Friday cyber surfing: NFL’s Best Defense, quarterback conversations continue

Good morning, here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, July 6.

Remember that “NFL’s Best Defense” poll over at ProFootballWeekly.com? Well, by way of fan voting the championship results are in and the Seahawks have come out on top over the Pittsburgh Steelers, earning a whopping 76 percent of the overall vote. The guys at PFW give credit to the 12th Man for their tremendous fan support, but they still aren’t ready to call the Seahawks the “Best Defense” in the NFL, calling Seattle a young, ascending defense, but noting the defenses of teams like the San Francisco 49ers, Houston Texans, Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers might be a little farther ahead of the Seahawks right now.

Here at Seahawks.com we continue with our Rookie Spotlight segment, this time focusing on Seahawks 2012  fourth round draft picks RB Robert Turbin out of Utah State and DT Jaye Howard out of Florida. Seahawks General Manager John Schneider talks with Tony Ventrella about Turbin’s impressive combine interview and how their familiarity with Florida defensive coordinator Dan Quinn – the Seahawks 2010 defensive line coach – aided them in their selection of Howard.

Starting off the first-of-three quarterback-central articles this morning we have Brady Henderson of MyNorthwest.com, who recaps a segment from yesterday’s “Bob and Groz” show when four-time Pro Bowler and Super Bowl MVP QB Kurt Warner joined the program. Naturally, Warner offered up his opinion on the Seahawks three-man quarterback competition, as Henderson writes, “Warner spoke from experience when he talked about the challenges of splitting reps between quarterbacks, which the Seahawks plan to do when they begin training camp later this month. In Flynn’s case, Warner thinks that will make it harder to master the offense, something Jackson shouldn’t have to worry about given all the time he’s spent in coordinator Darrell Bevell’s system. Warner said memorizing an offense isn’t the same as understanding it well enough to execute it efficiently. Warner: ‘It’s always one thing to study your playbook and draw plays on the board and be able to decipher stuff. It’s completely different when you have to actually call the play in a timely fashion, you have to get up there and be able to react and make it second nature to you. So you can get as many mental reps as you want; it’s never the same as a physical rep. The less of those you get, the less you’re going to be ready because that’s really where you learn and where you grow is under fire, whether it’s preseason games, whether it’s live scrimmages or just competitive situations in practice.'”

Next, over at NFL.com Gregg Rosenthal believes Matt Flynn has what it takes to be the Seahawks starting quarterback. On Flynn, Rosenthal offers, “In one of the final days of my former professional life, I watched every Matt Flynn snap possible. I won’t repeat myself here, but Flynn was accurate, composed and threw the ball well under pressure. That pocket presence gives him an edge over guys like [Kevin] Kolb, Matt Cassel and [Tarvaris] Jackson. In many ways, Flynn didn’t look like a young quarterback. He was very good before the snap. He moved safeties with his eyes. He responded to his bad plays. Flynn doesn’t have to carry the Seahawks. They have a solid running game and a stronger defense. He has a chance to be an average starter sooner than later. That’s a big upgrade for the Seahawks and that may be all they need to make the playoffs in 2012.”

Lastly, and again over at NFL.com, Ian Rapport catches up with former NFL QB Doug Flutie, who at 5-foot-10 bucked the NFL stereotype that quarterbacks must be tall to be successful. The conversation is relevant because Seahawks 2012 third round draft pick QB Russell Wilson stands just 5-foot-11, but finds himself right in the mix of the Seahawks quarterback competition. Rapport comments on Flutie’s relationship with Wilson, “Flutie is a college football analyst now, and he thoroughly studies the game that made him famous. He grew close with Wilson when the athletic passer was leaving North Carolina State and trying to decide between transferring to Auburn or Wisconsin for his senior season. He chose the Badgers and led them to a Big Ten title. ‘I was advising him,’ Flutie said. ‘Go somewhere where, No. 1, you know you’re going to play. No. 2, that you’re the guy they want. Coming up to the draft, he had some questions. He’s a great kid and I just wish him well.'”


Photoblog: Feeling Ravenous

The Seahawks started the second half of the season at a disappointing 2-6, and faced the visting Baltimore Ravens, holders of a gaudy 6-2 record and first place in the AFC North. However, Seattle never trailed and upset Baltimore, 22-17 on Military Appreciation Day at CenturyLink Field.

Hours before kickoff, safety Earl Thomas sat alone at his locker, studying his playbook before facing the Ravens.

In honor of Military Appreciation Day, the Sea Gals showed off their patriotism during their pregame routine.

A U.S. serviceman carried the American Flag and led the Seahawks out of the tunnel during pregame introductions.

As the teams stood for the Star Spangled Banner, fans throughout the stadium joined to perform a card stunt that thanked America's service veterans.

Cornerback Chris Maragos upends Baltimore's Ladarius Webb on a punt return in the first quarter of a hard-hitting game.

Baltimore's David Reed is hammered on a kickoff return and the ball squirts loose, one of his two fumbles recovered by the Seahawks.

Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin can't get his hands on a pass from Tarvaris Jackson in the end zone and the Seahawks settled for a field goal.

Seahawks defensive end Chris Clemons is collared as he tries to get to Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco.

Seahawks defensive backs Brandon Browner and Earl Thomas collide in the end zone and nearly intercept a pass from Flacco.

After scrambling out of the pocket, Tarvaris Jackson lets fly after finding Doug Baldwin open downfield.

Baldwin made the catch and looked for running room and the play netted 50 yards.

Seattle kicker Steven Hauschka signals that the Seahawks have recovered Baltimore's second fumbled return of the first half.

In the locker room at halftime, Gus Bradley gave instructions to his defensive unit.

Seattle's defense held up against Baltimore's 52 pass attempts, and Roy Lewis nearly intercepted this pass intended for the Ravens' Torrey Smith.

The Seahawks insisted on establishing their ground game, and it paid off. Marshawn Lynch breaks through a hole on his way to some of his 109 rushing yards.

All in all, seven Seahawks had receptions, including tight end Anthony McCoy who rambled upfield for a 14-yard gain in the second half.

Rookie cornerback Richard Sherman talks to teammates on the sidelines between series.

Receiver Golden Tate played well after an injuries to Sidney Rice and Doug Baldwin. Tate celebrates after his huge 24-yard reception on third down that helped seal the victory.

On Seattle's final drive, Marshawn Lynch followed his blocks and the Seahawks killed the clock with a 13-play drive.

Seahawks Chairman Paul Allen greets players including Michael Robinson as they returned to the locker room after the victory.

Running back Marshawn Lynch and his fullback Michael Robinson celebrate in the locker room.

Marshawn Lynch, who is normally reserved in the locker room, stepped up and spoke to the team after the game.

Head coach Pete Carroll talks to his players and coaches in the happy locker room after upsetting the Ravens.