Good morning, here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, July 11.
Danny O’Neil at the Seattle Times follows up his Seahawks wide receivers breakdown from yesterday with a closer look at one wide receiver in particular – Mike Williams. The former first round draft pick and USC alum enjoyed a breakout season with the Seahawks in 2010, leading the team in receiving with 65 catches for 751 yards after being out of the NFL completely for two years. Last year, for whatever reason – injuries, a new offense, or a new quarterback – Williams’ production fell off. O’Neil wonders how Williams will respond in 2012, “Well, that depends on Williams’ readiness both in terms of his recovery from injury and his mindset. Does he focus on the decline of his numbers last season as a sign the offense in general — and quarterback in particular — didn’t involve him to the same degree as 2010? Or does he see that as a speed bump that he can overcome? [Head Coach Pete] Carroll has always liked big, physical wide receivers, and there isn’t a bigger receiver on Seattle’s roster. Now, it’s up to Williams to show he can still be a sizeable factor in the offense.”
Bob Heist of the Pensacola News Journal catches up with wide receiver Doug Baldwin, who is working out in his hometown at his old Gulf Breeze High campus with Seahawks quarterback Matt Flynn in preparation for the start of training camp at the end of this month. Heist tells us, “The workout lasted more than an hour as Baldwin and Flynn ran through different routes, exchanging ideas on timing, field positioning and general likes and dislikes specific to executing certain patterns. ‘The neat thing about all this, Doug appreciates every second he has in the NFL,’ said Gulf Breeze coach Chris Nemith. ‘It’s an inspiration for anybody that says this is what you want to do and has the courage and resolve to stick with it. And those two guys out there today, this shows they care about the Seahawks and what they’re doing individually. You can see the self-respect they have in themselves and the mutual respect for each other. This really was outstanding to see.’
Sticking with the wide receiver theme, here at Seahawks.com Clare Farnsworth continues with his positional breakdown, as he takes a look at Seattle’s wide receiver position heading into 2012. Farnsworth notes that the unit should improve significantly as a whole if they can get, and stay, healthy, “With the return of [Sidney] Rice and the addition of [Kellen] Winslow, the passing game should be in good hands. But their practice reps will need to be monitored to make sure they’re ready when needed most – on game days. Their presence also should make it possible for [Doug] Baldwin to be even more productive from the slot. But the offense also needs [Golden] Tate and [Kris] Durham to play to their potential, more consistency from [Ricardo] Lockette and a return to form by [Zach] Miller – who caught 66 and 60 passes for the Raiders in 2009 and 2010.”
Tom Pelissero of ESPN 1500 Twin Cities chats with Seahawks quarterback Tarvaris Jackson, who is in Minnesota at Larry Fitzgerald’s annual offseason workouts. Pelissero asked Jackson about the competition at the team’s quarterback position, to which Jackson responded, “You only know what coaches tell you. Coaches have been pretty straightforward about the competition. It’s all you can ask. Just let me know where I stand. That’s all you can really ask for — know the truth and let the best man win.” Pelissero also noted that Seattle running back Leon Washington and wide receivers Ricardo Lockette and Golden Tate joined Jackson at the Fitzgerald workouts.
Over at SI.com, Chris Burke breaks down the Seahawks offseason. Burke points to the competition at quarterback, the health of the offensive line and the development of first round draft pick DE Bruce Irvin as three things to watch going forward, as he offers up a season outlook, “Because the Seahawks were more or less out of the playoff picture by the 2011 season’s midpoint, they kind of flew under the radar late. Which means that a lot of people now fail to grasp how close this team was to contending. Assuming one of the QBs steps up, the offensive line stays upright and someone — anyone — breaks through at wide receiver (don’t count Seattle out as a player for WR Josh Gordon in the supplemental draft), the offense could be pretty solid. The defense has question marks at linebacker with [Barrett] Ruud, K.J. Wright and Leroy Hill expected to start, but the front four and secondary are stout. Carroll may need one more year to fully implement his plan, but Seattle is on the upswing.”