Friday cyber surfing: With Jones out, opportunity arises for club’s young D-linemen

Greg Scruggs

Defensive end Greg Scruggs (pictured right) could see an expanded role in the absence of defensive lineman Jason Jones, who was placed on injured reserve

Good morning, and here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, December 21.

The club made a few roster moves yesterday, sending defensive lineman Jason Jones to injured reserve and signing defensive tackle Hebron Fangupo off of the team’s practice squad. In Fangupo’s place, the team signed wide receiver Bryan Walters, a native of Kirkland, Wash., to fill out the practice squad.

Joshua Mayers of the Seattle Times has the story on the move of Jones to injured reserve, “Defensive tackles that could see an expanded role for the Seahawks are Clinton McDonald, rookie Jaye Howard (who has been inactive most of the year) and Hebron Fangupo, a 6-foot-1, 323-pound player signed to the active roster Thursday. Rookie Greg Scruggs, a seventh-round pick out of Louisville, is also expected to see more time on the defensive line against a physical 49ers offense. ‘My biggest thing has been waiting for my opportunity and my chance, and so it’s come,’ said Scruggs, who has two sacks. ‘Now I just have to apply everything that I’ve been doing. You thrive on the opportunity to perform under pressure. One of the biggest knocks on me was I always had potential in college to be a first-round pick, but when big games came around, it was almost as if it was a slump. I’ve been fighting that my whole life and I think that this is an opportunity for me to go out and really show that I can play on the big stage and I can play under pressure.’ “

Danny O’Neil of the Seattle Times writes that Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh share the same philosophy on football, but differ in terms of personality, “Carroll has never met an interview he can’t talk around, while Harbaugh hasn’t found a conversation he can’t make agonizingly, haltingly awkward. But someone who has played for both coaches said that as different as they were to play for, there is a common ground between the two head coaches in Sunday’s game between the top two teams in the NFC West. ‘Their personalities are completely different,’ said Seattle receiver Doug Baldwin, who played for Harbaugh in college. ‘Coaching style is completely different. But there’s a strategic way that they go about running their teams. Obviously, they both love to run the ball. Passing is not necessarily at the forefront of the offense. It’s all running, and then you build the pass off the run. That, I guess you could say is comparable. Defense as well. You’ve got to have a strong defense to back everything up.’ “

O’Neil also has Thursday’s injury report for both the Seahawks and 49ers, noting the Seahawks got a boost with the return of defensive tackle Alan Branch to practice.

Steve Kelley of the Seattle Times says that it’s a good weekend to be a Seattle sports fan, with the Washington Huskies squaring off against Boise State in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas, and the Seahawks battling the 49ers on Sunday Night Football, “Sunday, of course, is the Almost-Game-of-the-Century between the Seahawks and San Francisco at CenturyLink Field. Games like this are why we’re sports fans. Games this good have a way of briefly galvanizing communities, which is part of why we build stadiums to house them. Sure, the Niners took some of the starch out of it with their win over New England in Foxborough last week, virtually assuring their second straight NFC West title, but this night still will have all the heat, passion and noise of a playoff game. CenturyLink will be lit up.”

Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune catches up with Fangupo after the move of Jones to injured reserve, “Fangupo is stout against the run, and could help plug up the middle of the defense against San Francisco’s potent running attack. ‘I’m just excited, man,’ Fangupo said. ‘I know what I can do, I’ve just been waiting. On game days it’s hard to watch, so I just try and sit back and wait for my opportunity to play. The best way to do that is by practicing, working my butt off to get the offensive line ready. And now that I have my shot, I’ve got to do the best I can.’ “

Williams also has a look at the increasing popularity of the read-option offense, “The option puts defenses at a disadvantage. Stack the box to stop a bruising runner like Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch or Washington’s Alfred Morris, and the quarterback pulls the ball out and takes off untouched down the sideline. Spread out to protect the perimeter, and the big back gashes you inside. ‘It just becomes a numbers game,’ San Francisco defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said. ‘Your typical run, the quarterback hands off and it’s now their 10 against your 11. Now, when he’s a potential runner, it’s their 11 against your 11 and they’re not even blocking one of the guys at the point of attack, so it actually becomes 11 against 10 if they do it right. So, the numbers are flipped.’ “

Michael Rushton of The Sports Network previews Sunday’s matchup with the Niners, “Seattle has much more on the line than San Francisco, but that doesn’t seem to matter to Kaepernick, who is looking to perfect his game heading into the postseason. He even refused to classify his win over New England as any kind of statement. ‘It really isn’t going to mean too much if we don’t come out and win this week. So, that’s what we’re focused on right now,’ he said. Even Seattle’s perfect home record might not save it as San Francisco is 11-4 on the road under Harbaugh since 2011. Sports Network Predicted Outcome: 49ers 20, Seahawks 13″

John Boyle of the Everett Herald dissects what Jones’ move to injured reserve means for the rest of the defensive line, “Rookie Greg Scruggs is the likely candidate to take over Jones’ pass-rushing role, but things would get more complicated in the event that Branch were to be out or even limited by his ankle injury. Clinton McDonald, who normally plays in pass-rushing situations, could take over for Branch in the base defense, or Scruggs could see some time in that role. The Seahawks could also work rookie Jaye Howard into that rotation, or even undrafted rookie Hebron Fangupo, who was signed off the practice squad to fill Jones’ roster spot. ‘We get a chance to take a look at some of the younger guys now,’ said Seattle’s ever-optimistic defensive coordinator Gus Bradley. ‘Some of those guys may have an opportunity now.’ “

Former Seahawks linebacker Dave Wyman, contributing to 710Sports.com, offers a look at running back Marshawn Lynch, whose production has received less attention than normal – just the way Lynch likes it – because of the success of rookie quarterback Russell Wilson, “The last time I remember hearing from Lynch was after the Miami game, a loss in which he only rushed for 46 yards. There was no scowling or harsh answer during the interview and he was gracious with both his time and himself. He’s much more likely to talk to the media after a game like that than after a victory in which he runs for over 100 yards. He’s not there for that. He just wants to win and is willing to pick his teammates up after a loss. He reminds me of Lofa Tatupu in that way. It was well known in the media that if you want one- or two-word answers, ask Tatupu about himself. If you want sentences that turn into paragraphs, ask him about his coaches and teammates. Like Tatupu, Lynch has a level of selflessness that plays well with his teammates … and ex-linebackers.”

Bill Swartz of 710Sports.com has his report from Thursday’s practice, “There was some positive injury news Thursday. Defensive tackle Alan Branch (ankle) was a full participant. With Seattle placing defensive lineman Jason Jones (knee) on injured reserve, the team is taking a closer look at young backups. Defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said rookies Greg Scruggs and Jaye Howard are both getting lots of work and could be in the rotation along with veteran Clinton McDonald. I spoke with Scruggs before practice and he assured me he is ready for this prime-time, nationally televised game. Scruggs believes he didn’t step up his game in college and it cost him a chance to be a first-round draft pick. He has practiced at all four defensive line positions for Seattle.”

Jim Moore of 710Sports.com previews the Seahawks-Niners matchup, “The 49ers have the slightly better team, but I said it last week, and I’ll say it again: if I’m going to blather on and on about the Seahawks being Super Bowl contenders, I have to ride them to the finish, and you’ve gotta love ‘em at home. Prediction: Seahawks 27, 49ers 21″

Brock Huard and Mike Salk of 710 AM ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Salk” discuss why they believe Sunday night’s contest will be decided by which coaching staff outsmarts the other in this short video.

Curtis Crabtree, writing for the Associated Press, says this Sunday the Seahawks will try to overcome several missed chances that plagued them in their first matchup with the Niners back on October 18, “Wilson was just 9 of 23 for 122 yards and an interception against the 49ers. His 38.7 passer rating against San Francisco is his lowest mark this season. Yet Wilson doesn’t see the point of dwelling on a missed opportunity. ‘There’s times where you’re like, ‘Oh man I wish he caught it’ … You have emotions but the key is staying even-keeled as possible, I think,’ Wilson said. ‘I let the receivers know I’m coming right back to them. You don’t think that they’re not going to catch the next one, so you’ve got to keep playing.’ Seattle’s offense has greatly improved since the initial meeting in October. Wilson has a passer rating of 111.3 over the seven games following the loss to the 49ers. Wilson has thrown 13 touchdowns to just two interceptions and Seattle is 5-2 since then.”

Mike Sando of ESPN.com notes several similarities between the Seahawks and 49ers on a statistical level:

  • Each team has scored 25 red zone touchdowns on 47 chances.
  • Each team has converted about 36 percent of its third-down opportunities.
  • Each team averages 6.8 yards per pass play.
  • The teams are within 30 yards of one another in total rushing yards: 2,280 for the 49ers and 2,250 for the Seahawks.
  • The teams are within one total touchdown of one another: 40 for the 49ers, 41 for the Seahawks.
  • The teams have committed about the same number of penalties, 99 for San Francisco and 95 for Seattle.

Sando also offers up his prediction for the Sunday night matchup between the two clubs, “Here we go. The main event. My feeling going into Week 15 was that San Francisco would go 1-1 against the Patriots and Seahawks. I didn’t have the guts to pick the 49ers at New England, unfortunately. The slate is clean this week. If the 49ers win prime-time road games on opposite coasts against two of the NFL’s best teams in an eight-day period, they’re even better than I realized when ranking them No. 1 on my latest power rankings ballot. Should be a great game either way. Sando’s best guess: Seahawks 23, 49ers 21.”

Doug Kretz of ESPN.com details “What to watch” in Sunday night’s matchup between the Seahawks and Niners. You must be an ESPN Insider to view this piece, but here is a small sample, “Key positional battle — Seahawks’ O-Line vs. 49ers’ D-Line: Seattle’s offensive line has been dominating up front the past couple of games and has been creating huge run lanes for Lynch and the ground game. These blockers are great road-graders who fight for everything they get and refuse to back down. San Francisco’s defensive linemen are also powerful and are great fighters. They are the league’s third-ranked run defense and hold opponents to 3.61 yards per carry….These are two evenly matched teams, and the position advantage could go either way at multiple spots. The ’12th Man’ advantage should provide the difference as Seattle pulls this one out.” Kretz likes the Seahawks by a score of 20-17.

NFL Films previews our Week 16 Sunday night matchup with the Niners in this short video.

Here at Seahawks.com Clare Farnsworth highlights rookie tight end Sean McGrath, who was recently promoted to the active roster from the practice squad earlier this week after the release of tight end Evan Moore, and recaps the activities surrounding “Thursday in Hawkville“, with a focus on the play of the rookies Wilson and Bobby Wagner.

Tony Ventrella has his “Seahawks Daily” with reaction from the club as they look forward to a challenging weekend against the Niners.

We bring you Wilson’s full video press conference from yesterday here, and Bradley’s full video press conference from yesterday here.

Finally, our team photographer Rod Mar has an updated look at the week of practice in photos.


Thursday cyber surfing: Defense readies for Patriots no-huddle attack

Good morning, and here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, October 11.

Danny O’Neil of the Seattle Times previews the Seahawks’ Week 6 matchup with the New England Patriots’ up-tempo, no-huddle offense, “What makes the Patriots’ offense go is their quarterback, who will be playing in Seattle for the first time as a professional. This is Brady’s 13th NFL season. He has three Super Bowl wins, two Super Bowl MVP awards and one supermodel marriage. But Seattle is one of two NFL cities where he has never played. He was out with a knee injury in 2008, the last time the Patriots came to town. ‘I’m actually excited to get out there and play in a place I’ve never played,’ Brady said Wednesday during his weekly news conference. ‘I think what makes it loud is that they’re very good. So, when they make plays, the crowd is into it and they get a lot of support.’ “

O’Neil also recaps a Wednesday conversation with Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, who says the Seahawks need to do a better job at converting in the red zone, particularly against a high-scoring team like the Patriots, “The red zone has been Seattle’s Bermuda Triangle this season, the offense missing the end zone repeatedly once the Seahawks are in scoring position. Of Seattle’s 14 possessions inside the opponent’s 20-yard line, Seattle has scored a touchdown on four of them, the lowest percentage of any team in the league. And with Seattle preparing to face the league’s top-scoring offense on Sunday, it can’t afford to settle for three points when it gets close, which means the emphasis this week is on improving the offense’s short game. ‘We’re doing a pretty decent job of moving the ball down the field and getting to the red zone,’ said Darrell Bevell, Seattle’s offensive coordinator. ‘Now we’re not finishing those with touchdowns, and we’ve got to do that at a better rate.’ “

Jerry Brewer of the Seattle Times comments on the Seahawks’ innovative defense, “Defense always carries the burden of reaction. You hear more about offensive ingenuity than cutting-edge defense because offense is supposed to be more imaginative. Before a defense can stop a team, it must know what to defend. Offenses create. Defenses stifle. But on occasion, there are special defenses that start to do as much dictating as reacting. You see glimpses of that with the Seahawks, but they’re young, and they’ve only been together since last season. They need more time and polish to achieve such a lofty status. Nevertheless, the potential is there. ‘Two or three years from now, we’ll see,’ Carroll said. ‘I know people in the league don’t think two or three years down the road very well. They think two or three weeks. But you’re going to have guys playing in their third and fourth and fifth years together by then. That’s not old guys. That’s just guys who have really grown up together. And that’s when you really benefit.’ “

Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune says New England’s hurry up offense will test the Seattle defense, “New England has the top-rated offense through five games this season, averaging 33 points and 439 yards a game. The Patriots have a league-leading 151 first downs, and are averaging 165 yards rushing a contest, No. 3 in the league. But it’s New England’s ability to get off a play every 15 to 17 seconds that has the league’s defenses on their heels. Carroll said the Patriots are the one NFL team that has come closest to mirroring the type of speed Oregon plays with in college football. Of course, Carroll can use his experience at USC in facing the Ducks’ high-powered offense annually when his defense takes on the Patriots this weekend. ‘We know what it is,’ Carroll said. ‘We know what they’re going to do, and how they’re going to do it when they speed it up. And we’ll see if we can match it, and if we can, then we’ll have a chance to play pretty good. The point is that we can’t let their tempo dictate our play.’ “

Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune revisits Carroll’s firing from New England and how it re-invented him as a coach, “It not only turned out to be one of those rare occasions that worked well for all principals, but it also is suddenly relevant again, 12 years later, as Carroll and his Seattle Seahawks on Sunday entertain the Patriots and the coach who so successfully replaced him – Bill Belichick. Belichick has led the Patriots to three Super Bowl titles in five appearances. Carroll regrouped, rebuilt the USC program into a national powerhouse, and has been with the Seahawks since 2010. ‘It really is classically one of those deals when you get kicked in the tail and you come out better,’ Carroll said.”

John Boyle of the Everett Herald writes that Carroll is excited to take on the challenge of going up against the League’s No. 1-ranked offense, “With all the weapons Brady has at his disposal, the Patriots would be a challenge for a talented Seahawks defense regardless of tempo, but now they’ve upped the degree of difficulty. ‘Preparing for that is most challenging,’ Carroll said. ‘I think the fact that they studied with Chip and he’s helped — I’m still kind of pissed at that — you have to experience what this is like to adapt well. They’re doing some really cool things on offense, and Tom Brady is as good as you can get. It’s an exciting opportunity for us. … They have really featured the no-huddle offense, and kind of tailored it after the speed of the college game, and it’s been very, very effective.’ The reason Carroll calls this an exciting opportunity as opposed to, say, a terrifying one, is that he and his defense might just be as well-equipped as any team in the league to handle an offense like New England’s. Through five games this season, the Patriots have scored more points and gained more yards than any team in the NFL. Perhaps most impressively, the Patriots have just three three-and-outs this season in 60 possessions, the fewest in the league.”

Boyle passes along some comments from Belichick, Brady, and Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker, who offer their impressions of the Seahawks’ defense, and also has an injury update after Carroll’s Wednesday press conference and the team’s practice session, noting that guard John Moffitt has been ruled out for Sunday.

Tim Booth of the Associated Press also revisits Carroll’s past with the Patriots, “While it was an embarrassing moment in Carroll’s coaching career, his firing in New England more than a decade ago was the catalyst for the philosophy and system Carroll brought to USC with so much success and that helped land him another chance in the NFL in Seattle. ‘What I learned from the situation is to be a really successful head coach you have to have control. Otherwise it’s somebody else’s job that you’re dealing with. That’s why everything that came out of that experience changed me and I haven’t been the same ever since,’ Carroll said Wednesday. ‘It took me 10, 11 months before I got going on the next job, but from that time, everything that is the philosophy, the approach, the mentality, everything, the language, everything came out of that experience. It’s classically one of those deals where you get kicked in the tail and you come out better. I hate to learn the hard way.’ “

Bill Swartz of mynorthwest.com catches up with cornerback Richard Sherman on how the Seahawks are preparing for the Patriots’ no-huddle attack, “The lightning-quick tempo is something the Pats borrowed from college football’s most prolific offense, that of the Oregon Ducks. A few Seattle defenders like cornerback Richard Sherman have faced the Ducks and other no-huddle teams in the Pac-12. ‘What New England does is similar with the pace,’ said Sherman, who played collegiately at Stanford. ‘I think it’s different because Oregon had guys running here, and motioning there. They would run two or three reads and you didn’t know where the ball was. The Patriots will line up quick, but then they’ll run power.’ “

Steve Sandmeyer of mynorthwest.com says it’s time for the Seahawks to open up the playbook on offense for quarterback Russell Wilson, “Coach Pete Carroll and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, try as they might, cannot escape the following three realities: • For Wilson to truly succeed, he has to be given the chance in the first place – the full playbook. • This includes giving him the chance to fail as well. • If Wilson is the guy they all think he is, he can handle it – including some failures along the way. That’s what taking a risk is about. This is the NFL. The Hawks need to be ahead of the curve – proactive instead of reactive. Don’t wait for the game that the defense can’t win by itself (perish the thought) and then address the passing game afterward.”

Art Thiel of SportsPressNW.com also recaps Carroll’s departure from New England in 1999, “Naturally, Carroll now looks upon the his sour departure from Boston as a chance for re-invention, which he exploited. ‘Getting spanked and getting knocked out of there was a great chance for me to regroup,’ he said. ‘I needed to get my act together or I was never going to get another chance. That gave me real insight to create what is so important to me now as a coach and deal with the position. I was embarrassed to get fired. I was ready for the next (job). Fortunately, I lucked out and got an opportunity at USC.’ Now he’s on to another new opportunity in Seattle. He has no empire yet, but what he has is control — he was hired before his nominal boss, general manager John Schneider, so there’s no doubt about where the final call rests. Just as was the case at USC — for better or worse. ‘What I learned from that (New England) situation is that to be a really successful head coach you need to have control,’ he said.  ‘Otherwise it’s somebody else’s job that you’re dealing with.’ “

Doug Farrar of YahooSports.com writes that the Seahawks believe they are ready for the Patriots’ offense, “Under the radar until recently, the Seahawks have assembled one of the NFL’s best defenses during the three-year tenure of head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider. The ultimate test for that young defense stands to be an equivalent exam for an offense that is blowing opponents off the ball in some interesting ways. By the traditional NFL metric of yards per game, which is how these things are measured in a conventional sense, the Patriots have the league’s #1 offense, and the Seahawks have the league’s top defensive unit. More advanced numbers support the hypothesis that this is a battle between two highly-charged units. Football Outsiders’ opponent-adjusted efficiency metrics has New England first in offense and Seattle third, behind the Chicago Bears and Houston Texans. No matter which stats you care to use, every occurrence of New England’s offense against Seattle’s defense looks to be a proverbial clash of the titans.”

John McMullen of The Sports Network previews the Seahawks’ Week 6 matchup with the Patriots, and offers a final score prediction, “The Seahawks defense, which is allowing a league-low 258.6 yards per game and is second in points allowed (14.0), will keep them in most games and this one should be no different, although Ridley’s emergence and New England’s balance will provide a very stiff test. ‘I think it will be a great challenge for us this week against a defense that’s really, really playing well,’ [Patriots offensive coordinator Josh] McDaniels said. Seattle, of course, is especially tough at notoriously noisy CenturyLink Field. This season the Seahawks have stymied Dallas 27-7 at home on Sept. 16 and topped Green Bay, 14-12, just over a week later, albeit with the help of a controversial touchdown call by the replacement referees on the last play of that one. ‘I think it might be the loudest stadium that we’ve been in and we’re in a lot of loud ones,’ Belichick said. ‘It’s a huge home field advantage for them.’ All that said, it’s hard to imagine Wilson keeping up and this game will put Carroll’s decision to go with the rookie under an even brighter microscope again. ‘I use it as fire,’ Wilson told the Seahawks’ website when asked about his critics. ‘I ignore the noise all the time, but at the same time I know that I have to get better.’  Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Patriots 24, Seahawks 23″

Greg Garber of ESPN.com ranks the NFL’s toughest venues to play at, and the Seahawks’ CenturyLink Field comes in at No. 2 on their list.

Mike Sando of ESPN.com has a look at NFC West injury situations, “Seattle Seahawks: Center Max Unger will join the injury report for Seattle this week with a hip injury that was expected to keep him from practicing Wednesday. Former starting guard John Moffitt, a contingency at center when healthy, was also among those missing practice. A knee injury will keep him inactive this week. Eight players have started on the offensive line for Seattle this season, tied with Jacksonville for most in the league. Seattle does have options at center. Lemuel Jeanpierre has started there. Defensive linemen Clinton McDonald (groin) and Jaye Howard (foot) did not practice. The team continues to list running back Marshawn Lynch as limited with a back injury. He has 121 touches this season, second-most in the NFL behind Arian Foster (142). Lynch had 313 touches last season.”

Here at Seahawks.com Clare Farnsworth notes the challenge that Brady and the Patritos’ offense present, and focuses on Carroll’s past with New England in his “Wednesday in Hawkville.”

Tony Ventrella recaps Wednesday’s activities in his Seahawks Daily, saying the Seahawks look forward to Sunday’s opportunity to face the League’s No.1-ranked offense.

Team photographer Rod Mar has a look at Wednesday’s practice in photos.

Finally, we have Carroll and Bevell’s full video press conferences from Wednesday.


Comments Off

Game at a glance: Irvin breaks the ice

A recap of the Seahawks’ 21-3 victory over the Raiders at CenturyLink Field on Thursday night:

PLAYER OF THE GAME

Bruce Irvin. There were plenty of candidates, but the nod goes to the first-round draft choice because he broke his oh-fer drought in the preseason.

After not producing a tackle, let alone a sack, in the first three preseason games, Irvin had 1.5 sacks against the Raiders and came tantalizingly close to collecting a couple more. He also forced a fumble on a punt return in the first quarter to set up Steven Hauschka’s first field goal to get things rolling.

“You can see the flair that he has,” coach Pete Carroll said. “It’s because of that marvelous speed that he has coming off the edge. He’s getting better, and he has so much talent.”

PLAYS OF THE GAME

Offense: The obvious choice would be Vai Taua’s 2-yard run in the second quarter for the Seahawks’ first touchdown. But his 13-yarder to the 2-yard line that setup it up was even better.

“It’s easy when you offensive linemen are getting push like that,” Taua said. “It makes it a lot easier, so all the credit goes to them.”

Defense: Jaye Howard’s safety-producing tackle of Mike Goodson in the fourth quarter. It wasn’t just that the rookie defensive lineman got to the RB in the end zone; it’s how he did it. Howard manhandled 300-pound Colin Miller on his way to Goodson.

“I thought Jaye Howard made a huge play, obviously,” Carroll said. “A safety is always fun.”

Special teams: Irvin’s fumble-forcing hit on punt returner Roscoe Parrish. Second-round draft choice Bobby Wagner recovered at the Raiders’ 38-yard line.

“I just thank the football Gods to see that I’ve been busting tail in practice every day,” Irvin said. “Those Gods are always watching. They watch when you take a play off. I think it starts in practice.”

INJURY REPORT

Taua strained the posterior cruciate ligament in one of his knees. Carroll said the extent of the injury will be known after Taua has additional tests on Friday.

Wide receiver Golden Tate twisted a knee while returning a punt in the third quarter. “It’s not bad,” Carroll said. “We need to see how he bounces back.”

Tate was returning punts because Leon Washington got poked in the eye during practice on Tuesday.

“He wasn’t real comfortable trying to catch punts in the pregame (warm-ups),” Carroll said. “He couldn’t see the ball the way he wanted to.”

Carroll also reported that defensive end Red Bryant chipped a tooth during the sideline celebration after Howard’s safety.

DID YOU NOTICE?

Rookie wide receiver Jermaine Kearse lined up at running back after Taua had to leave the game.

“We ran out of running backs, that’s why Kearse played,” Carroll said. “The guys were having a blast on the sideline with him.”

YOU DON’T SAY

“You just hope that you did enough to impress somebody. If not here, then there are 31 other teams that hopefully you have impressed.” – Taua, on Friday’s roster cut from 75 players to 53


Comments Off

Tuesday in Hawkville: ‘Other’ veteran receiver steals the show

A recap of the activities at the Seahawks’ Bing training camp for Aug. 7:

FOCUS ON

Braylon Edwards. Just-signed Terrell Owens wasn’t on the practice field. The recently signed Edwards was, and the veteran wide receiver put on a show during the 2½-hour practice at Virginia Mason Athletic Center.

“Braylon has done very well,” coach Pete Carroll said. “He’s learning very fast. He’s had a chance to compete right from the beginning. He’s made some big grabs already. He did it again today.

“So he’s factoring in and making a bid for playing time.”

Edwards’ beginning to this camp came a little later than most of the other players, as he was signed a week ago. But the former first-round draft choice of the Browns (2005) who also has played for the Jets (2009-10) and 49ers (2011) is making up for his delayed start.

Today, Edwards stayed with a play where the ball went off the hands of Pro Bowl cornerback Brandon Browner and was able to catch the carom.

“It’s definitely staying with the play,” Edwards said. “Getting open, holding the line and keeping the DB behind you.”

That, however, was just a warm-up as the 6-foot-3 Edwards then pulled down a Tarvaris Jackson pass despite tight cover from 6-3 cornerback Richard Sherman.

“Sherm expected me to go back inside,” Edwards said. “I didn’t. I kept it outside. It was a good throw and we made a play.”

Then there was the TD catch that wasn’t. Or was it? Edwards made a great effort to haul in a pass from rookie QB Russell Wilson on the other side of the end zone, but the official ruled he came down out of bounds. Edwards couldn’t wait for the instant replay.

“We’re going to go look at that film,” he said, smiling. “I think they both were good.”

Carroll said Owens is scheduled to practice for the first time Wednesday morning and will be wearing No. 10.

POSITION WATCH

Defensive tackles. After giving up too much ground in Sunday’s mock game, line coach Todd Wash challenged his unit – especially the tackles. They not only answered that challenge today, they did it emphatically.

“I don’t know if we had our best day up front in the mock game, so we challenged ourselves in the meeting room that we’ve got to do a better job of reestablishing the line of scrimmage and being active,” Wash said. “We were getting chewed up a little bit on some play-action stuff on Sunday.

“They took it to heart and came out today and played with really good effort.”

The best thing about the bounce-back performance? It wasn’t just a player or two; it was seemingly everyone in the full-team period that ended practice.

Nose tackle Brandon Mebane and end Red Bryant sandwiched Marshawn Lynch for no gain. Rookie tackle Jaye Howard got to Lynch 3 yards behind the line of scrimmage. The versatile Jason Jones got to Matt Flynn for a “sack.” Second-year tackle Pep Levingston stopped Tyrell Sutton for no gain. Howard got the penetration on a play where Sutton had to squirm and wiggle to gain 3 yards.

“They take a lot of pride in what they do,” Wash said. “And they know that the way they got it done on Sunday was not to the level of our expectations. So they came out, challenged themselves and had a good day.”

PLAYS DU JOUR

Offense: Let’s go with the best of Edwards’ efforts, the TD pass he caught against the long-armed Sherman at the right edge of the end zone.

Defense: Leo end Chris Clemons had a tempo-setter early in practice when he popped wide receiver Deon Butler to the turf after a short reception. The effort set off a celebration among the other defensive players.

IN ’N OUT

Cornerback Donny Lisowski, a rookie free agent from Montana and Seattle’s O’Dea High School, was released to clear a spot on the 90-man roster for Owens.

Bryant and Jones and rookie middle linebacker Bobby Wagner returned to practice. Still sitting out: wide receivers Doug Baldwin and Ricardo Lockette; tight end Anthony McCoy; linebackers Matt McCoy, Jameson Konz and Allen Bradford; defensive end Dexter Davis; and the two players on the physically unable to perform list – offensive lineman James Carpenter and cornerback Walter Thurmond.

UP NEXT

Flynn will run the No. 1 offense the rest of week, starting with Wednesday’s practice, as Carroll said the free-agent acquisition will start at quarterback in Saturday night’s preseason opener against the Titans at CenturyLink Field.

JOIN THE CROWD

Today’s cloud-covered practice attracted 1,264 fans. Only four more practices are open to the public – Wednesday and Thursday this week and Tuesday and Wednesday next week. Each sessions starts at 10 a.m. and you can register here to attend.

GNARLY TRAFFIC

With state routes 520 and 167 closed this weekend, fans attending Saturday night’s game are advised to plan accordingly. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

YOU DON’T SAY

“You know what happened? They gave us a day off. They gave John (Schneider, the GM) and I a day off and look what happened. That’s kind of what it was. We looked at each other, ‘Hey, let’s get something cooking.’ Bam, we did.” – Carroll, when asked why the team decided to sign Owens now


Saturday in Hawkville: Quarterbacks coach Smith sheds light on QB competition

A recap of the activities at the Seahawks’ Bing Training Camp for Saturday, August 4.

FOCUS ON

The quarterbacks. That would be incumbent starter Tarvaris Jackson, free-agent acquisition Matt Flynn, and 2012 third-round draft pick Russell Wilson.

But first, we take a look at a different ‘quarterback competition’ that took place between the coaching staff before the start of today’s practice. Quarterbacks coach Carl Smith, running backs coach Sherman Smith, offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, tight end coach Pat McPherson, and offensive line coach Tom Cable each took an attempt throwing a football into a trash can stationed 30 yards away. The victor? Not who you might think, as coach Cable’s first toss was right on the money, nestling nicely into the trash bags plastic lining.

Now, back to the actual quarterbacks – Jackson, Flynn, Wilson, and quarterbacks coach Smith, who has perhaps been the closest one to this three-man competition through the team’s first seven days of camp.

“To have the three of them involved in this competition just heightens their neurons every day,” said Smith. “There’s a lot of electricity in the room and in meetings, on the field, and it’s just a little more than usual. They’re like that all the time, but it just adds something when you think you’re going to be the guy, or have a chance to be the guy.”

Jackson wants to be the guy. Flynn wants to be the guy. Wilson wants to be the guy. But the three quarterbacks are not letting the competition for the starting job affect the way they work with each other, and the way they work at making this team better.

“They’re teammates – they’re helping each other,” said Smith. “They’re never going to play against each other. They’re all there to help the Seahawks win. T-Jack has been great with Matt and Russ, telling them the stuff he already knows about the system. Matt has been generous with his knowledge of what he came with from Green Bay, so it’s great for all of us.”

Smith has never been part of a competition like this before, but there is one thing he’s certain of, and that’s that the team will go with the man that gives them the best chance to win.

“Every year, whether it’s stated or not, the best guy winds up playing,” Smith said. “If somebody’s doing better he moves up. They could move from three to two, or from two to one. If you’re doing poorly at one, you move to two. It’s inherent to the game. You’ve got to hold your position once you have it.”

ROOKIE WATCH

Today we catch up with rookie defensive tackle Jaye Howard out of Florida, who was the second of the ‘Hawks two fourth-round draft choices in April.

Howard has seen snaps along the defensive line between the second and third units thus far in camp and his relationship with Florida defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who coached the Seahawks defensive line in 2010, has helped with his transition to the NFL, and more specifically, his transition to Seattle’s defensive system.

“The speed of the game has changed a lot,” Howard said. “But I was able to go out with coach D-Q before I came back to training camp and work with him on my pass rush and my run stuffing. It’s definitely an advantage coming from a guy in college that had been in this system before.”

During individual defensive line drills today Howard’s speed was evident. He has quick feet and moves well for someone who is 6-3 and carries 301 pounds.

“I feel like I’m a great penetrator,” Howard said. “I can get up and get to the quarterback. I’m quicker than most of the guards that I face, so I just try to use that speed to my advantage.”

Howard tallied 11.0 sacks in college through 45 games and now it’s about upping his game to get to the quarterback at the NFL level, an area that defensive line coach Todd Wash and defensive line coaching intern Kenechi Udeze could be seen emphasizing in practice today with Howard.

“They brought me in to get to the quarterback and they’re going to keep working me in until I get there,” said Howard. “It’s just baby steps – they were teaching me how to open my hips better, the small fundamental things that I didn’t have in college they’re trying to tweak now.”

PLAYS DU JOUR

Offense: Wide receivers Golden Tate and Kris Durham stood out with a few nice grabs, but Tate’s catch up the right sideline on a deep ball from Wilson takes the cake as our play of the day. Tate elevated over safety Jeron Johnson and cornerback Byron Maxwell to make the grab in the end zone for the score. Jackson made a nice left-handed (he’s right-handed) flip toss to Tate in the end zone while scrambling away from pressure. Tate shined again on a jump ball from Flynn in the team’s red zone drill from five yards out, hauling it in and drawing a defensive pass interference flag from the referee. Running back Marshawn Lynch made a nice grab at the beginning of practice when the team focused on coming out of their own goal line. Lynch hauled in an off-target ball from Jackson in the flat, getting one hand on the football and twisting his body toward the sideline to secure it with both hands before falling to the ground and lunging forward to pick up the first down.

Defense: Safety Chris Maragos came untouched off the right side of the line for a sack of quarterback Matt Flynn in the end zone that resulted in a safety during one of the team’s goal line drills at the start of practice. Flynn had very little time to react on the play before he was met by the speedy Maragos. During the team’s red zone offense drill, cornerback Richard Sherman tipped a ball from Tarvaris Jackson that fell into the hands of Kam Chancellor for an interception in the end zone. Safety Earl Thomas picked off a Jackson pass on a deep ball over the middle end zone intended for wide receiver Lavasier Tuinei. Linebacker Heath Farwell intercepted a ball from Flynn over the middle of the field toward the end of practice.

IN ‘N OUT

Eleven players did not practice today, as wide receiver Ricardo Lockette, linebacker Allen Bradford, and tight end Kellen Winslow joined the eight players who did not practice yesterday – wide receivers Doug Baldwin and Antonio Bryant, tight end Anthony McCoy, linebackers Bobby Wagner, Matt McCoy, and Jameson Konz, offensive lineman James Carpenter, and cornerback Walter Thurmond. Carpenter and Thurmond remain on the physically unable to perform list.

UP NEXT

The players have a walkthrough and meetings this afternoon and will practice tomorrow at 1:15 p.m. – a session that is slated to feature a “mock game” between the squads. Tomorrow’s practice is the last weekend practice scheduled for the entire camp.

After Sunday’s “mock game” the players will have a day off on Monday before beginning game-week preparations on Tuesday for their first preseason matchup against the Tennessee Titans on Saturday, August 11.

JOIN THE CROWD

Today’s practice attracted more than 2,500 fans – the most to date this camp. Head Coach Pete Carroll gestured up at the 2,500 faithful that blanketed the berm at VMAC to make some noise before the team’s agility bag drills at the start of practice, and the 12th Man responded with an overwhelming applause.

Six practices remain open to the public. You can register to attend a practice session here.

YOU DON’T SAY

“Hard to block. That’s all I’ve got.” – Quarterbacks coach Carl Smith on playing against former Seahawks defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy, who was inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame today in Canton, Ohio.


Comments Off

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.'”


Tuesday cyber surfing: Hill feeling ‘youthful’

Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” after the long Memorial Day week about the Seahawks for today, May 29:

Dave Boling at the News Tribune checks in with veteran linebacker Leroy Hill, who’s not only back but leaner: “To watch the Seahawks’ herd of young bucks at linebacker is to suspect the evolution of a new predatory species, a hybrid that maximizes speed without sacrificing power. And fitting in well with this group during offseason workouts is a lean and fast kid wearing Leroy Hill’s old jersey. This new No. 56 seems very polished, though. As it turns out – somewhat against the odds and occasional skepticism – the guy in Hill’s jersey actually is Leroy Hill. At 235 pounds, with scant 12-percent body fat, Hill resembles the 2005 rookie linebacker who surprised everyone with 7.5 sacks and led the Seahawks in tackles during their playoff run to the Super Bowl. ‘I feel amazing,’ Hill said after a recent practice. ‘A little more muscle and leaner … I committed to the offseason program and I’ve been going hard and feeling great. I feel … youthful.’ ”

Jesse Temple at FoxSports.com looks at Russell Wilson, and other height-challenged QBs who have made it in the NFL: “Wilson had just two balls batted down at the line of scrimmage last season while playing behind an offensive line at Wisconsin that averaged 6-5, 322 pounds – the fifth-heaviest line in professional or college football. His success is predicated on having an over-the-top delivery, a high release point and a strong arm, which are three essential aspects to overcoming the short quarterback stigma in the NFL. Wilson himself has attempted to put the notion that he’s too short to bed for quite some time. ‘My height’s not a factor,’ Wilson said after his pro day at Wisconsin in March. ‘I played this way my whole life. The key is finding lanes and delivering the ball on time. There’s not that much of a difference if I was 6-1 or 5-11, to be honest. Playing behind the offensive line you play behind, you don’t really see over guys, you throw through lanes, deliver an accurate ball, throw the ball with arc and pace and just make plays.’ “
Mike Sando at ESPN.com looks at where each NFL team ranks in popularity, and the Seahawks check in at No. 18: “Pollsters conduct 1,500 monthly telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of Americans age 12 and older. They have reached 390,000 Americans since 1994 via land lines and cell phones, in English and Spanish.”

Doug Farrar of ShutdownCorner.com looks at the impact the acquisition of Kellen Winslow will have in this dispatch at YahooSports.com: “ ‘We like guys with special dimensions and he’s got them,’ (coach Pete) Carroll said of his newest weapon. ‘He’s a real route-runner and a great, great catcher and he does stuff with the ball after he catches it, too. Zach (Miller) is a dynamite ‘Y’ tight end in this offense — we use him for so many different special things because he’s so good at it. To have the complement of these two guys going and the way we can mix it it’s a really exciting aspect for our offense … we’re going to make the most of this trade and it’s going to be really good.’ “

Here at Seahawks.com, we’ve got our 10th – and final – profile on the team’s draft choices, defensive lineman Jaye Howard: “Before Jaye Howard wrapped up his first ball carrier for the Seahawks, the fourth-round draft choice took a moment to wrap his head around the situation he finds himself in. ‘It’s been an unreal experience,’ the defensive tackle from Florida said of his first visit to Virginia Mason Athletic Center for the team’s rookie minicamp. ‘Walking into the same locker room and seeing Marshawn Lynch – a player that I look up to – and now I’m actually in the same locker room. It’s a great feeling. So I’m just embracing this moment right now.’ Once he got that out of his system, Howard started getting to the quarterback, as well as running backs before they could get through the hole.”

Pete Carroll is featured in this video interview on NFL.com. There’s nothing new here, except that someone connected with the team is getting some national attention.

For a look around the league, there’s Peter King’s “Monday Morning Quarterback” at SI.com, which includes this sad note on the future of the Times-Picayune in New Orleans: “So many of us in the journalism business have had to get used to new things. New age of versatility that has us do print, Internet, radio and TV. Twitter. The 24-hour news cycle. The whole business has changed, and we all probably knew this day was coming. But it’ll be an eerie day this fall: The storied New Orleans Times-Picayune, born in 1837, will stop publishing seven days a week. It’ll publish three days a week — Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. The Saints are the biggest story in the city, all fall. But you won’t read about them away from a computer until Wednesday every week in New Orleans. There’ll be a Super Bowl in New Orleans in February. Will those folks not inclined to read online have to wait ’til Wednesday to read about the biggest game in America? The paper will cut about 50 jobs from the 150-member staff and begin devoting most of its energy to the online product. This cannot be good for journalism, no matter which way the parent company, Advance Publications, spins it.”


Comments Off

Wednesday cyber surfing: A potpourri of past and present

Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, May 16:

Mike Sando at ESPN.com checks in with George Koonce, who spent one of his nine seasons in the NFL with the Seahawks, and he has quite a tale to tell: “I had a wonderful wife, beautiful children, money in the bank and a Super Bowl ring back on that day in 2003 when my post-NFL transition took my Chevy Suburban around a 25-mph corner at three times the posted speed. Whatever happened that day was going to happen. I didn’t really care. By the grace of God, I survived what was, in retrospect, a suicide attempt. But paramedics weren’t going to cart me off. No chance. The football tough guy in me refused to get into that ambulance. My wife, Tunisia, drove me to the hospital and saved my life with words, not medicine. ‘George,’ she said, ‘I don’t understand what you are going through, but I sympathize. We cannot reinvent who you are, but we can redefine who you are.’ ”

Also from Sando, a look at the addition of Alex Barron: “Barron gives the Seahawks seven offensive linemen drafted by other teams. That includes choices from every round but the sixth (and two from the fifth).”

And still more from Sando, a look at the team’s “pressure point”: “Tarvaris Jackson earned the respect of his Seahawks teammates by playing through much of the 2011 with a torn pectoral muscle on his right side. Jackson never complained or made excuses. The injury made it tougher for Jackson to take hold of the starting job for the long term. The Seahawks’ inability to make key plays in critical moments left them with a 7-9 record and kept them in the market for help at the position.”

John Boyle at the Everett Herald also looks at Tuesday’s addition of Barron: “Barron, a former first-round pick who played at Florida State, hoped that his NFC West tour would come to an end at that Seahawks minicamp, and for now anyway, it has. Barron and three other players who tried out last weekend have agreed to terms on contracts with Seattle. ‘I haven’t gone to Arizona and I don’t plan on going to Arizona,’ Barron said. ‘I’d be fine being home right here.’ A contract in May is hardly a guarantee of a job come September, but it is at least a step in the right direction for Barron, who missed all of last season with a knee injury.”

Eric Williams at the News Tribune looks at the crowded situation on the offensive line now that Barron has agreed to contract terms: “At 6-foot-8 and 318 pounds, Barron is long and athletic – he held his own against speedy rookie defensive end Bruce Irvin over the weekend – but has had issues with penalties over his seven-year career. Barron has been flagged 17 times – 14 of them accepted – in his past 17 games started. Barron will compete with Frank Omiyale, Paul Fanaika, Allen Barbre and Mitchell for the backup offensive tackle job behind starters Russell Okung and Breno Giacomini. Last year’s first-round pick, James Carpenter, is still recovering from knee surgery. Seattle now has 15 offensive linemen on the team’s 90-man roster.”

Also at the News Tribune, Dave Boling offers his impressions from the weekend minicamp: “Of the other draft picks, running back Robert Turbin shows a nice burst, and linebackers Bobby Wagner and Korey Toomer are both impressive athletes who flow to the play. Defensive linemen Jaye Howard and Greg Scruggs both are big guys who are lean and have pass-rushing potential.”

Danny O’Neil at the Seattle Times also looks at Tuesday’s additions, but focuses on Donny Lisowski: “Lisowski graduated from O’Dea High School in 2008. He played quarterback and defensive back, wrestled and ran track. Lisowski’s speed impressed coach Pete Carroll, who singled him out Sunday after the last of the three practices at the minicamp. ‘He was all over the place out here,’ Carroll said.

Elliott Harrison at NFL.com looks at the QB competitions in the league, including the Seahawks: “Unless (Tarvaris) Jackson plays out of his freaking mind, the odds-on favorite appears to be (Matt Flynn) the former Green Bay Packers backup, who has thrown nine touchdowns and compiled a 123.0 passer rating in two career starts. The other possibility would be to keep them both with the expectation that this is a playoff team in need of two vets. It’s just going to cost GM John Schneider a healthy chunk of change. Don’t forget third-round pick Russell Wilson, who the Seahawks reportedly think can compete, too. The smart money says that’s a year away.”

Also at NFL.com, in his latest “Pick Six,” Adam Rank looks at the best defensive nicknames in league history. The Seahawks aren’t included, but it’s worth a read anyway: “It might be hypocritical to list the Fearsome Foursome after the nickname was used to describe other units (don’t act like you knew that). But the Fearsome Foursome is synonymous with the Los Angeles Rams of the 1960s, which featured Deacon Jones, Merlin Olsen, Rosey Grier and Lamar Lundy. Easily the best nickname ever applied to a defensive unit.”

Jason Smith at NFL.com has a photo essay on the best rookie seasons by team, and the Seahawks are included: “Try as I might, I can’t make the argument for Kenny Easley’s 1981 rookie season over Curt Warner’s in 1983. Easley was the defensive rookie of the year, but Warner amassed 1,449 rush yards and 13 touchdowns. He had a pretty good career, with four 1,000-yard seasons, but he goes down as the guy everyone mistakenly called for interviews trying to reach the other Kurt Warner.”

Here at Seahawks.com, we have not only the word that Barron has agreed, but a look at his participation in the offseason program: “ ‘I just wanted to get somewhere,’ Barron said. ‘I’m pretty confident in my play. I’ve made some mistakes in the past, also. But I’ve gotten to the point where after last season, and coming into the offseason as a free agent, all I want to do is come in and just show that I can play. Because it can’t be talked about, it always has to be shown.’ ”

We’ve also got a look at the winding road that led fifth-round draft choice Korey Toomer to the Seahawks: “Korey Toomer has followed a meandering path to the NFL. But now that he’s here, as the Seahawks’ fifth-round draft choice, the rookie linebacker from Idaho is not only making up for lost time, he’s doing it in a blur. At the rookie minicamp over the weekend, and again in the offseason program workouts this week, the one thing that has stood out about Toomer is that he does everything fast. ‘The dude can run, no question about it,’ veteran linebacker Leroy Hill said on Tuesday, shaking his head. Toomer, in fact, ran himself right into being draft by the Seahawks – even though the team already had selected pass-rushing end Bruce Irvin in the first round and middle linebacker Bobby Wagner in the second round.”

The Pro Football Hall of Fame website has the word on Cortez Kennedy dominating items as his Aug. 4 induction draws closer: “Included in the prized gift were Kennedy’s 1993 Pro Bowl jersey, a pair of well-worn shoulder pads and a pair of cleats from his NFL career that spanned from 1990-2000.”


Pickin’ and grinnin’

Prior to the NFL Draft, John Schneider explained that part of his thinking in trading down is whether the two or three players you wind up getting are a better deal than taking the one player available with the original pick.

Then the Seahawks’ third-year GM traded down in the first round on Thursday night and the second round on Friday, picking up two extra draft choices in each deal – for moving back a combined seven spots.

Here’s a look at what the Seahawks got, and what they could have had:

FIRST ROUND

Original pick: 12

Traded down to: 15

Who they traded with: Eagles

What they got: West Virginia pass rusher Bruce Irvin at No. 15; Florida defensive tackle Jaye Howard in the fourth round; Northwestern State (La.) Jeremy Lane in the sixth round.

Who the Eagles took at 12: Mississippi State defensive tackle Fletcher Cox

SECOND ROUND

Original pick: No. 11 in the round, 43rd overall

Traded down to: 47

Who they traded with: Jets

What they got: Utah State linebacker Bobby Wagner at No. 47; Idaho linebacker Korey Toomer in the fifth round, where they did not have a pick because of the 2010 draft-day trade for Marshawn Lynch; Louisville defensive end Greg Scruggs in the seventh round.

Who the Jets took at 43: Georgia Tech wide receiver Stephen Hill


Comments Off