Pete Carroll’s first season in Seattle is off to a good start with the Seahawks tied for the NFC West lead. For his team to stay in first place, Carroll likely will need to help solve the franchise’s recent road woes.
One place where the Seahawks haven’t had trouble winning in recent years is the Edward Jones Dome, but they’ll be facing an improved St. Louis Rams team Sunday when they try to extend a 10-game win streak in the series.
In his return to the NFL, Carroll has the Seahawks (2-1) off to their best start in three years but both of their wins have come at Qwest Field. They lost 31-14 to Denver in their only road game in Week 2.
Seattle will play only twice at Qwest over its next seven games and once in October - against fellow division leader Arizona on the 24th. While the Seahawks have won seven of 11 at home, they’ve dropped 16 of 19 on the road.
“It’s obvious that we find a real energy level at Qwest,” Carroll said. “There’s a whole other part of our schedule that we have to react to and respond well to. We’ll take that in hand this week and see if we can get a good game going in St. Louis.”
Seattle’s only two wins in their last 13 road games both came in St. Louis, including a 27-17 victory last season. The Seahawks’ 10 consecutive wins over the Rams is the NFL’s third-longest active streak against one opponent. Their previous loss in the series was Nov. 14, 2004, at the Edward Jones Dome.
St. Louis (1-2) had lost 14 in a row there until last week’s 30-16 victory over Washington. After losing their first two games by a combined six points, the Rams finally broke through despite a groin injury to star running back Steven Jackson.
An MRI on Monday showed Jackson likely won’t miss an extended period of time, but his status is uncertain for this week. As insurance, the Rams signed Chauncey Washington(notes) off the New York Jets’ practice squad Tuesday.
“I’ll bet a lot of people would have written us off,” center Jason Brown(notes) said. “‘Oh, Steven Jackson is carrying the Rams’ offense on his back.’ Well, you still have to have faith the rest of the players can rally around and fill that void.”
Coming off a game in which he completed a career-best 62.2 percent of his passes, Sam Bradford(notes) will try to take advantage of a defense that gave up 455 yards to San Diego’s Philip Rivers(notes) last week. After a three-interception debut, the No. 1 overall draft pick has one in each of the last two games while throwing for three touchdowns.
“It seems like the more I’m out there in game situations, the more comfortable I become,” Bradford told the team’s official website. “I think as long as that continues to happen, I’m going in the right direction as a player.”
He’ll face a Seahawks defense which yielded 518 yards - ninth-most in franchise history - in last week’s 27-20 win. However, Seattle forced five turnovers after causing just two through the first two games, and the second of first-round pick Earl Thomas’(notes) two interceptions helped the Seahawks escape with a victory.
“We got to get to the essence of what happened. We just have to own up to what’s going on so we can get better,” Carroll said.