<div id=”content_id”>RENTON Nick Vannett Color Rush Jersey , Wash. (AP) — Coach Pete Carroll didn’t have to decipher all the reasons the Seattle Seahawks booted their first chance at clinching an NFC playoff spot.“Without the added issue of getting behind on the penalty situation, we would have won the game,” Carroll said Monday. “So it’s really clear. It’s not like there’s any mystery what happened this game. We just have to clean it up.”The Seahawks seemed to have a winning formula against San Francisco on Sunday. They got the combination of runs and passes they were seeking. The offense didn’t turn the ball over while the defense forced one. Chris Carson had the best day of his career running the football.But Seattle couldn’t overcome 14 penalties for a franchise-record 148 yards, even against an opponent with little to play for and three wins on the season entering the week. The Seahawks (8-6) showed that while they may be good enough to make the playoffs, they are not good enough to overcome a litany of mistakes, whether it be turnovers, protection or in Sunday’s case, penalties.Perhaps most troubling for Carroll: Seattle was called for seven penalties in the fourth quarter and overtime.“Really disappointed in that because that’s about finishing and doing right. That just didn’t happen,” Carroll said. “That’s too bad because we’ve spent a lot of time and a lot of emphasis on trying to finish games by doing the right things instead of that kind of stuff happening because that’s what can occur. It was really clear to these guys.”However shocking the loss was for Seattle fans, it did essentially nothing to affect the Seahawks’ playoff hopes. Seattle can’t clinch a postseason berth just by beating Kansas City on Sunday. But a win over the Chiefs, coupled with losses by a couple other NFC wild-card contenders, would be enough. Even if the Seahawks were to stumble against the powerhouse Chiefs — who have a lot to play for in the AFC playoff picture — a win over NFC opponent Arizona in Week 17 would still get Seattle into the playoffs.Injuries were the other big story out of Sunday’s loss, and Carroll gave an ominous update on guard Jordan Simmons, who suffered a knee injury in the second half. Simmons had played well in his three starts this season, but went down late in the third quarter and never returned. Carroll initially said it was a first-degree knee sprain, but avoided specifics on Monday afternoon.“He’s got a pretty good knee injury. It’s going to be an issue,” Carroll said.Carroll was also unsure whether D.J. Fluker would be able to play this week while still recovering from a hamstring injury he suffered on Dec. 2 against San Francisco. If Fluker can’t make it back Justin Britt Color Rush Jersey , the Seahawks would likely go with Ethan Pocic or Joey Hunt at guard. Pocic stepped in on Sunday after Simmons was injured and struggled. He was called for holding late in the fourth quarter and again in overtime, negating plays of 19 and 32 yards that got Seattle into San Francisco territory both times.“He had a bit of a struggle on a couple of plays,” Carroll said.Carroll was also unsure on Bradley McDougald’s prognosis after he left the game early with patellar tendinitis.The one piece of good injury news for Seattle was that linebacker K.J. Wright, who has missed 11 games with knee issues, might be able to play against Kansas City. Wright practiced last week with an eye on returning against the Chiefs. Carroll said Wright came out of the week of practice in good shape.“The ramping up has worked out fine and he is ready to go,” Carroll said.NOTES: K Sebastian Janikowski was lamented by fans for missing an extra point in the first half and his lackluster effort to slow Richie James Jr. on his 97-yard kickoff return touchdown. While Carroll doesn’t expect the 40-year-old kicker to be making open-field tackles, he would have liked a little more effort. “I wish he would have tried anything. The first thing the kicker has to do is get the guy to turn back into the field. He got that done. Just anything. We’d take anything because it wound up being a touchdown. We could do more.” … Seattle’s previous high in penalty yards came in 1979 against Denver when it had 145. FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Ezekiel Elliott won his second NFL rushing title in three seasons for a Dallas offense that has been defined by the ground game for several years now.Seattle takes the league’s No. 1 rushing offense into a wild-card playoff against the Cowboys on Saturday night, led by Chris Carson, but with more help from others than your average pro backfield .While receiver Amari Cooper’s impact on the Dallas passing game was dramatic following a midseason trade, and Seattle’s Russell Wilson again finished among the NFL leaders in touchdowns passing, both teams figure to try to control the second postseason meeting between these franchises with their running backs. “We have a formula here,” said Dallas right guard Zack Martin, who has made the Pro Bowl in all five of his seasons. “Usually if we win a game, we kind of stick to that formula. It’s always a tough game against those guys. It’s kind of a bone-on-bone game. We’ve got our work cut out for us.”Elliott finished with 1,434 yards while setting a club record for catches by a running back with 77, one more than Herschel Walker 32 years ago. His 2 Nazair Jones Color Rush Jersey ,001 yards from scrimmage were second to New York Giants rookie Saquon Barkley.The 23-year-old former Ohio State star had the first 40-touch game of his career, a 29-23 overtime win against defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia that all but wrapped up the NFC East for the Cowboys (10-6).With the fourth seed in the playoffs locked up, the Cowboys sat Elliott in the regular-season finale against the New York Giants. Dak Prescott showcased his passing game with a rally for a 36-35 win, but that’s unlikely to be the way Dallas advances in the postseason.”Knowing going into these playoffs I’m going to have probably the heaviest workload I’ve had all season,” Elliott said, “so great getting fresh and ready going into this last stretch of the season and ready for what they throw at me.”The Seahawks (10-6) will throw multiple backs at the Cowboys, starting with Carson. With 1,151 yards rushing, Carson became the club’s first 1,000-yard rusher since Marshawn Lynch on Seattle’s most recent Super Bowl qualifier in 2014.Throw in Mike Davis (514 yards), Rashaad Penny (419) and Wilson (376), and the Seahawks have the first backfield with a 1,000-yard rusher and three with at least 300 yards since the 2001 Pittsburgh Steelers.Seattle is averaging 160 yards rushing per game, while Dallas finished the regular season ranked 10th at 123.”The offensive line has just really come into their own — No. 1 rush team in the NFL for us, which is something that we really wanted to do is to run the ball this year and also play-action and do our thing,” Wilson said. “Those guys have been a big, big thing for us.”Carson 12th Fan Color Rush Jersey , a second-year back drafted in the seventh round, had his first 100-yard game with 102 yards on a career-high 32 carries in the first meeting with Dallas this season, a 24-13 Seattle victory in Week 3 after the Seahawks had started 0-2.While the Cowboys let Seattle control the game with its rushing attack, they still held Carson to 3.2 yards per carry, his lowest average of the season. Defense kept Dallas in the game despite one of the worst offensive showings of the season.”So much of this is about us and what we need to do to play good run defense,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “It’s about us being fundamentally sound and being physical and being in our gaps and setting edges and running to the ball and being a great tackling team regardless of who they hand it to or what kind of runs they use.”There isn’t much mystery in who will get the handoffs for the Cowboys. Elliott carried 304 times, 18 fewer than when he led the league in rushing as a rookie in 2016. Backup Rod Smith had just 44 rushes, 12 of those when Elliott sat against the Giants.Really, the No. 2 running option for Dallas is quarterback Dak Prescott, who has six rushing TDs in each of his three regular seasons. While the Cowboys have been at their best when Prescott shows the running threat, they will spend plenty of time trying to establish Elliott early.”The ball is in his hands most of the time,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. “I don’t know him at all, but I am sure he’s a great competitor, he just plays like it. It all matters to him and there’s an intensity about his play that has made him already a significant player in the league.”</div>
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