Michael Bennett says replacing Cary Williams changed Seahawks' season

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In an interview with Jenny Vrentas of The MMQB, Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett pointed to replacing CB Cary Williams as a turning point for the season:

"Losing Cary and adding J. Lane and D. Shead in the game has really turned our season around a lot,” Bennett says. “No offense to Cary, but these guys have been in the defense a lot longer than Cary, so they kind of understand where the holes are and what you have to do, and I think they have done a great job of taking us back to that level where we are used to playing."

"It gives us more time [on the line],” Bennett adds. “We were beating guys fast, and sometimes [the quarterbacks] were getting the ball out, but now we are getting the quarterback to hold the ball. And that starts with everybody playing football together. We’ve got a lot of great players playing in one accord."

Judy Battista of NFL.com previews Seahawks-Panthers:

But let's get real. All anybody wants to see is Russell Wilson vs. Cam Newton. In the last seven games of the regular season, Wilson and Newton combined for 49 touchdowns (44 passing) and just two interceptions. And one of them has led all quarterbacks in rushing yards in each of the last three seasons. Expect the Seahawks to use plenty of read option and rollouts to get Wilson on the move. Newton will have to move, too, if the dominant performance of Seattle's front four against the Vikings is any indication of how they will play here.

Six of Bruce Irvin's 22 career sacks have come against Cam Newton. Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times caught up with Irvin:

“You’ve really got to be disciplined in your rushes," he said. “Because with Cam you want to make him one-dimensional. You can’t give him a choice where he feels like he can beat you with his legs and his arms. That’s when you are under pressure.

“But when you get a little pressure on him and make him throw -- he has a really strong arm and guys with strong arms feel like they can fit balls into tight windows or spaces that are not really there. So I feel if we rush him and stop the run and get him to really try to force throws then I really feel like we’ll have a lot of success against him."

Brady Henderson of 710 ESPN Seattle talked to Seahawks punter Jon Ryan about his broken nose:

"It broke pretty good," Ryan said of his nose. "They say it usually just cracks but I broke the bone pretty clean in half and they just kinda set it back in there."

Ryan said his first concern was returning to the game, which he did. He also wanted to make sure his fiancée, who was at the stadium, knew that he was OK.

"And then I was like, 'Man, I'm going to look like hell in the wedding pictures, so I've got to get this things cleaned up,'" he said.