A Happy Bobby Birthday

Bobby Wagner

The way Bobby Wagner played last season, it was hard to believe the Seahawks’ middle linebacker was only a rookie.

He not only led the team with 140 tackles, Wagner’s total was the fifth-highest in franchise history behind Terry Beeson (153 in 1978), Chad Brown (150 in 1998), Anthony Simmons (147 in 2000) and Michael Jackson (141 in 1981). Wagner also finished second in voting for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.

The way Wagner approached this offseason – with a lead-by-example commitment to getting better – it’s hard to believe he’s only 23. And just barely, as today is Wagner’s 23rd birthday.

“Bobby has put the work in,” defensive coordinator Dan Quinn said. “He’s doing the things when no one is watching – studying video, putting in the extra work in the weight room and the meeting room.”

So on Wagner’s birthday it turns out that he might be the gift of a second-round draft choice who just keeps on giving.

Speaking of gifts …

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On this date: ’86 Seahawks finish hot, but miss playoffs

A look at some memorable moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Dec. 20:

Curt Warner

1981: Dave Krieg passes for three touchdowns, including two to Steve Largent, as the Seahawks close the season with a 42-21 win over the Browns at the Kingdome. Rookie safety Kenny Easley leads the defensive effort with two interceptions, returning one 82 yards for a score; and Greggory Johnson returns a Michael Jackson-forced fumble 31 yards for another score. Jackson also has 16 tackles and sack.

1985: In a Friday night game at the Kingdome, Norm Johnson hits the right upright on a 52-yard field goal on the final play as the Broncos win 27-24 behind a 432-yard passing performance by John Elway.

1986: In a Saturday afternoon game at the Kingdome, Curt Warner runs for 192 yards and three touchdowns and Dave Krieg throws two TD passes to Daryl Turner as the Seahawks close their season with a 41-16 victory over the Broncos. Steve Largent also catches six passes for 101 yards. The Seahawks finish with 10-6 record, including victories over both teams that advance to the Super Bowl (the Broncos and Giants), but do not make the playoffs.

1987: Curt Warner runs for two touchdowns, Dave Krieg passes for two more and John L. Williams catches eight passes for 117 yards in a 34-21 victory over the Walter Payton-led Bears in Chicago. Eugene Robinson leads the defensive effort with two interceptions and 11 tackles, while rookie Brian Bosworth has two fumble recoveries and a sack.

1992: Loss No. 13 in the Seahawks’ 2-14 season comes in Denver, as Gaston Green scores the only touchdown in the Broncos’ 10-6 win at Mile High Stadium. The defense intercepts John Elway three times and forces three fumbles, while Chris Warren runs for 97 yards in the loss.

1998: The Seahawks score 17 points in the final 10 minutes to pull out a 27-23 victory over the Colts at the Kingdome, as Ricky Watters has a 33-yard touchdown run, Shawn Springs returns a fumble 14 yards for a TD and Todd Peterson kicks a 30-yard field goal. Watters finishes with 178 rushing yards in Dennis Erickson final home game as coach of his hometown NFL team.

2009: The Buccaneers score 24 unanswered points in a 24-7 victory over the Seahawks in Seattle. Matt Hasselbeck passes 29 yards to John Carlson for the Seahawks’ only points, but also throws four interceptions.


On this date: Seahawks hang 44 on Chargers

A look at some memorable moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Nov. 16:

Jim Zorn

Jim Zorn

1981: Jim Zorn passes for two touchdowns, Theotis Brown runs for two more and Dan Doornink has a rushing and a receiving TD in a 44-23 victory over the Chargers at the Kingdome, despite a 151-yard, two-TD performance by San Diego’s Chuck Muncie. Linebackers Michael Jackson (15) and Joe Norman (13) combine for 28 tackles.

1997: Doug Brien kicks a 48-yard field goal in overtime as the Saints pull out a 20-17 victory at the Superdome. Darryl Williams leads the Seahawks’ defensive effort by returning an interception 44 yards for a touchdown, while Sam Adams has two sacks and Chad Brown recovers two fumbles.

2003: Bobby Engram returns a punt 83 yards for one touchdown and catches a 34-yard pass for another in a 34-14 win over the Lions in Seattle. Koren Robinson also recovers a fumble in the end zone for a TD, while Shaun Alexander and Matt Hasselbeck run for scores.

2008: T.J. Duckett runs for two fourth-quarter touchdowns, but it’s not enough in a 26-20 loss to the Cardinals in Seattle as the Seahawks run for 43 yards and Matt Hasselbeck throws three interceptions. Josh Wilson has 10 tackles, an interception and a forced fumble in the loss.


And the best third-round pick is …

From Michael Jackson in 1979, to Darrell Jackson in 2000, to Brandon Mebane in 2007, the Seahawks have discovered players with first-round talent in the third round of the NFL Draft.

Just look at the contributions of these three:

Michael Jackson, a linebacker from the University of Washington, led the team in tackles three consecutive seasons (1980-82).

Darrell Jackson, a wide receiver from Florida, was the team’s leading receiver in 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2006 – including a then-franchise record 87 receptions in ’04.

Mebane, a defensive tackle from Cal, has started 69 games over the past five seasons, and last season led all NFC interior linemen in tackles.

But the honor for best fourth-round pick in franchise history goes to Fredd Young – a linebacker from New Mexico with the second “d” in his first name that he explained stood for defense.

Young was selected in 1984 and made the Pro Bowl in each of his four seasons with the team – the first two as a special teams player, the last two as a linebacker. He led the team in tackles three consecutive seasons (1985-87), before being traded to the Colts for a pair of first-round draft choices.

So Young also was the draft choice that kept on giving, as the team used the first-round selections acquired for him to draft offensive lineman Andy Heck in 1989 and as part of the package to trade into the third spot in 1990 to take Hall of Fame defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy.

Honorable mention among the team’s third-round picks goes to running back Lamar Smith (1994), who rushed for 680 yards and eight touchdowns in 1996; tackle Sean Locklear (2004), the right-side starter on the best line in franchise history in 2005, as well as 2006-08; and linebacker Leroy Hill (2005), who has started 77 games the past seven seasons.


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Friday cyber surfing: Pass rushers and passers

Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, March 30:

Mike Sando at ESPN.com discusses the Seahawks’ biggest need in the NFL Draft with Brock Huard and Mike Salk at 710 ESPN. Sando opts for a pass-rusher: “I lean toward making pass-rush help a higher priority while the team finds out whether (Matt) Flynn has the ability to maximize the existing weapons and make full use of additional ones. The chart shows which players accounted for the Seahawks’ 33 sacks last season. Five of the players with at least 3.0 sacks are unsigned and/or will not return.”

One of those players who won’t be back is Anthony Hargrove, who agreed to terms with the Packers in free agency. Tyler Dunne at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has the details: “Green Bay only had 29 sacks in 2011, as the loss of Cullen Jenkins lingered all year. The 6-foot-3½, 272-pound Hargrove probably isn’t a savior. This will be his fifth team in eight seasons. The 28-year-old has played for the St. Louis Rams (2004-’06), Buffalo Bills (2006-’07), New Orleans Saints (2009-’10) and Seattle Seahawks (2011). But he should offer the Packers’ defensive front something it sorely lacks – speed.”

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll met with the media at the NFL owners meeting on Wednesday, and was asked about the Jets’ QB situation now that Tim Tebow has joined Mark Sanchez. Clark Judge at CBSSports.com has the details: “Carroll coached Sanchez at USC, so he knows the guy. But he knows about Tebow, too, with Sanchez saying he once played host to him as a recruit at USC. ‘I think Mark will respond the way you need to,’ Carroll said. ‘He’s smart enough. He gets it. He’s said all the things he could say at this point. Now it’s back to: Let’s go play football. And Mark will be ready for that. There’s no question there’s a ripple in the force there in their locker room. Tebow is that extraordinary of a person and a player. I was just as much a fan watching that thing happen this year as anybody, and I was just amazed at his ability to do it.’ ”

Speaking of Carroll, he, GM John Schneider and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell attended the Pro Day workout of QB Ryan Tannehill at Texas A&M on Thursday. Charean Williams at the Fort Worth Star Telegram has the details: “Seattle’s contingent was larger than expected considering they just signed free agent Matt Flynn to a three-year, $26 million deal. General manager John Schneider, head coach Pete Carroll and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell were in College Station. ‘He did a really good job,’ Carroll said. ‘He should feel very proud of the workout today and the preparation that he and Chris (Weinke) put in to get here. He did a really nice job.’ “

 
Mike Mayock at NFL.com has more on Tannehill’s workout: “He’s a big, strong kid that can rip the ball. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.62 seconds, but we all knew he was athletic already because he’s a former wide receiver. His foot is fine. He threw the ball extremely well on short, intermediate and deep passes. His movement skills in the pocket were excellent; he had good feet and good accuracy on the run. Everything checks out.”

Also at CBSSports.com, Rob Rang of NFLDraftScout.com updated his mock draft this week and it includes a new selection at No. 12 for the Seahawks: “Luke Kuechly, Boston College, inside linebacker. A year ago the Seahawks’ starting three linebackers were Aaron Curry (strong side), David Hawthorne (middle) and Leroy Hill (weak side). After trading Curry to Oakland during the season, Seattle doesn’t appear particularly concerned about the possibility of losing Hawthorne or Hill to free agency. Perhaps that’s because they’re targeting the All-American Kuechly, who’d be an upgrade in the middle.”

Here at Seahawks.com, we caught up with Michael Jackson, the former University of Washington linebacker who also led the Seahawks in tackle for three consecutive seasons: “Now 54, Jackson was a broadcaster for one season with NBC after he retired and then moved to Los Angeles briefly to pursue an acting career. But he moved back to the Seattle area after only six months because, as he put it, ‘There were dog-eat-dog people down there.’ He works for Diamond Parking, in their real estate division. He and his wife, Kathy, have three sons – Christopher, Justin, and Marshall; a daughter – Donnall; and eight grandchildren. ‘Everybody is doing well, and everybody is happy,’ he said.”

We’ve also got guard John Moffitt and center Max Unger helping spread the word on an agreement with KCPQ to televise the team’s preseason games in this video.


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On this date

A look at the memorable – and not-so-memorable – moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Dec. 20:

1981: Dave Krieg passes for three touchdowns, including two to Steve Largent, as the Seahawks close the season with a 42-21 win over the Browns at the Kingdome. Rookie safety Kenny Easley leads the defensive effort with two interceptions, returning one 82 yards for a score; and Greggory Johnson returns a Michael Jackson-forced fumble 31 yards for another score. Jackson also has 16 tackles and sack.

1985: In a Friday night game at the Kingdome, Norm Johnson hits the right upright on a 52-yard field goal on the final play as the Broncos win 27-24 behind a 432-yard passing performance by John Elway.

1986: In a Saturday afternoon game at the Kingdome, Curt Warner runs for 192 yards and three touchdowns and Dave Krieg throws two TD passes to Darryl Turner as the Seahawks close their season with a 41-16 victory over the Broncos. Steve Largent also catches six passes for 101 yards. The Seahawks finish with 10-6 record, including victories over both teams that advance to the Super Bowl (the Broncos and Giants), but do not make the playoffs.

1987: Curt Warner runs for two touchdowns, Dave Krieg passes for two more and John L. Williams catches eight passes for 117 yards in a 34-21 victory over the Walter Payton-led Bears in Chicago. Eugene Robinson leads the defensive effort with two interceptions and 11 tackles, while rookie Brian Bosworth has two fumble recoveries and a sack.

1992: Loss No. 13 in the Seahawks’ 2-14 season comes in Denver, as Gaston Green scores the only touchdown in the Broncos’ 10-6 win at Mile High Stadium. The defense intercepts John Elway three times and forces three fumbles, while Chris Warren runs for 97 yards in the loss.

1998: The Seahawks score 17 points in the final 10 minutes to pull out a 27-23 victory over the Colts at the Kingdome, as Ricky Watters has a 33-yard touchdown run, Shawn Springs returns a fumble 14 yards for a TD and Todd Peterson kicks a 30-yard field goal. Watters finishes with 178 rushing yards in Dennis Erickson final home game as coach of his hometown NFL team.

2009: The Buccaneers score 24 unanswered points in a 24-7 victory over the Seahawks in Seattle. Matt Hasselbeck passes 29 yards to John Carlson for the Seahawks’ only points, but also throws four interceptions.


On this date

A look at the memorable moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Nov. 16:

1981: Jim Zorn passes for two touchdowns, Theotis Brown runs for two more and Dan Doornink has a rushing and a receiving TD in a 44-23 victory over the Chargers at the Kingdome, despite a 151-yard, two-TD performance by San Diego’s Chuck Muncie. Linebackers Michael Jackson (15) and Joe Norman (13) combine for 28 tackles.

1997: Doug Brien kicks a 48-yard field goal in overtime as the Saints pull out a 20-17 victory at the Superdome. Darryl Williams leads the Seahawks’ defensive effort by returning an interception 44 yards for a touchdown, while Sam Adams has two sacks and Chad Brown recovers two fumbles.

2003: Bobby Engram returns a punt 83 yards for one touchdown and catches a 34-yard pass for another in a 34-14 win over the Lions in Seattle. Koren Robinson also recovers a fumble in the end zone for a TD, while Shaun Alexander and Matt Hasselbeck run for scores.

2008: T.J. Duckett runs for two fourth-quarter touchdowns, but it’s not enough in a 26-20 loss to the Cardinals in Seattle as the Seahawks run for 43 yards and Matt Hasselbeck throws three interceptions. Josh Wilson has 10 tackles, an interception and a forced fumble in the loss.


Cyber surfing: Wednesday

Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, July 20:

With the end of the lockout reportedly in sight, Dave Boling of the New Tribune is expecting a hectic few weeks as the Seahawks forge ahead with free agency and re-signing their own free agents before the start of training camp. Says Boling: “One thing working in the Seahawks’ favor is that the constant turnover of the past year has them accustomed to making changes on the fly and pulling a quick trigger on personnel deals. So we may presume that (GM John) Schneider is already loosening up his dialing digits and clearing his throat for action.”

The end of the lockout must be at hand, because Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com doesn’t just have his first power poll, it’s a four-pronged affair – at least that’s what he’s calling it, even though there are five categories. He not only ranks the teams (the Seahawks are tied for 28th), he also rates the QBs (Matt Hasselbeck is 27th), the pass-rushers (Chris Clemons is 20th), the cornerbacks (Marcus Trufant is 27th) and the tackles (Russell Okung is 25th).

Also from CBSSports.com, Will Brinson has put together a cast for a movie about the lockout. Really. It’s right here. Only Colts QB Peyton Manning gets to “play” himself.

Brinson also provides the give-us-this-day-our-daily-labor-update item, by checking in with NFLPA president and former Seahawk Kevin Mawae. Offers Mawae: “We’re not tied to a timeline of July 21. Our timeline is to get the best deal for our players. We’re not going to agree to any deal unless it’s the right deal for all the players.”

Keeping with this giddy the end-is-near trend, John P. Lopez at SI.com has a post-lockout shopper’s guide for NFC teams. Here’s his take on the Seahawks: “Money is no object: The Charlie Whitehurst era looks set to begin, with Matt Hasselbeck one of the premier QB free agents likely to depart. Whitehurst needs someone to either push him or take the job. Matt Moore of Carolina or Trent Edwards should be the players targeted. Smart shopper: Pete Carroll likes to go off the grid sometimes. If a Moore or Edwards is not signed, why not Vince Young, the player who beat Carroll for the 2005 NCAA national championship? Carroll has a knack with players searching for a new identity or rebirth and VY definitely fits the bill.” Not sure we care for any of those options. Here’s his take on the AFC teams.

Danny O’Neil at the Seattle Times continues his trip through the NFC West with a look at the San Francisco 49ers through the words of Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area. Offers Miaocco: “There might not be another team in the NFL that was more negatively impacted by the lockout than the 49ers. Jim Harbaugh is one of eight new NFL head coaches, but the 49ers’ coaching staff is at a distinct disadvantage with a shortened timetable to implement their systems. … If there’s one advantage to the work stoppage, it’s that the coaching staff had plenty of time to watch film and get familiar with the rest of the NFL. Harbaugh also handed unsigned quarterback Alex Smith the playbook, PowerPoint material and video cutups of the West Coast system when the lockout briefly lifted on April 29. Smith organized two weeks of structured workouts that included installation meetings and on-field practices at San Jose State. Twenty-five of the team’s offensive players took part in the get-togethers that were dubbed ‘Camp Alex.’ ”

The Seahawks are scheduled to play the Rams twice this season – Nov. 20 in St. Louis and Dec. 12 at CenturyLink Field – and Sporting News Today has a preview of the Seahawks’ NFC West rival. Offers correspondent and longtime Rams beat writer Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post Dispatch: “It’s possible St. Louis could play better, yet have the same record it did in 2010. That’s because the schedule, particularly the first six weeks of the season, could be crushing. In order to succeed, the Rams’ run blocking must improve and the receivers have to step up. To truly be a playoff contender, the Rams need to produce one more TD per game than they did in 201. And that’s asking a lot.”

Vinnie Iyer at Sporting News Today offers predictions on where some of the big-name players might end up after the lockout, and he has Bengals QB Carson Palmer being reunited with Pete Carroll, his former college coach, in Seattle – despite Cincinnati owner Mike Brown saying repeatedly that he will not trade Palmer.

The roof at the stadium where the Seahawks play their games has been repainted after CenturyLink took control of Qwest. Here’s a look at the new roof at CenturyLink Field – or least half of it – courtesy of KIRO-TV’s Chopper 7.

Here at Seahawks.com, we continue our series of stories on the team’s first 35 seasons with a look at 1981 – when linebacker Michael Jackson led the team in tackles, but remembers very little about it. We’re also extending the voting to determine your choice for the best player in franchise history: Steve Largent or Walter Jones. As of 8 o’clock this morning, Jones had jumped into a 28-vote lead over Largent (617-589). Largent had a three-vote lead yesterday at 5 p.m. You can cast your vote here.


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Greens, and greens

There were reasons to celebrate at the Jacob Green Charity Golf Classic on Friday, and that was before the fivesomes teed off at the Golf Course at Redmond Ridge to raise money for the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

First, it was Michael Jackson’s birthday. Jackson was a run-’em-down, knock-’em-down linebacker who led the Seahawks in tackles for three consecutive seasons (1980-82).

“I turned 54 this morning, so I’m already having a good day,” Jackson said.

The former University of Washington star was one of the celebrities who joined foursomes for the event. Others included former Cy Young winner and MVP Vida Blue, legendary Sonics point guards Gus Williams and Slick Watts and former Mariners second baseman Julio Cruz, as well as a collection of former and current Seahawks – Kenny Easley, Edwin Bailey, Paul Skansi, Randall Morris, Charle Young, Eric Stokes and, of course, Green; David Hawthorne, Brandon Mebane, Red Bryant, Cameron Morrah, Roy Lewis and Anthony McCoy.

The other bit of celebratory news is that the Green’s extended family is getting another extension. Janelle, Jacob’s daughter and Red Bryant’s wife, is pregnant. And it’s going to be a boy. Green and his wife, Janet, have three daughters – Janelle, Jessica and Jillian.

“It’s our first grandchild, so we’re all so excited,” Janet said. “But Jacob is really excited.”


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Tackling trios

The Seahawks have had three or more players collect at least 100 tackles in the same season seven times in their first 35 years.

But it has happened only once since the 1996 season that we examined in the eighth installment of our series of seasonal recaps. That was in 2001, when the linebacking trio of Anthony Simmons (123), Chad Brown (106) and Levon Kirkland (101) turned the trick.

Since then, the only time the Seahawks have had two players do it in the same season was in 2009 – when linebacker David Hawthorne (116) and safety Jordan Babineaux (106) each did it for the first time in their careers.

Here’s a look at the other triple-digit tackling trios in franchise history, as well as the two seasons when five players each produced at least 100 tackles:

1976: Free safety Dave Brown (111), linebacker Mike Curtis (107), middle linebacker Ed Bradley (101).

1978: Middle linebacker Terry Beeson (club-record 153), linebacker Keith Butler (122), linebacker Sammy Green (115), cornerback Cornell Webster (113), free safety John Harris (113).

1980: Linebacker Michael Jackson (136), Harris (119), strong safety Keith Simpson (110), defensive tackle Robert Hardy (103), Beeson (101).

1981: Jackson (141), strong safety Kenny Easley (107), Butler (100).

1993: Free safety Eugene Robinson (111), linebacker Terry Wooden (106), middle linebacker Rod Stephens (105).

1996: Middle linebacker Dean Wells (107), linebacker Winston Moss (106), strong safety Robert Blackmon (102).

2001: Simmons, Brown, Kirkland.

And, speaking of tackles and trios, five players have led the Seahawks in tackles for at least three consecutive seasons: Beeson (1977-79), Jackson (1980-82), Fredd Young (1985-87), Chad Brown (1997-99) and Lofa Tatupu (2005-08).

Robinson also did it four times, but not consecutively (1988-89, 1992-93); while Simmons did it three times, but not in a row (2000-01, 2003).


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