Friday cyber surfing: Dare to daydream, big

Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, May 25:

Mike Sando at ESPN.com takes a look at the daydream/nightmare scenarios for each of the teams in the NFC West, which includes a record of either 12-4 or 6-10 for the Seahawks. Let’s go with 12-4: “Matt Flynn’s fourth-quarter comeback victory over Green Bay in Week 3 serves notice in prime time that Seattle made the right move in signing the Packers’ former backup. Sure, Russell Wilson lit up opponents during the exhibition season, but everyone figured coach Pete Carroll would go with Flynn heading into the season. Seattle hadn’t been able to finish games on offense previously, but the vibe is completely different now. Flynn isn’t perfect, of course, and he doesn’t have to be. He’s got the NFL’s most physical running back in Marshawn Lynch, two viable tight ends, a healthy Sidney Rice and a downright nasty offensive line. Finally healthy, left tackle Russell Okung joins fellow 2010 draftees Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor in the Pro Bowl. Second-rounder Golden Tate won’t be making the trip, but preseason rumors of a potential breakout season weren’t far off. With the defense allowing only 16 points per game, Flynn doesn’t have to be a hero most weeks. By midseason, it’s all coach Pete Carroll can do to refrain from gloating over the team’s then-controversial decision to draft Bruce Irvin in the first round. Irvin’s two-sack game at San Francisco on Thursday night in Week 7 gives him 5.5 for the season, matching what the 49ers’ Aldon Smith had at the same point in 2011. Irvin doesn’t quite equal the 14-sack total Smith posted as a rookie, but he’s not far behind. The national pundits learn the hard way what should have been evident already: Carroll and the Seahawks’ personnel people know what they want on defense. A trip to Green Bay for the NFC Championship Game leaves the Seahawks thinking big.”

Back to reality, the Seahawks OTA practice on Thursday was open to the media, and most of the attention was focused on just-acquired tight end Kellen Winslow and the continuing competition for the starting QB job.

Steve Kelley at the Seattle Times looks at why dealing for Winslow makes sense: “It is a sign of the maturity of the 2012 Seahawks that they can go after specific needs. They can make a trade, as they did this week with Tampa Bay for a player like Winslow, whose skills perfectly fit the Seahawks’ offense. ‘This falls under the category of a team need,’ general manager Schneider said as the sun finally broke through the clouds Thursday. ‘He’s a guy that brings that energy and passion that fits our group and our locker room right now. Kellen is so passionate about the game. He really is all ball. And those are the kind of guys you feel like it’s worth bringing into your program. He’s the type of guy who wants to be great.’ ”

Percy Allen at the Times focuses on the QB competition: “No quarterback was sensational during the first organized team activity open to the media. Flynn, however, avoided turnovers and miscues that tormented the other two. The former Green Bay Packer, who signed a three-year, $26 million deal in March, displayed good command of the offense while quickly getting the ball out of his hands and lofting passes for big gains. ‘At this level, everybody is a competitor and everybody wants to win every snap,’ Flynn said. ‘It’s kind of a lot of fun to chirp around with the defense and to talk back and forth. And get out there and see who wins the day.’ ”

Eric Williams at the New Tribune has this take on Winslow from Carroll: “Looking for some instant offense in the passing game, the Seattle Seahawks hope they found it with the addition of tight end Kellen Winslow. ‘He’s a wide receiver in a tight end’s body,’ Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. ‘He’s got all of that ability and route-running like I mentioned, but more than that, he makes plays. As well as – the thing that I love about the guy the most – is that he’s a great competitor. He just loves to play the game, and we can’t have enough of that around here.’ ”

John Boyle at the Everett Herald retraces the route that brought Winslow to Seattle: “Winslow missed Tampa’s first voluntary workouts last week while working out in San Diego, then flew to Tampa Bay Saturday for this week’s workouts. After arriving, he got a call telling him not to come to the team’s workouts, which began Monday, and that new head coach Greg Schiano planned to trade him. By Monday, Winslow was traded to the Seahawks for a conditional 2013 draft pick, which meant another cross-country flight to join his new team. ‘That’s how the NFL is,’ he said. ‘It worked out for both sides. I’m going to miss my teammates out there, my boys. I’ve grown together a lot with those guys, but it’s the NFL. It’s hard. It’s good to have a job, you know. It’s good to have a job, so I’ll be OK.’ ”

Liz Matthews at 710 ESPN provides notes from Carroll’s post-practice Q&A session: “Carroll provided some injury updates regarding a few of the players who are now on the mend. Offensive tackle James Carpenter was present at the activity on Thursday, and finally able to run since his season-ending knee injury in November. ‘He went out there and was jogging today,’ Carroll said. ‘Everybody was fired up for him. It was great to see him. He’s made a couple big steps just recently, so that’s really encouraging.’ ”

Here at Seahawks.com, we look at Winslow as a knight in a chess game: “Kellen Winslow is listed as a tight end, although you’ll undoubtedly see the Seahawks’ latest acquisition line up as an H-back, a slot receiver, in two tight-end sets and even split or flanked in spots usually reserved for wide receivers. It’s a diverse role that actually needs a new title, and Winslow came up with one on Thursday. ‘You want to create mismatches, so I am kind of the knight in the chess game,’ Winslow said after his second practice with the team that acquired him on Monday in a trade with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. ‘You can move me around and control the middle of the field.’ ”

We also take a look at the QB situation in Hawkville: “Pete Carroll wasn’t kidding when he said that incumbent Tarvaris Jackson, free-agent addition Matt Flynn and third-round draft choice Russell Wilson would compete for the starting job. And the actions of the team’s third-year coach during the first week of the team’s OTA practices have spoken even louder than his word. Today, Wilson was first in the rotation. Wednesday, it was Flynn. Tuesday, it was Jackson. ‘We’re rotating all the guys,’ Carroll said. ‘To present really the competition as balanced as we can we need to see them with all the guys.’ ”

There’s also Tony Ventrella’s video recap, as well as video of the Q&A session with Carroll and Winslow.


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