Suspensions helped unite Seahawks

May’s suspension of linebacker Bruce Irvin, tackling Saints running back Khiry Robinson, galvanized the Seahawks.

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May’s suspension of linebacker Bruce Irvin, tackling Saints running back Khiry Robinson, galvanized the Seahawks.

JERSEY CITY, N.J. — Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Wednesday that the suspension of LB Bruce Irvin in the spring got the attention of players that they needed to take their commitment to the team more seriously.

Seven Seattle players have been suspended for performance-enhancing or substance-abuse violations since 2011. That does not include CB Richard Sherman, who won an appeal. Irvin's, for a performance-enhancing drug, came in May.

"I found that we were a very young team with young minds and guys that needed to formulate the plan," Carroll said. "And the best way we could do that is to gather the power that they represent us. Everybody represents the Seahawks."

Born out of Irvin's suspension was the motto "Seahawks 24/7." The slogan was plastered on T-shirts and worn around the locker room all season.

"We realized that we had a tremendous commitment to what we were doing on the field and that we needed to embrace that we needed that commitment to extend off the field as well," Carroll said. "Like any team comes together on different issues, this was an issue. And Bruce was a great starter to the new mentality that we've developed; about taking care of business; about always representing; about having a conscious that never leaves us, whether we're on the field, off the field, in-season or out of season."

Even with the new focus, the Seahawks had problems. CB Walter Thurmond was suspended for four games in November and CB Brandon Browner for one year in December. Both were for the substance-abuse policy.

"When we've had anybody who has strayed … it came to the point where we really felt compassion for the guys that couldn't hang with us in the commitment that we made," Carroll said. "So I think it's become very strong from inside out, from inside right in the middle of the locker room on out, and I think that we're on a really good path. I think it's a good illustration of what it takes to get everybody committed and everybody on the same page, and I think the commitment to the Seahawks is pretty clear right now."

About that retirement …: Broncos CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie said he's not considering retiring. He added that his comments Monday about doing so if the Broncos win the Super Bowl were "misread."

Rodgers-Cromartie said he was talking about players who get through their first contracts, sign a one-year deal, then are out of the league. He cited Fabian Washington, a cornerback for the Raiders and Ravens from 2005-10. "He's a guy who can definitely still play in this league," said Rodgers-Cromartie, who is on a one-year deal with the Broncos. "He made it through his first contract. Then he got a one-year deal and … he's home. So you've got to think about life outside of football."

Seattle Practice report: RB Marshawn Lynch got his usual Wednesday off but was the only player not to participate. WR Doug Baldwin was a full participant after missing last week's three practices with a hip injury. Seattle practiced at the Giants' indoor facility but opened the doors. That led to the temperature dropping to 36 degrees, close to Sunday's projected temperature. "The turf (for the outdoor facility) is somewhat frozen, and the turf in here is good,'' Carroll said. Carroll added the team plans to practice outside only if needed.

Denver practice report: The Broncos worked out at the Jets' outdoor facility, where the temperature dropped to 21. They plan to remain outdoors all week. Only reserve DL Sione Fua (calf) sat. K Matt Prater, out with the flu all last week, was a full participant.

Seminole star? Asked for a Broncos player who could make a key play Sunday, Denver receivers coach Tyke Tolbert said reserve CB Tony Carter. Carter, a former Florida State standout, had one interception this season and played 33 of 56 snaps in the AFC title game. "I see him in practice every day," Tolbert said. "I see how he is fast. He's quick. He has good change of direction. He makes plays in practice a lot."

. Fast facts

Super Bowl XLVIII

Who: Denver Broncos (15-3) vs. Seattle Seahawks (15-3)

When: 6:30 p.m. Sunday

Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.

TV/radio: Ch. 13; 98.7-FM, 1010-AM

Line, O/U: Denver by 2; 47

Official website: superbowl.com

Weather: Current forecasts call for a high of 40 degrees with a 0 percent chance of precipitation. Expect temperatures to drop during the game with winds at 10 mph. The overnight low is expected to be 27.

Suspensions helped unite Seahawks 01/29/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 29, 2014 10:55pm]

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