The news that Kam Chancellor played with a torn MCL is stunning — and just another nod to the toughness and dedication of the Pro Bowl strong safety.
And don’t forget: All-Pros Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman came into the game with injuries, too — Thomas with a shoulder issue and Sherman with a bad elbow. On top of that, Jeremy Lane suffered a badly broken wrist on his interception in the first quarter.
It is safe to say those injuries played a huge role in the outcome — particularly with Tharold Simon giving up two touchdown passes, including the go-ahead score late in the game.
Chancellor — also playing with bone spurs in his ankles and a bad hip — managed to keep up with tight end Rob Gronkowski for most of the game, including great coverage on a go route to the end zone at one point. Chancellor finished with 10 tackles.
“Shoot, my injury happened two days before the game and they told me I wasn’t going to be able to play,” Chancellor told Seahawks.com. “They told me, ‘Torn MCL and bone bruise.’ I was mad. I was frustrated. But at the end of the day, I was able to play.”
Carroll told 710 ESPN, “The docs just said, ‘There’s no way. There’s no way he should (be able to play).’ But he was not going to miss it.”
“It was an extraordinary effort from guys who played through unbelievable issues,” Carroll said. “That was a heroic thing that those guys did to play. They wanted to play for their teammates and they did exactly that — and they did it in great fashion.”
The injury that probably affected the Seahawks the most was the concussion Cliff Avril suffered in the third quarter. The difference in Tom Brady and the New England offense was stunning with Avril out of the game.
When Avril was playing, Brady was 15 of 23 for 106 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. With Avril off the field, Brady was 22 of 27 for 214 yards, all four touchdowns and no picks.
Now that the season is over, the coaching staff is taking hits. Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn became the coach of the Atlanta Falcons and took defensive assistant Marquand Manuel with him.
Potentially next out the door is linebackers coach Ken Norton, who reportedly could be headed to Oakland to be Jack Del Rio’s defensive coordinator with the Raiders. Norton and Del Rio played together in Dallas from 1989 to 1991.
Carroll told 710 ESPN, “There are some other guys on our staff that are being requested to talk to. So we have to work through that first.”
Secondary coach Kris Richard is expected to be elevated to Seattle’s coordinator role, and if Norton leaves that will mean the Hawks will need to find at least two new assistants.
Saturday is Guaranteed Money Day for a bunch of Seahawks: