New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - The Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos both had their first full practices of Super Bowl week on Wednesday.
The NFC champion Seahawks worked at a torrid pace for 90 minutes on the artificial turf inside the New York Giants' indoor practice facility in East Rutherford before opening a series of doors around the structure in an attempt to simulate the temperatures they're likely to face on Sunday.
The temperature outside on Wednesday was a frigid 22 degrees, far under the projected temperature at kickoff for Super Bowl XLVII Sunday night.
Only one Seattle player didn't work during the unpadded practice, star running back Marshawn Lynch, who is dealing with a balky knee. Lynch's absence was hardy unusual, though.
"Everybody's fine," Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said. "This is the day we rest Marshawn. Wednesday is always a rest day for him. We've been doing that for years, and it's always worked out great. We're in great shape. We're just as fortunate as can be to be in this kind of shape this late in the year."
According to pool reports, Lynch was in good spirits throughout the practice, at one point acting as a cornerback as quarterback Russell Wilson worked his first-team offense. Lynch also spent a few minutes chatting with club owner Paul Allen and general manager John Schneider.
The other three Seattle players who were banged up after the NFC Championship Game 10 days ago all practiced without limitation on Wednesday. Wide receivers Doug Baldwin (hip) and Percy Harvin (concussion) ran well with Baldwin looking especially sharp while running routes. Meanwhile, defensive tackle Brandon Mebane didn't seem hampered by an ankle injury.
Carroll calls his Wednesday practices "Competition Wednesday" and the coach uses part of the session to see his starters battle against each other, unlike most teams who run starters against the scout team.
Wilson threw a red-zone touchdown pass early in a competitive period before All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman responded with an athletic interception. The physical nature of the Seattle defensive backfield was noticeable as the Seahawks upped the tempo with music ranging from James Brown soul to Notorious B.I.G. hip-hop.
Carroll said he was happy with the indoor field and the footing his players were able to get.
"The turf out there is somewhat frozen, and the turf in here is good," Carroll said when asked why he chose to work indoors. "And if we could get the temperature anywhere near what it will be Sunday -- it could be anywhere from the low twenties to the mid-thirties -- that's what we wanted."
The Broncos, meanwhile, put the pads on in Florham Park, N.J., going for one hour and forty minutes after a 30-minute walkthrough session at the New York Jets training facility. By the completion of their practice, the temperature had dipped to 21 degrees with a wind-chill factor of just nine degrees.
"It was great," Broncos coach John Fox said after practice. "We're pretty much weather-proof. We practice in this stuff all the time. Being in Denver, we've played in a few different elements. We practiced numerous times in single digit, played in single digit, played in wind. We've practiced in snow many times. We're pretty much ready for anything."
Fox indicated he was pleased with the practice after the travel to East Coast and the numerous commitments surrounding Super Bowl week.
"I wanted to see how well they would re-boot, get re-charged and practice what we've put in," the coach said. "They recalled it and it went very well. We had a very good practice."
Peyton Manning was reportedly sharp and in control, unaffected by the elements.
"Very sharp," Fox said. "What I've noticed, he had to get used to weather over the past two years. I think he's done an unbelievable job, which I think people forget."
Fox's Wednesday practices focus on first- and second-down plays, with a physical running game emphasized. The Broncos ran live drills with speakers positioned on one of the sidelines simulating crowd noise to promote concentration.
"Normally, it's about five times louder than that," Fox said before revealing he turned down the volume because Super Bowls are not true away games.
"It?s not an away game. The ones I've been to haven't been too loud. So we just kind of practice with what we think we're going to get."
Like Seattle, just one player on the Broncos' 53-man active roster did not practice: third-year defensive tackle Sione Fua, who is nursing a calf injury. Kicker Matt Prater, who missed three practices last week with the flu, was a full participant.