ALAMEDA –- The Seattle Seahawks were going through a rough patch. The defending Super Bowl champs were under intense scrutiny over the past few weeks, with reports of locker-room issues coinciding with below-expectations play.
The heat was on after trading talented skill player Percy Harvin to the New York Jets on Oct. 17, which sparked investigation into fights between Harvin and his position-mates and a reported rift with Wilson himself.
Seattle dropped to 3-3 with a loss to the St. Louis Rams a few days later, which brought more discussion of discord, with more ire aimed at Wilson, who was reportedly too management-friendly for some Seahawks’ taste. There was also reports that Marshawn Lynch’s act was reportedly wearing thin.
That's not the type of environment for good game prep.
The Seahawks denied reports of dysfunction, earned a hard-fought win over Carolina and say they are a strong union while preparing for a winless Raiders team on Sunday afternoon.
“We’re together more than ever,” Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson said Wednesday on a conference call. “We ignore the noise. We just focus on trying to win football games. We have high expectations for ourselves and that’s all we’re trying to do, is live up to them and be a great football team on Sunday.”
The Seahawks are headed home after a rough two-game swing on the road, looking to notch their second-straight win against the hapless Raiders.
“I don’t focus on that. I just focus on this week. I focus on what we can do this week to try to play at a high level. I believe we have a great football team. I believe we have the right guys in the room and the right guys on the field, and we’re excited about that.”
In terms of reports swirling about his team’s chemistry, head coach Pete Carroll said that period is now in the rearview.
“I think it’s gone,” Carroll said. “There are no facts to it. We had to make a trade a few weeks ago stirred things up because everyone wanted to know why and that got people asking questions. We’re in great shape. We’re a close team. These guys have grown up together as Seahawks. The locker room is really strong.”