Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, June 7:
Vinnie Iyer at SportingNews.com ranks the safeties in the league and puts Earl Thomas as No. 3 and Kam Chancellor at No. 7: “In just two years at free safety, Thomas has delivered on his promise to be the heir apparent to (Ed) Reed’s ballhawking throne. He’s already racked up 174 tackles and seven interceptions through two seasons and earned his first Pro Bowl appearance last year. The Seahawks have allowed him to roam free in Pete Carroll’s defense, and Thomas has responded by displaying exceptional range. … Chancellor joined Thomas in representing the Seahawks in Hawaii, and he’s the ideal complement at strong safety. Although he had four interceptions in 2011, his strength is in smacking around ball carriers as an intimidating presence. Because of size at 6-3, 232 pounds and style, he’s like having an extra powerful linebacker in the back seven.”
Also from Iyer, the best cornerbacks in the league, with Brandon Browner at No. 9: “What a find for Pete Carroll, whose Pac-10 knowledge paid off in turning this Oregon State product from a Calgary Stampeder to a Pro Bowl Seahawk. It’s unusual for a corner with Browner’s size (6-4, 221) to be so fluid in coverage. In starting every game last season, he racked up a league-leading 23 passes defended and six interceptions (including two returned for touchdowns). If he comes through with another big year in Carroll’s scheme, he will shoot up this list.”
For those scoring at home, the Seahawks were the only team to have two players selected at one spot, as well as the only team to have three players ranked overall – one more than the Chiefs and 49ers.
Pete Carroll made the radio rounds yesterday to discuss, among other things, the team’s final two OTA practices being cancelled by the league. Mike Sando at ESPN.com has the highlights: “ ‘There was a little pushing thing that happened on the practice field a week ago, there was an article written about it, that did draw their attention and that is what came up,’ Carroll said. ‘They said, ‘We’re going to come up and check you out.’ They did. The guy who came out, he loved what we did, he said it was the best OTA he has ever seen. We thought we were on track, but then when they went back and looked at some other stuff (on video), they thought we were getting after it too much.’ ”
Sando also expands his item on the backup QBs in the NFC West from yesterday to include the entire league.
Here at Seahawks.com, we look at the lessons learned by rookie cornerback Jeremy Lane during the team’s OTA practices: “As Deon Butler exploded off the line on his way to chasing down a deep pass from Russell Wilson, rookie cornerback Jeremy Lane matched the speedy receiver step for step and was there to go up and make the interception. Later, Lane was there to tip away a pass that was intended for Phil Bates in the end zone. Lane then completed his trifecta of impressive plays by shielding 6-foot-6 receiver Kris Durham from a catchable pass that sailed incomplete. All of this happened on Tuesday, just before Seahawks coach Pete Carroll informed his players that the final two OTA practices were being cancelled after the league determined the team had violated the rules on contact during one its sessions. In the wake of that news, it’s nice to know that the work the players already had done is paying off. Say what? Allow Lane to explain. ‘In college, I was kind of bad at it,’ he said when asked about his ability to make plays on the ball when it’s in the air. ‘But since I’ve been here, we do a lot of ball drills. So it’s helped me out a lot.’ ”
We’ve also got coach Pete Carroll talking about Brian Banks’ tryout today in words and video: “ ‘He’s a young man that has an opportunity to get a second chance at his dream,’ Carroll said. ‘I just think he deserves it and we’re going to give him a really good look and a serious look, and if he does well and we like him we’re going to try to get him to come to minicamp (next week).’ Banks, 26, served 62 months of his six-year sentence. A judge in Long Beach, Calif., threw out his kidnapping and rape conviction last month after looking at a videotape of his accuser admitting she lied.”
Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has a look at Lofa Tatupu’s return to the NFL with the Falcons: “Tatupu, a Pro Bowl selection his first three seasons in the NFL, did not play last season after the Seahawks released him following a six-year career. He started all 16 games in 2010 after playing only five games in 2009 with pectoral and hamstring injuries. While there was much speculation that the effects of concussions and other injuries caused Tatupu to miss last season, he insists he was healthy. The phone simply did not ring. ‘It wasn’t my choice,’ Tatupu said. ‘I think that’s kind of what happened to veterans across the league. … But it wasn’t anything to do with concussions or lingering injuries. I was ready to play last season. I got released, like a lot of people did, and I just didn’t catch on with anybody.’ ”