Seahawks Insider

Thursday practice report: Hasselbeck shows improvement

Post by Eric Williams on Oct. 8, 2009 at 2:59 pm with 34 Comments »
October 8, 2009 3:50 pm

For the second straight day Matt Hasselbeck practiced, and appears on pace to play on Sunday against Jacksonville.

Hasselbeck (rib) was listed as a limited participant in practice today, along with LB Lofa Tatupu (hamstring). After splitting time taking snaps with Seneca Wallace with the first unit, Hasselbeck took the majority of the snaps on Thursday and remains questionable for Sunday.

There were some concerns as to how Hasselbeck’s rib injury would respond after practice on Wednesday, but he appeared to loosen up OK after the early stages of practice.

LB Leroy Hill (groin), OT Walter Jones (knee), OT Sean Locklear (ankle) and OG Rob Sims (ankle) are listed as out.

DE Patrick Kerney (groin) did not participate in practice. And CB Josh Wilson (ankle) and FB Justin Griffith (knee) were full participants in practice.

For Jacksonville, S Sean Considine (groin), LB Adam Seward (groin), CB Scott Starks (hip), TE Ernest Wilford (knee) did not participate in practice.

LB Clint Ingram (ankle) and OG Maurice Williams (knee) were limited participants. And DT Derek Landri (wrist) and OT Tra Thomas participated fully in practice.

We talked to Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley about the team’s defense heading into the Jacksonville game. He said the defense recommitted itself to creating turnovers and big plays on defense after not getting it done in that area in the first four games, with only four turnovers created so far this season.

As far as the Jags, even though they threw the ball well against Tennessee, Bradley says containing Jacksonville offensively still starts with running back Maurice Jones-Drew.

“He’s so strong, and we faced a back like that in Frank Gore,” Bradley said. “And the same challenge is set in that he kind of leads their train. I know they didn’t run the ball much with him the last game because of a game plan kind change, but we know in order to be successful he’s the first guy we need to do well against.”

Similar to Gore, Jones-Drew has the ability to break big plays, so Bradley said it will be important that the defense rallies to the ball

“Our big emphasis is it’s going to take 11 hats,” Bradley said. “You know, we’ve got to get everybody to the ball with a guy like that, because he’s broke so many tackles. He’s a powerful runner, and a lot of times one guy can’t bring him down, so it’s going to take all 11. And our emphasis is that 11 hats have to be on the ball carrier.”

Bradley said the return of cornerback Josh Wilson is important to the team’s defense, not only because of his ability to make plays, but just the energy and enthusiasm he plays with on Sundays.

“He’s an emotional guy who plays with a lot of energy, and we need that on the field,” Bradley said. “When a guy makes a big play, everybody get excited for him. And we felt like last week that kind of slipped a little bit, too, and that’s what we’re all about.”

Speaking of energy, the coaches seemed even more upbeat then they usual during practice, with head coach Jim Mora and others on the coaching staff joking with players during drills.

It makes sense. The Seahawks could be putting too much pressure on themselves heading into Sunday’s game at 1-3, so the coaching staff might be trying to relax them a little bit so they play loose.

Also, the monotony of the daily grind tends to start setting in around this time, with the Seahawks going at it for almost three months now, so breaking up the routine a little bit helps keep the players’ focus.

Notes from practice
Leave a comment Comments → 34
  1. Great news about Matt! I hope the OL can keep him healthy.

  2. Tompage says:

    Better work on their max protect schemes with our O-Line situation.

  3. Dukeshire says:

    I would agree that after last week it would be easy for them to play real tight Sunday. Especially with how much emphasis Mora has articulated for this game. You got to play free to play your best.

    Matt is welcome news. As Bobby said, keep him upright for, God’s sake.

  4. krieg17 says:

    Got to have Matt Sunday, he is the team!!!!!!

  5. Seahawks2620 says:

    wait…I though Griffith got released. What did I miss…

  6. That is great news. Hopefully we can get some running game going to keep some balance, and pressure off Matt. I’m gonna cringe every time he takes a hit, if he plays.

    good to have Wilson back too.

  7. Mora did go on record to say they will scheme to keep Matt from getting blindsided on Sunday (i.e. give Frye plenty of help).

    I remember the Redskins when they won their last SB… they usually only sent about 3 guys out in the passing game. It was usally max protection for Rypien.

    If we only send out TJ, Carlson and Branch/Burleson/Butler… that’s fine with me. Keep our leader healthy!

  8. 2620 – they did release him… but then picked him up again after the game…

  9. chuck_easton says:

    Griffith’s release was a temporary move to make room for an OL to be signed. He wasn’t going to play anyway. He’s a veteran so he got paid even if he wasn’t on the team. Nobody would sign him because he couldn’t pass a physical if he was hurt. Just a roster switcheroo to get around the fact that the team can’t bring sombody from the PS without one of the 53 man roster being cut or put on season ending IR.

    Expect something similar this weekend. Probably with Sims. Locklear, Jones, and Hill are too valuable to risk some team trying to make an offer. Even if the team tells the player they will be re-signed immediately after the game it can still be risky.

  10. pabuwal says:

    I’m hoping somehow this defense can pull a turnaround like the 2007 Giants. The 2007 Giants had strong defensive line depth (like the Seahawks supposedly do) and struggled over the first few games learning a new coordinator’s (Spagnaulo) scheme.

  11. Dukeshire says:

    I found this interesting regarding Curry. This may explain, in part only, why Curry seemed a bit hesitant against the Colts last week.

    Certainly doesn’t explain why he appeared confused, at times.

  12. I keep hearing about how we’re supposedly so good and supposedly have such good depth along our DL but I’m having a problem believing it after watching our team through 1/4 of the season.

    Kerney is not a good DE anymore. At least he certainly isn’t playing like anyone who is any good through a quarter of the season.

    Although Jackson has made me happily eat my words, he’s still not an elite player at DE. He’s turning into a solid guy, but not a difference maker. He’s a guy you need to win championships (he’s turning into being good at what he does but not a superstar).

    I’m still waiting for the Redding who was going to be so good. He’s certainly not bad, but most of us were guilty of thinking he’d be better than what he’s shown.

    I’m still not sold on Tapp as a good DE (certainly not saying he sucks b/c he is a fine football player – Duke would kill me if I said he sucked:). He’s fine and he certainly isn’t bad but we seem to have a lot of players like him who are okay but when it comes to getting a consistent pressure on the opponents… all of our DL are failing as a unit. I don’t think you can blame any one player for our lack of pass rush, but we certainly don’t have anyone (Mebane included) who will get a consistent pressure.

    Cole has shown why GB allowed him to test FA. He’s another guy who is a decent player but he’s not a difference maker (I don’t think any of us expected him to be a difference maker either).

    Red Bryant has certainly disappointed me. At this point he’s been below average. He has not been an overall asset when he’s played.

    The Mebane injury was huge, as I think he’s our best defensive player. But he’s not the dominant and disruptive force some of us had hoped for (again, the injury has something to do with this).

    I love Reed and Bennett as rookies but that’s what is wrong with them for ’09 (they are rookies). I expect them to contribute in the future but the future isn’t yet for them.

    Basically, RDE isn’t good, nor bad. RDT isn’t good, nor bad. LDT is fine, but needs to stay healthy. LDE isn’t good, nor bad. With that being said, the line is relatively a bit above average. Certainly not good.

    I’m watching the Nebraska – Missouri game as we speak and, again, Suh is a dominant beast of a DT. If we want a difference maker at DT to go along with Mebane, he’s our guy (future Pro Bowler). Don’t take it too literal though… I’m still in the camp who wants LT & LG with both of our first rounders.

  13. Dukeshire says:

    Tapp has not had the impact I thought he might in this scheme, yet. Granted my expectations were high (unreasonably?) but he has played well. I do however think this line is rather deep. They have a number of players that are versatile enough to play across it. The biggest disappointment to me ha been Kearney, followed closely by Bryant. They’ve bounced him back to LDE and he was ineffective there as well. Cole seems to be very hit or miss. At times he appears to be immovable, others he disappears. And of course Mebane may be the teams most important player behind Hass. But realistically, we’re only 1/4th through the season as Bobby pointed out, roles are only now being solidified. The next 4 will tell us everything. Hopefully at the end of those, the game still count.

  14. I’ve been watching the Nebraska game and looking up NFL seasons where one team starts out hot and fizzles and then some start so-so and end up hot winning it all. Recent examples are the NYG two years ago in starting so-so and Ten starting hot last year. We still have time… but we’ve gotta start winning SOON!!!

    I like our team (minus the OL). Too bad I value to the OL so highly. I only hope we can play with most of our starters begining in week 7 (which is week 8) to see what we’ve really got. I’m mad at FS and RB, but other than that, we SHOULD be good for ’09 and, as I’ve pointed out many times, all SB winners have had a crappy player here and there who has started for them. We have Babs and JJ (and most of our OL). JJ has been a stud in spots and Babs will come up with a big play in the next few games so they can’t be too terrible. At least it isn’t Duckett and Russell out there. The Steeler OL wasn’t much to write home about last year either. Although it looks grim… there’s still a chance…

  15. BobbyK, all due respect dude, but I think you are critiquing our D linemen a bit prematurely. There’s just limited opportunities to judge them at this point. Give them a chance to prove themselves.

    As a unit, the D line got a nice start against the Rams, they played well against the 49ers except for two blown plays, they struggled just a bit against the Bears because Mebane, HIll, and Tatupu were all missing from the front seven, and they struggled badly through the Colts game because Peyton Manning can freeze defensive players in their tracks like deer in the headlights.

    This week, with Mebane, Tatupu, and Wilson all healthy again, I expect all our defensive units to be effective again, and the D line will benefit and begin showing what they can do. I think Tapp, Redding, and Jackson will perform well at DE even without Kerney in there.

    And Jacksonville Rookie Eugene Monroe (who some say we should have drafted instead of Curry) just may get taught a lesson or two this week, maybe by Curry. Won’t that be fun to watch.

  16. The season is a quarter of the way completed so it’s not too early for an analysis (up to this point).

    I know the Rams are technically an NFL team but are they really a team we want to compare our players to? If we’re comparing ourselves to the Rams or Raiders, I think we have problems.

    I don’t think we can blame part of the Chicago game on not having Tatupu b/c I think the Heater played just as good, if not better, than Tatupu would have in that particular game (I am NOT advocating Hawthorne as a better player than Tatupu).

    It will definitely be nice to get healthy though.

    Even though Monroe is a LT… I’m still glad we didn’t draft him.

    I think not having Kerney is a good thing for the week. He has not been impressive and if it means more PT for Reed, Tapp… then I’m all for Kerney not playing (on a situational basis w/respect to Reed).

  17. Suh is a freak. Anyone just see the INT he made? Unbelievable. No way he’ll be available when we pick. If you’re not watching the Thursdaynight game, you’re missing out!!!

  18. seahawklovertoo says:

    Bobby, I love this kid Suh. He is everything You said, plus he’s got some brains. This kid is smart ! Wow. He’ll make the GM that drafts him look like a genius.

  19. seahawklovertoo says:

    Honestly, I’d mortgage 2011 for as many (first round) picks I can get in 2010.

  20. The thing about Suh on that “personal foul” PENALTY… he’s too good for his own good. He rips a guy down by the SHIRT and he gets called for a horsecollar. Well, most players are pansies and can’t do what he did, but he’s clearly a monster who can do things that most humans can’t do. No way most players can rip a guy down like that (most Seahawks couldn’t)… but the refs need to realize he’s a freak and he CAN and DID do those things that aren’t supposedly possible.

  21. Seahawks2620 says:

    I really want Matt back in and playing, but with the way our Oline was falling apart last week against the Colts…..Matt will be on his ass every other play

  22. I think it is early to critique each player like that. I’m not saying the defensive linemen have played great so far this year. I’m saying they haven’t had much of a chance. The DB play and LB play has been so bad at times that the defensive line is stuck unable to rush the passer effectively. If the defensive backfield would cover the receivers for a change, then you might see Kerney and the other defensive linemen get coverage sacks. When that happens everyone wants to give the DEs all the credit even though its not all their doing. Except for the week Mebane was out, the defensive line has not been the problem with the defense. And 4 games played with numerous injuries makes it too early to judge what this defense can become. Jump off the bandwagon if you want, but still I think this defense has the stuff to become very good this year.

  23. One thing about Matt… I think there will be ALOT of quick drops and getting rid of the ball. I don’t think our offensive staff (IF they have any brains) will allow him to be in a position to take many hits.

  24. Good points, Stevo. But I’ve been on this bandwagon since 1983 and even if I get critical, there’s no way I’m jumping off.

  25. Agreed Bobby, about Matt and quick drops this week. I think that sounds great. Something we never saw with Seneca, who holds the ball and is slow to make decisions. Matt back in there and taking short drops could really speed up our offense and make it fun to watch again. I just hope he’s not in too much pain to execute it.

  26. I must either be a hopeless homer or a hopeless optimist. With so many saying our season is all but over I’m looking at the schedule and I still see 9-7.

    6 home games that all look like wins to me. Arizona in two weeks probably being the toughest one.

    6 road games that feature 4 likely losses (Dallas, Az, Minn, GB).

    That would get us to 9-7. Okay, call me a homer. I still see it happening.

  27. I do too… as long as we can get healthy (minus Walt, who I still hope for, but don’t expect).

  28. Dukeshire says:

    Bobby – You’ve mentioned the quick (3 step) drops before and I totally agree. I also think that with that they’ll have to attack the middle (slants, curls and ins are “easier” throws than long outs across the field. Another way to protect Matt) of the field rather than outside the hash marks, something else Seneca preferred. With that, I believe we’ll see a more aggressive, downfield offense as opposed to the more lateral one we’ve watched the last 2 weeks.

  29. seahawklovertoo says:

    The only sure loss is @ Mini. We can beat Dallas and the Cards in Phoenix. GB…? To early to tell . So, if a “love fest” overcomes Mora and his players, we can do good. Truthfully, I hope we don’t get to pick in the top six in the next draft. That means ,if we can go to the play-offs( and I hope we do), at least we should win 5 or 6 games.

  30. If MN is a sure loss, then I don’t want to go to the game.

  31. oceanic says:

    I don’t see how Matt can throw with any accuracy considering his damaged ribs. I also don’t understand why Mora would risk further injury since the Hawks are missing three starting O linemen. Let Seneca play against the Jags. He can roll out to escape the pressure.

  32. Fourty_five_circa_84 says:

    I wouldn’t count MN as a sure loss . . . it will be a tough game, but you don’t know when farve is going to loose it and I still feel, when healthy, we can stop the run.

  33. IdahoHawk says:

    I agree with you oceanic…
    Timmy call Denver and offer their pick back for Ryan Clady.. Maybe think about trading the pick for an O-line man.

  34. Eric-

    Any Trufant sightings? Seems to me that if he is to return after the bye, he should start getting some running and work in pretty soon here. Is there a status report you can give us?

    I do understand his return is probably inconsequential if we don’t win the two before the bye. :)

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