Seahawks Insider

Seneca Wallace sidebar

Post by News Tribune Staff on Sep. 30, 2007 at 9:45 pm with 18 Comments »
September 30, 2007 9:45 pm

The following is an unedited version of a sidebar that will appear in Monday’s paper.

By Frank Hughes

The News Tribune

SAN FRANCISCO – The Seneca Wallace experiment has returned for the Seattle Seahawks.

For years Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren has wanted to use Wallace, his backup quarterback and best all-around athlete, in a role other than Matt Hasselbeck’s worst-case-scenario emergency backup.

David Greene, however, never permitted that.

But after acquiring Charlie Frye after the first week of the season, and Frye getting acclimated to Seattle’s offensive system, Wallace is again part of Holmgren’s game plan.

Holmgren used Wallace three times in three completely different roles in the Seahawks’ 23-3 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday afternoon, giving the Seahawks yet another offensive weapon with which opponents have to contend.

"This was the first time we’ve used all of his skill set," Holmgren said. "He’s so talented. Today you saw him running the ball, throwing the ball and catching the ball. He’s going to be one more threat in our arsenal."

Wallace had varying degrees of success. In the first quarter, he lined up as a wide receiver and Hasselbeck found his protégé for an 18-yard completion along the left sideline.

On another, he was sent in motion as a receiver, doubled back and took a handoff from Hasselbeck for a reverse that lost a yard. He also was used as a decoy on one play, where Hasselbeck threw to another receiver.

But it was the final play that makes Wallace so dangerous. He ran a play designed similarly to the reverse, only this time he pulled up. Deion Branch was open for a moment in the end zone, but Wallace underthrew the pass and it was knocked away by Walt Harris.

"I want (that pass) back, big time," Wallace said. "You got to try to take advantage and hit those. (Harris) made a good play. Maybe a couple yards deeper ee could have had a big one.

"If I can get on the field and just play a little bit, I am very happy. Even if it is only two or three plays a game, I am happy. Mike said, ‘Hey, I am going to give you an opportunity to play, just be smart.’ So I am going to go out there and give it 100 percent."

There is always the danger, of course, that Wallace could get hurt, meaning the inconsistent Frye would be in charge if Hasselbeck was injured.

Wallace said that while he is on the field, he has to gauge risk vs. reward on every play.

"You just want to make sure you don’t put yourself in a situation where you are going to take a shot," Wallace said. "I know I had one where I dove and you are out there playing but at the same time you don’t want to do soemthing where you hurt something and cost your team if you go down. I just wanted to make sure I didn’t put myself in a bad situation."

The Seahawks would not say how much more they plan to use Wallace in the future. But at the very least they know – and their opponents know – he is there if they need him.

"We are just trying different things," Wallace said. "We don’t want to leave nothing out here. Mike is doing a good job of drawing up those plays and calling them for us. It was fun just to get my first action as a receiver. Hopefully we can keep this thing rolling and do good things throughout the season."


Game coverage
Leave a comment Comments → 18
  1. It was great to see the team use Wallace’s talent for once. Hopefully he becomes a regular fixture in the offense.

  2. joeypk07 says:

    Frank, just so you know. The run play with Seneca was not a reverse, it was an end-around. A reverse requires handing the ball off to a running back who heads in one direction and hands the ball off to a receiver coming from the opposite direction.

  3. osoviejo says:

    Holmgren had a funny take on his postgame show re the errant Seneca pass. “I told him, heck, I can get a receiver to throw that ball. You’re a quarterback–make the play.” Holmgren said Seneca responded with “Give me another chance, I’ll do it.”

  4. i stand corrected.

  5. It is absolutely a great thing that Wallace is out there. Firstly, it should keep defenses wondering. Even if the plays don’t work, it should keep defenses guessing, keep them from cheating.

    Second, it will give them some chances to find out what works and what doesn’t. And it sure seems like they are being fairly cautious about it.

    Third, obviously Holmy is more comfortable with Frye after 3 weeks than he was with Greene after 3 years. So while Seneca is probably still our #2, and we don’t want to lose him in case something happens to Matt, this is a solid indication that Frye has talent. If nothing else, they may be able to trade something for him down the line. Perhaps he proves to be equal #2, giving them more opportunities to do stuff with Seneca.

    Fourth, I think that having another guy that can make a big play out there helps stretch the field. Matt looks to be better at throwing the deep ball, and now when teams crowd our slants, we have some deep threats, a gadget threat, and 2 guys (Burleson, Seneca) that are a threat to take a screen, reverse, or out, and take it too the house. Not to mention that he might be able to pull the safeties deep, with just that extra bit of speed.

    Fifth…ok, I’ve got nothing. I shouldn’t get too excited, on the road vs. a Pittsburgh team that just got beat by the Cards will be a challenge.

    If they can stop the run and *if* Matt can keep his game as good as it has been, we should keep it close.

  6. kramsand says:

    The Holmgren quote starting this is the first time we’ve used all of his skill set was attributed to Alexander in an earlier transcript.

  7. griffincsb says:

    i was all for bringing seneca out onto the field and using him in different situations. it’s an awesome extra weapon to have for our offense, and i hope the guys keep practicing plays with him involved.
    a combo WR/QB on the fiels cant be fun to try and play defense against, so, i look forward to seeing what they have in store with him.


  8. snegura2002 says:

    Go Seneca and some more! I can only see more plays for him in the future.

  9. mindnbrad says:

    AMAZING D. And very good pocket protection.

    Once we can consistently convert 3rd and shorts, and score TD’s in the red zone, and win big games, THEN we’ll get national attention.

    (National attention is not all it’s cracked up to be, though. We know who we are.)

  10. I second skrati’s third. I thought it was very telling that Holmgren would put Seneca in there in the first quarter of the regular season. They must be seeing something very good in Frye-guy for him to take that risk…and not just on one trick play, but several.

  11. Love it… absolutely LOVE IT!!

  12. eaglehawk says:

    Great move by Holm. Simply masterful! And about time!

  13. sherminator says:

    Great job! Let’s keep Seneca out where he belongs – on the field with Matt. He changes the whole equation when he’s out there.

  14. Holmgren would not use Senece if he did not think Frye was coming along adequately. Amazing that Frye has picked up enough of the offense in his 4 weeks of being here, something that Green could not master in 3 years. Me thinks that Green was not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

  15. SnakeDoctor says:

    Me thinks the knife was not very accurate.
    Sure hope Holmy keeps up with doing a couple of trick plays each game. Keep em guessing.

  16. The option pass isn’t going to work unless they set it up by running the same play as a straight handoff to Wallace. Do that a few times, with some success, and defenses will start cheating up when they see the formation with Seneca in the backfield.

  17. Radem44 says:


    Frye-guy…that’s pretty good :-)


  18. IDHawkman says:

    I’d like to see mack and weaver in the backfield, with a strong left (pollard) formation, Burleson or Branch split wide left and SW on right. (ball on right has mark). Run the end around behind Spencer, Sims, Big Walt, Pollard, Mack and Weaver. Have Branch/Burley streak down the field and maybe every now and then release pollard. Then have Seneca make the choice to throw deep, run or even throw back to hass going down the right sideline. (Can Hass catch?)

    That would be one heck of a student body left play, huh?

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