If you thought we were done pumping NFL Top 100 player lists to bide the time during this slow part of the offseason, think again.
In response to NFL Network’s list of the Top 100 Players of 2013, ProFootballTalk.com introduced their own century index back on July 1, when they unveiled players ranked in the bottom-fourth (No. 100-76). Having joined forces with several members of the NFL media to generate their list, the PFT staff has continued to unveil 25 players at a time each Monday since. Yesterday, they disclosed players ranked No. 75-51 and will highlight No. 50-26 next week before concluding the following Monday with their Top 25.
Six Seahawks showed up on the NFL Network’s player-driven list – center Max Unger at No. 95, wide receiver Percy Harvin at No. 90, free safety Earl Thomas at No. 66, quarterback Russell Wilson at No. 51, cornerback Richard Sherman at No. 50, and running back Marshawn Lynch at No. 24. Fifty players into PFT’s countdown, Unger and Harvin show up yet again – Unger slightly lower at No. 99 and Harvin considerably higher at No. 53. I like to think Thomas, Wilson, Sherman, and Lynch will all rank somewhere in PFT’s Top 50 in the coming weeks.
The PFT edition also adds a new Seahawks face to the League’s Top 100 landscape, as cornerback Antoine Winfield – one of the club’s notable offseason acquisitions – comes in ranked one spot ahead of Unger at No. 98.
It’s No. 24 for No. 24.
That would be All-Pro/Pro Bowl running back Marshawn Lynch, who landed at No. 24 on tonight’s unveiling of players ranked Nos. 30-21 on NFL Network’s Top 100 Players of 2013. Lynch joins cornerback Richard Sherman (No. 50), quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 51), free safety Earl Thomas (No. 66), wide receiver Percy Harvin (No. 90), and center Max Unger (No. 95) as the sixth Seahawk to appear on the player-driven countdown of the League’s Top 100 players.
The Seahawks “Beast Mode” back had a career-year in 2012, earning his second-straight trip to the Pro Bowl while racking up 1,590 yards (a career-high, good for 3rd in NFL) and 11 touchdowns on the ground. That impressive total went along with 196 yards and a score on 23 catches out of the backfield. He set a career-high with 10 100-yard games and his 1,590 yards rushing were good for the third-best total in team history. Not one player has more rushing yards than Lynch since Week 9 of the 2011 season (2,531 yards in those games).
Lynch is the seventh player at his position to appear on the list, ranking ahead of San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore (No. 32), Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy (No. 45), Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin (No. 57), Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson (No. 62), Washington Redskins running back Alfred Morris (No. 64), Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson (No. 71), and Jacksonville Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew (No. 98).
With Lynch as the sixth Seattle player to be named in the Top 100, the Seahawks trail only the NFC West rival San Francisco 49ers as the team that is most-heavily-represented in the network’s countdown. The 49ers have seven players highlighted so far, including defensive end Justin smith (No. 29), the aforementioned Gore (No. 32), linebacker NaVorro Bowman (No. 37), tight end Vernon Davis (No. 38), tackle Joe Staley (No. 78), quarterback Colin Kaepernick (No. 81), and wide receiver Anquan Boldin (No. 93).
Thursday’s final minicamp session marked the end of the club’s official Offseason Program. Break for team veterans begins tomorrow, but the rookies will report for workouts next week, with the coaches break beginning shortly after that.
At the end of today’s camp, several Seahawks players took to Twitter to voice the success they’ve enjoyed throughout spring workouts:
Good morning, and welcome to the final day of the Seahawks’ three-day minicamp at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. Today’s workout is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. – two hours earlier than the sessions that were held on Tuesday and Wednesday. But before we get there, here’s a look at what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for June 13, 2013:
Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune passes along his notes and observations from day two of camp, including comments from cornerback Richard Sherman on the close-knit chemistry of the team’s secondary. Williams also profiles the 6-foot-7, 305-pound defensive tackle Tony McDaniel, who has been working throughout the offseason in the spot vacated by defensive tackle Alan Branch, who signed with the Buffalo Bills in free agency.
Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times has a few post-practice video interviews from yesterday with wide receiver Sidney Rice, linebacker Bobby Wagner and Sherman.
Curtis Crabtree of 950 KJR AM also details the impressive play of the Seahawks secondary and has his notes from day two of camp.
Art Thiel of SportsPressNW.com has a look at quarterback Russell Wilson’s rapid rate of improvement.
NFL.com’s Around the League writer Marc Sessler caught wind of Wilson’s unwillingness to acknowledge a “sophomore slump” when Wilson was asked about the term during his Tuesday press conference. Sessler puts Wilson ahead of Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Ryan Tannehill and Brandon Weeden as the surest-bet quarterback who’s heading into their second season.
With 23 of the League’s 32 teams in minicamps this week, NFL.com’s Chris Wesserling has compiled a quick-hit-list of 15 things we learned from Day 2 of NFL minicamps.
Our Clare Farnsworth’s “Hawkville” blog focuses on Sherman and wide receiver Doug Baldwin – the pair of Stanford graduates who have stood out above the rest with their play this offseason. Farnsworth also has a feature on the versatility of the team’s defensive line, catching up with defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, defensive line coach Travis Jones, defensive end Red Bryant and McDaniel on the line’s look.
Team photographer Rod Mar has the snaps from days one and two of camp here.
We’ll be back with more following today’s practice and media availabilities, as we wrap-up this final day of the Seahawks’ official Offseason Program. In the meantime, we leave you with four Seahawks-themed podcasts from yesterday via 710Sports.com:
Assistant Head Coach/Offensive Line Coach Tom Cable on “Brock and Danny”
Center Max Unger on “Bob and Groz”
Fullback Michael Robinson on “Bob and Groz”
Left tackle Russell Okung on “Wyman, Mike and Moore”
After a two-week hiatus, the Seahawks get another name in NFL Network’s Top 100 Players of 2013.
When players No. 30-21 are unveiled at 5 p.m. PT on Thursday on NFL Network, a sixth Seattleite will join the likes of center Max Unger (No. 95), wide receiver Percy Harvin (No. 90), free safety Earl Thomas (No. 66), quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 51), and cornerback Richard Sherman (No. 50).
Unfortunately, we can’t tell you who that player is just yet. But with the field shrinking by the week, it makes it a little bit easier to pinpoint the remaining Seahawks on the list. All-Pro/Pro Bowl running back Marshawn Lynch is the first that comes to mind, but I could also see Pro Bowl left tackle Russell Okung earning a mention.
Tune in to NFL Network tomorrow to find out who it is and we’ll have the announcement for you here as soon as it drops.
A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for June 11, as the Seahawks kicked off a mandatory three-day minicamp that will conclude their offseason program:
FOCUS ON: MICHAEL BROOKS
After the rookie defensive tackle was claimed off waivers on May 29 and practiced with the Seahawks for the first time a few days later, Brooks admitted, “I’m just trying to learn my way around right now and get with this new system.”
The 6-foot-3, 299-pound Brooks apparently is a fast learner. In today’s practice, he tipped a pass incomplete and then penetrated to get a “sack” – on back-to-back plays. It was that talent and versatility that first attracted the Seahawks, who tried to sign Brooks after the NFL Draft in April. He opted for the Lions, but the Seahawks got another chance to acquire Brooks after he was waived.
“We saw some things we liked about him on tape and Michael certainly has come in here and tried to learn the system quickly,” first-year defensive line coach Travis Jones said after practice – which was held under sunny skies but also in a brisk breeze along the shores of Lake Washington.
And, like most of the linemen, Brooks is learning more than one position. He’s playing the three-technique tackle spot as well as the five-technique end position.
“Everybody’s got different positions to learn,” Jones said. “You’ve got to try to find a way to get on this team, and the best way to do that is to learn a couple of different positions.”
And it doesn’t hurt when you’re making multiple plays from those multiple positions.
PLAYER WATCH: CHRIS CLEMONS
The team’s sack leader the past three seasons was on hand for the start of the mandatory minicamp, but Clemons is continuing his rehab from surgery after tearing a ligament and meniscus in his left knee during the wild-card playoff victory over the Redskins in January.
“It’s good to get Clem back in, even though he can’t work,” Carroll said.
Clemons, who was acquired in a 2010 trade with the Eagles, has posted 11, 11 and 11.5 sacks in his first three seasons with the Seahawks.
“The doctors say he’s in great shape,” Carroll said. “He’s ahead (of schedule). He’s worked diligently to get there. Is he going to make it back by the first game? I don’t know. He has a chance. And if it can happen, he’ll make it happen.
“But like I said the whole time, we will not rush that. We’re going to take our time on that and make sure he’s right. The doctors are greatly confident. He is also.”
Even if he’s not practicing, Clemons provides a plus.
“Clem, he’s a great leader on this team. He’s tough as nails and really stands for something in this locker room,” Carroll said. “So to have him around is important.”
POSITION WATCH: TIGHT END
With starter Zach Miller sitting out to rest a sore left foot, it allowed second-year tight end Sean McGrath and rookie Luke Willson to work with the No. 1 offense – snaps that will prove invaluable as they continue to develop in the offense.
“It does give the other guys a chance to step up and get some good focus work,” Carroll said. “It’s really good for Luke and Sean McGrath is getting extra turns. So it’s a good deal.”
While Willson was selected in the fifth round of April’s NFL Draft, McGrath spent most of his rookie season on the practice squad after being signed as a rookie free agent last year.
“Sean is stronger. He’s quicker,” said Carroll, pointing out that McGrath has added almost 10 pounds. “He just looks great. He always could catch the football really well. Now he knows what he’s doing and he’s become just a regular part of it. He’s in the rotation right now.”
ANOTHER TOP 100 PLAYER
A sixth Seahawk will be included among the players ranked 21-30 in the NFL Network’s continuing countdown of the Top 100 Players for 2013. The latest group will be unveiled starting at 5 p.m. on Thursday.
As usual, we can’t tell you who it is. But All-Pro center Max Unger (No. 95), receiver/returner/running Percy Harvin (No. 90), All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas (No. 66), Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 51) and All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman (No. 50) are the Seahawks previously included. That leaves a very-prominent name still out there – All-Pro running back Marshawn Lynch.
A WISH COME TRUE, AND THEN SOME
The club hosted Make-A-Wish recipient Kevin Lee today. Needless to say, it was an over-the-top experience for the 12-year old from Farmington Hills, Mich., who has had four open-heart surgeries.
We can’t share more details at this time because the event was videotaped by a crew from ESPN and will be included in the network’s Eighth Annual My Wish series that is scheduled to air the week of Aug. 18.
The players will practice again on Wednesday afternoon and then wrap up the three-day minicamp with a morning practice on Thursday.
YOU DON’T SAY
“You saw him. He was killing it today in practice. He’s just a very, very talented football player – very fast; very, very quick. He’s a very smart football player. He has the mind of quarterback. He thinks all the time. He’s thinking about what’s going on. What the coverage looks like and how he’s matched up with certain guys. So that helps.” – quarterback Russell Wilson on third-year slot receiver Doug Baldwin, who was played through injuries most of last season after leading the team in receptions as a rookie free agent in 2011
A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for June 3, as the Seahawks kicked off the final week of their OTA sessions:
FOCUS ON: ZACH MILLER
The Seahawks’ veteran tight end does so many things well that focusing on just one could be difficult. Except that when it comes to making one-handed catches, Miller is exceptional.
He had another during today’s OTA session, as well as a finger-tip grab of a pass after he got behind Pro Bowl-caliber strong safety Kam Chancellor. Miller also had a one-hander in the end zone last Wednesday that earned five-highs from several players – defensive, as well as offensive – and coach Pete Carroll. All three passes were thrown by quarterback Russell Wilson.
“I’ve always had a knack for just being able to get the big paw on it,” Miller said through a smile after the team’s sun-drenched session along the shores of Lake Washington. “It helps that I’ve got pretty big hands.”
But making the one-handers is mental as well as physical.
“You’ve got to understand what kind of passes you can catch like that,” Miller said. “If the ball is coming to you fast, you have no chance. So you’ve kind of got to pick your times to do that.”
While those catches can be uplifting for Miller, the QB who throws the pass and the other offensive players, they can have the reverse effect on the players who are covering Miller.
“If you make a one-hander, the defenders don’t like that,” he said. “They think they’ve got you. Then you stick a big paw out and you bring it in, they’re like, ‘Really, you caught that?’ ”
With Miller, the answer is a resounding “yes,” and comes with the tagline “again.”
PLAYER WATCH: MICHAEL BROOKS
The rookie defensive tackle has now practiced with the team twice since being claimed off waivers last week. But Brooks admits to feeling like the new kid who has entered a new school at midterm.
“I’m just trying to learn my way around right now and get with this new system,” said Brooks, who was signed by the Lions after April’s NFL Draft.
Brooks did things one way at East Carolina and was learning to do them another with the Lions. Now comes the way defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and line coach Travis Fisher teach their techniques.
“I was just getting used to the way they do things in Detroit, then I get here and I’ve got to switch it all over,” he said.
In his first two practices – Friday and today – Brooks has participated in the individual drills and then been tutored while on the sideline during the team portions.
“It’s been a pretty good transition. Everybody is helping out,” he said. “I’m just watching and trying to learn from the older guys. They’ve been in the system for a while and I’m just kind of feeling my way through.”
POSITION WATCH: RIGHT TACKLE
With incumbent starter Breno Giacomini missing today’s session, rookie tackle Michael Bowie worked on the right side of the offensive line with the No. 1 unit that also included Pro Bowl left tackle Russell Okung, veteran left guard Paul McQuistan, All-Pro center Max Unger and second-year right guard J.R. Sweezy.
Bowie also continued to work with the No. 3 line, along with left tackle Mike Person, rookie left guard Alvin Bailey and fellow seventh-round draft choices Jared Smith at center and Ryan Seymour at right guard.
The extra reps will only help Bowie as he works to earn one of the backup spots on the 53-man roster.
JOSH PORTIS CFL BOUND
Josh Portis, the quarterback released last month by the Seahawks, has signed with the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL, the team has announced.
Portis was the Seahawks’ No. 3 quarterback on 2011, when he was active for one game. He was released last August on the roster cut to 53 players, signed to the practice squad and then released in November. Portis was re-signed in April.
The players will be back on the field Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday as they complete the 10 OTA sessions allowed by the CBA that ended the 136-day lockout in 2011.
The Pro Shop at CenturyLink Field will kick off its grand re-opening weekend on Friday from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. The ceremonial ribbon cutting will take place at 5:30, with Wilson and team president Peter McLoughlin doing the honors.
YOU DON’T SAY
“He’s ready to learn. He’s listening to everything. He’s asking questions. Which is exactly how you want your rookie to be. He’s making plays out. He’s having some good days. It’s what he’s got to do to be our second tight end. … And he has that speed that he can separate from guys pretty easily. He’s going to be a weapon for us on offense.” – Miller on Luke Willson, the tight end the Seahawks selected in the fifth round of April’s NFL Draft
One-hundred days from today – on Sunday, September 8 – the Seahawks will kickoff the 2013 regular season against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C.
As our Insider Clare Farnsworth outlined earlier, 2013 is a season of heightened expectations for this Seattle ball club. The overwhelming message we gathered from Farnsworth’s feature is that the Seahawks players and coaching staff are handling each of these final 100 days to kickoff just like they’ve handled the previous 100 – one at a time.
So, we’re going to take it one day at a time along with them.
Every Friday, from now until the regular season begins, we’ll outline all the happenings of the week to come. And not just what’s happening with the team (though that will take priority), but we’ll use this space to keep you up to date on what’s going on around the Seahawks community as well. From player appearances to charity events and from fan activities to friendly holiday reminders (Fathers Day is rapidly approaching – June 16, to be exact – you’re welcome) we’ll have it for you here.
Hopefully, this will help us all cope with life without football, as together we inch closer and closer to answer the often-uttered question: Is it football season yet?
Without further ado, here’s a look at the what’s going on next week, June 3-7, with your Seattle Seahawks:
Monday, June 3:
- After taking the weekend off, the team continues with Phase 3 of their Offseason Program, moving forward with the seventh of 10 Organized Team Activities (OTAs). This OTA session is open to the media, so expect plenty of coverage from us and the rest of our colleagues around the Pacific Northwest.
Tuesday, June 4:
- The eighth of 10 OTAs takes place at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. This session is closed to the media, but our staff will be around to deliver plenty of offseason goodness your way here on Seahawks.com.
Wednesday, June 5:
- The ninth of 10 OTAs takes place at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. This session is closed to the media as well, but once again we’ll be on hand to bring you a look at what’s going on from the team’s second to last day of OTAs.
Thursday, June 6:
- The final day of OTAs takes place at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. Like Monday’s go-around, this workout is also open to the media. We’ll have a full OTA-wrap-up for you here on Seahawks.com and blanketed across our social media channels.
- The NFL Network’s countdown of the Top 100 Players of 2013 continues at 5 p.m. PT with players ranked No. 31-40. Will a sixth Seahawk join the likes of Richard Sherman (No. 50), Russell Wilson (No. 51), Earl Thomas (No. 66), Percy Harvin (No. 90) and Max Unger (No. 95)? All-Pro/Pro Bowl running back Marshawn Lynch and Pro Bowl left tackle Russell Okung come to mind, but we’ll have to wait and see.
Friday, June 7:
- No team activities are scheduled, but it’s Seahawks Blue Friday. Wear your Seahawks-themed gear to school, work, or wherever you may be.
- Don’t have any gear, or need something new? Friday also marks the grand re-opening of the expanded Seahawks Pro Shop at CenturyLink Field, which may feature a player appearance, or two (look for specifics next week here on Seahawks.com). All in all, it sounds like a great day to head down to the field and grab yourself some fresh garb.
All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman, who recently ranked as one of the League’s nine most indispensable defensive players, joined center Max Unger (No. 95), wide receiver Percy Harvin (No. 90), free safety Earl Thomas (No. 66), and quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 51) as the fifth Seahawk to be represented on NFL Network’s list of the Top 100 players of 2013, appearing at No. 50 on tonight’s unveil of players ranked 41-50.
Not only is Sherman the fifth Seahawk, but he’s also the fifth player at his position to make the network’s list. Sherman ranks ahead of the Denver Broncos’ Champ Bailey (No. 53), Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Darrelle Revis (No. 67), Chicago Bears’ Tim Jennings (No. 69), and Kansas City Chiefs’ Brandon Flowers (No. 75).
When Sherman was drafted with the 23rd pick in the fifth-round (154th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft, he took close notice of every cornerback that was drafted ahead of him, saying he could rally off each of their names if asked. Two years later, Sherman has established himself as one of the game’s top players, tallying 115 tackles, 12 interceptions (eight last season, T-2nd in NFL), 41 passes defensed, four forced fumbles and 1.0 sack in just 26 starts with the Seahawks.
You can bet the overtly-ambitious Sherman will maintain that 2011 draft mentality toward any other cornerbacks that may be ranked ahead of him on this list (fellow All-Pro corner Charles Tillman of the Bears has yet to be unveiled) when the countdown picks up again next Thursday with players ranked No. 31-40.
Another week, another Seahawk in the NFL Network’s Top 100 Players of 2013.
When the players ranked No. 41-50 are unveiled on Thursday starting at 5 p.m. PT, the quartet of All-Pro center Max Unger (No. 95), wide receiver Percy Harvin (No. 90), All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas (No. 66) and Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 51) will have company.
As usual, we can’t say who the latest Seahawks player is. But the field is growing smaller by the week. Possible candidates include Pro Bowl left tackle Russell Okung, All-Pro running back Marshawn Lynch and All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman.
You’ll have to tune in to find out who it is.