Our own Dave Boling of The News Tribune writes that veteran receiver Brandon Stokley could provide Matt Hasselbeck a reliable target on third-down situations, a role Bobby Engram effectively played for Seattle for a couple years.
Boiled down, he’s a reliable slot receiver with good hands and an understanding of what he needs to do. If that sounds like former Seahawks receiver Bobby Engram, then that’s certainly something the Seahawks can use.
Nobody is sure how he will fit into the receiver rotation, with veterans such as Deion Branch and Mike Williams matched up with young guys Deon Butler and Golden Tate, and Ben Obomanu also serving as a versatile special teams player.
But GM John Schneider looks for players who can fill certain niches; and if he finds them, Carroll creates the specific niches for them to fill.
“(Stokley is) a uniquely talented player,” Carroll said. “You’ve heard me say this a lot of times: We’re looking for guys who do special things. We covet that kind of player. And the background he’s had in the system makes him a valuable addition. We’ll learn as we go how he fits in, but we have some ideas already.”
Seahawks offensive line coach Art Valero said rookie Russell Okung looked rusty in his first practice in over a month, but did some good things on the field. Now, the next important step is how his ankle feels today.
Ryan Divish of The News Tribune writes that Seahawks players, including linebacker Lofa Tatupu, are gushing over St. Louis rookie quarterback Sam Bradford.
Clare Farnsworth of Seahawks.com writes that Seahawks head Pete Carroll said the one thing he is excited about is the improvement up front with the offensive line.
Greg Johns of Seattle.pi.com provides a Q & A with Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley.
Mike Mayock of the NFL Network breaks down Leon Washington’s two kickoff returns for touchdowns in the Anatomy of a Play feature.
ESPN 710 Seattle’s Jim Moore is becoming a reluctant fan of Carroll.
ESPN 710 Seattle’s Brock Huard breaks down Earl Thomas’ game-ending interception.
John Boyle of the Everett Herald writes that linebacker David Hawthorne is thriving in his new role at outside linebacker.
Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders reports the Seahawks broke the record for best special teams DVOA rating in the history of that measurement with Leon Washington’s performance last week (hat tip to Doug Farrar).
St. Louis Rams
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Rams hope to end Seattle’s 10-game winning streak.
Bill Coats of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that running back Steven Jackson did not practice on Wednesday because of a strained groin.
Steve Korte of the Belleville News-Democrat profiles Rams’ newest addition running back Chauncey Washington, who was feature in HBO’s “Hard Knocks” during his time with the New York Jets.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporters debate whether middle linebacker James Laurinaitis has become an elite player at his position.
San Francisco 49ers
David White of the San Francisco Chronicle writes that the Niners’ playbook will be the same with quarterbacks coach Mike Johnson taking over for departing offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye.
Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com writes that even though the playbook is the same, the offense will features more variation.
Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee reports that head coach Mike Singletary considered promoting former Seahawks offensive line coach Mike Solari to offensive coordinator before finally promoting Johnson.
Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic writes that Cardinals young receivers Stephen Williams and Max Komar have to step up with Steven Breaston and Early Doucet out with injuries.
Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says Larry Fitzgerald is trying to be like a big brother to the younger receivers.
More Somers: Cardinals safety Adrian Wilson and the quarterback of the team’s upcoming opponent San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers, were teammates at North Carolina State.