INDIANAPOLIS – Most of the attention for the Seahawks who are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents next month has centered on leading rusher Marshawn Lynch. And rightfully so, after the numbers the “Beast Mode” back produced last season.
But during his interview session at the NFL Scouting Combine on Friday, coach Pete Carroll offered some don’t-forget-about praise for the unique contributions provided by defensive end Red Bryant in his first full season as a starter.
“He’s certainly not underrated in our locker room,” Carroll said when asked about the 6-foot-4, 335-pound Bryant being underrated on a national level. “He’s been a big factor for us. It was really an exciting emergence to see Red.”
And that worth-seeing emergence occurred on Carroll’s watch. Bryant was a seldom-used tackle in his first two seasons, but moved to end in 2010.
“He struggled playing inside,” Carroll said. “He’s was too tall and too long. He had trouble getting down in a stance that would allow him to play in there. So when we moved him outside, it took about two days. The first day, we were excited. The second day, we said, ‘Hey, there’s something going on here.’
“It totally transformed his role on our football team, and even to the point where we look for players to play like him as we look for upgrades on our roster. … He’s a monster playing on the tight-end side.”
That’s saying a lot, but Carroll hadn’t said it all.
“He’s been a big factor in the way we played him. Other teams are going to see that, too,” Carroll said. “Because of the way it has happened, and kind of the attitude and the personality that Red brings, he’s been very special to us.
“To us, he’s maybe different than somebody else will see him. But we’d love to have him back and we’re going to do everything we can to keep him.”