshawn Lynch.

Speaking of the number “30,” that’s how many consecutive field goals Mare has connected on since being read the riot act early last season by previous head coach Jim Mora for missing a pair of field goals against the Bears. Mare set a single-game franchise record Sunday and is currently riding a franchise-best FG streak with Mike Vanderjagt’s NFL-record streak of 42 in a row in his sights.

Wiith Mare’s automatic foot leading the way, the one truly special thing about the Seahawks is their special teams, which also feature reliable P Jon Ryan, dangerous return specialists Leon Washington and rookie Golden Tate and a bunch of pluggers like Michael Robinson, who left the game Sunday with an injury after forcing one of two takeaways courtesy of the team’s coverage unit.

There are certainly flashier ways for a team to make its presence felt on a national level. But the Seahawks appear content to do just enough good things to hopefully start separating themselves from a very ordinary NFC West pack.

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