Seahawks Insider

Friday practice report: Spencer to split time at guard

Post by Eric Williams on Dec. 18, 2009 at 2:05 pm with 46 Comments »
December 18, 2009 2:56 pm

The Seahawks wrapped up practice this afternoon, again working outside as they get ready for this Sunday’s contest against Tampa Bay at Qwest Field.

Seattle head coach Jim Mora said Aaron Curry (hip) should be able to go on Sunday. He was a full participant in practice and is listed as probable.

“We came in on Monday and he was a lot better,” Mora said about Curry. “And when they indicated that it was muscle, soft tissue more than bone, they were pretty confident, our training staff, by the end of the week he’d probably be ready to go. And he is.”

The only player that might not go this weekend is linebacker D.D. Lewis (knee), who is listed as questionable on the practice report, and of course Nate Burleson (ankle) who is out this week after suffering a high-ankle sprain against Houston last week.

Mora said Spencer will play the first quarter at right guard, and second-year player Mike Gibson will play the second quarter at right guard, and might stay there if he performs well.

“We’re going to be very flexible with that,” Mora said. “If we go out and things are going real well, I don’t know if we’ll make that adjustment. We’ll see.”

Mora also said Sean Locklear will start at left tackle.

Mora said with Burleson out, Justin Forsett will do the punt returns, with Ben Obomanu backing Forsett up.

For Tampa Bay, tight end Kellen Winslow is listed on the injury report with a knee issue, and did not practice on Friday, and so his status is questionable for Sunday.

Notes from practice
Leave a comment Comments → 46
  1. I’m definitely going to be analyzing the RG situation this Sunday (and hope for the best).

  2. bulldog80 says:

    As many others have already said, it’s about time this switch was made. I actually think that Spencer can be a servicable guard. He’s certainly not much of a center. This game is going to be an interesting one for me. I think these teams are much more alike than they are different. This is simply a pride game for both teams as well. I’m expecting us to get outcoached again however. We’ll see if that ends up being the difference in the game.

  3. Dukeshire says:

    I’m not much of a “hunch” guy but I have a good feeling about Gibson. Nothing to base that on, so well see.

    It’s not at all surprising that Mora will administer the play at guard like a preseason game. He wants to “see what we have there” so it’s probably a good play. He did the same thing with Jones and Edge. Edge got the 3rd quarter, regardless. Against the Niners Jones and Forsett seemed to swap quarters. I have to admit that I’d like to read something more definitive than “we’ll see”, just once. Oh well, let’s go Big Mike, as he said on Wednesday, it’s an opportunity, grab it by the throat!!

  4. Pretty funny that the team went this long with 3 starters (Spencer, Sims and Willis) completely ill-suited to the Zone Blocking Scheme.

  5. I hate the zone bullsh!t system. Mora talks about being tough, which is fine and I agree with, but he hires an OC who wants pansies who take angles and cut your knees (i.e. cheapshots… as the original BS Broncos used to get criticized for) as opposed to wanting players who can man up and kick your ass.

    Sure, he says he wants “dirtbags” who can get nasty, like Hutch was/is, who can line up in front of you and knock you into next season but I have my doubts about the level of competence this staff has with respect to the ZBS… I know talent wins out… as with anything… and that’s part of the reason we outright suck on the OL… but if he says he wants guys who can get rid of our “soft” national image, he sure as hell picked the wrong OC to do it with if we want to be known as a team (not just defense) who can kick your ass.

  6. vichawkfan says:

    I recall couple years back when Spencer was brought in a RG and it was to “improve” the o-line. Well, he stunk there too.

  7. Why not Josh Wilson on PR?

  8. raymaines says:

    bulldog80 says: I’m expecting us to get out coached again however.

    Nope, not this week. Not by Raheem Morris. Ain’t going to happen. The ‘Hawks might loose the game, but they won’t be out coached.

    In fact, loosing the game might not be such a bad thing. This season is totally lost and April is just a few months away.

  9. snydro22 says:

    If I have learned anything from this blog over the years, it’s that a whole lot of people think the word “losing” is spelled, “loosing.” I mean, a significant percentage of the people..

  10. snydro22 says:

    Don’t take that as a knock against you, RayMaines. It was just an observation, and you’re a good poster and usually spot on.. I agree, Raheem Morris is in WAAAAY over his head.. It may or may not have something to do with the fact that Tampa Bay dumped most of their veteran presence in the off-season and basically pushed him into a pack of wolves, though.. No one had any expectations for that team, really.. Seattle, on the otherhand, got me all stiff in the offseason and then stiffed me..

  11. snydro22 says:


    I hear reference after referance to the “cut blocking” technique of taking out the opponent’s knees, but I’m yet to see it in a game.. What do they call the technique of getting immediately pushed backwards or knocked to the ground?

  12. BobbyAyala says:

    Dead around here, makes one think the masses aren’t pumped about the upcoming game between two of the NFL’s best whipping posts.

    Hell hath no fury like a Seahawks Nation scorned.

    Go Tampa.

  13. snydro22 says:

    *I’ve yet to see it* is what I meant to say..

    Is rooting for your team to lose really a bad thing when the reason behind it is so your team will win in the long run? I think I could rationalize that, but I just can’t stomach rooting against them.. I do like to see Knapp fail to a certain degree, though. He is atrocious.. I understand the sentiment that the o-line sucks, but there is a decent enough amount of talent on the offensive line to come up with a decent scheme. I am not convinced that other coaches could not do a better job with this exact team.. And that is basically what everything boils down to when it comes to making the decision over whether a change is needed..

  14. seahawklovertoo says:

    snydro22, thanks for your last post; kind off how I feel as well. If those Seahawks FO jerk-offs didn’t make us believe in their “miracle plan”, I could have lived thru another year of misery and kept my opinions to my-self , as I have done it since ’82 (that is the year I came to USA and fell in love with this game).

  15. snydro – it is common knowledge the Broncos used to get heavily criticized for that kind of stuff. If you didn’t follow football in the late 1990s then you probably wouldn’t know that and I’m not going to do your homework to find you the sites or sources to back it up. It’s common knowledge for those of us who have followed football for a long time.

  16. seahawklovertoo says:

    Everybody here, can You please do me a favor?? Since I can’t spend all my time on this blog and wait, next time You see Blue Talon, can You tell him to go back to :”Hawks GM talk heating up”.
    I have a message for him . I guess he left before I could post it.
    Thanks in advance.

  17. FireRuskellNow says:

    Curry shouldve been benched even if he was healthy, he REEKS. Reminds of Boz, trash talk and no performance, everything.

  18. Please don’t remind me of Boz. You’re right. And it makes me sick. At least Curry has youth on his side. If you want to get even more depressed, Curry reminds me a bit of Ricky Hunley. I hope I’m wrong!!! I’ve been thinking this for over a month… but didn’t want to admit it…

    For those of you who don’t remember the Broncos/Bengals situation, he was the 7th overall pick in 1984 and sucked.

    Of course, if we want to be positive thinkers (that’s a heck of a lot more fun) he also has some Carl Banks in him too (3rd overall pick that same draft).

    The story of his career isn’t written yet… and I hope for Banks ability over what Hunley had to “offer.” We’ll see…

  19. FireRuskellNow says:

    Sounds just like Curry so far to mee!!!

  20. Dukeshire says:

    Bobby – I may have missed something but I don’t think snydro was questioning you, rather pointing to the inept play of the line. But just in case…

    And you know the season is winding down, there are more and more snydro sightings.

  21. I was wondering what happened to snydro.

    Regarding this defense and Curry, who hasn’t looked like crap the last 2 years? Put Jared Allen over here and he’d look like crap also. It’s just the way this defense has played the last 10 years.

    The team could go 7-9 this year and 6-2 at home which is nearly par for the course. What’s changed from 03-07 is they are playing far more difficult road games the past 2 years and have to now contend with an elite team in the division.

    Would Holmgren really be able to overcome that? He wasn’t able to from 2003-2007. If the schedule was more difficult and their was an elite team in the division, you can easily say Holmgren wouldn’t have had anywhere near the success he did.

  22. Damn it just seems like years of this drama surrounding the Hawks. I’m really sick of it. Our front office, coaching, players, What does it take to get it RIGHT!. It all seems so F up! From this distance the Hawks lack a winning formula. Ruskell tried to just plug players in holes. That isn’t how you build a franchise. Mora is the same philosophy with his coaches. God what a frickin disaster. There seems to be a lack of real leadership at all levels. Where and who is the cornerstone? If you don’t have that in the Front office How can you establish that in or on your team. There isn’t anyone who knows how to create that. Holmgren can do that but is he the guy? I don’t know. I for one wouldn’t follow anyone over at VMAC across the street let alone up some Mountain. Come on Hawks get it right!!!!!!!!!

  23. pabuwal – You couldn’t be more wrong with respect to Jared Allen. His last year in KC he played on a worthless defense; pathetic, like ours. They were terrible, yet he led the NFL in sacks. The year after he left, the Chiefs, as a team, had about as many sacks in that season as Allen had in his last year in KC. You put Allen on the Seahawks defense and he would be that elite player that would make others perform better around him and we’d actually be a pretty decent defense. We’d have more of a pass rush (and, yes, if he were a Seahawk he’d also have double digit sacks in ’10) which would make the DBs jobs easier and then we’d all be talking about how guys like Grant, Babs, etc. aren’t as bad as we have made them out to be up to this point (not that I am implying Babs is a very good FS).

    Sorry, snydro, I misunderstood what you were implying.

    Duke – thanks for the read. That’s exactly what I meant. Every Hawks fan should read that article with respect to the zone bullsh!t blocking system.

  24. “double digit sacks in ’09” THIS season — dang editing features

  25. snydro22 says:

    Snydro sightings? What? That rascal..

    Bobby, Duke is right, I wasn’t questioning you.. I know what cut blocking is, just haven’t seen our guys do it – and the joke was that our technique seems to be falling over and hoping the defensive linemen trip on us..

    But never infer that you know more about football than me, or have been following it for longer than I have. I wouldn’t put you in the top 20 of posters on this blog with football knowledge, BobbyK.. I’m just being honest.. You obviously have a ton of time on your hands because you post 35 times a day, but most of it is garbage and rhetoric.. Some of the other dingbats like to kiss your a** and mistake quantity for quality, and it seems to have gone to your head.. You look a little like the “Dwight” character from the British version of The Office, so I know you probably never played a snap.. I’ve been a Hawks fan since 1981, and I go to 8 games a year.. Don’t try to trump it, because you can’t.. I’ll be in section 128 tomorrow.. If you want to give me any more attitude, come do it there..

  26. That’s a great article on zone blocking…thanks for the link.

    Is it smart to draft players for a system that just might be made illegal before long?

    All it’s going to take is a run of knee injuries with one or two high profile defensive linemen getting wiped out from cut blocking, and the NFL is going to ban that technique. Then, where will that leave us? With an OL full of players who are hand-picked and trained for a specific technique that they won’t be able to use anymore. We could invest a lot of draft choice in our OL and the next 2-3 years turning them into the league’s best and overnight it would all be gone. Seems like a recipe for disaster.

    A couple of other points. It’s considered borderline dirty and so much so that our players can practice against live players. Just because it’s legal doesn’t mean we should do it.

    It also seems like that scheme is not widely adopted, so the pool of top talent who fits that scheme is going to be smaller than a more traditional approach. So, we’ll have fewer potential draft choices to choose from and fewer FAs to choose from when we need to fill holes, etc. That makes me think it will be harder to maintain the talent level of the offensive line moving forward because of the smaller pool of candidates to fill positions.

  27. Snydro,

    You would be respected around here if you could just find a way to stick to football topics and avoid cut blocking other posters on here. You would make this blog much better if you would channel your energies toward football analysis instead of personal attacks.

    We’re all on the same team, and there’s no need for name-calling and put-downs. Bobby and Dukeshire are the top two posters on this blog and have been for years. I’m not sure what your screen-name means but it sounds an awful lot like the word snyde as in snyde remarks, which are really just immature and senseless. There’s no need for personal attacks and if you feel like someone is being a jerk, take the high road and just ignore him or let the rest of us put that person in their place.

    Obviously, you care about the hawks and you’ve been a fan for a very long time. How about helping make this blog better by sharing what you now about football?!

  28. princeaden says:

    IMO the ZBS is effective, but not necissarily moral. I would much rather have an OL that can line up and run down the throat of any team, man on man. They know it’s coming and there’s nothing they can do to stop it.

  29. snydro22 says:

    Okay, for anyone who isn’t watching our games, let me point something out – we are not cut blocking. Plain and simple, it’s not happening.. Zone blocking and cut blocking are two totally different things.. Is cut blocking employed in the zone-blocking scheme? Yes, it can be.. Is it a necessary component? No..

  30. princeaden says:

    Duke, I thought that was you just by reading your posts over the lasy year. You are Duke S. from Shorecrest, correct?

  31. princeaden says:

    Make that “lasy” year

  32. snydro22 says:

    Zone blocking is immoral? Oh man, this is why my head explodes whenever I read these comments.. This is why I mostly just post punch-lines and leave.. How is blocking an area rather than just one man immoral? In what context?

    Great, now our kids won’t be able to zone-block at recess..

  33. princeaden says:

    “last,” for crying out loud

  34. princeaden says:

    It’s the cut- block from the weak side that is the part in question. If it’s ok to do that and severely jeopardize D- lineman’s careers then why don’t they just make it ok to let a receiver crack back on a Defensive end below the waist. It’s essentially the same thing.

  35. snydro22 says:


    I’ve been on this blog since it’s inception.. The Sando days.. I created the moniker “snydro22″ because I was 22 at the time, and I am 28 now.. My last name is Snyder..

    I don’t want respect on here or care about it because it’s a football blog and it’s just for fun.. I just like to make jokes and get Hawks news from Eric and Divish.. I’ll leave the obsession to BobbyK and yourself..

  36. I think he meant cut-blocking is not necessarily moral. Everyone on here has a different background with a different level of football knowledge, which is pretty cool because guys like you can help those among us who are still learning. You gotta start somewhere. Remember back to 1981?

  37. Dukeshire says:

    Syndro is syndro and I’m Duke. We do however share the same last name.

    Snydro – section 128? You going to the Tenn game as well? If so I’m coming over to buy you a beer.

  38. BobbyK – I was joking about Jared Allen to make a point the Seahawks really haven’t had a good defense in a very long time.

  39. snydro22 says:

    Yes, I will be at the Tenn game.. I might leave right after Griffey raises the 12th man flag, though lol.. That might be the last time the crowd cheers at that game!

    But save your 9 dollars! I’ve had some recent liver complications and I can’t drink any alcohol for the foreseeable future.. Strictly greens for now ;) But definitely we should meet up and shoot the sh*t..

  40. BobbyK:I hate the zone bullsh!t system.

    I don’t like it either. Never have. Every rushing play looks more like a rugby scrum than a football play. But you have to admit that teams that do it right have been very successful with it. Seattle just doesn’t execute very well.

    Ever since Mora was announced as Seattle’s new head coach I thought it was kind of a curious irony that the blocking scheme that was always the Holmgen era’s defensive achilles heel was now going to become their offensive focal point. Now that it’s been done it seems to have become Jim Mora’s offensive achilles heel (along with a whole whack of other things).

  41. snydro22 says:

    Earther hit the nail on the head..

  42. snydro22 – thanks for the personal attack. I already said “sorry” for misinterpreting your post.

    Since I’m 36 it’s pretty safe to say that I have been following football longer than you have, but that’s not the point, nor does it really matter.

    I’m not going to claim to know more than you. In some instances I probably do know more than you. In other instances I can guarantee you know more than I do. Who cares? What’s the point? I don’t know you, nor do I care to. And I’m sure you feel the same.

    I like the blog because I get a lot of ideas from others with respect to the team and it makes me more informed. And since I don’t know any other Seahawk fans around here, it’s fun to “talk” with the other bloggers.

  43. Dukeshire says:

    Snydro – Dude, sorry to hear that. Regardless, love to meet up and say hello.

  44. BobbyK:
    Re your “I hate the zone bullsh!t system.” post….Good take on that.

    Mora says he wants tough dirtbag O linemen, but the ZBS is what you install when you don’t think your guys are tough enough to man-block. Way to shift the blame around, Mora.

    It would be nice if just once Mora admitted the obvious: “So far, we have done a crappy job teaching our guys to zone block.”

  45. Re: The Unger/Spencer/Gibson Clusterf$@k

    I am so tired of hearing Mora blame players. I think some of Mora’s comments have been misinterpreted, like the infamously stupid “I don’t know why the cast is still on”, but Mora should learn to shut his mouth sometimes, and he should learn to take blame where blame is due to coaching mistakes.

    Chris Spencer has been on the field with a broken hand, snapping left-handed, injured shoulder, and chronically bad back, and week after week he leads the line and takes on 330-pound DTs and cut blocks LBs to the ground. This is a TOUGH MAN who does his job, and does it while in pain, and doesn’t need to be criticized for not snapping perfectly with his left hand.

    If the coaches had more sense, Spencer would have been on the bench as soon as he broke his hand, or moved to OG at that point. Mora should have apologized for his decisions instead of blaming Spencer.

    I have to assume the reasons Spencer was kept at C were because:
    #1 Unger is not as good or as ready as some people seem to think he is.
    #2 Spencer is more valuable at C than some are giving him credit for.

    But if you are going to make an injured center stay in the game and snap with his wrong hand and it doesn’t work out, then for godsakes don’t blame the player.

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