Seahawks Insider

Morning links: Unger a center at heart

Post by Eric Williams on May 29, 2009 at 7:03 am with No Comments »
May 29, 2009 7:03 am

Seahawks offensive lineman Max Unger joined KJR’s Mitch Levy on the radio this week. Unger talked about the possibility of playing a lot in his rookie season.

"That’s all up in the air," Unger said about possible playing time. "And I think that will kind of get sorted out a little bit more when training camp starts. But I followed the Seahawks pretty closely this last year, just like I knew about mostly all the injuries and stuff and how the team was pretty much plagued by them.

"I think it’s a completely different story when this team’s at full strength. So again, I think all that playing time stuff will be maybe sorted out when training camp ends and all the preseason games end and stuff."

On the possibility of playing this year if injured players like Mike Wahle do not make a healthy return to the football field, Unger had this to say.

"That’s definitely exciting," Unger said. "Obviously nothing is guaranteed, but it is definitely exciting. There is the possibility of playing time here in the near future. But again it’s one of those things where we have a very, very veteran line. And it’s going to be pretty tough to crack the starting lineup here. It’s not to say that it’s easy to play the backup role, but it will be nice to get some non-starting experience I guess here kind of in the early going."

Unger went on to say the position he will most excel at in the league is center because he likes the position the best, feels the most comfortable there and likes being the first one to come off the ball.

Unger also said the transition from the University of Oregon to Seattle has been made easier because he played in a zone blocking scheme in the spread offense for the Ducks, and the Seahawks are running a similar blocking scheme.

The Hawks are working Unger at left guard with the second unit, while Mansfield Wrotto has worked at left guard with the first unit, so it seems the Seahawks want to make sure that they have enough depth at that position should last year’s starting left guard Mike Wahle have issues with his shoulder during training camp. Wahle hasn’t practiced during the offseason’s workouts after shoulder surgery ended his season last year, but the team expects him to be ready for training camp.

Rob Sims has been working as the starting right guard with the first unit, and Kyle Williams has been working at right guard with the second unit. But I suspect once Walter Jones returns during training camp that Ray Willis will serve as a backup at tackle and be allowed to compete for a starting job with Sims at right guard. Willis started a couple games at right guard last season when Sims went down in the opening, regular-season game at Buffalo and played solid in that role.

Listen to the entire interview with Unger in this audio link.

Running back Justin Forsett joined KJR’s Dave "Softy" Mahler on Thursday to talk about what his role will be on this year’s Seahawk team. Forsett said he’ll still be involved in special teams, and hopes to get a few carries as well this season. Forsett also said the new zone blocking scheme fits his running style because it allows him to hide behind his blockers and then hit the hole before the defense sees him. Check out the audio link.

Clare Farnsworth of catches up with fullback Justin Griffith.

Seattle fullback Owen Schmitt is one of three players highlighted in a movie documentary "The Call" directed by Adam Golomb. The 85-minute film documents an unlikely bond formed between a small-town football agent and three up-and-coming rookies heading into the NFL draft. The movie was filmed in 10 cities over 5 months starring Antoine Cason (San Diego Chargers), Beau Bell (Cleveland Browns) and Schmitt. The film debuts in town on Friday, June 5 at the Seattle True Independent Film Festival.

Nate Burleson, Deon Grant and Deion Branch join KJR’s Gros and Gas in studio to talk about the team’s offseason in this audio link.

The Sporting News finished its defensive positional rankings this week. Deon Grant and Brian Russell were left out of the top 20 at safety, with Ed Reed taking the top spot. Former Seahawk Ken Hamlin came in at 11th, and Roy Williams, who the Cowboys cut during the offseason, ranked 20th overall. I think Grant should have made it over those two.

Lofa Tataupu was surprisingly omitted from the top inside backers list. Brian Urlacher held down the top spot.

Leroy Hill came in at 15th overall among top linebackers in the league.

Patrick Kerney ranked ninth overall among defensive ends.

Brandon Mebane got some love, ranking 20th overall at defensive tackle, although Rocky Bernard came in three spots higher at No. 17, making you wonder if the person putting this together even watched the Seahawks last season.

Marcus Trufant ranks 11th overall among top cornerbacks in the league.

The Patriots’ Stephen Gostkowski tops the kicker list. Seattle’s Olindo Mare does not make the cut.

Fox Sports Adam Schein grades every NFL organization. Seattle ranks 19th overall.

Upper Deck holds a rookie touchdown dance competition during the photo shoot for the rookie cards. Seattle’s Aaron Curry makes an appearance.

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