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On this date: Walter Jones given franchise tag for third consecutive year

Walter Jones

A look at some memorable moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb. 24:

1994: Nate Odomes, a two-time Pro Bowl cornerback for the Bills, is signed in free agency. Knee injuries, however, would prevent Odomes from ever playing for the Seahawks.

1998: Kevin Glover, a three-time Pro Bowl center for the Lions, signs with the Seahawks in free agency. But injuries would limit him to 14 starts in two seasons with the Seahawks.

2004: Walter Jones is given the franchise tag for the third consecutive year. Despite reporting late, the left tackle would be voted to his fifth consecutive Pro Bowl.

2010: Olindo Mare is given the franchise tag, and the veteran kicker responds by hitting 25 of 30 field goal attempts – including extending his consecutive kick streak that began in 2009 to a franchise record 30 in a row.


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On this date: Three-time franchise player Walter Jones signs long-term contract

Walter Jones

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

1997: After getting a come-check-this-out phone call from just-signed free agent and former Steelers teammate Chad Brown, Willie Williams also signs with the Seahawks and starts 75 games at cornerback over the next seven seasons. Williams would return three of his 17 interceptions for touchdowns, tying him for second in franchise history with Keith Simpson, Kenny Easley and Josh Wilson behind all-time leader Dave Brown (five).

2005: After being named the franchise player for three consecutive years, Walter Jones signs a multi-year contract that makes him a Seahawk for the remainder of his 13-season career.

2006: Linebackers coach John Marshall is elevated to defensive coordinator on Mike Holmgren’s staff as health issues force Ray Rhodes to take a position as a special projects/defense assistant.


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On this date: Walter Jones, Steve Hutchinson help pave Pro Bowl way

Walter Jones, Steve Hutchinson, Shaun Alexander

A look at a memorable moment in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb. 13:

2005: Walter Jones and Steve Hutchinson, the left side of the Seahawks’ offensive line, help the NFC rush for 155 yards and a 5.7-yard average in the Pro Bowl but the AFC wins 38-27. Shaun Alexander also is on NFC squad, but does not play in the game.


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On this date: Joey Galloway traded for two first-round draft choices

Joey Galloway

A look at some memorable moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb. 12:

2000: Joey Galloway is traded to the Cowboys for first-round draft choices in 2000 and 2001, picks the Seahawks use to select Shaun Alexander and Koren Robinson.

2003: John Marshall is hired as linebackers coach on Mike Holmgren’s staff.

2006: Matt Hasselbeck completes 10 of 17 passes for 85 yards as the NFC wins the Pro Bowl 23-17 in a defense-dominated game that features 10 turnovers and seven sacks. Lofa Tatupu has a team-high six tackles, as well as two more on special teams, while Walter Jones, Steve Hutchinson, Mack Strong and Robbie Tobeck help the NFC convert eight of 18 third-down situations and control the ball for 32 minutes.


On this date: Shaun Alexander scores three times in Pro Bowl

Shaun Alexander

A look at a memorable moment in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb. 8:

2004: Shaun Alexander runs for 66 yards and two touchdowns and also scores on a 5-yard reception to help the NFC take a wild 55-52 victory in the Pro Bowl. Matt Hasselbeck (4 of 9 for 51 yards), Alex Bannister (one special teams tackle), Steve Hutchinson and Walter Jones also represent the Seahawks in the game.


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On this date: Jim Mora named as Mike Holmgren’s replacement

Jim Mora

A look at some memorable moments in Seahawks history that occurred on Feb 6:

1983: Kenny Easley has nine tackles as the Seahawks’ lone AFC Pro Bowl representative in a game won by the NFC 20-19 as Danny White throws a TD pass to John Jefferson with 35 seconds remaining. This is the third of what will be five Pro Bowl berths for Easley.

1994: Eugene Robinson intercepts a pass and Chris Warren leads the AFC with 64 rushing yards, but the NFC wins the Pro Bowl 17-3. Cortez Kennedy also represents the Seahawks in the game and contributes two tackles.

1998: Pete Rodriguez agrees to become special teams coach on Dennis Erickson’s staff.

2000: Walter Jones, Cortez Kennedy (three tackles) and Chad Brown (two tackles on special teams) represent the Seahawks and AFC in the Pro Bowl, but the NFC wins 51-31.

2008: It is announced that assistant head coach/defensive backs Jim Mora will become head coach after the season, which will be the last of Mike Holmgren’s 10 seasons as head coach.


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‘Ohana Day in Hawkville: Getting Marshawn Lynch to talk can be as difficult as trying to tackle him

Marshawn Lynch

Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch & Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh

HONOLULU – Hawkville has moved to Paradise this week, as the Seahawks have six players preparing to participate in the Pro Bowl on Sunday at Aloha Stadium. Today was ’Ohana Day at the stadium. ’Ohana? It means family in Hawaiian, in an extended sense of the term. And today’s practices were open to the public:

FOCUS ON

Marshawn Lynch. So, how is the Seahawks’ Beast Mode running back enjoying his third Pro Bowl experience?

“It’s great,” Lynch said at the conclusion of the NFC practice at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Thursday. “Except for the media.”

That was typical, as Lynch would rather let his actions speak for him. And during the 2012 season, he was downright boisterous while producing career-high totals in rushing yards (1,590), average per carry (5.0) and 100-yard rushing games (10).

Marshawn LynchWhile he has shied away from interviews this week, Lynch has displayed just the right mix of sass and wit, as well as charisma, while dealing with his teammates and the fans.

Now that those defenders in the NFC are his teammates rather than opponents who are trying to tackle a back who does everything in his considerable power to prevent that from happening, that is.

“He’s a great running back, so it’s a good feeling when you get him down obviously,” Ndamukong Suh, the Lions’ defensive tackle, said after today’s practice. “He’s one of those guys who just runs the ball really hard.

“He’s a rare breed of a back. He’s compact, and strong, and fast. At the same time. He can beat you on the edge. He can beat you up the middle. He’s a great combination of everything you’d want in a running back.”

When asked what it was like to try and tackle Lynch, Bears cornerback Charles Tillman offered, “It’s hard, because he’s a very powerful running back. He’s very strong. So it’s doable, but it’s hard.”

Lynch did agree to do one interview after practice today – with the Cartoon Network.

“It’s great to get a chance to meet everybody, because you play against so many of them during the season,” Lynch said. “So now is a time to kick back and enjoy the festivities and meet all the players.”

And Lynch’s favorite Cartoon Network character? “I used to watch Johnny Bravo,” he said.

12s

A RAINBOW BACKDROP

Aloha Stadium is the home field for the University of Hawaii Rainbow Warriors, and today several thousand fans were wearing a rainbow of NFL jerseys. A quick scan detected the colors of more than two dozen NFL teams – and the Seahawks were among those teams with the most fans.

It comes with growing up in The Islands. Just ask Seahawks center Max Unger, who grew up on the Big Island.

“There’s no pro team in Hawaii, so you just kind of pick one,” Unger said before today’s practice, explaining that his uncle has been a lifelong Vikings fan. “Then you’re a big fan of that team. So when you look in the crowd, you’ve probably got every team in the league represented here in a very small group. So it’s pretty cool.”

Not to mention colorful.

WILSON TO … MONIZ?

Following the NFC practice, Seahawks rookie QB Russell Wilson aired it out to some fans who had been selected for a “Play Catch with a Quarterback Experience.” Among them was James Moniz, who made a juggling catch of a deep ball from Wilson.IMG_8467

“I made one catch, dropped three,” Moniz said with a laugh as he was trying to catch his breath. “I thought we were just going to play catch, and he’s got us running deep routes.”

That’s Wilson. But that’s also why Moniz has become a fan of the QB, despite being a fan of the Dolphins.

“Russell Wilson is awesome,” Moniz said. “I have lots of friends from Wisconsin who are Badgers. So we’ve been cheering for him the last couple of years.”

LET’S GET MORE PHYSICAL

The message has been delivered by the league and received by the players: The effort level in tomorrow’s game must increase if the Pro Bowl is to continue.

“I plan on playing,” Seahawks kick returner Leon Washington said. “I plan on coming out here and having fun. But have respect for the game and play this game hard. We’re trying to win this game – NFC, and let’s beat this AFC team.”

Is that possible when Priority One remains not getting injured, or injuring anyone else?

“Hopefully guys take care of each other, but at the same time play hard,” Washington said.

How fine is that line? “You treat it like a thud practice,” Washington said. “You go hard. But I talked to one of the Green Bay coaches (who are coaching the NFC squad). For instance, say if you’re tackling a guy and you know you can have him in a vulnerable position. OK, tackle him. But other than that, between the plays, play full speed, play hard and go out there and protect yourself.”

STAT DU JOUR

Champ Bailey is at his 12th Pro Bowl, which has allowed the Broncos’ cornerback to climb to the top of a very impressive list. Here are the players who have been voted to double-digit Pro Bowls since 1971:

Player                                  Pro Bowls

OG Randall McDaniel              12

OG Will Shields                         12

CB Champ Bailey                      12

QB Peyton Manning                11

DE Reggie White                      11

TE Tony Gonzalez                     11

LB Junior Seau                           11

CB/S Rod Woodson                  11

LB Lawrence Taylor                  10

S Ronnie Lott                             10

LB Mike Singletary                    10

OL Bruce Matthews                  10

WR Jerry Rice                             10

LB Ray Lewis                               10

Where’s Walter? Left tackle Walter Jones holds the Seahawks’ franchise record with nine Pro Bowl berths. Hall of Fame defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy is next with eight, while Hall of Fame wide receiver Steve Largent is next with seven.

STAT DU JOUR, PART DEUX

Since the NFL moved the Pro Bowl to the Sunday before the Super Bowl in 2010, an average of 29 players who were voted the game have not participated in the past four Pro Bowls. In 2009, when the Pro Bowl was played the Sunday after the Super Bowl, 11 players decided not to participate.

This year, there are 31 players not participating – 15 from the 49ers (nine) and Ravens (six), who will play in the Super Bowl next Sunday; and 16 others, including all three quarterbacks who were voted to the NFC squad.

These nuggets were gleaned from … The Wall Street Journal.

UP NEXT

The game, of course. That’s what this week is all about. Kickoff on Sunday is set for 2 p.m. here, or 4 p.m. in Seattle.

YOU DON’T SAY, SEAHAWKS EDITION

“It wasn’t too far out there for me. Probably for a lot of other people. But I always believe in myself and I always believe in my talent.” – Russell when asked if it was “too far out there” to imagine that he would conclude his rookie season by playing in the Pro Bowl

YOU DON’T SAY, NFC EDITION

“We as players feel like we owe it to our fans to play better than we did last year. It’s an honor and it’s a privilege to be here. I don’t want to be a part of taking this honor and this privilege away from the future Pro Bowlers. I don’t want that to happen on my watch.” – Tillman


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Marshawn Lynch, Max Unger, Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas named All-Pro

Richard Sherman

STONE MOUNTAIN, Ga. – The Seahawks have landed four players on the All-Pro team that is selected by the Associated Press, it was announced this morning.

There were two on offense – running back Marshawn Lynch and center Max Unger; and two on defense – cornerback Richard Sherman and free safety Earl Thomas. This is the first time any of them have been selected All-Pro, but Lynch, Unger and Thomas were voted to the Pro Bowl last month.Marshawn Lynch

Sherman received 39 of a possible 50 votes, while Thomas got 28, Lynch 24 and Unger 16.

The Seahawks are in Georgia for tomorrow’s NFC divisional playoff game against the Falcons in Atlanta.

The four-player contingent matches the largest in franchise history. In 2005, the season the Seahawks made their Super Bowl run, running back and league MVP Shaun Alexander, left guard Steve Hutchinson, left tackle Walter Jones and fullback Mack Strong made the All-Pro team. The 1984 team had three players selected – kicker Norm Johnson, nose tackle Joe Nash and strong safety Kenny Easley, with wide receiver Steve Largent and cornerback Dave Brown getting second-team honors.

Max Unger“That is taking individuals and saying they are the best in the NFL at that position and that’s what I wanted to be,” Sherman said. “The Pro Bowl is taking three from each side, it’s more of a popularity contest. The All-Pro, you’re the best at your position. It doesn’t matter if you’re a fifth-rounder or fourth-rounder or undrafted. If you play the best, you’re All-Pro.”

Unger took the opposite view, saying that the Pro Bowl means more because the squad is selected by other players and coaches in the league – as opposed to the media members who vote on the All-Pro team.

“To have other players say you’re the best at your position, that really means something,” Unger said, and then added with a smile, “But being named All-Pro is pretty cool, too.”

Unger, Thomas and Sherman are the first players in franchise history at their positions to be named first team All-Pro. Lynch joins Alexander as the only running back to be named first-team All-Pro, and Alexander also made the second team in 2004. Curt Warner was a second-team selection three times (1983, 1986 and 1987), while Chris Warren got second-team status twice (1994 and 1995).Earl Thomas

Jones holds the franchise record with four first-team selections (2001, 2004-05 and 2007), and he was a second-team pick in 2008. Defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy and Easley were named to the first team three times – 1992-94 for Kennedy, who also was a second-team selection 1996; 1983-85 for Easley. Largent made the second team four times (1978-79, 1984 and 1987).

You can find the entire All-Pro team here.


Thursday in Hawkville: Brandon Browner excited to be back and heading to the playoffs

A recap of the events at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Jan. 3:

Brandon Browner

FOCUS ON

Brandon Browner. The Seahawks’ right cornerback returned from his four-game suspension on Monday, practiced with the team for the first time in a month on Wednesday and today he fielded questions from the media at his cubicle in the locker room before practice.

“It’s really exciting,” Browner said. “I’m glad to be back out here with my team. Enjoying that.”

Browner returned to his offseason home in Southern California during his suspension for violating the league policy on performance-enhancing substances.

“I couldn’t find it in myself working out here,” he said. “I wasn’t coming up here (to VMAC). So it was weird to go to some park here.”

But Browner did watch the four games he missed – a 58-0 romp over the Cardinals at CenturyLink Field; a 50-17 victory over the Bills in Toronto; a 42-13 win over the 49ers in Seattle; and last week’s 20-13 victory over the Rams, also at CenturyLink Field.

“It was fun,” he said with a smile, “because we were kicking everybody’s butt. I missed not playing with the guys, but it was awesome to watch.”

Browner has returned just in time to experience the NFL postseason for the first time, as the Seahawks are preparing for Sunday’s NFC Wild Card game against the Redskins at FedExField. He was on a Grey Cup-winning team with the Calgary Stampeders of the CFL in 2008. But this is different because it’s the NFL.

“It’s very exciting,” Browner said. “That’s what you play for, to get to the playoffs and eventually, hopefully, the Super Bowl.”

And his thoughts on this latest first in his career that took a radical turn last year when he was signed to a future contract by the Seahawks in January, won the starting job during training camp and ended playing in the Pro Bowl as an injury replacement after leading the team with six interceptions and 23 passes defensed?

“You don’t know yet until the game comes,” Browner said of the playoffs. “But I think we have a good game plan going into this and it will be a good matchup. I’ve got confidence in my team and my ability.”

Is Browner ready after sitting out a month?

“Most definitely,” he said. “It starts in the head, and I’m mentally tough. I know I’ll be a little tired out there, but at the end of the day I’m fighting for a playoff victory. So I’ll be all right.”

To help with the physical preparation, Browner got some reps today with the scout team that works against the Seahawks’ offense, as well as working with the No. 1 defense.

“It always takes a little bit of time to get back into it – the one-on-one’s, the coverage concepts,” defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said. “But he’s taking extra reps to get back on that.

“The mental part of it is all there. But the physical part, he’s getting sharp again. He’s looked pretty good.”

ANOTHER DAY IN THE SUNSHINE

The players practiced outside for the second consecutive day. It will help prepare them for the game against the Redskins, because the temperature along Lake Washington was 46 degrees and the forecast for Sunday in Landover, Md., is calling for a high of 49 and a low 39.

OPPONENT WATCH

London Fletcher. We also featured the Redskins’ inside linebacker yesterday, but that was from the perspective of Washington coach Mike Shanahan. Today, we get Michael Robinson’s take on Fletcher, who is 37 and in his 15th NFL season.

These two ran into each other last season at CenturyLink Field, and Robinson puts Fletcher in the same class as the other great inside and middle linebackers he faced a season ago and this season – the Ravens’ Ray Lewis, 49ers’ Patrick Willis and Bears’ Brian Urlacher. And that is saying a lot.

“We spoke at the Pro Bowl last year. Good guy. Got a lot of love for him,” Robinson offered. “The old adage about London, if you don’t block him he’ll make every tackle. He’s one of those guys, he has a lot of big hogs up front and it’s hard to get on him. And he will make, literally, every single tackle if you don’t block him.

“So it’s a big, big challenge for us.”

INJURY REPORT

The official report, as issued by the team:

Did not practice

CB Jeremy Lane (knee)

Full participation

RB Marshawn Lynch (back)

An already encouraging injury report got even better today, when Lynch took part in all phases of practice after being limited on Wednesday – which has been his routine for much of the second half of the regular season. Lane was added to the list. He started the past three games for Browner.

For the Redskins:

Did not practice

CB Dominique Johnson (knee)

OG Kory Lichtensteiger (ankle)

Limited in practice

S DeJon Gomes (knee)

Full participation

LB Lorenzo Alexander (shoulder)

DE Stephen Bowen (biceps)

QB Kirk Cousins (illness)

LB London Fletcher (ankle)

WR Pierre Garcon (foot)

QB Robert Griffin III (knee)

CB DeAngelo Hall (elbow)

LB Ryan Kerrigan (ankle)

C Will Montgomery (knee)

WR Josh Morgan (hand, foot)

S Jordan Pugh (ankle)

P Saverio Rocca (right knee)

S Madieu Williams (elbow)

Fletcher and Cousins practiced today after sitting out on Wednesday.

STAT DU JOUR

The Seahawks and Redskins don’t play that often, but there have been some memorable events during the series that the Redskins lead 11-4 during the regular season and the Seahawks lead 2-0 during the postseason. Here’s a look at some of the games that standout, and why:

1976: Redskins 31, Seahawks 7. First road loss in franchise history

1980: Seahawks 14, Redskins 0. Second road shutout in franchise history

1983: Redskins 27, Seahawks 17. Steve Largent catches eight passes for 130 yards and two TDs

1989: Redskins 29, Seahawks 0. Steve Largent’s final game

1992: Redskins 16, Seahawks 3. Loss No. 6 in a club-record eight-game losing streak

1994: Seahawks 28, Redskins 7. Chris Warren goes “home” and runs for 100 yards and two TDs

1995: Seahawks 27, Redskins 20. Chris Warren goes “home” again and runs for 136 yards

1998: Seahawks 24, Redskins 14. Steve Broussard returns a kickoff 90 yards for a TD

2002: Redskins 14, Seahawks 3. Bruce Smith beats Walter Jones for two sacks

2005: Redskins 20, Seahawks 17. Last loss before a club-record 11-game winning streak

2005: Seahawks 20, Redskins 10. Win in divisional playoff game sends Seahawks to NFC title game

2007: Seahawks 35, Redskins 14. Win in Wild Card game sends Seahawks to divisional round

2008: Redskins 20, Seahawks 17. Loss No. 4 in six-game losing streak

2011: Redskins 23, Seahawks 17. Only loss in a six-game stretch

UP NEXT

The team will fly to Baltimore on Friday after the players hold a midday practice. Saturday’s walk-through will be held in the D.C. area.

Remember: Kickoff is at 4:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, so the game will start at 1:30 p.m. on the West Coast.

YOU DON’T SAY

“Great football teams don’t shy away from success. We’ve been waiting on these moments our whole entire lives. I know for me, as an example, I’ve been waiting for this my whole entire life. I think with our football team, we’re determined to be successful; we’re determined to be great. And that mindset of staying focused on the positive, staying focused on the great opportunities that you have, staying focused on the now – one opportunity at a time, one play at a time; that mentality of just competing with that, I think that’s where you’re successful more times than not.” – quarterback Russell Wilson when asked if he and his team were comfortable with the level of success they’ve achieved


Russell Wilson NFL Rookie of the Month

When you lead your team to five consecutive victories and also tie the league’s rookie record for touchdown passes, it should be worth something.

For Russell Wilson, it was. The Seahawks’ quarterback was named NFL Rookie of the Month this morning.

Wilson, a third-round pick in April’s NFL Draft, definitely had a December to remember. While leading the Seahawks into the playoffs, the rookie fashioned a 115.2 passer rating by completing 74 of 113 passes for 1,067 yards, with nine touchdown passes and two interceptions. He also ran for 262 yards and three more TDs as the Seahawks dispatched the Bears 23-17 in overtime, the Cardinals 58-0, the Bills 50-17, the 49ers 42-13 and the Rams 20-13.

Along the way, Wilson had a game with four TD passes (against the 49ers), another with three TD runs (against the Bills), another where he completed almost 80 percent of his passes (78.9 on 15 of 19 against the Rams) and his TD pass against the Rams was his 26th — tying the NFL rookie record set by Peyton Manning in 1998.

Wilson joins left tackle Walter Jones (October, 1997), defensive tackle Rocky Bernard (September 2002) and middle linebacker Lofa Tatupu (December/January 2005) as the only Seahawks to win the monthly rookie honor.


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