Updated Mar 18, 2013 - 3:00 pm
Seattle Seahawks Blog
Wednesday, June 12, 2013 @ 3:51pm
Wednesday, June 12, 2013 @ 12:44pm
All indications are that the Seahawks are set to welcome back T-Jack.
Tarvaris Jackson, who was Seattle's starting quarterback in 2011 before he was traded to Buffalo during training camp last summer, indicated on Twitter Wednesday afternoon that he's headed to Seattle and that his deal with the Seahawks will become official Thursday.
This comes a day after ESPN's John Clayton and Adam Schefter reported that Seattle was likely to sign Jackson, who was released by the Bills earlier this week. According to Schefter, Jackson will sign a one-year deal with the Seahawks.
It's not known whether the Seahawks will make a corresponding roster move with quarterbacks Brady Quinn or Jerrod Johnson, who are competing to be Russell Wilson's backup. Seattle kept two quarterbacks on its active roster last season and three the year before.
Jackson, 30, earned the respect of his teammates and a reputation for toughness while playing through a painful pectoral injury in 2011.
"He was a guy that worked hard, he was a guy that in some trying times he never blamed anybody, he was a guy who took accountability for whatever he did wrong," Seahawks fullback Michael Robinson told "Bob and Groz" Wednesday. "And like I said, a really good player. Even with a torn pec he came out there and he can throw the ball better than most of the league, so a really tough guy."
Former Seahawks defensive tackle Alan Branch had this to say when he signed with the Bills in April, reuniting with Jackson:
"I'll say this: Tarvaris Jackson is one of the toughest competitors I've seen out there," Branch told ESPN. "When he played when I was in Seattle, the guy was hurt in more than half the games and he kept playing. He had us winning games, too. We were in every single game. It's not like we ever got blew out."
None of those wins came in come-from-behind fashion, though, which was the knock on Jackson during that 2011 season. His inability to lead a game-winning drive despite several chances left him with a 7-7 record as a starter and no guarantee that he would be the starter in 2012.
Seattle signed Matt Flynn in free agency before drafting Russell Wilson in the third round, and Jackson was the odd-man-out in the three-way quarterback competition. He was traded to the Bills in August for a seventh-round pick and didn't appear in a game last season while serving as Buffalo's third quarterback.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013 @ 11:29am
Jim Harbaugh is a smart man, a fantastic football coach, a driven competitor and a man I think football fans here in Seattle are lucky to have in the NFL.
Jim Harbaugh fanned the flames of the Seahawks-49ers rivalry with comments about Seattle's recent string of suspensions related to performance-enhancing drugs. (AP)
No part of me believes that it was at all accidental that Harbaugh included a line like this when asked about the recent run of PED-related suspensions up here in Seattle: "You don't know what it is. Even when people say what it is, you don't know that that's what it is. I've heard this thrown out or that, but that's usually the agents or the players themselves saying it's, for example, Adderall. But the NFL doesn't release what it actually is, so you have no idea."
Is he stating a fact? Yes. Is he right? Yes. Is that where the meaning of a line like that ends? Absolutely not.
It's unfortunate, in this case, that the carelessness of a few Seahawks players gave Harbaugh this particular piece of ammunition, but he would have found something else, something incendiary, in its place if he had needed to. From his days running up the score at Stanford to Handshakegate in Detroit to jibberish quotes about "jive turkeys" to his classic sideline tantrums, Jim Harbaugh has proven to have an incredible knack for getting under the skin of his opponents, and for that Seahawks fans should be thankful.
The 49ers-Seahawks rivalry is quickly becoming the marquee matchup in the NFL, and while it may not have needed extra hot sauce, Harbaugh saw fit to supply some anyway. None of this is to say that I don't respect that man, because I do, but his demeanor makes it oh-so-easy to find that little extra fire for the games in which the Hawks and Niners square off. For their part, and to their credit, the Seahawks' brass and players will downplay the significance of Harbaugh's words, but I don't believe for a second that they won't resonate at 12 Seahawk Way.
I'm confident in the weeks and months to come that San Francisco's head man will fire additional shots over the bow here in The Emerald City, and I'll be smiling each and every time. There's no hero without a villain and no rivalry with genuine vitriol that goes beyond the logo on the helmet. As long as Harbaugh is coaching the 49ers, Seahawks fans will have that vitriol by the freighter load.
And for that I can only say, "Thanks, Jim".
Wednesday, June 12, 2013 @ 9:13am
By Danny O'Neil
RENTON – Doug Baldwin's second season was only half bad.
That wasn't nearly good enough, though. Not for the wide receiver who came to Seattle in 2011 as an undrafted rookie and wound up leading the team in catches.
So when Baldwin had 11 catches halfway through an injury-riddled sophomore season, he wasn't simmering on the backburner so much as stewing. When you raise the bar as high as Baldwin did coming out of Stanford, it can end up leaving you feeling low.
"A lot of it was I had so much pressure built on myself and high expectations on myself that I really didn't know if I could achieve," Baldwin said. "I kind of lost a little bit of confidence."
Think about that the next time someone asks if these Seahawks might get complacent amid the Super Bowl forecasts for this season. While Seattle may have won 11 games last year and stood half a minute from playing for the conference championship, this is a roster full of young players still looking to validate themselves in one way or another.
Receiver Golden Tate and cornerback Brandon Browner enter the final year of their respective contracts. Safety Earl Thomas and cornerback Richard Sherman both could be in position to seek extensions next offseason.
And then there's Baldwin, who is trying to show that last season was his aberration, not the rookie year when he caught 51 passes and became the first undrafted rookie to lead his team in receptions since the AFL-NFL merger.
He was the feel-good story of that 2011 season, the rookie from Stanford whose own college coach didn't think he had much of an NFL future, who arrived for training camp with one change of clothes and proceeded to play his way not only onto the team, but into a prominent role.
It was the sequel that proved a little troublesome for Baldwin.
"At this time last year, Doug was pressing a little bit," coach Pete Carroll said. "He was coming off a great first season. I think he came in just wanting to do so much."
"You can see how relaxed he is," Carroll said. "He's playing like a vet."
On this team, he is a vet. Tate is the only receiver on the roster with a longer Seahawks tenure than Baldwin, whose ability to find the soft spot in zone coverages can make him a quarterback's security blanket.
"A very smart football player," quarterback Russell Wilson said. "He has the mind of a quarterback. He thinks all the time, thinking about what's going on, what the coverage looks like and how he's matched up with certain guys."
The addition of Percy Harvin this offseason jumbled the pecking order, but any possibility that Baldwin's role as a slot receiver would be eclipsed with Harvin's addition has been answered over the past two months.
"(Doug) has shown his best," Carroll said. "He's making every claim why he has been a good football player and why we're going to play him when it comes to this fall."
That is the culmination of a comeback that began over the final eight regular-season games last year as Baldwin shook off an injury-riddled start in which he missed much of training camp with a hamstring injury, suffered two broken front teeth in the fourth quarter of Seattle's Week 1 loss at Arizona and missed another game with a high ankle sprain.
"I had to overcome that," Baldwin said, "and had to rebuild my confidence through the end of last year up to this year. Now, I'm healthy, I'm feeling good, my mental state is back to where it was."
Tuesday, June 11, 2013 @ 6:43pm
Tarvaris Jackson's tenure with the Buffalo Bills is over, and as ESPN's John Clayton reports, the former Seahawks quarterback will make a visit this week to discuss a return to Seattle.
"I know from T-Jack's standpoint, he would like to come back ... (and wide receiver) Doug Baldwin tweeted out that he would like to have T-Jack back," Clayton said. "Say what you want about T-Jack – he was a quarterback that could get you seven wins, but as a backup quarterback you really want a quarterback that can get you to eight wins ... and I think T-Jack's good enough to do it."
Clayton believes Jackson would be an upgrade as Russell Wilson's backup over Brady Quinn.
"He's got a better track record, he's had more starts, he's scored more points, he's been on good teams," Clayton said of Jackson. "He has credibility in the locker room, he averages 19 points a game, so you're getting a better quarterback coming off the bench. And now that he's gone to a different place and found out that he wasn't gonna start against Kevin Kolb and a rookie, I think he comes back with the attitude, 'OK, fine, I'll be the backup. I'll be fine with it.' "
Clayton said that with the current weak crop of backup quarterbacks, the addition of Jackson would be a coup for the Seahawks.
"You're not gonna get too many great backup quarterbacks. He would, in my opinion, be in the top six or seven backup quarterbacks (in the NFL)," he said. "Whether they bring in to compete with Brady Quinn or replace Brady Quinn, I think it's the right move."
Tuesday, June 11, 2013 @ 5:17pm
RENTON – Michael Bennett entered the NFL as a player without a position in the eyes of some scouts.
A tweener, so to speak, because while he was an accomplished defensive lineman at Texas A&M, the knock was that he would be too small to play defensive tackle in the NFL and too slow to project as a pass-rushing defensive end.
That's kind of odd in retrospect since it's Bennett's ability to play multiple positions that might be his biggest asset now that he's in Seattle on a one-year deal after recording nine sacks for Tampa Bay last season.
"We really want to feature Mike as an inside rusher in passing-down situations," coach Pete Carroll said after Tuesday's minicamp practice. "But his versatility is such that he can play both end spots."
Defensive lineman Michael Bennett signed a one-year deal with the Seahawks in March after spending the last four seasons in Tampa Bay. (Rod Mar, Seattle Seahawks)
Chris Clemons – last year's starting defensive end – is recovering from knee surgery, and while the Seahawks haven't ruled out the possibility that he will be ready to begin the regular season, there's no guarantee of that, either. Bruce Irvin backed up Clemons a year ago, but not only will he be suspended the first four games of the season, he's playing some strongside linebacker this season.
Then there's Cliff Avril, a marquee defensive addition for Seattle this offseason along with Bennett and cornerback Antoine Winfield. Avril returned to the field Tuesday, but was limited to individual drills as he recovers from plantar fasciitis.
Bennett has provided flexibility amidst all that uncertainty as he returned to the team where he began his NFL career as an undrafted rookie in 2009, making the team out of training camp.
Bennett, who weighs 274 pounds, didn't appear in a game for the Seahawks in 2009, and was released in the second month of the season when Seattle was forced to add another left tackle. Bennett was claimed by Tampa Bay, where he recorded 14 sacks over the past two seasons, and amidst a slow free-agent market, opted to join the Seahawks on a one-year deal.
Now, the guy that so many worried wouldn't have a true position in the NFL is showing what a value his versatility is.
"Maybe that knock helped me become a better player," Bennett said. "I'm happy to be able to play all those different positions."
The Seahawks signed Bennett with the intention of plugging him into the spot Jason Jones filled last season as the pass-rushing defensive tackle on passing downs, but he has proven himself capable of filling more than one hole in Seattle's defensive packages.
"We feel like we have a good sense for that already," Carroll said, "and he's got a great work ethic, too, that he adds to the team."
Off on the wrong foot
Tight end Zach Miller sat out practice with a sore foot Tuesday, watching the workout while wearing a plastic protective boot. And while that's the same foot Miller injured in Atlanta during the playoffs – suffering a torn fascia in the first half – that's where the similarities to Miller's current situation end.
"Not the same thing," Carroll said. "He's just got a sore foot."
Miller's absence left Sean McGrath and rookie Luke Willson as the two tight ends getting most of the work along with Cooper Helfet. Carroll said he did not have any long-term concerns about Miller's injury.
"It's not going to be a serious problem," Carroll said. "Just a little rest."
Wide receiver Percy Harvin (hip flexor), guard James Carpenter (knee surgery) and cornerback Tharold Simon (foot) did not participate in practice, either.
Breno Giacomini was back at practice, returning to Seattle after undergoing tests on his knee in New York last week.
"He's fine," Carroll said. "All the reports came back really solid and that he was OK, which was really good for his mindset. He needed to know that. He's ready to go."
Giacomini worked alongside guard John Moffitt with Seattle's first-unit offensive line on Tuesday. Moffitt will be competing with J.R. Sweezy for the starting job at that spot.
Fingers crossed for Chris
Clemons returned to Seattle this week, attending the team's mandatory minicamp. Clemons is recovering from knee surgery to repair a torn ligament he suffered in Seattle's first-round playoff game at Washington.
He has been rehabilitating on his own, and while Carroll offered no firm timeline for Clemons' return, he did not rule out the possibility that the team's top pass rusher each of the past three seasons will be ready to play in the opener.
"The doctors say he's in great shape," Carroll said. "He's ahead and all of that. He has worked diligently to get there. Is he going to make it by the first game? I don't know. He has a chance, and if it can happen, he'll make it happen. But like I said the whole time, we will not rush that. We're going to take our time on that and make sure he's right."
Monday, June 10, 2013 @ 1:17pm
Dave Boling of The News Tribune and ESPN's John Clayton joined "Brock and Danny" for a roundtable Seahawks discussion on Monday and were asked what potential issue – aside from injuries – poses the biggest threat to derailing a 2013 season that is full of promise.
Clayton's response: More suspensions stemming from violations of the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances. Seattle will already be without defensive end Bruce Irvin for the first four games of the season while he serves a PED-related ban.
Boling had Irvin's suspension in mind when he answered with Seattle's pass rush, the team's most glaring deficiency last season.
"It came in spurts last year and at critical times they didn't always have it," he said.
"For instance, [at] Atlanta, if they get a little better pressure on that last drive on Matt Ryan, they're playing in the NFC Championship against a team they just beat by 39 points."
Brock Huard and Danny O'Neil have a different potential issue in mind, which they discuss in the video below.
You can listen to Monday's show here.
Sunday, June 9, 2013 @ 11:10pm
By Danny O'Neil
Jobs are like championships in the NFL in at least one way.
Neither are won in June.
But that doesn't mean there wasn't anything at stake during Seattle's offseason training program, though, and as those workouts conclude with this week's three-day mandatory minicamp, it's an opportunity to pinpoint which players have impressed and which ones still have a ways to go.
I. Littler Mr. Moffitt
A third-round pick in 2011, John Moffitt was installed as a rookie starter before suffering a season-ending knee injury that compromised his offseason preparation a year ago. By the end of last season, Moffitt was sharing time behind J.R. Sweezy, a converted defensive tackle who was playing offensive line for the first time since junior high.
Well, Moffitt is in noticeably better shape this year. At least his coach has certainly noticed.
"He's had a good offseason," Pete Carroll said of Moffitt. "He's in the best shape since we've had him. He's in better shape than when he got here. He's leaner, and I think stronger, than he has been."
Whether that translates to a starting role remains to be seen, and his competition with Sweezy at right guard is one of the only starting spots that will be up for grabs in August.
II. Catching on
Chris Harper's role really isn't a question. At 234 pounds, he is the biggest of Seattle's receivers and his strength and size were a pair of intriguing calling cards for Carroll, who has had a great deal of success with larger receivers.
But while Harper caught the ball extremely well during the three-day rookie minicamp in May, he hasn't made the same impact after joining the veterans for workouts. The Seahawks will remain a run-first offense, which means there's a question as to how they're going to spread the ball among receivers Percy Harvin, Sidney Rice, Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin. There's no doubt about Harper making the team, but he's got work to do if he's going to crack the rotation.
III. Simon says, 'Recover'
Fifth-round pick Tharold Simon is the prototypical Seahawks cornerback, standing 6 feet 2. That length – combined with Simon's strength – makes him a natural fit for Seattle's press-man scheme.
But while Simon looks the part, we still haven't quite seen that yet. Not enough at least since his on-field work has been very limited during the voluntary training sessions because of a bum wheel.
"He came in with an old foot injury that he played with all last year," Carroll said. "We just want to make sure. It's kind of a stress-fracture kind of looking thing, but it isn't that yet. So we just don't want it to progress."
Translation: It's not too bad right now, but it could get worse, so the Seahawks have had him rest.
The question is where that will leave him when training camp begins because cornerback is going to be one of the most competitive spots on the roster. Start with Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner. Then there's veteran Antoine Winfield and Walter Thurmond, who's healthy for the first time in two years. That leaves Simon hip deep in a battle to make the roster with second-year player and special-teams mainstay Jeremy Lane as well as Byron Maxwell and Will Blackmon.
Simon can't afford to be playing catchup in terms of conditioning when training camp opens.
IV. Knee-d to know: Jesse Williams
Maybe it was nothing more than a precaution that rookie Jesse Williams watched last Wednesday's offseason training activity. Maybe it was just a little soreness in the right knee that was covered in a compression sleeve. Maybe it won't mean a thing when training camp begins.
But concern over Williams' knee was the primary reason the defensive tackle from Alabama was available in the fifth round when Seattle chose him. He has as clear of a path to playing time as any rookie on the team if he can hold up. That will be something to watch going forward.
V. Tackle football
You comfortable with rookie Michael Bowie – a seventh-round pick – being one injury away from starting at offensive tackle? Well, how about Michael Person, a seventh-round choice from 2011 who's now in his third year? One of those two is the backup right now because while Paul McQuistan has played some tackle, he's at guard right now while James Carpenter recovers from knee surgery.
Frank Omiyale was last year's backup tackle, but he wasn't re-signed, which leaves Seattle going with the youth movement. For now.
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