Jonathan Stewart ran for 92 yards and touchdown after regaining his starting job on Sunday against Seattle. (AP Photo)
SEATTLE -- Jonathan Stewart returned to the starting lineup on Sunday and ran for 92 yards and a touchdown for the Carolina Panthers.
Stewart, who grew in nearby Lacey, got the start over Mike Goodson, who had amassed 400 yards from scrimmage in his previous three starts.
Stewart said he had a number of friends and family members at the game but said he only had to get about a dozen tickets.
“Everybody I’m close with, they’re just good people in general, so they just go out and get their own,” Stewart said. “They’re not expecting anything, so that’s good.”
Stewart didn’t let them down. He seems to be back on track since sitting out two weeks with a concussion, rushing for 190 yards in the last two weeks.
“I think I’ve run fine,” Stewart said. “That’s what they drafted me for, me and Goody (Mike Goodson) and Tyrell Sutton. The offensive line has been doing really well creating lanes for us to run through. That’s what we’re supposed to do.”
Goodson left the game in the second half after injuring the AC joint in his right shoulder on a kickoff return.
“It’s sore right now, but it should be all right, though,” Goodson said. “I hurt it a couple of weeks ago on a kick return the same way. Today, he put his helmet right on it.”
It capped a long week for Goodson, who missed two practices to fly to Houston for the birth of his third child, a boy named Brody.
Goodson said he wasn’t upset he didn’t get the start.
“No, we’ve got a great backfield,” Goodson said. “Whoever gets the start, it’s not really that big of a deal to me. We all get carries, we all make plays.”
CALL IT BACK: Goodson had a 96-yard kickoff return for a touchdown called back on a pair of penalties by the Panthers. Cornerback Robert McClain was flagged for a low block and Marcus Hudson for holding, forcing the Panthers to instead start their drive at the 10-yard line.
FAST STARTERS: After not having scored a touchdown in the first quarter in their first 10 games, the Panthers have now scored on their opening possession in back-to-back games. Goodson found the end zone in the opening frame, this time with a 6-yard touchdown run.
“That first drive is kind of how we pictured it going,” said OT Jordan Gross said. “We ran the ball, threw the ball, big plays, both Stewart and Goodson ran hard — they ran hard all game. We came out in the second half, and it’s like two completely different teams. That will make you wonder if it’s 11, or whatever we are, playing like that.”
PANTHERS GO AFTER JENNINGS: It was pretty obvious early in the game the Panthers were going right after LCB Kelly Jennings, repeatedly throwing in his direction on the first two drives.
GODFREY GETS ANOTHER: FS Charles Godfrey added to his team-leading total with his fifth interception of the season in the second quarter. Godfrey couldn’t have had an easier pick as WLB James Williams pressured Seahawks QB Matt Hasselbeck and hit him as he released the football. All Godfrey had to do was catch the ball, like fielding a punt.
Later in the game Williams got a hand on a Hasselbeck pass and CB Captain Munnerlyn, starting in place of Chris Gamble, came up with his second pick in as many weeks.
BEASON GETS ONE: It’s hard to believe, but MLB Jon Beason recorded his first sack of the season in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game. It’s been that type of a year for Beason, who played out of position for most of the season.
FIVE PICK SIXES: Panthers quarterbacks have now had five passes that have been returned for touchdowns this season — two by Clausen, two by Brian St. Pierre and one by Matt Moore. Clausen said his pick on Sunday was a killer and came after a half in which he felt more comfortable than ever in a Panthers uniform.
“That’s how I felt out there,” said Clausen, the team’s second-round draft pick. “I felt like I was in control of everything. Our offensive line did a great job protecting. Receivers, tight ends and running backs did a great job whether we were running and they’re blocking. We were just hitting on all cylinders, which was good.”
GAMBLE INACTIVE: Gamble sat out Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury. That meant Captain Munnerlyn got another start -- and another interception -- and rookie McClain worked as the team’s nickel back on Sunday.
SEAHAWKS LOSE TWO WRS: The Seahawks lost despite losing starting WRs Mike Williams and Ben Obomanu in the first half to injuries.
DAVIDSON STILL CALLING: A sideline reporter for FOX television incorrectly reported that running backs coach Jim Skipper was calling the plays on Sunday. Coach John Fox confirmed after the game that those duties remain in the hands of offensive coordinator Jeff Davidson.