Tuesday round-up: Reviewing the read-option

Brock Huard and Danny O’Neil of 710 AM ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Danny” discuss how much the Seahawks will use the read-option in 2013

Good morning, and here’s what’s “out there” for today, Tuesday, July 2, about your Seattle Seahawks:

Danny O’Neil of 710Sports.com writes about the risk and reward associated with running a read-option offense.

It’s never too early to start thinking about fantasy football, and NFL.com has their list of the Top 30 fantasy football players for 2013. Seahawks wide receiver Percy Harvin comes in at No. 17, while running back Marshawn Lynch appears at No. 3 behind Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (No. 2) and Houston Texans running back Arian Foster (No. 1).

Former NFL offensive lineman turned NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger says the NFC West is the best division in the NFC in this short video clip.

NFL Network’s Baldinger and former NFL center Shaun O’Hara have a look at the best available free agents remaining and offers some landing spots on which teams they might fit best with.

With football just 10 Sunday’s away, NFL Network’s NFL Total Access crew takes a stab at some Week 1 headlines around the League.

The NFL announced training camp report dates for all 32 clubs yesterday afternoon, and Seahawks rookies and veterans alike will report to Virginia Mason Athletic Center on Wednesday, July 24. The team’s first practice will be held Thursday, July 25 – you can register to attend that session and more by clicking here.

And here at Seahawks.com, Clare Farnsworth continues his 2013 preview series with a look at the offensive line, including comments from assistant head coach/offensive line coach Tom Cable on the under-the-radar play the club has received from right tackle Breno Giacomini and guard Paul McQuistan.


Marshawn Lynch lands at No. 24 in NFL’s Top 100 of 2013

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.

Marshawn LynchThe 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).


Minicamp round-up: Day one

Good morning, and welcome to day one of the Seahawks’ three-day mandatory minicamp at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. Today’s team workout is scheduled to begin at 1:30 p.m., but before we get there, here’s a look at what’s “out there” as the club heads into the final week of their Offseason Program.

Sean McGrathBob Condotta of the Seattle Times identifies four key issues the Seahawks face as they gather for camp this week, including the battle for the backup tight end spot between 2013 fifth-round draft pick Luke Willson and second-year player Sean McGrath.

Danny O’Neil of 710Sports.com details five players to watch during the team’s three-day workout – offensive guard John Moffitt, wide receiver Chris Harper, cornerback Tharold Simon, defensive tackle Jesse Williams, and the competition for the backup offensive tackle spot between 2013 seventh-round draft pick Michael Bowie and third-year pro Michael Person.

Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune has his observations from the team’s nine sessions of Organized Team Activities (OTAs) that finished up last week and has a look at what to expect from this week of camp.

Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune previewed this week’s minicamp in his Monday Morning QB chat. You can find the transcript of yesterday’s chat here.

DLMike Sando of ESPN.com has a look around the rest of the NFC West, as the Arizona Cardinals and San Francisco 49ers also hold their mandatory minicamps this week, while the St. Louis Rams continue with OTAs.

Our Clare Farnsworth offers a recap of the club’s offseason to this point and highlights questions and concerns heading into the practice week.

Outside of minicamp news, former Seahawks quarterback Tarvaris Jackson was released from the Buffalo Bills yesterday and John Boyle of the Everett Herald makes the case for bringing Jackson back to Seattle to backup entrenched starter Russell Wilson.

Lindsay Jones of USA Today has a feature on wide receiver Percy Harvin.

Former NFL player and scout Bucky Brooks of NFL.com breaks down who is the better cornerback – the Seahawks’ Richard Sherman or the Cardinals’ Patrick Peterson – and Brooks offers the edge to Sherman, calling him “currently far superior.”

Check back later this afternoon for our coverage from day one of Seahawks minicamp.


NFC West day three draft rewind: San Francisco 49ers

Marcus Lattimore

Former South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore was the 49ers’ pick toward the end of round four

With day three of the 2013 NFL Draft in the books, we take a look back at the moves made around the NFC West, concluding with the San Francisco 49ers.

The Niners started day three by making a splash on a pair of skill position players toward the end of round four when they picked up wide receiver Quinton Patton out of Louisiana Tech (No. 128 overall) and South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore (No. 131 overall).

Patton earned first-team All-WAC and second-team All-American honors in his final season at Louisiana Tech, when he racked up 104 catches for 1,392 yards and 13 scores. He went on to run a 4.54 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine and will figure into a receiving corps that already features Michael Crabtree, Anquan Boildin, and last year’s first-round pick A.J. Jenkins.

B.J. Daniels

Former South Florida QB B.J. Daniels was the 49ers’ first of three selections in the seventh round

Lattimore found early success with the Gamecocks and was highly touted as one of the best running backs in the country, but his durability is a question. He suffered multiple season-ending knee injuries at South Carolina. However, the 49ers backfield is already loaded up with Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter and LaMichael James, which should allow Lattimore to continue his recovery process.

The Niners followed up by adding defensive lineman Quinton Dial late in the fifth round (No. 157 overall) and linebacker Nick Moody in the sixth round (No. 180 overall). Dial comes into the Bay Area at 6-foot-5, 318-pounds out of the University of Alabama to add depth along the D-line, while Moody measures 6-foot-1, 236-pounds out of Florida State, providing an athletic option at outside backer.

San Francisco closed out their draft with three selections in round seven – South Florida quarterback  B.J. Daniels (No. 227 overall), Iowa St. offensive lineman Carter Bykowski (No. 246 overall), and Rutgers cornerback Marcus Cooper (No. 252 overall).

Daniels, at 6-foot-1, 217-pounds, put up 59 touchdowns in four seasons as signal caller for the Bulls. He added 2,068 rushing yards and 25 scores on the ground in that same span. He joins a young mix of quarterbacks that includes entrenched starter Colin Kaepernick, recently acquired backup Colt McCoy, and former Wisconsin product Scott Tolzien.

San Francisco 49ers
A pick-by-pick look at the players chosen by the NFC West rival San Francisco 49ers in the 2013 NFL Draft.

Round Pick No. Player/School Position Height, Weight
1 18 Eric Reid/LSU S 6-1, 213
2 40 Tank Carradine/Florida St. DE 6-4, 273
2 55 Vance McDonald/Rice TE 6-4, 268
3 88 Corey Lemonier/Auburn DL 6-3, 255
4 128 Quinton Patton/LA Tech WR 6-0, 204
4 131 Marcus Lattimore/South Carolina RB 5-11, 221
5 157 Quinton Dial/Alabama DL 6-5, 318
6 180 Nick Moody/Florida St. LB 6-1, 236
7 227 B.J. Daniels/South Florida QB 5-11, 217
7 246 Carter Bykowski/Iowa St. T 6-6, 306
7 252 Marcus Cooper/Rutgers CB 6-2, 192

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NFC West day two draft rewind: San Francisco 49ers

Cornellius Carradine

With day two of the 2013 NFL Draft in the books, we take a look back at the moves made around the NFC West, continuing with the San Francisco 49ers.

Vance McDonaldThe Niners started by adding depth to their rotation along the defensive line with the selection of Cornellius “Tank” Carradine, the draft’s 40th overall selection, listed as a defensive end out of Florida State University.

Carradine, who measures 6-foot-4, 273-pounds, started 12 games for the Seminoles in 2012, recording 80 total tackles and 11.0 sacks. But he tore his ACL late in the season, an injury that caused him to miss much of the pre-draft process.

San Francisco let defensive linemen Isaac Sopoaga and Ricky Jean-Francois go in free agency, so the pick fills a need for the club.

To arrive at the edge-rusher Carradine, the 49ers dealt pick No. 34 to the Tennessee Titans in exchange for picks No. 40 (Carradine) and No. 216 (seventh-round), as well as a 2014 third-rounder.

Corey LemonierWith the 55th pick in the draft, the 49ers targeted tight end Vance McDonald out of Rice University. The 6-4, 268-pound McDonald fills another need for the Niners after tight end Delanie Walker signed with the Tennessee Titans in free agency this offseason.  McDonald was primarily used as a receiver out of the slot position while at Rice and seems to be an obvious replacement for the versatile Walker. The Niners traded up with the Green Bay Packers to select McDonald, so the tight end was clearly on the club’s radar.

The Niners closed the draft’s second day by adding Corey Lemonier out of Auburn. Listed at 6-foot-3 and 255 pounds, Lemonier will likely play outside linebacker in San Francisco’s defensive scheme, even though his draft profile has him listed as a defensive lineman.


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Friday cyber surfing: 2013 NFL Draft first-round roundup

Good morning, Seahawks fans, and welcome to day two of the 2013 NFL Draft. After not selecting in yesterday’s first round, the Seahawks hold two picks today (Round 2, No. 56 overall and Round 3, No. 87 overall). The action revs back up at 3:30 p.m. PT.

In the meantime, here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks and around the League for Friday, April 26.

Jerry Brewer of the Seattle Times says the Seahawks trading their first-round draft pick to acquire wide receiver Percy Harvin was the right move.

Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune recaps the Seahawks’ quiet first day and offers up some second-round targets for Seattle.

John Boyle of the Everett Herald details the moves made around the active NFC West on the draft’s first day.

ESPN.com NFC West blogger Mike Sando was hard at work while the rest of us in the Seahawks media room were spectating yesterday’s first round (kidding, kind of), and he shares his thoughts on the Rams, 49ers, and Cardinals first-round selections.

Grantland.com’s Bill Barnwell tries to make sense of the draft’s first day, noting surprises, trade winners and losers, and what to watch for on day two.

Former University of Washington Husky standout cornerback Desmond Trufant – the younger brother of longtime Seahawk Marcus Trufant – went to the Atlanta Falcons, who traded up with the Rams to grab him at No. 22.

A 49-year-old NFL Draft streak was snapped yesterday when a running back was not taken in the first round for the first time since 1963.

NFL.com has a round-by-round look at the 2013 NFL Draft order after last night’s picks and draft-day trades.

NFL.com Around the League editor Gregg Rosenthal breaks down what he believes to be the draft’s top 20 remaining players.

Seahawks.com’s live coverage of the draft will continue later this afternoon, but you can read Clare Farnsworth’s recap of day one here.

Stay plugged in to our draft central for all the latest news surrounding your Seahawks and the rest of today’s draft.

We leave you with the reactions from several Seahawks players via Twitter as they followed last night’s first round:


49ers trade up to draft safety Eric Reid

Eric Reid

The defending NFC West and NFC champion 49ers were in the market for a safety after Pro Bowler Dashon Goldson signed with the Buccaneers in free agency. They went shopping in a big way tonight during the first round of the NFL Draft, trading up with Cowboys to the 18th spot and drafting LSU’s Eric Reid.

The 6-foot-1, 213-pound Reid was ranked as the third-best safety in this draft class by NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock. Texas’ Kenny Vaccaro went to the Saints at No. 15, prompted the 49ers to trade up from the 31st spot and also included a third-round pick to select Reid. Mayock had Florida’s Matt Elam ranked No. 2 among the safeties.


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NFC West Free-Agent Tracker

Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett

Defensive linemen Cliff Avril (left) and Michael Bennett (right), who combined for 18.5 sacks in 2012, will join the Seahawks’ pass rush in 2013

Three weeks since the start of the 2013 League year, we take an updated look at who has come and who has gone around the NFC West via trades and free agency.

Arizona Cardinals

Out: S Kerry Rhodes (released); S Adrian Wilson (released, signed by New England Patriots); RB Beanie Wells (released); WR Early Doucet (released); CB William Gay (released, signed by Pittsburgh Steelers); QB Kevin Kolb (released, signed by Buffalo Bills); QB John Skelton (released); CB Greg Toler (free agent, signed by Indianapolis Colts); LB Quentin Groves (free agent, signed by Cleveland Browns); LB Stewart Bradley (released, signed by Denver Broncos); G Rich Ohrnberger (free agent, signed by San Diego Chargers)

In: CB Antoine Cason (free agent, signed from San Diego Chargers); DE Matt Shaughnessy (free agent, signed from Oakland Raiders); RB Rashard Mendenhall (free agent, signed from Pittsburgh Steelers); LB Jasper Brinkley (free agent, signed from Minnesota Vikings); S Yeremiah Bell (free agent, signed from New York Jets); CB Jerraud Powers (free agent, signed from Indianapolis Colts); LB Lorenzo Alexander (free agent, signed from Washington Redskins); QB Drew Stanton (free agent, signed from Indianapolis Colts); DE Frostee Rucker (released from Cleveland Browns); S Jonathan Amaya (free agent, signed from Miami Dolphins); QB Carson Palmer (trade with Oakland Raiders)

For a full Cardinals free-agent tracker click here.

San Francisco 49ers

Out: S Dashon Goldson (free agent, signed by Tampa Bay Buccaneers); DT Isaac Sopoaga (free agent, signed by Philadelphia Eagles); TE Delanie Walker (free agent, signed by Tennessee Titans); DT Ricky Jean Francois (free agent, signed by Indianapolis Colts); K David Akers (released); WR Tedd Ginn (free agent, signed by Carolina Panthers); QB Alex Smith (trade with Kansas City Chiefs)

In: DL Glenn Dorsey (free agent, signed from Kansas City Chiefs); S Craig Dahl (free agent, signed from St. Louis Rams); LB Dan Skuta (free agent, signed from Cincinnati Bengals); WR Anquan Boldin (trade with Baltimore Ravens); K Phil Dawson (free agent, signed from Cleveland Browns); WR Marlon Moore (free agent, signed from Miami Dolphins); QB Colt McCoy (trade with Cleveland Browns); CB Nnamdi Asomugha (free agent, signed from Philadelphia Eagles)

For a full 49ers free-agent tracker click here.

Seattle Seahawks

Out: RB/KR Leon Washington (released, signed by New England Patriots); DE Jason Jones (free agent, signed by Detroit Lions); WR Ben Obomanu (released); QB Matt Flynn (trade with Oakland Raiders); DT Alan Branch (free agent, signed by Buffalo Bills)

In: DE Cliff Avril (free agent, signed from Detroit Lions); DE Michael Bennett (free agent, signed from Tampa Bay Buccaneers); WR Percy Harvin (trade with Minnesota Vikings); DT Tony McDaniel (free agent, signed from Miami Dolphins)

For a full Seahawks free-agent tracker click here.

St. Louis Rams

Out: RB Steven Jackson (free agent, signed by Atlanta Falcons); WR Danny Amendola (free agent, signed by New England Patriots); S Craig Dahl (free agent, signed by San Francisco 49ers); CB Bradley Fletcher (free agent, signed by Philadelphia Eagles); WR Brandon Gibson (free agent, signed by Miami Dolphins); C Robert Turner (free agent, signed by Tennessee Titans); S Quintin Mikell (released); OT Wayne Hunter (released); TE Matthew Mulligan (released)

In: OT Jake Long (free agent, signed from Miami Dolphins); TE Jared Cook (free agent, signed from Tennessee Titans)

For a full Rams free-agent tracker click here.


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Seahawks ranked No. 1 in ESPN’s 2013 NFL Power Rankings

Expectations will be high for the Seahawks in 2013. If that much wasn’t already clear from the way the Seahawks players and coaches have handled themselves since the loss to the Atlanta Falcons in last year’s divisional playoff round, it will be now, after the staff at ESPN.com has compiled their first NFL Power Rankings of the 2013 season.

The Seahawks rank atop the list, one slot above the division rival San Francisco 49ers, who fell in last year’s Super Bowl to the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens rank No. 8 on the ESPN staffers’ list.

ESPN.com NFC West blogger Mike Sando (who cast a No. 1 vote for the Seahawks) offered some analysis of the group’s rankings:

“The Seahawks have been gaining on the 49ers for the past couple years. The 49ers were already an elite team. Seattle had more room for improvement. I felt as though the Seahawks caught the 49ers late last season. Seattle did benefit from a run of late-season home games against division opponents.

“Percy Harvin, Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril have the potential to become high-impact additions. There was risk in making the Harvin move. Will he run his course in Seattle, same as he did in Minnesota? It’s a fair question, but I think the results will be positive in the beginning, at least.

“The NFC West remained the highest-ranked division with a 12.3 average ranking for its teams. That was up slightly from a 12.8 average at regular season’s end.”


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Seahawks earn “A” in USA Today’s first offseason report card

We’re just over one week into free agency and Nate Davis of USA Today has handed out his first offseason report cards, and Seattle should feel good about the mark they’ve earned. Davis tabbed the Seahawks with an “A” grade after acquiring the likes of wide receiver Percy Harvin and defensive ends Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett. The Seahawks were one of just two teams (the Minnesota Vikings being the other) to earn the high mark.

Here’s a look at what Davis had to say about the moves general manager John Schneider and head coach Pete Carroll have made to this point:

Seattle Seahawks (A): The offense (Harvin) and defense (DEs Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett) have been supercharged, and the pay scale really didn’t suffer much even if GM John Schneider had to part with a few picks, including this year’s first rounder, for Harvin. The Niners should be worried.

Yesterday, we tracked the free-agent acquisitions around the rest of the NFC West, and took a look at why the West will be “a bear of a division in 2013.” Davis’ grades and comments on those clubs are below:

Arizona Cardinals (C): At the outset of free agency, they only had about $3 million available. But new GM Steve Keim has made quite a few moves to churn his roster: he signed QB Drew Stanton and parted with Kevin Kolb, picked up RB Rashard Mendenhall after punting Beanie Wells and completely remade the secondary. But should Keim have devoted his newfound money to a worrisome O-line in order to give Stanton (or whomever) a chance? Maybe next month.

St. Louis Rams (B+): If free agency is any indication, St. Louis is very confident its youngsters are ready to supplant Amendola, Gibson and Jackson. New LT Jake Long and TE Jared Cook should make QB Sam Bradford a very happy man. Armed with two first-round picks, the Rams’ drastic improvement over the past year should continue at draft time.

San Francisco 49ers (B): They chose to move on from all-pro FS Dashon Goldson and a few others. But given this team’s return to NFL royalty under GM Trent Baalke and coach Jim Harbaugh, who’s going to argue? WR Anquan Boldin and DE Glenn Dorsey look like cost-effective additions, but is Craig Dahl really the man to fill Goldson’s cleats?