Injuries are killing Seattle’s opponents

Chargers HardwickThe first week of the NFL season was riddled with key injuries for many teams, and the attrition affected many of Seattle’s opponents.

We detailed before the season all of the injuries and suspensions that already will affect many of the Seahawks’ 13 foes this season, and the hits just keep on coming.

For the second straight week, the Hawks will go against a backup center as San Diego lost longtime pivot Nick Hardwick for the season due to a nerve issue in his neck. His backup is Rich Ohrnberger, who stepped in against Arizona in San Diego’s 18-17 loss on Monday.

In the Seahawks’ opener, Green Bay started rookie center Corey Linsley in place of injured starter JC Tretter.

An even bigger loss Wednesday came in St. Louis, where the Rams learned they could be without star defensive end Chris Long for 8-10 weeks due to ankle surgery.  The Seahawks play at St. Louis in Week 7 and Week 17.

The Rams already are hurting at quarterback, where Sam Bradford is missing a second straight season and Shaun Hill left with a leg injury Sunday.

Another division opponent, Arizona, could lose pass rusher John Abraham to retirement after Abraham suffered a concussion Monday.

Two other opponents — Kansas City and Philadelphia — also lost key players for extended periods.

The Chiefs will play the rest of the season without linebacker Derrick Johnson and defensive end Mike DeVito, who both suffered Achilles injuries against Tennessee. The Seahawks play in Kansas City in Week 11.

The Eagles, who host the Seahawks in Week 14, lost two offensive linemen and a backup linebacker to IR in their win over Jacksonville. Right tackle Allen Barbre, who spent time with Seattle in 2010 and 2011, needs ankle surgery, and Pro Bowl left guard Evan Mathis suffered a torn MCL that will keep him out eight weeks (he was placed on short-term IR). Linebacker Najee Goode is out for the season with a torn pectoral muscle.

The Eagles already are without suspended left tackle Lane Johnson for the first four games, so quarterback Nick Foles and running back LeSean McCoy might not have much fun over the next few weeks.

If the Seahawks — already thin at cornerback — don’t fall victim to the injury plague, they look set to have a slightly easier time against the Chargers, Rams, Chiefs, Cardinals and Eagles.

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