By Brady Henderson
Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable joined "Brock and Danny" before Wednesday's minicamp practice for a 13-minute discussion that included some interesting insight on Seattle's running game, its read-option attack and two of the players that make them go.
"There's no reason why he can't be better this year," offensive line coach Tom Cable said of running back Marshawn Lynch, who ran for a career-high 1,590 yards in 2012. (AP)
'Marshawn is really brilliant'. It might not be the first word that comes to mind with enigmatic running back Marshawn Lynch, who has a violent running style and an eccentric personality. But Cable twice called Lynch "brilliant" while explaining how Seattle's running game took off following a slow start in 2011 once he got Lynch to embrace the principles of his scheme.
"I think first it was to find out what is important to him, how does he see it. From there, once that connection was made, it was like, he has no idea but he was made for this system," Cable said. "So once I was able to show him how this will help him because of who he is and how he does things, he just grabs onto it.
"He's such a brilliant guy. People don't probably understand that or appreciate that about him. He's, in a lot of ways, an expert at football. He understands how to run it, why, what do I need to do, how do I set up combinations, he understands all the protection, doesn't miss a route, all those things. What people didn't know is that Marshawn is really brilliant.
"And I think once you connect it to that, don't just make him a running back, make it a little more human, and he saw that and he said, 'OK, what do you want me to do?' And when that happened, you've seen the last two years. And there's no reason why he can't be better this year."
Assurance for Wilson's well-being. Earlier this offseason, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin publicly dismissed the read-option as a passing fad because of the risk it poses to quarterbacks who are exposed to extra contact.
Seattle's Russell Wilson showed discretion while running in the open field last season and for the most part was able to avoid big hits because of it. Cable said the Seahawks are determined to keep it that way and suggested they're different in that regard from Carolina and Washington, whose offenses also include read-option plays.
"I think there's a couple styles with this whole thing. If you look at, say, what Washington's doing or Carolina, the quarterback is part of it. He's gonna go in there and he's gona keep it and run down there in the – we call it the briar patch – and he's gonna get whacked," Cable said. "We said we're not doing that, we're not gonna do that. If we're gonna continue to [run the read-option], our guy's gonna be like an old option quarterback – hash number, sideline, slide. You see danger, get down.
"But we weren't gonna run him up in there because in my opinion – you may not like to hear this, some people – but I think that's foolish. ...There's 32 of them [starting quarterbacks] and then we're fortunate enough to have a franchise guy. Those are special dudes, so take care of him. And that's what we'll do."