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Danny O'Neil covers the Seahawks for The Seattle Times.

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September 18, 2008 3:49 PM

Seahawks secondary a primary concern

Posted by Danny O'Neil

The secondary was considered a strength of Seattle's defense a year ago when cornerback Marcus Trufant made his first Pro Bowl and the Seahawks allowed a league-low 15 touchdown passes.

Now, there were plenty of people whose explanation of that season pointed to the parade of backup quarterbacks Seattle faced from Matt Moore to Troy Smith to Chris Redman and Gus Frerotte. Heck, even the quarterback Seattle beat in the playoffs -- Washington's Todd Collins -- was a relief pitcher since he replaced Jason Campbell.

Seattle's secondary was victimized by big plays on Sunday against San Francisco, the 49ers completing five passes of 25 yards or more.

Some of that can be credited to Mike Martz, 49ers offensive coordinator who came up with a great game plan to exploit the tendencies of Seattle's defense. A good chunk of that was the play of the secondary, though.

"They didn't blow assignments or anything like that," defensive coordinator John Marshall said. "They were right there, either close and in some cases close enough to make the plays. You've got to overcome the things that happen like you intercept the ball in the end zone, boom, you're out of there, and there's a penalty. Now, it's first-and-3, boom, they fire right back at you. But you've got to overcome those things.

"There is no secret about last week and the players know that. It's just a matter of making the plays."

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