Seahawks Insider

Curry sits out with injured elbow, Okung makes an appearance

Post by Eric Williams on Aug. 30, 2010 at 6:15 pm with 28 Comments »
August 30, 2010 7:05 pm

The Seattle Seahawks had a light practice today, working for about an hour in jerseys and shorts and no helmets.

Veteran wide receivers T.J. Houshmandzadeh and Deion Branch worked with the scout team along with linebacker Lofa Tatupu, perhaps a signal that we will not see very much of them on the field when the team travels to Oakland on Thursday.

Linebacker Aaron Curry was held out of practice today. Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said Curry hyper-extended his elbow against Minnesota and he does not know if he will be available for Thursday’s game.

However, Carroll said David Hawthorne’s hip injury is improving.

Offensive tackle Chester Pitts got some work in with the first unit today at left tackle, sharing time with Mansfield Wrotto. Ben Hamilton did the same thing with Mike Gibson at left guard, and also worked some at center with the second unit.

“It will be limited, but we’ll get him out there,” Carroll said about Pitts practicing. The 31-year old is returning from microfracture knee surgery and wearing a bulky brace on his right knee. “Unfortunately the week is not very long for him, but we’ll take him to the game and he’ll dress out for the game and all of that.

“This is an important step for us bringing him around. And he’s been incredibly dedicated to getting right. He’s worked as hard as anybody I’ve ever seen in the hours that he’s put in and the dedication to it.”

Carroll later said that trip allows Pitts to get another workout in, but he will not play.

Carroll said even though the starters will not play much, if at all, Thursday’s game is still important in terms of the team making roster evaluations for the final 53.

“We have so much work to do this week,” he said. “Even as short as it is, it’s really important for us. We’re going to suit everybody up and get everybody ready to go. And I want to keep us in a competitive mindset about getting ready for a game and all of that. And then we’ll make our adjustments on who we’re playing and how we do that. And you’re seen that on game time.”

Rookie Russell Okung was out at practice today watching on the side with a sleeve covering his sprained right ankle. Carroll is still hopeful Okung can make it back for the regular-season opener in two weeks.

“He’s walking all right and he’s coming along,” Carroll said. “So we’ll just have to wait and see what happens. I know for Russell’s sake he’s dying to play in first game, and he’s going to do everything he can to get back. And then we’ll just see how it goes.”

Carroll mentioned that he was pleased with the way the offense has taken care of the ball, with no interceptions or fumbles from the first-unit offense in six quarters of preseason work. During training camp Carroll has emphasized taking care of the ball offensively and forcing turnovers on defense.

“That has a lot to do with Matt’s decision making,” Carroll said. “He’s embraced the approach, and the running backs have embraced the approach of how important it is to take care of the football, and the receivers have as well. And as long as we do that, we’re going to be in every game.”

The not-so-good part of that equation is Seattle’s offense has went 3-and-out on seven of its 16 possessions (44 percent) and scored a whopping 20 points in those six quarters of work.

Hasselbeck talked about that after the game against Minnesota on Saturday.

“We’ve made a huge emphasis on, it’s all about the football, no turnovers,” Hasselbeck said. “And there’s a fine line there I’m finding myself where it’s yes, no turnovers. But at the same time you really got to let loose and cut it loose at times, too. And I think that’s part of the growing process. And that’s something I’m going to critique hard on myself and see where I can improve.”

Also, third team quarterback J.P. Losman, who has not played since the first preseason game, should get some time against Oakland according to Carroll.

Hasselbeck playing well: Carroll said he’s been pleased with the way Hasselbeck has played during the preseason.

And Hasselbeck’s numbers back up that statement. He’s 24 of 42 for 279 yards, with one touchdown and no interceptions for an 85.3 passer rating. Hasselbeck’s been sacked three times and has a 57.1 percent completion percentage.

“I think he’s been very solid,” Carroll said. “I think he’s done very well. … Matt has taken a leadership position in leading the charge for taking care of the football the way we want to and prioritizing it properly.”

Whitehurst inconsistent: On the flip side, reserve quarterback Charlie Whitehurst has been up and down in his play so far this season, and the numbers show that.

Whitehurst is 35 for 68 for 425 yards, with three touchdowns and four interceptions for a 61.2 passer rating. He’s been sacked three times and has a 51.5 completion percentage.

“I think Charlie has done good stuff,” Carroll said. “He’s been in a couple, tough situations. And unfortunately he’s had a play in there in each game that is really regrettable. The turnovers, he’s had four I think in the games he’s played. But he’s thrown a lot of good balls. He’s shown that he can make all of the throws. He’s moved well. He’s been in command in the offense. … So I think he’s had a very successful preseason for us. And I’m hoping he’s going to be able to feel confident going in.”

More roster moves on the way? Carroll said the team will evaluate the cuts around the league and study to see if there’s any moves they can make to improve the roster.

“As always, we’re going to continue to compete and look at everything that has happened and see if anything can affect us in a positive way, and just keep battling,” Carroll said.

Starting running back job still up for grabs: Carroll again reiterated that the team has not come to a conclusion with who the starting running back will be for the opener Sept. 12 against San Francisco between Julius Jones, Justin Forsett and Leon Washington. Carroll went on to say he’s perfectly comfortable with going with a running back by committee, which he had done several times during his tenure at USC.

He did mention Justin Forsett as a guy they like on the field on third downs.

“We’re playing two backs in the two-back system nine or 10 years ago, or whatever it was now,” Carroll said. “And we thought that it was okay, and we were questioned about it way back then. I think it’s a pretty accepted that there’s a lot of teams that play with two backs, and I think it’s a good way to go.

“In my experience it doesn’t matter. It’s getting the best guys on the field and making the right choice at game time as things unfold for you.”

Notes from practice
Leave a comment Comments → 28
  1. Dukeshire says:

    Eric, with Curry presumably not playing Thursday, do you think we’ll get an opportunity to see him at Sam or will he work more extensively at Leo? I’d really like to see him at LB but with Reed out they’re a bit thin at DE…

    And Hamilton back at LG? If healthy, is that still his spot?

    All in all, pretty good news, the injured beginning to come back.

  2. Dukeshire: I think we’re going to continue to see Curry at Sam. We might see Dexter Davis both at Leo and Sam with Curry out. Hamilton is still competing with Gibson for the starting left guard job. They haven’t settled on a guy yet. If Curry is out, we might see Herring at Sam and Hagler at Will.

  3. When Curry came off the field for the final time in Minnesota on Saturday night he kept flexing his hand and spent most of his time looking at his wrist (and feeling his wrist). This happened as most, if not all, of the starting defense was still on the field in the 3rd quarter.

    They got the tape off his wrist, looked at it, and then put ice on his wrist (lots of time writing “wrist”).

    They didn’t put the ice on his elbow until a bit later but it definitely seemed that Curry and the training staff was more concerned with his wrist than his elbow (as he was moving his arm with, seemingly, no pain with respect to moving his elbow). That seemed like more of an afterthought at the time but was still significant enough to warrant some ice.

  4. Dukeshire says:

    Eric, I didn’t ask that very well. I meant Dexter Davis at Sam or Leo with Curry out, but you answered it. (I didn’t mean Curry at Leo, that makes no sense if he’s out…) I was thinking Davis. Typed him. Anyway…

  5. Eric — do you think Curry will be unleashed on the QB more often when the games start to count (from SAM or Leo)? If so, do you think they have been trying to limit him a bit with respect to rushing so they aren’t tipping their hands when San Fran comes to town? I should have asked you this in person on Saturday, but forgot about it. Sorry.

    I know he has definitely rushed the passer this pre-season but, to me, it doesn’t seem like he has rushed nearly as often as he should if the games counted. He looks lost, most of the time, going backwards and that’s not his strength. But you can tell that the raw talent is oozing with respect to going after the QB.

    In my world, there’s no reason for him not to have double digit sacks for a long time. But if they ask him to do other things like drop back and cover — then I think there’s going to be plenty of reasons to mention the “b” word in the same sentence as his name (bust).

    If the Dolphins would have asked Dan Marino to run the option, I don’t think he would have had the career he had (not that any NFL teams ran the option in the mid-80s, but you get the point). It’s kind of the same, to me, with Curry and asking him to do all of the things he did at Wake (and for some reason he isn’t good at the same things in the NFL).

    I firmly believe Curry is a 10-18 sack guy waiting to happen. And, yes, that “18” wasn’t a misprint. I don’t expect “18” this year but if you take his natural talent and add a year or two of pass rush moves/coaching — he should be dangerous. We all complain about our horrible pass rush and, to me, here we have a guy who is on our roster who I think can get to the QB better than most players in the NFL (specifically when we talk about raw talent).

  6. Who are the best Seahawks? The criteria is being the best at what they do (this is only for offense/defense… it’s too demoralizing to hear some say that a K or P is our best player). 2010 Prediction(s)…

    1. Mebane (don’t run on me or I’ll kick your A and I’m gonna get more pressure/sacks this year too)
    2. Curry (see above – how he’s used will determine whether he’s good or sucks — if not used properly; he will NOT make the top 10 in this list and then you’d move everyone else up a spot)
    3. Trufant (he’s back!)
    4. Lofa (more important than #4 when you consider intangibles, but on an individual basis he has to stick with this spot)
    5. Mike Williams (I am drinking the kool aid)
    6. John Carlson (only if Baker is healthy, which allows Carlson to run around more often instead of doing dirty work – which he’s not very good at doing)
    7. Red Bryant (may not be a highlight reel player, but he’s going to crank it up and be a stud role player)
    8. Matt Hasselbeck (will be higher based on OL play, will be lower and out of the top 20 with crappy OL play; moral of the story – will be okay if protected adequately)
    9. Earl Thomas (too dang talented NOT to be in the top 10; top 1-2-3 player by 2012)
    10. F-Force/Leon Washington (take your pick; one/both will be fine)

    Honorable Mention: Okung & Wilson
    Honorable, honorable mention: Heater (if healthy) &Hill (if healthy)
    Overrated — if everyone thinks Branch sucks, can he really be overrated? Same for Housh?
    Most important crappy player who needs to have a good year for the Seahawks to win the West? It’s either Spencer, Unger, or Locklear. I won’t lie, I expected MORE from Unger and Lock up to this point in pre-season. Spencer has exceeded my expectations up to this point but that isn’t saying much. Somehow this unit needs to NOT suck and AT LEAST one of these guys needs to do their part.

  7. Off topic, but I just read an article about V Jackson. Turns out his agents also rep Lindsay Lohan, OH Simpson & assorted rappers.

    With judgment that bad, I’d prefer he wasn’t a Seahawk.

  8. Okay wild and crazy question. (or two)

    Assuming that Wrotto could continue to play as well as he did at Minn – (I know big if) Does anyone think he might have a chance to challenge Lock on the right side when Okung comes back?

    or if/when Pitts gets healthy is he going to push to play tackle?

    It may just be me but I only think that by the way they have played this year and the way they been talked about I only think they have long term plans for Spencer and Okung – nobody else has got the positive comments from the staff and/or consistant good play

    I liked the Unger pick last year and I think he is going to be a good player I am just not sure that he is going to fit in with what they want to do here. I unfortunately think he is going to be one of those guys who gets a big contract somewhere else and we let him walk! OUCH

  9. snydro22 says:


    Aaron Curry is not a good football player. He represents the waste of a 4th overall pick. Forget about him ever being above average at anything in this league. There is no evidence to suggest he will be a dominant pass-rusher at any point in the future.

    I love all Seahawks, but not equally. As I have maintained since the day he was drafted, Aaron Curry is my least favorite player – and the most overpaid player in Seahawks history.

    He has a sense of entitlement that will prevent him from ever being great.

    He did a great job of selling a false set of goods heading up to the draft. Unfortunately, he can’t back up the image he presented on the field nor in his personal life. We will pay the cost now for years to come.

  10. Dukeshire says:

    I have to agree with Snydro here. I’m not sure I would list him as one of the top 5 linebackers, let alone top a 10 player on the team. (Certainly not off play this preseason.)

    And also like Snydro, I’m skeptical of Curry as a consistent double digit sack guy. Players like J. Allen, Freeney, Dumervil, Ware, Peppers, etc…, aren’t just talented but incredibly skilled and work their asses off to develop those skills (in addition to motors that won’t stop, which along with tackling is the most basic ingredient for great pass rushers and two things he’s not known for). He has yet to show an ability to adapt and learn to improve his play on the field. He is making some of the same basic mistakes he made last season.

    It may be that he’s simply a very slow learner and will need all the time that comes with having a huge monetary investment made in ones self. And that’s good news if you hold out hope that he’s capable of great things. But for me, with this guy, seeing is believing. Prove me wrong Curry…

  11. edstang45 says:

    C’mon BobbyK When has Curry shown he can get after the QB, what have you seen to make you think he can be a consistant sack guy. I want hin to be that guy!!!! But I see him get locked up tied up turned around, comming to the QB a step or two late. He does get fired up and motivated and will smack you after the whistle!! And I don’t see any confidence of the D staff to bring him but rather see him dropping off most of the time. This is his second camp and he does look confused most of the time.

  12. I hate to say it, but Curry is a bust. Nothing would please me more if I am wrong because I would love for him to get double digit sack numbers every year. I just don’t see it. I’ve been specifically watching his play this preseason and he just doesn’t seem to know what he is doing. I would expect it from a 5th or 6th round pick last year, but not the 4th overall pick.

    I really can’t blame Ruskell for the pick either because everyone loved Curry in the draft. All NFL scouts thought he was the best LB to come out of the draft in over 10 years. Everyone missed on this one.

  13. The Most overpaid player in Seahawks History was the BOZ!!!

  14. It’s absolutlely clear that Lofa is the most important player on this team. That goes for either side of this ball. Our entire defense plays much more aggressive and disciplined when he’s on the field. I used to think all the presnap hoopla was half smoke and mirrors and all for show. Especially when minimal presnap adjustments are physically made. Watching our defense struggle without him last year made me miss him that much more. When he speaks or adjusts the D. Everyone is looking and listening including CBs. Curry looks like a talent when he’s on the field and a bust when he’s not.

    I thought i would throw that out there to remind the majority of the people on this blog. Yes the majority that called to trade tatupu “the last big piece of the ruskell puzzle”… All because we have heater at MLB…

  15. chuck_easton says:

    I am also in the Curry is a bust camp.

    When he was drafted he looked like he was going to be a dominant LB. The talk was he was in the Lawrence Taylor class.

    I lost a lot of respect for him last season during the 9 day holdout. Prior to that he was all talk about his work ethic, his down to earth family grounding, and all that.

    Since his late arrival last season he has proven it’s all about the money. He got fat on that contract and now he’s showing signs of being disinterested, unmotivated, and lacking any ability to grasp anything necessary to justify the high draft pick, the holdout for more money, the big contract.

    I’m still waiting for Curry to prove me wrong.

  16. wabubba67 says:

    I’m hoping that they use Curry like a modern day Rufus Porter (who, for some strange reason, seems to never get any love on this site when people write about great former Seahawks). If he’s used in that role, he has a chance not to be a bust. However, Porter was a hungry FA out of New Mexico St. (when the draft used to go beyond 7 rounds)….I don’t see that same desire out of Curry. He’s got his fat contract…..why work?

  17. hawkdawg says:

    I do not see Curry as being “disinterested”, “unmotivated” or “fat”–at all. But I do see a guy who is not the sharpest tack in the box when it comes to football IQ. He is going to take time. Only then will we know. Not all high round picks are great to begin with. But some get there.

  18. I still like you BobbyK.

  19. Like many of you, I think Curry sucks (at SAM). But I see a guy with tools to become a force at getting to the QB. It’s like a pitcher with a 98 mph fastball. He needs more that that (location, secondary pitch, etc.) but that 98 mph fastball is special and you can’t coach someone to have that type of talent. I see that with Curry being a guy at getting to the QB. The tools are there, he just needs to have the coaching staff send him much more often for his skills to be sharpened. And for some reason, there are plenty of guys who throw in the mid/upper 90s who don’t do anything in the majors. Lets hope: 1. The coaching staff uses Curry properly and: 2. Curry can get after it. And, maybe, he’ll have 10 sacks this year!!! I don’t think any of us would mind that.

  20. longco44 says:

    Isn’t this a contract year for both Housh and Branch? Do you any of you guys out there actually feel any of these two players have trade value?

    I was never a TJ fan, and I think from hearing how all of you feel about this guy, he would be better off with another team! I liked Branch, it was just dissapointing we’ve never had him play for more than 2-3 games per season!

    edstang45, you said “When has Curry shown he can get after the QB”.. I think that would have had to be back when he was at Wake Forest!!! Oh, and prior to whatever rediculous contract he signed last year!!!

    I could be wrong, but I think for some players it has little or nothing to do with the love of the game and everything to do with the money, which is sad, but that’s just the way it works sometimes!

    Im sure if any one of us on here were to be a football player or capable of playing the sport we would be happy and content with a 2 million dollar contract for 10 years!! Shoot, I could live very comfortably off that much!!!

    But from my post the other day.. I seriously think that there should be a team in the Portland area! Though I live in the Federal Way area, I love the Portland area.. NFL needs to start expanding once again!! Its been a while!!

  21. snydro22 says:

    We all like BobbyK!

  22. snydro22 says:

    For the record –

    Brian Bosworth signed for 10 years/11 million

    Aaron Curry held out for 6 years/60 million (34 million guaranteed)

    Gavel smack!

  23. bayareahawkfan says:

    Curry has to prove it on the field, and to date, he hasn’t, given. But the people suggesting he looks “disinterested” or isn’t working hard because he got paid must be watching a different player (or not watching him at all).

    Curry’s problem isn’t lack of effort, it’s not getting the technical details down. Ray Roberts has spoken at length about his potential, and calls out specific, very technical things he is failing to which limit him (he doesn’t “get skinny” very well, for instance).

    More importantly, he is adamant these can be learned, and points to Michael Sinclair as a very similar player who had all the tools, but was nothing special until he mastered the technique. Then he blossomed.

    Further, he maintains that having Curry spend 10 minutes each practice working on pass rush moves and then the rest of the time playing as an LB in coverage is the problem – it’s retarding his growth.

    My point is that we can all agree to disagree about whether or not he will turn out to be a bust, but let’s at least refrain from calling him lazy, or saying that he doesn’t work hard. That’s an insult the kid doesn’t deserve. He’s no Haynesworth.

  24. Dukeshire says:

    He’s no Haynesworth, I’ll agree. But I’ve seen everyone of his NFL snaps (as have most of us), and he does not give all out effort every time. We spoke about that very thing on this blog toward the end of last season.

    And to play devil’s advocate to Ray Roberts’ points (who himself by the way, an underperforming 1st round choice, to put it nicely); Michael Sinclair was a 6th round pick. There are very different standards for a 6th round pick and the 4th pick overall. Curry may simply be a slow learner and will one day develop into the player we all presume he’s talented enough to be. But until then, he’s being outplayed by undrafted free agents and late round picks.

  25. bayareahawkfan says:

    Fair points, Duke. I just don’t like what I perceive as the knee-jerk negativity bubbling up in the comments lately.

    Lighten up, people. Is this team better right now than it was at this time last year? Absolutely.

    It’s as if people expect a zero-to-dominant team transition instantly.

  26. Dukeshire says:

    I do agree with that. As Snydro said the other day, there is more reason for optimism right now than the past two seasons combined, yet there is loads more negativity here than I can remember. What that tells me is that a sizable number of contributors here haven’t been through a true rebuild before. It is a long process. Years. This is year one. But this team is headed in the right direction, IMO and soon enough they will be in a genuine position to contend. But not right now.

    And although I’m in the “prove me wrong” camp regarding Curry, he does seem to have become a lightning rod for win now mentality crowd, that you eluded to.

  27. bayareahawkfan says:

    Yeah, that’s generally my issue.

    This team is better now than it was for most of last year, and it’s light years better in terms of positioning for the future than it has been in at least the last two years, arguably longer.

    Glass is more than half full, not 25% empty. I’m fired up for this season :).

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