I've Moved

For those of you that follow this blog: you should now check in regularly at FieldGulls.com because I will now be leading a team of really great writers over there. I figure I can reach a larger audience and get better support from SBNation than I could get doing everything myself here. Hope to see you over there and make sure and contribute and comment as much as you want, I welcome discussion on everything.

Also, I've taken over the twitter handle Fieldgulls so check me out on the twitterverse.


Thank God it's TGIF

I've taken a few days off from posting but plan on picking it back up again in force next week. I don't have any original content for you today but I'll hook you up with a few good links.

Seattle was one of two teams to attend Montana State's pro day, where they took a look at OL Michael Person. A little bit about the 6'5, 299 lb (likely Guard) player, from his NFL Combine page:
Person is prospect from the FCS ranks with the intangibles, work-ethic and football smarts to become a backup offensive lineman. However, lacks the foot quickness and body control necessary to start or protect the blind side. While he did not allow a sack during his senior year and shows the ability to thwart the bull rush, should have problems dealing with speed rushers. Doesn't play with great pad level or blow defenders off the ball but does a good job getting into position as a run blocker. Consistently recognized for his leadership and effort in college. Person could hear his named called late on Day 3.
Person has the mentality you look for. Capable of anchoring and holding up against the bull rush. Gets off the ball, establishes good initial position, and locks on when run blocking. Takes direct routes to targets at the second level. Has good football IQ and a lot of starting experience.
Lacks bulk for the NFL. Does not possess the athleticism to stick with edge rushers. Hat and hand placement need to improve. Leans and lunges on occasion. Doesn't get much movement off the ball when run blocking. Must adjust to a steep incline in competition level from the FCS level.
A few more visits are expected/have happened:

Tony Pauline reports that the Hawks will work out Boise State (backup) QB Mike Coughlin. He didn't get much playing time in his college career behind Kellen Moore. This does not bode well - but there is precedent for this - Matt Cassel was a backup to Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart his entire college career and has had a measure of success in the NFL.

Lehigh Guard Will Rackey - The Hawks (Tom Cable according to this article) recently attended the pro day for the probable 3rd round pick. This isn't really new news, but the Hawks most definitely have interest.

More on Rackey from the NFL Combine Page:
Rackley's a small-school tackle who projects well as a guard in the NFL. He's above-average in pass protection and as a run blocker and has the mentality necessary to become a starter. Does a good job against power pass rushers but may have some difficulty against defensive linemen with great agility. Fires off the ball, wins the position battle, and is very capable moving to the second level but does not possess the leg drive to move defenders off the ball. Shows average awareness but will may need some time to adjust to the complexity of the NFL. Rackley's a Day 2 prospect.
Hampton DT Kenrick Ellis.  According to Adam Wright's twitter account, the Hawks worked out the big defensive tackle on Wednesday.  He projects as a probable 5-tech for the Hawks.  Here's what his NFL Combine Page has to say:
Ellis is an intriguing prospect who could develop into a complete starting defensive tackle capable of clogging up the middle, making plays in the backfield off penetration, and collapsing the pocket. Has a pretty rare combination of size and explosiveness. Can be disruptive with his power or quickness. Counters and the screen game can be used to beat him at times. Plays with some fire and has a solid motor. Teams will need to further investigate his dismissal from South Carolina.
Ellis is blessed with NFL-ideal height and weight at defensive tackle. Holds up really well at the point of attack and can take on the double team and eat up space inside. Does a very good job pushing the pocket with his bull rush and uses a few hand moves to get off blocks. Excellent burst for a big man.
Has character flags after being suspended and later dismissed by South Carolina. Needs to do a better job of watching his pad level at times. Can be fooled by crisp ball-handling and ball-fakes. Can be neutralized by trap blocks he fails to recognize. There are some concerns about his conditioning level.

Apparently the Hawks are not the team that has put in a first round draft pick offer for Kevin Kolb, according to Peter King.  This comes a day or two after Pete Carroll didn't deny that they were in fact the team to do so.  Of course Pete is going to be playing coy and possibly even using smokescreens at this point about which direction the Hawks will be going. At least, I hope he is, because I would love to see them use a little tact this time around so they don't have to give up an arm and a leg to get their target QB.

(Like they did last year with Whitehurst - it seems like the offer the Chargers presented to the Hawks was a pretty much their first offer, and evidently they expected some haggling... but the Hawks accepted.  "oh - geez! Yeah if you're take that offer? Sweet! (chuckle chuckle).  Actually the real quote was "We presented them a deal we thought was good for us, and we are thrilled it was accepted.” - translation - SUCKERS). Damn it just get the stupid CBA done so we can all stop speculating on the QB situation.

Ok, on to the good news: Compensatory draft picks will be announced today. Hopefully we get two or three more first rounders. That would be great. But it's most likely going to be a 4th and a 6th (or a 5th and 7th according to some). Brandon Adams breaks it down...


Throwing Some Stats Around

Think the Seahawks shocking the world had any bearing on the perception of them nationwide?  According to ColdHardFootballFacts.com, uhhhh, no. In their latest offseason power rankings, they had the Hawks at #24 in the league (yes, only 8 teams are worse than the Hawks). Above them? Try San Francisco and St. Louis.  Also, the Houston Texans, Miami Dolphins, Jacksonville Jaguars, and even the Minnesota Vikings.  Ouch.

While I can't really dispute this all that much based on the Hawks' situation at QB and the fact that they had a near league-worst defense last year, it still goes to show that the Hawks get no love despite the fact that they beat the defending champion Saints in the playoffs and challenged Chicago enough to ignite a glimmer of hope they'd be playing in the NFC Championship game. Oh well, being an underdog is not necessarily a bad thing.

This quasi-arbitrary (once past the top 10 or so) ranking system aside, Cold Hard Football Facts does have some great metrics to take a look at and I did so in relation to the Hawks.  First off, their Bendability Index is a system of trying to measure the effectiveness of the "bend but don't break" concept on defense - this is exactly what Pete Carroll's defensive philosophy is all about - and offers some insight into the direction the Hawks are going:


The Blame Game

Check out a piece I wrote over at Seahawks Addicts about the recently released lists of Best and Worst Cornerbacks in the NFL, compiled by Football Outsiders.

HawkLinks for Sunday

In case you haven't see it yet, the NFL has proposed rule changes meant to diminish injuries to players on what is the most injury inducing play in the league, kickoffs. These rule changes propose that the kickoff line be moved to the 35 yard line (instead of the 30) so there will be more touchbacks and theoretically less room to get a running start for the return man. Obviously, with the Seahawks ranked so highly in special teams, I'm against these rule changes. Leon Washington proved to be the man on kickoff returns and proved himself invaluable in the field position game. If the changes are enacted, it could potentially be detrimental to the Hawks.

For an idea of the type of change you're looking at, in 1993, the last year that kickoffs were taken from the 35 yard line, there were 57 kickoff returns of 40+ yards and 4 touchdown returns. In 1992, there were 6 return TDs. In 2010, Leon Washington had 3 himself (and should have been 4 except for a early celebration), and there were 113 40+ yard returns and 23 touchdowns. Player safety would most likely be improved though so it may be enacted. Personally, I'm not against player safety, but it seems like it would make kickoffs very dull. Check out the links above for a more in-depth look at the rule changes and their potential ramifications.

Kevin Kolb might be on the move, and Andy Reid has stated that he'll be listening to offers during the offseason. Check out a couple of stories from NFL.com on a potential trade for Kolb - one that looks at the risk involved and one that looks at potential suitors and the odds it will happen.

Speaking of quarterback acquisitions, I guess it has recently come out that the Hawks originally wanted to trade for then-Buffalo QB Trent Edwards before getting rebuffed and instead traded for Charlie Whitehurst. Not that it really matters now, but it kind of makes you wonder about Whitehurst considering he was a backup option to a guy that got released from the Bills after two games in 2010.  After he was released, it was again rumored the Hawks may try to pick him up but he was claimed by the Jaguars instead.  The Hawks instead settled on another former Bill as their third-stringer, JP Losman.

Brady Henderson of 710ESPN Seattle takes a look at Georgia C Clint Boling, a potential target for the Hawks in round 2 of the draft.

Looking Forward: Wide Receivers, Part II

Golden Tate had a very hit and miss rookie season. He ended up catching 21 passes for 221 yards - which is not especially impressive. He did however have some very impressive catches in those 21, which gives me hope as a fan that his sophomore campaign will be his breakout year.

First off, why did he struggle in his first year? He has the tools - he's got great hands, can break tackles, and is an exciting runner after the catch. He was the toast of training camp and preseason - wowing all the reporters at camp with his incredible acrobatic plays we'd hear about daily. He made some amazing catches in his few game opportunities but those opportunities were scarce because of his issues running routes and making mistakes.


Looking Forward: Wide Receivers

In a series of posts I plan to sort of roll out as the offseason goes on, I'll be taking a look at some of the Seahawks positions and trying to assess (as best as a fan can) the Hawks' strengths and needs.  I've started a bit with the Cornerback and Linebacker position, which I'll try to follow up on soon, but I wanted to talk a little bit about Wide Receivers - particularly Deon Butler and Golden Tate.  I'll start with Butler.

First of all, Deon Butler didn't come cheap to the Seahawks - they traded away three picks just to move up in the draft to select him in the third round (any third round pick is pretty valuable in the first place). They gave the Giants their fifth and seventh round choices from '09 and their 3rd round choice from '10.  A little ridiculous in my mind but that is basically the Seahawks drafting tendencies of the past decade or so in a nutshell. So the Hawks gave up a lot to get a receiver that's 5'10, 175 lbs. It's not like that precludes him from being a great receiver, but it definitely comes as a disadvantage. I guess that they drafted him with visions of DeSean Jackson in their minds, because he sort of fits that mold- extremely fast deep threat type receiver. You can't really fault them for that I suppose - Jackson had a ridiculous rookie campaign, leading his team in receptions and racking up almost a thousand yards on 62 catches. Not bad for a skinny little speedster.


HawkLinks for Friday

By now a lot of you have probably already seen this, but Randy Moss mentioned that he'd like to go back and play for the Patriots,... but also would play for the Browns or the Seahawks, if they'd have him. Some people saw this as a slight - like saying, "shoot, I'd even play for the lowly Seahawks or Browns." I'm inclined to just think that he throwing out teams randomly. There's a chance the leadership/coaching of those teams have some draw to him- and I kind of doubt that he was saying it as an insult. (Maybe he liked Darrell Bevell when he was briefly with Minnesota?) I'm not really sure how I feel about this - but I'm wary of adding a guy like Moss and risk negatively affecting the locker room. He is a talent for sure, but if teams like Minnesota or Tennessee couldn't use him at all, I doubt the Hawks could either. My guess is he'll end up with the Pats again.

Since I've lobbied a bit for the Carson Palmer trade, here are a few more links related to the situation that might catch you up a bit on the status of it all and give you more insight into Palmer as a player.

-Clark Judge's opinion is that Mike Brown will not trade Palmer, no matter what. Palmer will have to retire. Essentially, it's up to Marvin Lewis, the Bengals' head coach, to convince Brown otherwise.

-Jordan Palmer, on his brother Carson's toughness:
Carson had several deals going on and not that he - not just because he's my brother but he's probably the toughest player I've every played with and not just in the injuries he plays with but he doesn't say anything to anybody. So I was one of the only guys who really knew all the different things he had going on with his body and yeah, there was a couple games where I took every rep in practice and I'm thinking Saturday morning I'm going to start. The Saturday goes on and he starts feeling better and ends up suiting up and going on...There was a week when we were playing the Jets, we played on a Sunday then we had a Thursday Thanksgiving game. Very quick week, very difficult defense to prepare for. I went into that game really thinking I was going to start.
-Marshall Faulk and Rich Eisen talk about Carson Palmer's situation on NFL Total Access. Marshall Faulk believes Seattle would be a great fit for Palmer, saying, "Carson Palmer, in the NFC West, with his old coach, Pete Carroll: what merger between these two guys. Listen, if you saw what he did with Mike Williams and how Mike Williams played for Pete Carroll, just imagine what a guy who won the Heisman under Pete Carroll would do there."

Finally, as you may or may not know, I believe that the Seahawks need to sign or draft a true fullback to help with their running game this season. I'm not the only one - here's what QB Matt Hasselbeck said after the Hawks beat the Panthers in week 13, where Michael Robinson played a big role:
No one wanted to say it, but (if) you don’t have a fullback on your roster, it makes it a little harder, especially in short yardage and goal-line situations, having (Robinson) back is huge. I think it definitely showed up last week.
I'm not going to say that's insubordination, but the writing is on the wall - the Hawks didn't do themselves any favors by neglecting to have any true fullbacks on the roster for the majority of the season and Hass knew it. The standout fullback in this year's draft class could be Stanford's Owen Marecic. Check out a good profile courtesy of Bigblueview.com.  Marecic is an old-school football player - just a blue collar, do everything for you type of guy and would be a good pickup for the Hawks in the middle rounds if he lasts that long.  Of course, I highly doubt the Hawks will pick up a fullback in the draft, but a guy can dream right? I think it's an important piece of the puzzle that the Hawks will need to pick up in the offseason.

Trading for Kevin Kolb

I have been thinking about doing a write up on the idea of trading for Kevin Kolb. It's something that Kevin Calabro and many others have been talking about for weeks and the rumors are certainly circulating that the Hawks may be suiters for the 26 year old QB. I am not really sure how I feel about it to be honest with you. I did a short write up on it a few months ago, and stated then that overall I'm not a huge fan of the idea. In doing my research just now though, I did come across a ridiculously thorough look at Kevin Kolb, complete with in-depth analysis (and video of every pass he attempted) of every game he has started, courtesy of the SBNation Blog for the Eagles, Bleedinggreennation.com. If you're a Hawks fan and you've got about an hour to kill, read the article and watch the tape.


The Wildcat in Seattle

The Wildcat offense is not something that's foreign to the Seahawks. In the Holmgren years we saw the SeneCat formations with varying degrees of success... but mostly failure. Seneca Wallace was a weapon in theory but the plays just never really panned out. The Seneca Wallace plays had some success under Jim Mora, Jr's tenure (if you can call one year a tenure), but again - not really. The plays were used very infrequently and in random situations. For some reason though, people go crazy about it. I remember being at the games too and seeing Wallace run out there and all of a sudden 'oh it's ON!' Then of course he'd take the snap or the swing pass and run out of bounds or something at the line of scrimmage.

Well, when Isaiah Stanback was signed last preseason, the Wildcat rumors started up again in force.

Defensive Tackles to Watch Cont...

To continue in what will be a series of posts concentrated on a few prospects that Hawks fans should keep their eye on as the draft gets closer, I'll take a look at a few more Defensive Tackles that could be selected in the early rounds:

----DT Phil Taylor, Baylor
6'3, 334lbs

The first thing that jumps out at you about NT Phillip Taylor is his size. At 6'3, 334lbs, the immediate comparison to make is to Big Red Bryant (6'4, 323lbs). Since Taylor is not known for his elite pass rushing skills, the 5-tech position or the 1-tech might just suit him better, and he could provide depth along the line at both. Because the Hawks so desperately need a 5-tech to back up Bryant in the case that he gets hurt again or doesn't fully recover from his knee injury, Taylor may be at the forefront of the Hawks' front office's mind.


Defensive Tackles to Watch

I've intentionally been pretty quiet when it comes to possible draft targets, mostly because there are very good resources for this that know way more than me when it comes to college players.  The places I visit most for draft breakdowns are SeahawksDraftBlog, CBSSports' draft coverage, WalterFootball, DraftBreakdown, and Drafttek.  These guys do a great job of breaking down who might go where and giving detailed scouting reports on each player. I tend to take everything that Mel Kiper and Todd McShay say with a grain of salt because they change their reports and analysis of each guy so often it gets annoying. Players' stock goes up and down week in and week out for the simple reason that they need something new to talk about everyday on TV.  I understand it's an around the clock news era, but guys rise and fall so often it really makes you scratch your head. Regardless, it's such a crapshoot anyway that it's more important just to know what types of prospects are out there than to try and guess where they'll go.

I decided to take a look at some of the players that all these outlets have going to the Seahawks and give you a general overview of each guy from these sites so you can have an idea of who the Hawks might be looking at.

I'll start with a big-need position for the Hawks, Defensive Tackle.


For the Record:

I am just going to refuse to talk about the stupid lockout. It really annoys me, and I don't want even think about it. I'm just going on with my life as if it's not happening, free agency will start soon, the draft won't be canceled, and life will be good again. Instead, I'm going to take a nap. I think this will work.

The Prospect of Carson Palmer as a Hawk

Earlier this week, rumors started circulating that Palmer could be a real option in play for the Hawks. There were reports on ESPN Insider, some Cincinnati blogs, and chatter all over twitter about the subject.  Adam Wright posted on his Seahawk Talk twitter account that a "Source telling me that #Seahawks QB Hasselbeck has been told by the front office that they will try to deal for #Bengals QB Carson Palmer" followed by "Hasselbeck was also told if they can't acquire Palmer, they'll re-sign him, if they can agree on a new deal. The two QB's share same agent".  Now, you have to take all these reports and sources with a grain of salt, but it's legitimate that the Hawks could be interested in dealing for Palmer.

Cincy's front office has stated that he will not be traded, and will be forced to retire if he doesn't want to play.  As late as Thursday afternoon, sources had the Bengals offering the automatic response to trade requests as: 'No, thanks. If Palmer plays in 2011, it will be for us.' Of course, anything could happen, but if Cincy is going to turn down a first round draft pick and just let Palmer retire, then that's their choice.

I just don't think that will happen. Bengals' owner Mike Brown has remained steadfast in his word in the past: Ochocinco tried to hold out for a trade, that didn't work; Corey Dillon did the same, with zero success.  These players were good, yes, but neither of them could have fetched what Carson could.  Also, neither of them threatened to retire - something that I believe that Palmer will do if he doesn't get his trade. Why would Brown decide to take nothing and let Palmer retire when he could possibly get a another first round draft pick for this year to continue his team's rebuilding process? He may be stupid enough or stubborn enough, but I just don't see it in this case.

Here's why I'm not against the acquisition (and maybe am hoping for it a little bit):



Brandon Mebane has been given a third-round tender.  To me, this says that the Hawks want to keep him but will not keep him at too high a cost.  Derek Stevens over at The Blue Bird Herd wrote a good piece advocating against franchising Mebane (a forgone conclusion at this point) and illustrates why losing Mebane might not be the end of the world (because Pete Carroll has him playing the wrong position).  It's also a position review of the Defensive Tackle/Nose Tackle spots as well that sheds some light on the Hawks' needs.  The Blue Bird Herd blog is a really well written and researched blog and Derek Stevens seems to really know his football.  I had never really heard of it until just recently, but it's definitely worth checking out.

Since I did a piece on Pete Carroll's offensive philosophy, it's only natural that you as a fan should read up on his defensive philosophy as well.  In a three part series by Damien Lynch from Foul Weather Fans.  Very interesting and one any Hawks' fan should read.  A couple notes of interest about this series of articles:
-It was written before last season, so it's fun to see where Lynch projects each player and what their strengths would be for each position.  Overall he demonstrates good foresight into this for the most part.
-It spells out why Brandon Mebane is a good, if not great 1-Tech player but not ideally suited for the 3-tech position, (which, according to Pete Carroll, is supposed to be "your premier interior pass rusher" and be able to beat the center and guard consistently to get to the QB), and coincidentally is exactly the argument that Derek Stevens of Blue Bird Herd makes in the link I posted above.
-The author notes that Earl Thomas would be a great candidate for FS in Pete Carroll's defense (this was written before the draft had happened last year), and even included a picture of him in the article.  Very good sir!  Two Points!

Brandon Adams over at 17Power pointed out another great article about the Brandon Mebane Conundrum at his blog, written by Kip Earlywine (raddest name ever, by the way). I'll quote from there but you need to check out the article in full. Here's a paragraph that sums up the thesis:
Brandon Mebane is not a natural pass rushing defensive tackle. He is natural at dominating a single gap, penetrating into the backfield, getting hits and tackles behind the line of scrimmage and stopping the run in the process. What Mebane doesn't have is anything resembling elite pass rushing technique, aside from a super-quick first step. When tasked with the "1 tech" role in 2007 and 2008, Mebane was arguably the most valuable defender on the team in that time frame. In 2008 alone, he had 5.5 sacks and 18 QB hits, all of this while essentially acting as the 4th pass rusher. This misguidedly caused Seahawks coaches to think Mebane would be better in a pass rushing role, but just the opposite, the lack of pass rush support turned Mebane into a non-factor. He had only 1 sack and 1 QB hit in 2010 while playing a pass rush position.
John Clayton has a new potential free agent guard to keep your eye on: Davin Joseph.  He may be more attractive to the Hawks because he is much younger than a Robert Gallery and could be more durable. Check out the story here.  I'm intrigued.

With the Seahawks looking to possibly upgrade at the right tackle position come April's draft, it makes sense to get to know a few of the prospects.  Meet Gabe Carimi.  Says he's the best tackle in the draft.  Could be on the Hawks' radar at #25, if he lasts that long.


Looking Forward: Cornerbacks Part II

In the live chats that Hawks' beat reporters often do, people ask about the Hawks lack of depth at the CB position.  The venerable Eric D Wiliams of the Tacoma News Tribune has indicated that he thinks the Hawks have more depth there than most people give them credit for.  He then will mention a couple of young players named Marcus Brown and Josh Pinkard that have a shot at competing for a roster spot next year.  I took note of this and did a little research on Brown and Pinkard to give you a better idea of what to expect.

Josh Pinkard is a USC product that has most likely been given a chance because of his prior affiliation with Pete Carroll.  He played six years at USC: he was given two years of a eligibility back because he sustained major injuries in 2006 and 2007, tearing the ACL in each knee.  

When he did play, though, he was a very good corner. In 2008, in 12 games, he had 39 tackles, 3 deflections, 2 fumble recoveries, 2 forced fumbles and an interception on his way to an Honorable Mention for All Pac-10 honors. In 2009 he improved on his numbers, managing 59 tackles, 9 passes broken up, and 2 interceptions.

Pete Carroll's Offensive Philosophy

In the last few days and weeks, there have been a lot of rumors flying around about who the Seahawks might bring in next year to play at QB. It's that time of the year where talk is really the only thing you can do.  Things are starting to heat up though as the draft draws nearer and the idea of free-agency actually happening sounds more realisitic.

While we can speculate on who the Hawks might bring in to play QB next year, I think it's important to talk about what type of QB Pete Carroll really wants, and more specifically, what type of offense you can expect the Hawks to be running in 2011.

When Pete Carroll was hired last year, in pure Sinatra style, he promised that he'd do it 'his way'.

"I vowed, 'If this is the last coaching job I ever have I'm going down with the stuff that I want to be my offense,'" Carroll said at the time.


Grading the Seahawks' 2010 Draft: Round 5

Kam Chancellor

In the fifth round, using the pick they received in the trade of G Rob Sims to Detroit, the Hawks chose a 6'3, 232 lb Safety named Kam Chancellor out of Virginia Tech.  A former high school quarterback, he played Free Safety and Corner for Virginia Tech and was originally projected to play Free Safety in the NFL.  However, he lacks elite ballhawk skills and is more adept as a run-stopper so the Hawks have moved him over to Strong Safety. He's a strong, fairly quick athlete that shows a lot of promise and could compete for the starting SS job next fall.  His experience at Free Safety will serve him well in his pass coverage and defending play action, but his true strength will be as an in-the-box type thumper.

Looking Forward: Cornerbacks Part I

Because CB is such a position of need for the Hawks going into 2011, I'm going to break my review out into several posts.  To start out, I'm going to profile a few young guys that I think could have an impact at OTAs and in camp, and possibly compete for a roster spot and playing time.

First of all, I want to take a look at newly signed CB Brandon Browner.  Signed from the CFL's Calgary Stampeders in late January, I look at this guy as the most probable of the 'futures' guys to have an immediate impact for the Hawks.  One thing that I noticed about him when doing some research is that he is listed as a Strong Safety at some outlets, a Free Safety at others, and a CB at most.  I don't think Pete has really mentioned where they envision him playing, whether it be at Strong Safety, Free Safety backing up Earl Thomas, or Corner; I'd say that CB is the most likely landing spot for Browner.


Looking Forward: Linebackers

The Seahawks linebackers were a bit frustrating this season. Prior to the start, it was basically the only position group that nobody was worried about. They were solid and deep; Lofa Tatupu in the middle, David Hawthorne and Leroy Hill weakside, and Aaron Curry on the strongside. A linebacker corps to be feared and respected. At least I thought it was. Unfortunately it didn't really pan out like that.

Leroy Hill had problems with the law and then with his health and was placed on IR before the season started. David Hawthorne played well and was statistically the best linebacker on the team. Tatupu played alright, considering his myriad injuries and lack of size. Aaron Curry played alright as well. He is frustrating when you compare him to Clay Matthews but he doesn't play the same role as Matthews in our defense and thus doesn't get the same statistical production. That being said, he's not terrible either. He is a good player with the potential to be a great player, and I'm hoping that he takes that step in 2011.

Overall the group underachieved on a statistically terrible defense. They failed to shine in any defensive category.  Their leading tackler was Hawthorne for the second straight year.  He racked up 106 tackles, but compare that to league leaders (174 Jerod Mayo) and it's rather lackluster (26th among linebackers in 2010). In 2011 the Hawks linebacker corps will have to step up and make a bigger statement for the defense to get any better. Everyone tends to focus on the Defensive Line or Defensive Backs when it comes to the Hawks terrible defense, but some blame needs to fall on the linebackers as well.

DT Brandon Mebane Tendered

Brandon Mebane received an original round restricted free agency tender.  That means they've offered him a one year contract, and if he signs with another team, that team will have to give up their third round pick for him.  Of course, no one knows what the new CBA will spell out for restricted free agents so it could all be a moot point.

And in that spirit, I will write no more on the subject.  But I will leave you with this video of him chest bumping Derek Anderson, which makes him all that more endearing to me, and combined with the fact that he's young and talented, it makes me really hope he re-signs with the Hawks.

Seahawks release TE Chris Baker

Due a $500k roster bonus coming up on the league year-end, the Hawks decided to release veteran TE Chris Baker.  This is not a super surprising move; the Hawks are stacked at TE, and youngsters Cameron Morrah and Anthony McCoy have the potential to get more playing time in 2011, as I stated about a week ago in an article about the future of our Tight Ends.  

The other way to look at this is that new Offensive Line coach Tom Cable may be looking to improve their blocking TE position in the offseason and Baker didn't figure into his plans.  There have been rumors that the Hawks may pursue Daniel Graham, who was just released by the Broncos.  Cable and Graham go way back and Graham has a reputation as a solid veteran blocking Tight End.  Seattle could be a logical landing place for a player like Graham, as the Hawks are looking to improve their pass protection and run blocking in the coming season and may look to reunite with Cable.

I think overall that it's a good move to release Baker.  Seattle has great depth at the position and players with higher potential ceilings like McCoy and Morrah will get a chance to play more next season.  I look forward to it.


QB Nate Davis Waived by Seahawks

Well, so much for that.

It will be interesting to see what this means.  I don't know what they saw or didn't see from Davis, but now the Hawks are left with one QB on their roster, Charlie Whitehurst.  They have yet to sign Matt Hasselbeck with only about 9 hours left till the CBA expires.

Things are beginning to get interesting.

TEs in the Bevell Offense

Check out a piece I did on what to expect from John Carlson and Cameron Morrah this next season over at Seahawks Addicts.

2011 Season: Nostradamus style

A Futile and Pointless Exercise: Guessing the Hawks' record next year:

Arizona Cardinals
St Louis Rams
San Francisco 49'ers
Philidelphia Eagles
Washington Redskins
Atlanta Falcons
Baltimore Ravens
Cincinatti Bengals

Arizona Cardinals
St Louis Rams
San Francisco 49'ers
Dallas Cowboys
New York Giants
Chicago Bears
Cleveland Browns
Pittsburgh Steelers

Wow, the Hawks, by getting to the playoffs, really made things harder for themselves next year. By winning the division, you ensure yourself a tougher schedule, and the Hawks are going to be playing some elite teams in 2011.

The Mike Williams Reclamation Project 2011

A little caveat before you read this article:  I'm a dreamer when it comes to the Hawks.  When they invited Reggie Williams and Mike Williams  to camp last year I had delusions of the Hawks' grandeur, picturing Mike and Reggie coming back to dominate the league and provide Carroll with his prototypical big, jump ball in the endzone type receivers.  Well, obviously Reggie didn't pan out.  But you know what?  Mike Williams did. One year later, 2nd in voting for NFL comeback player of the year after a solid "rookie" campaign.  During the offseason, there's a lot of time to sit there and try and come up with who Carroll and Schneider will dig up this year, and that is basically what this article amounts to.  I'm not an idiot (I hope); I know that the vast majority of players that wash out of the league do so for a reason and coaches and front office guys are typically good at what they do and at talent evaluation.  That being said, some guys slip through the cracks for one reason or another.  So in other words, take everything that follows with a grain of salt, but try and enjoy the idea of what potential it could have.

He's a former USC Legend. He's a tall, sure handed, athletic WR. He was selected early in the draft but ultimately never met the expectations of the team that drafted him so ultimately he was released. Pete Carroll though, saw something in him and invited him to tryout for his Seahawks team. Am I talking about Mike Williams? Nope.  I'm talking about FA WR Dwanye Jarrett.

Leon Washington Re-signed

As everyone has already reported, the Hawks resigned Leon Washington to a 4 year deal worth up to $16 million. I'm excited about the signing. It shows a loyalty to players that came in and produced, and it shows an acknowledgement to how important the special teams squad is to the Hawks' coaching staff and front office. Special Teams can be the forgotten group; typically young no-namers competing for a job. They aren't bad players, but inexperienced a lot of the time. The Hawks' special teams won them at least 2 or 3 games by themselves last year. They were indirectly responsible for several other wins as well. The field position game is SO important to an offense like Seattle' and one that cannot be neglected.  I love that the Hawks have shown they value this by re-signing special teams' stalwarts Roy Lewis, Kennard Cox, and now Leon Washington.


Hawks Re-sign DB Kennard Cox

CB/DB Kennard Cox was re-signed today through the 2011 season.  Another in a line of role-player signings, Cox brings expertise and experience to the Hawks highly ranked special teams unit.  Cox also gives the Hawks some depth at Corner, though he will not likely compete for a starting job at that position.  

Cox is 6'0, 190 lbs.  He's young, is a hard worker, and has stayed motivated despite the fact he's been cut and re-signed so many times that he probably doesn't want to think about it.  Good for him for persevering- that type of presence in the locker room can't hurt.


Grading the Hawks' 2010 Draft: Round 6

Round 6, Pick 16 (#185 Overall):

Anthony McCoy.

In the sixth round, the Hawks picked TE Anthony McCoy.  The 6'5, 260lb USC product came at a bargain in the sixth round and I think he could be a major steal.  Originally given a second or third round grade by most draft scouts, he fell because he failed a drug test just prior to the Combine, testing positive for marijuana. This isn't a big deal to me, it shows lack of judgment, sure, but really, it could be worse.

So the guy smoked some weed.  We got him in the sixth round instead of the second.  Sweet, as far as I'm concerned.  As far as Pete's concerned, I think we're on the same page.  No big deal, according to Matt Taibbi (seriously, pretty funny).  Of all the guys that the Hawks took in this draft, I feel like McCoy gets overlooked and sort of forgotten the most.  He did miss a large part of the season on the IR (knee), but I really like his potential.

We Want Fullbacks Back

I'll be honest, it bothered me when the Seahawks let Leonard Weaver walk.  He was maybe my favorite player at the time.  And before that, Mack Strong (best football name ever, ... well except Dick Butkus.. actually that's just the best name ever, football or anything) was maybe my favorite player.  I just like watching Fullbacks rumble and tumble and light people up.  Not only that, I think they're pretty important to the offense.  

So it bothered me even more when the Seahawks decided to basically just not have a Fullback.  I was never that high on Owen Schmitt... he was a decent player, never really showed the flashes of brilliance that Leonard Weaver did, but he was good enough.  I wasn't super bothered when they let him walk.  The Hawks' line were being coached by Alex Gibbs, and In Alex We Trusted.  Until he decided to retire right before the season started, thus hamstringing our entire offense.  We traded Rob Sims because of Alex Gibbs.  For a 5th round pick and a guy that now plays for the Omaha Nighthawks in the UFL.  Sims would be pretty nice right now at guard.  But that's neither here nor there.  The point being:  we basically let all of our Fullbacks go, and what was left, Quinton Ganther, didn't really pan out.  (Weaver went on to become a Pro-Bowler, Schmitt is now starting for Philly... great)

Why isn't anybody talking about Brandon Stokley?

For a piece I wrote on Brandon Stokley, check out Seahawk Addicts.  A great site for Hawks fans that you probably already know all about.


Seahawks Sign RB Chris Henry

Yesterday I was trying to figure out who the Seahawks might sign/draft to provide some depth at RB in the case that Leon Washington signs elsewhere.  Well, I may have my answer.  Henry, a 2nd rd (50th overall) pick out of Arizona in 2007, spent most of the season last year on the Seahawks practice squad.

He was drafted so high in 2007 mainly because he showed impressive athleticism at the Combine (which he was barely invited to in the first place, after an innocuous college career, only rushing 255 times for 859 yards and 8 TDs in his 3 year stint there).  At 6'0, 230, He ran the 40 in 4.4 seconds, which tied him for first in the running backs group, and finished in the top 5 in almost every category: 4.14 short shuttle (3rd), a 11.51 long shuttle (2nd), a 6.96 three cone (5th), a 10′7″ broad jump (1st -T).  He's got good quickness, evidenced by his 10 yrd split of 1.51 sec during his 40, second for all running backs and better than that one guy Adrian Peterson.

Grading the Seahawks 2010 Draft: Round 7 cont...

Round 7, pick 29 (#236 Overall):

Dexter Davis

With their first pick of the seventh round, the Hawks took a flier on the undersized, but fast and athletic Defensive End out of Arizona State.  At 6'1", 245, he doesn't fit the normal body type of a speed rush defensive end, but what he lacks in size, he makes up for in speed.  At the combine, he ran a 4.62 40, which was best among all DEs. While many thought in the NFL he'd make the move to OLB, it was originally thought that he was being drafted to come in to eventually play the "elephant" position in the Hawks 4-3 defense, which is essentially a stand up defensive end that roves around and rushes the passer.  (kind of like a OLB, so it sort of makes sense)


For a good read on Earl Thomas and the impact his family has made on his life, check out this link.  Earl is going to be a superstar in the NFL, in my opinion.  The Hawks got a steal at #14, and he'll continue to get better and better.

Champ Bailey re-signed with the Broncos yesterday to a 4-year, $40 million contract.  This could have significant implications for the Hawks.  Many people had/have the Broncos choosing CB Patrick Peterson with the 2nd overall pick, which some draftniks thought could be too high to select a Corner.  Now that they have Bailey locked in for the next few years, they may look to bolster their defensive line instead.  This will mean Peterson will fall and will mean there's a domino effect resulting in more top level Corners available at #25.  Some guys on the minds of Seahawk fans are Nebraska's Prince Amukamara (almost a lock to be taken in the top 15), Colorado's Jimmy Smith, Texas' Aaron Williams, and Miami's Brandon Harris.  With the issues the Hawks had in the secondary last year, many analysts have them choosing a top-flight CB in Round 1.

Eric Williams talks about who the Seahawks may be concentrating on at this week's NFL Combine.

Rob Staton of Seahawks Draft Blog breaks down the format and schedule of the NFL Combine.

In Case You Missed It - The Kevin Calabro Show

Yesterday's 4 o'clock segmenton The Kevin Calabro show was excellent.  First, they caught up with The Professor, John Clayton.  Clayton broke down the Seahawks needs in detail, and he talked about what the Hawks might do in Free Agency and the Draft.  Clayton is one of the most in-the-know guys in the business so if you're a Hawks fan you will want to listen to this.

After Clayton was done, Mel Kiper joined the show for the first time ever.  He broke down what he thought the Hawks might do in the 1st round and what might happen to Jake Locker, among other things. 

All in all, a great listen.  When I got home from my afternoon commute I sat there in my car listening to the rest of it, typically a good sign that they're bringing some quality commentary.

Getting to Know Your Coaches: Quality Control Coach Robert Saleh

The Hawks recently brought Robert Saleh in as quality control coach.  Saleh comes in from the Houston Texans, where last year he served as Assistant Linebackers Coach.  After an atrocious year on defense, the Texans wholesale fired their defensive coaching staff and Saleh was one of the victims.

The Quality Control coach is basically an entry-level coaching position in the NFL and will probably have no visible impact on the team this year.  However, Quality Control coaches provide a lot of the grunt work necessary for the coaching staff to function.

Many great head coaches started out in the trenches, doing the gopher work and the adminstrative crap that inevitably piles up but position coaches have no time to work on.  Jon Gruden started out in Mike Holmgren's coaching staff as the Quality Control coach, and for a great piece on his start, check out this link.


A note if you're just finding this blog.

Which, of course, you are.  Since I just started it.  Two weeks ago.  I aim to provide daily (or so) commentary and analysis on the Seahawks.  Right now, because it's the offseason, I'm concentrating on the types of players the Hawks could bring in to improve their team through the draft and free-agency. I've been doing a lot of profiles on potential FA acquisitions to be had, mostly to start discussion and to outline the types of needs the Hawks have.

In addition to that, I try to provide links for Hawks fans to check out, and mix in a few player profiles for the less-known Seahawks waiting in the wings.  I'll be doing a position by position overview once I have the chance to look at some game tape, and a pick-by-pick look at the '09 Draft as well.

Hit me up if you have requests for specific topics.

I Want The Raiders' Backfield: Part 1

Not that I don't love Beastmode and Forsett.  I do.  But if Leon Washington leaves I'd love to see the Hawks bring in a solid third RB, and the first guy that comes to my mind is Free-Agent Michael Bush.

He was just busted for DUI, which means he'll likely come at a cheaper price than he was originally hoping for going into his offseason of free-agency.  This could be key, considering the Hawks will most likely not spend much on a RB at this point.  Because of his arrest, he may have to serve a suspension, which may make him less desirable to other teams as well. It remains to be seen, but with Lynch and Forsett in the backfield already, the Seahawks have the luxury of having their 3rd running back miss a few games if need be.

McGahee Released by Ravens

Willis McGahee will reportedly be released by the Ravens this offseason.  One of the league's best backs at finding the endzone, McGahee has scored 20 TDs in the last two years.  He's a tough, hardnosed runner, but he became too expensive as a secondary back for the Ravens, who have Ray Rice as their feature back.

McGahee is turning 30 this year; he's no spring chicken by NFL running back standards.  He does have some gas left in the tank though, and will provide a solid backup option for any team that he decides to play for.

Is Running Back a Need?

One question I have been asking myself this offseason is whether the Seahawks will try and make any moves at RB.  For the sake of argument, I'm going to assume that Leon Washington takes his considerable talents somewhere where he'll get more touches on offense.  If that's the case, Seattle will need to bolster their depth at that position.

I'm going to take a look at the Running Back position in the next few posts and break down what guys are out there.

Seahawks sign two

The Seahawks announced today that they have signed DB Roy Lewis and WR Isaiah Stanback to contracts for the 2011 season.  I like these moves; they are role-playing guys but locking them in is important.

Roy Lewis is a nickel and dime 3rd down package guy that brings solid depth to the Hawks secondary.  Playing in that role he recorded 26 tackles, 1 sack, and a forced fumble in the 2010 season.  The University of Washington product was a special teams captain and Seahawks Man of the Year this past season and his presence in the locker room and on the field will be a big boost for the Hawks.


Educate yourself on the type of Defense that the Seahawks run.
A short explanation of the 4-3 Leo defense can be found here.  This is a good read if you're not familiar with line gaps, terminology pertaining to defensive positions, etc.  Once you've read that and you're ready to bite off a much bigger piece, see below.

A much longer explanation, by Pete Carroll, on his defensive philosophy.  A good read; hard-core Seahawks fans will want to check it out.  In great detail, Pete explains his defense, the type of players you want at each position, and so forth.  It's a little thick, but very interesting, none the less.  For a truncated version of that article, check out 17 Power's explanation.  A very good read.

Read a few good articles about the Seahawks' defensive line:
Clare Farnsworth breaks down the need to bolster our depth at Defensive Line.  Some good quotes from Red Bryant and others, and also some looks at who the Hawks might be targeting in the draft.

Clare Farnsworth also put together a good piece on Red Bryant.  Bryant, although he played well at the LEO position early in the year before getting injured, plans on being that much better next season.

Doug Farrar reviews the Hawks' defensive line, it's strengths, weakenesses, and possible targets from the Draft.

Where will Matt Hasselbeck end up?  Can you imagine him in another team's jersey?
Tim Hasselbeck talks up his brother.
Brock Huard explains why he thinks Hasselbeck could be close to signing with the Seahawks.

Watch the Seahawks beat the Saints again... the entire game.  What else do you have to do today? Work?

Grading the Seahawks' 2010 Draft: Round 7.

Round 7, pick 38 (compensatory selection): #245 Overall.

Jameson Konz
Seattle took a flier on WR/TE/Athlete Jameson Konz with their final draft pick.  The Uniontown, Ohio native measured in at 6'3" 235, runs a 40 in 4.38 seconds, and has a 46" vert.  And those numbers, really, are the main reasons he was chosen.  He is a freakish athlete.  To be that big, fast, agile (6.93 3 cone drill), and to have a 46" verticle jump is pretty rare.  He also benched 225 lbs 27 times - better than some linemen can boast.  So he's got strenght to go with quicks.

Like Antonio Gates, Josh Cribbs, and James Harrison, Konz played his college ball at Kent State.  He played linebacker the first three years of his collegiate career. When he was a Senior, he was moved to Tight End, but he hurt his ankle, redshirted, and returned for another year.  His senior year he played in-line Tight End about a third of the time and lined up at H-Back the rest. He caught 21 passes for 298 yards and a pair of TDs. His numbers most likely would have been significantly better had he not been injured his redshirted (first) senior year: he would have been catching passes from his then QB teammate/roommate and current New England Patriot Julian Edelman. The next year, Edelman was drafted and Konz was catching passes from a true freshman, (16 TD to 16 INT). Not terrible stats for a guy in a shaky offense that was playing on defense the three years prior. 


Seahawks, Waiting in the Wings: WR Dominique Edison

During this offseason, I'm finding it fun to try and guess who might be the next Hawks' Mike Williams. Everyone knows the story by now; Mike was brought in off his couch for a tryout, made the team, and basically became the Seahawks' most productive receiver.  Not bad for a guy NO ONE had thought would even be on the team.  Any team.

When the Hawks' futures contracts were revealed last month, one guy in particular strikes me as having a chance to make the 53 man roster:  WR Dominique Edison.  At 6'2", 205, and blazing 4.34 40 speed, he definitely fits the profile as an outside deep threat in Pete Carroll's system.  He is a project guy though, coming out of Steven F. Austin University, a small Division I school in the Southland Conference.  At SFAU, Edison had good career numbers, catching 182 passes for 2,697 yrds and 28 touchdowns.  Despite his performance there, I would guess that reason he didn't get as many looks in the draft is probably due to him playing at a lower level with lower competition and less fanfare.  That being said, he definitely has the physical tools to compete, and he wouldn't be the first small school project to make it big in the NFL (read: Pierre Garcon, Marques Colston).

A Little Optimism

By Kyle Schmotzer
Don’t overlook the passion.

Laying in bed, sitting at a stop light, killing time at work or having a “talk”. We all replay in our heads, Matt Hasselbeck sliding into the end zone, ball raised over his head. We dream of Marshawn Lynch stiff arming guys for the next five years. But most of all we fantasize about hoisting the Lombardi trophy, with one finger in the air for all those “haters” that never believed (not that it mattered anyway).

And until this year we have all been longing for a reason. A reason to believe it is all possible, and now it is. What has happened to the Seattle Seahawks in the last 15 months gives us all hope. And isn’t that all we really want?

We have seen the turnover that never needed to happen but had to happen. What the heck do you mean by that?….I mean, Seattle never needed to change. We have always loved our Hawks, supported them no matter what and paid to see them. But to be a champion? It had to happen, and now! We all believe in the coach that had a “bad” first go in the NFL, moved to college and exploded, and now is the ra ra guy that limps up and down the sideline chest bumping and high fiving players. He is the guy that we HAD to have to make this team different. Different then all the other Seahawk teams that never could be tough enough, strong enough or fast enough.

We have a WR in Mike Williams that left football for 2 years. Nobody cared or gave him another chance and now we all drool over what he brings to the team. We have a running back that looks, well, scary (to my kids). But more importantly runs with passion. Every time he runs I think of Shaun Alexander. No matter how good he was he never ran with that toughness that we all see now. We have a Safety that is fast, real fast. He gives us hope in a position that has been in limbo for a long time.

Yes we limped into the playoffs this year BUT. Look what happens when a 7-9 team makes the playoffs. A team that “should have never been there,” the laughing stock of the NFL. Well we all know what happened. Imagine, just imagine what would happen with a few more moves, a draft and some ra ra. That’s right, magic! Magic can happen, and yes its magic because Seattle could never win a championship. Right? Well its time, maybe not this year, maybe not next. But we have the hope and the reason to believe that it can happen. And will happen. Because we never stop believing in our team and we never over look the possibilities.


Seahawks, Waiting in the Wings: QB Nate Davis

Seattle signed QB Nate Davis to a futures contract back in early January and I remember being really excited about it.  As someone that actually really does enjoy the preseason (getting to see future star players get out there an compete is interesting, remember Forsett lighting it up a few years back?), I remember watching Davis with a lot of interest. 

Of course, last year, he was playing for the 49'ers so didn't get to a huge amount, but there seemed to be a lot of talk about his arm and his playmaking ability.    

The 6'2" 225 lb Ball State Quarterback entered the draft after his Junior year in 2009. A legendary character at Ball State, he led his team to a 12-0 start in '08 before they lost in the MAC championship to Buffalo.  For a great anecdotal look at his college career, check out an article by Slate Shale here.



Brock and Salk debate Franchise Tagging Brandon Mebane:  I've been profiling potential FA targets for the Hawks, but it's good to keep our eye on the prize, Brandon Mebane.

Mike Sando details what certain key Mock Drafts are having the NFC West Teams take:  Good overview and analysis on what people are talking about today. I'm sure tomorrow it will all be different.  Even though nobody did anything.

17 Power is one of my favorite new blogs:  Brandon Adams profiles a guy that I've been watching for a while now, Jonathan Baldwin, WR, Pitt.  Although I kind of doubt that the Hawks go WR in the first round, he is a very intriguing prospect that has drawn comparisons to Calvin Johnson.  Read more here.

Field Gulls front paged a fanpost about possible avenues the Hawks may take on draft day.  Do they stay at #25 or do they try and trade down, possibly out of the 1st altogether.  In my opinion, #25 could have some value, due to the new 3-day format of the draft.  Once the first day is winding down, players unexpectedly still on the board may prompt teams to trade up in a hurry, before all the shuffling, trading, and whatnot happens during the night between rounds one and two.

Seahawks Draft Blog is my single favorite Seahawks' blog. Constant updates, intelligent commentary, and you can really tell that Rob Staton has put in the research.  Not only that, he appears to be British and so thus uses many s's instead of z's (realise, capitalise, etc), which makes him seem even smarter.  If you have any questions about what the Hawks may do in the draft, this would be the place to look first.  I highly recommend you checking out what he has to say.

Possible FA Targets: DE Charles Johnson

Guest Contributor:  Kyle Schmozter.
Charles Johnson, Carolina

Another tough Defensive End.  He had a breakout year in 2010 after playing behind Julius Peppers in 2009, racking up 11.5 sacks and 62 tackles. In his four years as a Panther he has 21.5 sacks with 4 forced fumbles. Aside from his huge year last year he has gotten better every year and has consistently put up good numbers as a pass rusher. He is a young (24) talented End that will be looked at by many teams this off season.

Possible FA Targets: DE Ray Edwards

Guest contributor: Kyle Schmotzer
Ray Edwards, Minnesota

Edwards has five years in the league, all with the Vikings. He has almost 30 sacks in those five years and has played in at least 12 games in every season. Edwards has not shied away from the idea of playing for the highest bidder, giving 31 other teams a shot at landing perhaps the best FA Defensive End on the market this year. He is young, tough and has proven to be consistent. Standing in the shadow of Jared Allen, he would (could be) a star on a line in desperate need of one.

Possible FA Targets: CB Nnamdi Asomugha - There's No Way We Go Get Nnamdi... right?

The premier free-agent in a very good free-agent class this year is the holy grail of Cornerbacks, Nnamdi Asomugha.  Kyle was just emailing me, asking for my odds on the actual chance we could land such a talent out here in Seattle and I figured I should try and break it down.

I think, on paper, the hawks have a decent chance: they are a 'contender', and they have very deep pockets with plenty of cap space to pay him big. The immediate impact that he would provide just makes me giddy...

Anyway, here's my take:


The QB Conundrum: Matt Hasselbeck

As I go about writing profiles for the possible FA/Trade targets at QB for the Seahawks, the natural question that comes to mind is this:  What about Matt Hasselbeck?

I have been writing these profiles based upon the assumption that Matt doesn't come back.  Now, is that likely? I really don't know. Based upon how he played in the playoffs and what Pete Carroll has said regarding the issue, it seems likely that they come to a deal.  However, not everything that Pete says, Pete does.  We all saw what happened in the offseason last year with the impressive overhaul of the roster, and learned that you can't particularly expect Carroll and Schneider to do the expected; read Lendale White.

A Note on the ongoing CBA issues and labor dispute

I just thought I'd throw a caveat out there that I am aware of the ongoing labor disagreement between the NFL Owners and the NFLPA.  I have no idea the length of time it will take to come to some sort of agreement, and am also aware that there is no free-agency period until that agreement happens.

I am writing with the assumption that the two sides will eventually work it out and the free-agency period will begin.  Call me an eternal optimist, but I think they will get it done.  I will continue to update the blog with potential Seahawk FA options, Draft options, and player profiling as if there will be no significant work stoppage, lockout, draft/combine boycotting, or the like this offseason.


Chargers Officially Franchise Vincent Jackson.  With the amount of money tied up with Jackson, it's unlikely they'll be able to sign both Malcolm Floyd and Legadu Naanee to long term contracts.  Keep an eye on this as the offseason progresses.  As soon as the new labor deal is worked out, teams will be in a footrace to sign the best available free-agents.

The Chiefs have hired Jim Zorn as their new QB Coach.  This takes him off the table as the next possible QB coach for the Hawks.  Instead, as it's been rumored for weeks, that responsibility will still most likely go to Carl Smith.  In the link, you will also see that Robert Saleh has been hired as the Hawks QC Coach, whatever that means.  I will be profiling each of the Hawks coaches in the coming weeks/months.

For an interesting writeup about the potential devastating impact an NFL lockout could have on the Hawks, check out this article, written by Brock Huard.  In a nutshell, the Hawks have done a great job of freeing up cap space by cutting players with big contracts, and renegotiating with older players with bloated salaries.  If the lockout occurs, they could stand to lose the most, as they would not be able to pursue any free agents until the dispute is resolved.

Danny O'Neil gives a good look at the Brandon Mebane and Will Herring Free Agency problem.  He debates whether the Hawks will look to Franchise Tag Mebane and lock him up for the year.  If he goes, Seattle will have a big hole to fill on the defensive line.  The next week or two will tell you what the Hawks have planned for both Mebane and Herring.

Yeah,... sooo

Legadu Naanee might have just gotten a little cheaper.


The QB Conundrum: Josh Johnson

First off let me start by saying that I don't think that the Seahawks will or should pursue Josh Johnson, or really any of the players that I've been profiling the last few days.  I am just throwing some names out there as possibilities.  I think that Josh Johnson's name has to be included on this list for a number of reasons.

First, it has been reported that Jim Harbaugh may be thinking about bringing Johnson to the Bay Area.  Johnson thrived under Harbaugh's tutelage at San Diego in 2007, passing for 2,988 yards, 43 TDs to JUST ONE INTERCEPTION. He also rushed for 726 yards and two TDs.  He ended the season with a NCAA all time best passer rating of 176.68.  It is believed that Harbaugh was a huge influence on his performance, so the idea of Johnson ending up having success with the Niners is frightening.

The QB Conundrum: Matt Flynn

A player that I could see come into the fold for the Seahawks is current Green Bay 2nd string QB Matt Flynn.

Flynn is an LSU product that led his team to the National Title in 2008 over the #1 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes in a 38-24 drubbing.  Flynn was the game's MVP, throwing for 174 yards with 4 TD and only 1 INT.

He was taken in the '08 Draft by John Schneider's Green Bay Packers in the 7th round, with what was essentially a flier pick on the 5th year senior.  Subsequently, he beat out a much more highly touted '08 draft QB Brian Bohm (the Packers' 2nd rd pick) for the back up job behind Aaron Rodgers and got the opportunity to play in a few games in 2010 for the oft-concussed starting QB.  

The QB Conundrum: Kevin Kolb

Over the last couple of weeks, it's come out that Larry Fitzgerald wants the Cardinals to bring in a veteran QB.  If they don't make some sort of significant upgrade there, they stand to risk losing one of the best wide receivers in the NFL after this year.  He becomes a free agent after the 2011 season, and he has said over and over that he wants to be on a winner.

It came out in the last few days that he'd like Kevin Kolb to be their next signal caller.  Kolb has now reciprocated that interest.  Kolb has said for the last few months that he wants to start somewhere.  In my opinion, he is good enough to do so on a significant number of teams.  Arizona is certainly one of those teams. Will the Cards make the move?  As a Seahawks fan, I sure hope not.  The idea of a game-ready and game-tested QB to pair with Fitzgerald in the desert doesn't make me comfortable.  I don't think that the Cardinals are one key player away from becoming Superbowl contenders again, but it would definitely put them back on track to contend for the meagre NFC West title again.


Possible FA Targets: WR Malcolm Floyd/WR Legedu Naanee

I like Malcolm Floyd.  Not just because when he was healthy, he was killing it for my fantasy football team last year (sometimes).  He seems like a worker.  Not flashy, but does his job.

He fits the profile of a Carroll WR - rangy, 6'5", 225, and decently fast. However, he had the annoying habit of becoming invisible in a few games, or maybe more accurately he was inconsistent as the no.1 receiver on a team with Philip Rivers at the helm.  In week 2 he had three catches for 95 yards and score.  In week 3, against Seattle, he had 6 for 97 yrds and a TD.  The next week?  2 catches for 45 yards.  He went off in week 5 when he caught 8 passes for 215 yards and a TD.  The next week?  2 catches for 15 yards before he got hurt in the 4th quarter.  This lack of consistency could be the product of a number of things, but his numbers do tell us that he's capable of big games.  With Philip Rivers.  And as the number one receiver.  I'm not sold he'd be equally as effective in Seattle's offense.

Possible FA Targets: WR Jacoby Jones

Free Agent WR Jacoby Jones is an interesting prospect.  Although it could be argued that he is a clone of Ben Obomanu, I don't doubt that Schneider/Carroll will at least take a look at him.  Jones finished the 2010 season off on a strong note:  week 14, 5 catches for 52 yrds and a TD; week 15, 7 catches for 50 yrds; week 16, 5 catches for 115 yrds; week 17, 5 catches for 70 yrds.


Possible FA Targets: WR Sidney Rice

Sidney Rice becomes a free agent this offseason, and thus becomes a possible FA target for the Seahawks.

Although it remains to be seen if the Vikings will use their franchise tag on him as well, he has the potential to be a great fit for the Hawks.  If the Vikings don't Franchise him, they also have the option of Transition tagging him, which means courting teams will have to pay him a large amount over multiple years to sign him.  I am still not certain what type of GM John Schnieder is, with regards to Free Agent signings, but it will definitely be interesting to find out.

VJax to be Franchised

With Vincent Jackson expected to be franchised, that leaves one less potential Free Agent the Hawks may be wooing this offseason.

After courting Vincent Jackson and attempting a trade with the Chargers last offseason, it remains to be seen if the Seahawks will look to upgrade significantly at the WR position again this offseason.  With Jackson off of the table, there could be several players the Seahawks could be interested in.

I'll profile a few possible players the Hawks could pursue in Free Agency this offseason in the next few posts.

Season Retrospective

The 2010 season, in hindsight, was a wild success.  To me, you look at what you achieved:

We got new leadership, in John Schnieder and Pete Carroll, and had a good draft.  It seems obvious to me that two pillars of the Hawks future will be Earl Thomas and Russell Okung.  I will go into the rest of the 2010 draft a little later, but I'd say that overall, it was a resounding success.


I sift through the many different Seahawks blogs on a daily basis - looking for the latest scraps of information to come out of the VMAC, over the waiver wires, the NFL office, or wherever.  I check the twitterverse several many way too many times a day - I follow several hundred NFL beat reporters, commentators, draftniks, bloggers, etc etc and never get bored reading the most inane posts, however infinitesimally little relevance it may have to my Hawks.

I boast no inside knowledge of the Seahawks organization. However, what I can provide is my perspective on an obsessive search for anything I can find on what is going on with my favorite sports team.

After I found myself penning long winded emails detailing what I hope will happen this offseason to my buddy, I decided it might be more fun to create an outlet for this kind of thing, where more people can get involved.

I don't pretend to be an expert on anything that will follow in this blog. I am just giving my opinion and my take. That's it and that's all.