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Seahawks' Kerney done for the season


lee sunset
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RENTON -- It was almost a year ago that Patrick Kerney unleashed a relentless rampage that didn't end until he had a NFC-leading 14½ sacks and had finished second in the voting for NFL defensive player of the year.

There will be no such surge for the Pro Bowl defensive tackle this season.

Kerney was placed on injured reserve Wednesday, when it was decided it's better to get him fully healed for next season rather than trying to rush him back into the lineup in this 2-8 season.

Kerney said another MRI exam Tuesday revealed the shoulder is not healing properly.

"You can get angry about it, you can get sad about it, but it's not going to heal your shoulder any faster," Kerney said. "You take it for what it's worth. Now my job is to get better and get stronger for next season."

Kerney had a "clean-out" procedure on his surgically repaired left shoulder two weeks ago and missed the past three games.

But he still leads the Seahawks with five sacks.

The new question: Who supplies the pass rush now?

Darryl Tapp and rookie Lawrence Jackson remain the starters at defensive end for Sunday's game against the Washington Redskins at Qwest Field, but they have combined for four sacks in 10 games.

Defensive tackle Brandon Mebane and pass-rushing linebacker Julian Peterson have four sacks each this season, but the team has generated only five in the past three games.

Rookie defensive end Brandon Miller was claimed off waivers Wednesday to fill Kerney's roster spot. But he spent the first 10 weeks of the season on the Atlanta Falcons practice squad and then did not play Sunday after being signed to the Falcons' 53-man roster last week.

The inability to pressure opposing quarterbacks has tormented the Seahawks, who rank 31st in pass defense. It also has forced them to blitz more, which has left the defensive backs vulnerable to big pass plays.

Told that the Seahawks are tied for ninth in the league with 24 sacks, coach Mike Holmgren was surprised -- especially since seven of the teams that have more sacks also have a winning record.

"To be in the top third in sacks, that's great," he said. "Maybe we should be No. 1 in sacks. If you studied the film ... then maybe there were 10 or 12 sacks that we should've had that would've put us up there. And maybe they've cost us four games.

"You know what I mean?"

Translation: The Seahawks are not completing the task with the four-man rush or when they blitz.

It's a situation with no end in sight now that Kerney's season has ended.

Last year, he collected three sacks in a Week 11 win over the Chicago Bears at Qwest Field. In the next six games, he added seven more sacks.

Kerney re-injured his shoulder -- the same one that needed surgery in January to repair a torn labrum -- at the end of the Week 8 game this season in San Francisco when he reached out to grab 49ers quarterback Shaun Hill. He also had a 50-yard fumble return in that game.

Kerney offered an analogy involving the Whack-a-Mole arcade game that sums up not only his season, but that of the entire team.

"Every time you pop your head up, you get it beat back down," he said.

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Guest WoodyPaige
I'd still take him any day of the week.

I agree, this injury doesn't justify whether we are better off without him.

What sucks is that we lost Brandon Miller because of it.

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Guest WoodyPaige

BTW, I love how the Seahawks basically get anyone who leaves this team. Kerney, Duckett, Miller, Mora himself....and the one that really pisses me off, even if he was never on the team: Brandon Coutu.

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1 or 2 at the most.

The other years he was either a non-factor or hurt.

Huh? He had a 105 game starting streak before his injury in 2006. He never missed a game from like 2000 through 9 games of 2006. I remember 2004 he had close to 70 tackles (not sure of exact number - it was 65 to 68) and 13 sacks. He had double digit sacks at least 4 of those years and no less than 6 1/2 sacks in any year except the year he was hurt - when he only played 9 games. He was a factor. Even more important, he was a leader on the defense. Kerney was the one getting everyone pumped up all the time. I can still see him out there pumping his arms up to get the crowd into it - getting the guys out there going. He was a great player for our team. I know we made the best decision for our team at the time, but don't knock the man - he played his heart out here, hurt or not.

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Huh? He had a 105 game starting streak before his injury in 2006. He never missed a game from like 2000 through 9 games of 2006. I remember 2004 he had close to 70 tackles (not sure of exact number - it was 65 to 68) and 13 sacks. He had double digit sacks at least 4 of those years and no less than 6 1/2 sacks in any year except the year he was hurt - when he only played 9 games. He was a factor. Even more important, he was a leader on the defense. Kerney was the one getting everyone pumped up all the time. I can still see him out there pumping his arms up to get the crowd into it - getting the guys out there going. He was a great player for our team. I know we made the best decision for our team at the time, but don't knock the man - he played his heart out here, hurt or not.

Sorry, was never was a big fan of his.

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