Good morning, here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks on this first official day of 2012 training camp, July 27.
Steve Kelly at the Seattle Times writes an open letter to Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, pleading him for a winning season and stating the effect it would have on the city of Seattle that has ached through mediocrity in the city’s sports scene, “So it’s on you, Coach, as well as your assistants and your players, to get this city out of its malaise. More than ever, Seattle needs the Seahawks. And that means it needs something more than 7-and-9 mediocrity. As it should be, the heat is on you. You’ve got to settle on a quarterback quickly. Matt Flynn? Russell Wilson? I don’t care. But one of them has to be the answer sooner rather than later. You have to keep Sidney Rice healthy and make sure Kellen Winslow gets open. You have to make sure the young offensive line continues its improvement. You have to make first-round pick Bruce Irvin into a legitimate pass-rushing threat. Chris Clemons and Bruce Irvin have to become the buzz of the league. Training camp is beginning, and the eyes, ears and good wishes are focused on your headquarters at Virginia Mason Athletic Center.”
The Seahawks announced that wide receiver Antonio Bryant was signed to the team’s 90-man roster yesterday, and Danny O’Neil at the Seattle Times has the story, “Seattle signed Antonio Bryant, who had 1,248 yards receiving with Tampa Bay in 2008 but hasn’t played the past two years. Bryant, 31, tried out for the Seahawks during the three-day minicamp in June and was admittedly playing himself back into football shape.”
Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune gives his analysis on the signing of Bryant, “If healthy, Bryant (6-1, 211 pounds) could provide a big, physical body on the perimeter for the Seahawks, competing with Ben Obomanu, Kris Durham and Ricardo Lockette for reps at split end.”
Yesterday, former Seahawks defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy spoke with reporters on a conference call. Kennedy is set to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on August 4 in Canton, Ohio. Williams has a run-down of the conference call, noting that Kennedy expects a crowd of more than 350 supporters to be on hand during his acceptance speech, including one special guest, “Presenting Kennedy will be Dixie Fraley Keller, the widow of [Kennedy’s] former agent Robert Fraley, who was killed in a plane crash in 1999 along with professional golfer Payne Stewart. ‘That’s how much Robert meant to me,’ Kennedy said. ‘And I’ll be talking about Robert too – the type of guy he was, and how he helped me off of the football field. He just taught me about life. He taught me how to be a pro off of the football field, and to make sure I treat people the way I want to be treated.’ ”
Also at the Tacoma News Tribune, Dave Boling speaks to Kennedy’s gratitude for everyone who surrounded him along his journey through the League and helped him to get where he will be next week – the Hall of Fame, “From his first day in the NFL, Kennedy has called himself blessed and was always quick to show appreciation for those who helped him on his way. He was a humble superstar who truly understood the importance of his family, his teammates and his friends. He will spend a lot of time on that big stage in Canton offering thanks to those people. It will be genuine. From the heart.”
Here at Seahawks.com Clare Farnsworth continues his “Cortez: Countdown to Canton” series with Tommy Brasher, who was hired as Seattle’s defensive line coach in 1992 – Kennedy’s best season in his 11-year Hall of Fame career. Farnsworth recounts a time when Kennedy was coming out of the University of Miami and Brasher was scouting Kennedy as a coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, ” ‘They sent me down to Miami to scout Cortez,’ said Brasher, who coached with the Seahawks through the 1998 season and then returned to the Philadelphia Eagles until he retired after the 2005 season. ‘I go down there and I start watching this guy (on tape). I went, ‘Damn, I need this guy.’ ‘ ”
Farnsworth also touches on the special relationship that developed between coach Brasher and Kennedy.
Also here at Seahawks.com we visit with Seahawks assistant head coach/offensive line coach Tom Cable, who sits down with Tony Ventrella in our latest ‘Seahawks Insider’. Coach Cable – a graduate of Snohomish High School – talks about his early coaching influences, teaching philosophies, the personalities of his young offensive lineman, and his passion for fishing.
Revisiting a topic from yesterday, Brock Huard and Mike Salk of mynorthwest.com share their thoughts on Seahawks center Max Unger’s contract extension in their Thursday Wrap Up video. Huard believes the extension entrenches Unger as the leader along the team’s offensive line. Unger – a guest on the Brock and Salk show yesterday – says his new deal means stability for him at the position and within the Seahawks organization. You can listen to the 710ESPN audio here.
Also at mynorthwest.com, Brady Henderson details a visit with ESPN’s John Clayton, who doubts that Seahawks offensive lineman James Carpenter will play in the 2012 season, ” ‘That knee was bad,’ Clayton said. ‘It hasn’t really had a full time to heal. I think he’s slow in healing. If they get four games out of him they’re lucky. I don’t think they’re going to get any games out of him.’ Henderson then comments, “Losing a starting tackle would be a bigger blow to a team with less depth at that position. The Seahawks re-signed Breno Giacomini — who played well enough after replacing Carpenter to earn a new contract — and the versatile Paul McQuistan earlier this offseason. They’ve also signed tackles Frank Omiyale and Alex Barron.”