Seahawks Insider

Schneider: Whitehurst will compete for starting QB job

Post by Eric Williams on April 18, 2011 at 3:26 pm with 28 Comments »
April 18, 2011 3:34 pm

Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider offered a wide range of opinions on the upcoming draft and the state of his team in a 50-minute interview with reporters here at the VMAC.

Schneider appeared more comfortable in his second year as the team’s head personnel man, and several times during the interview session had us in the room cracking up with some quick one-liners, including yours truly on the receiving end of a few zingers.

Here are some tidbits.

— Schneider said that no matter what the team does in the draft and free agency, Charlie Whitehurst will be given an opportunity to compete for the starting job in 2011. Whitehurst currently is the team’s only quarterback on the roster.

“Yeah he is, absolutely,” Schneider said. “Charlie won the biggest game of the season for us. And with absolutely no disrespect to (Matt) Hasselbeck, that was the first week it was Charlie’s game. Charlie went into the other games with Matt’s plan. This was a plan for Charlie. And quite frankly the Rams were playing pretty good at that point. And he took care of the ball and played well.

“Did he have his struggles during the season? Sure. I mean he hasn’t played a lot of regular-season games. So, I thought one of the coolest things he did was come into that Arizona game and bring us right down the field. Now, the series didn’t end that great. He threw a ball he’d like to have back. But I’ve been around a three-time MVP (Brett Favre) that wasn’t a great decision maker early on his career. But he became a much better decision maker.”

— Schneider confirmed that he would like to trade down in this year’s draft from the team’s No. 25 overall pick if the opportunity presents itself, but also admitted it’s harder to trade down than it is to trade up.

— He said it was important for head coach Pete Carroll in his first year to make the playoffs, but also admitted to cringing a little after watching the Seahawks defeat St. Louis in the final game of the season — a win that cost the Seahawks a drop from No. 8 to No. 25.

— In year two of the building process, Schneider said he wants to continue to make the roster younger.

— Schneider also talked about the subjective nature of evaluating quarterbacks, along with the uniqueness of this year’s group and the importance of staying true to the draft board and not reaching for a guy. That fact that up to a dozen teams need a quarterback will make for a more unpredictable draft, Schneider said.

“All these guys are so different,” Schneider said about this year’s quarterback class. “I mean, wow. You go through seven guys, and they’re all just complete different cats.”

— Schneider said the Seahawks would like to come away with an offensive lineman and a defensive lineman in this year’s draft.

— Schneider also said the coaching staff has been more involved in the draft evaluation process because they are not allowed to work with players during the lockout.

— Schneider also confirmed that Carroll is not opposed to going with a quarterback with limited movement skills, pointing to the fact that Carroll and quarterback coach Carl Smith had Drew Bledsoe while in New England. This jibes with the Seahawks’ interest in Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett.

Leave a comment Comments → 28
  1. Dukeshire says:

    Interesting stuff. I have no doubt they’ll end up with at least one o-lineman and one d-lineman in the draft, but how early?

    If they could trade out of the first for an additional (early) second and re-coop the third, I would not complain.

  2. chrisj122 says:

    Yep, Matts days are over in Seattle.

  3. He talks as if Charlie Whitehurst is an inexperienced 24 year old quarterback.

  4. Even worse than Matt being gone, Schneider believes in Charlie “Clip Board” Whitehurst.

    On the bright side. Hawks will draft the trenches early from how it sounds. Also, because of SOS, Hawks will end this season in a prime spot to have a shot at Luck in the next draft.

  5. Palerydr says:

    no matter what we do and IF there is a season next year we have a first place sked. @home Div plus Eagles, Redskins, Ravens, Bengals and Falcons. On the road Div plus Cowboys, Giants, Steelers, Browns and Bears. I’m not seeing a lot of easy games there folks. We could easily be a 5 win team next year and actually play well.

  6. First of all, we can’t necessarily believe anything that the Duke Boy is saying this time of year. It’s not a knock on him personally, it’s just that this is the time of year of not showing your hand.

    Re: Whitehurst

    If he’s so bad that he can’t hardly complete passes during practices, then I’m not going to put a lot of stock into Schneider saying now that he’s “going to be given a chance” to comPete. There’s no way he’s going to report at this press conference that “Man, Charlie sucks. We’re in desparate need of getting a QB in the 1st round of the draft.”

    The Rams game was a great win. He had a couple of nice passes in that opening drive and then played the role of game manager the rest of the game (play not to lose). That’s fine. He did his job but he still doesn’t inspire confidence in a road play-off game where we need the QB to actually makes plays in the clutch. Besides, this was almost the same Rams team that had a top 2 pick in the draft for three consecutive years that we beat at HOME (and part of the reason they finished with the record they did had to be b/c of playing in the NFC Worst, too).

    There were even a few times during the season where it would have been easy for Mr. Happy to bench Matt and go with Charlie. However, if players truly comPete and all the players at practice clearly can tell that Matt is truly superior to Charlie then Pete would lose serious credibility with his players if he played the person who wasn’t as good. That’s why I view that Charlie must be that bad (in addition to the many practice reports making fun of him missing passes all the time).

    Personally and selfishly (b/c of my love for the offensive line), nothing would be better than for Charlie to actually be good and for us to skip taking a QB in the 1st or 2nd round so we can actually get a couple of linemen. I would much rather Charlie be our QB answer so we wouldn’t have to draft someone else in a high round. Sadly, I just don’t believe this can/will happen and since I believe that QB is, by far, the most important position for any professional sports franchise, I believe that we need to do what we need to do to get a real QB of the future.

  7. Dukeshire says:

    What ought Schneider have said regarding CW? This is a program bulit(ing) on competition from within. If CW isn’t given a total vote of confidence that he’ll have a genuine shot at starting, it undermines everything Carroll is about, IMO.

    Let’s be careful not to read too much into what a GM says less than 2 weeks before the draft.

  8. Resign Matt.
    Let Charlie comPete.
    Trade down from #25 and draft Ponder late 1st/early 2nd (if available).
    QB situation solved. I think. lol

  9. Soggybuc says:

    I seem to remember a fan favorite looking pretty shaky in his first starts. so much so he was benched. i also remember well people screaming bum, he cant play, horrible trade etc etc.
    Game speed is not something that can be coached or practiced it has to be experienced and most QB’s struggle in early starts although it hides better when the team around them is good aka Kolb.
    CW wasnt working with a cast of all pro’s and had 2/5 ths of a line in front of him to boot. it’s way to early to really tell how good he can or cannot be. he needs to get 6-8 consistant starts to tell and hopefully with an actual NFL line.

  10. CHawkFanIn9erLand says:

    No surprise there. It’s not like he’s going to say “Charlie is a major loser, and we have no viable QB on our roster, and no free agency, and no early first round pick, so we’re just going to write off this season and next season and we’ll see you in 3 years”

    I honestly think we’re two offseasons away from being a true playoff contender. Meaning a team that would actually compete for a playoff spot in a division other than the NFC West. We get physical linemen this year and next, enhancing our ability to win the battle at the LOS.

    We’ll find a serviceable QB at some point between the next two offseasons, I believe with the hard work that PC and Schneider put in all year to improve the roster, combined with the preparation of PC’s staff in gameplanning each game, we’ll be pretty respectable in 2 years.

  11. soggy – do you remember hearing about that player (Matt) and how bad he looked in practices? No. You did not.

    Also, when Matt was traded to the Seahawks, he was 26 years old. Charlie is going to be 29 years old when this season starts (if it starts). Do we really want to spend a couple of years developing a 30 year old QB? By the time he hits his prime (if he has a prime), he’s going to be physically declining. I’d like to get a young guy who can have a much longer window of leading this franchise, as opposed to looking for Charlie’s eventual replacement in a few years.

  12. raymaines says:

    I’m good with all the roster churn and everybody competing for a job and all of that, but it was still PC and JS that paid a hefty price for CW. If the kid can play and the ‘Hawks don’t have to draft a QB, then all is well but right now it doesn’t look like that’s the case. That trade is going to define this management team for better or worse, for years to come. Right now I’m CW’s biggest fan.

  13. If they don’t believe he’s the guy, I don’t think they are going to hand the keys to him just b/c they invested a 3rd round pick for him. It would be silly to do that if you’re an NFL organization and you think that they player you traded for isn’t very good. If you make a mistake, you admit it, and move on.

    That’s almost like saying this regime sucks because they invested a 4th round pick on EJ Wilson last year and have already cut him. Losing that pick isn’t going to doom this franchise for years, just like wasting a 3rd for Charlie isn’t going to doom it. If we get too many of those types of picks, yeah, that could send us to the toilet, but I don’t see that happening.

    Not having a 3rd rounder this year makes our 2nd and 4th rounder even more important, IMO. They need to hit on both if we’re going to get better (obviously) as opposed to also having a 3rd and only hitting on 2 of the 3 (more room for error).

  14. OutSydeDog says:

    I still have nightmares thinking about the Seahawks drafting a QB in the first round, so no to any QB in the first round.

    I would love to have Matt back, but whoever is on the roster will compete and if CW can beat somebody out, good for him. Whoever is back there, we need a better line in front of them. Draft the big boys early and a QB later.

  15. OutSydeDog says:

    and Eric….how come you didn’t give us the scoop on your zingers?

  16. I really want to know what the zingers were!!!!

  17. I’m not worried about CW’s age. If he develops into a good QB by age 30, then we still have about 5 years with him. The important thing is to have a few prospects, as well as a veteran (Hass, please), so if CW doesn’t pan out, all isn’t lost.

    Although Locker or Mallet would definitely be enticing and exciting picks (boom or bust), it would be smarter to go with OL, DL or CB in the first round, and a QB in the second or third.

  18. ryanpeper says:

    Thank God for John Schneider! Atleast somebody has an objective POV about CW and Montlake Jake.

  19. That’s a really odd question for a reporter to ask whether Charlie Whitehurst would “be given an opportunity to compete” since Charlie is the only QB on the roster.

    The question is will they bring in anyone to seriously compete with him. And of course, that’s a stupid question too, because, assuming there is a training camp this year, there will eventually be 5 QBs competing in camp, even if 3 of them end up being me, BobbyK, and Dukeshire. ;) Don’t laugh, any one of us is better than David Greene.

    No one should expect any real info out of a GM two weeks before a draft. Anything Schneider says about the draft now, assume the opposite could be true.

    At least I hope his jokes were good.

  20. Dukeshire says:

    Hey, no one’s laughing. I was QB for our city league flag football team last fall, the Hail Mary’s. Let’s just say, I’ll be near the phone next Thursday… lol

  21. chrisj122 says:

    Just like most I don’t put much stock in to what J.S. is saying 2 weeks before the drafts, but one thing I kind of find interesting that he did say
    “I’m not to excited about not having a 3rd round pick”.
    Which is totally understandable but if he were really confident in C.W. would he have made that statement or would have it been something like “I’m not to excited about not having a 3rd round pick but look at what we got in exchange for that.”

    Maybe I’m just over analyizing and reading to much in to these statements, just a thought though.

  22. At first glance, my reaction to Schneiders words was “damn, that just kicked Matts ass out the door–there’s no way Matt will put up with having to “compete” with CW again, not when other teams (vikes, Niners, Browns, etc) are sure to offer him as much or more plus less competition.”

    But on second thought I agree with BobbyK; Schneider isnt going to tip his hand, and its not like CW showed a lot in practice. Compete my hairy…

    Which is good. I could care less how much of Paul ALlens money Hass gets–the smartest thing is to sign him to a front-loaded contract and only take a qb if you love the guy, unless he’s a late round project. But not having Matt makes our qb need dire, which is obvious to everyone–including JS. NOt a good position to be in.

    Matt is practically begging Seattle to show they care, offer him more $$/longer terms/whatever. Get it done, idiots. If you can blow a third rounder and 5 million a year on CW, you can overpay for Hass just to buy security. Hell, if a qb comes along and outperforms Hass, who cares if Hass is overpaid, just play the young guy. Thats not as bad as overpaying a backup who never develops.

    Matt may or may not have much left in his tank. But I cant see CW or any rookie outplaying him over the next two years. And there isnt a veteran qb available I’d prefer over him either. Vince Young? As OchoStinko would say, “Child, please!”. Its time to get serious about replacing Matt, but not time to throw him away like trash.

    Oh, and Bruce Gradkowski isnt going to resigned by Oakland; he wouldnt be a bad pickup while we groom a young guy. ANd he’s LOTS better than CW.

  23. SeahawkFan12 says:

    LOL to the donut-eaters who think Matt’s days are “over” because Schneider said CW will compete for the starting job.
    NEWS BREAK: CW has BEEN competing for the starting job since he got here. He obviously hasn’t lived up to the level he needs to be to EARN that starting spot (both here and in San Diego) otherwise he’d be the starter. Hell, he didn’t even keep his starting spot after winning the “biggest game of the year” last year.. Until Matt either signs with another team or re-signs here, CW’s future is as clear as mud.

  24. Seahawkfan12–LOL, I cant eat donuts, as I allready have Dunlap!

  25. Duke, I’ll bet you ran the most complex offense in your city league, hands down!

  26. untrammelled foetus says:

    Nowadays a qb’s prime don’t start until he’s 30 – that’s whhy schnied talks about Clipboard like he’s a prime pup, because dude really is.

  27. Dukeshire says:

    Stevo – It was a co-ed league, but yes, I tried. lol. My girlfriend actually got mad at me after a game because I didn’t get he the ball enough. I called her T.O. and that if she didn’t understand the playbook, I couldn’t trust her on the field. She didn’t find that as funny as I did (and still do, actually.) LOL.

    untrammelled foetus – There are quite a few successful QBs well under 30 right now; Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco, Aaron Rodgers, Matt Schaub, Phillip Rivers… The significant difference between them and CW (talent not withstanding) is that they’ve had loads of game experience in which to work things out. CW has two regular season starts under his belt after 5 seasons. That has to be a concern for a player who’ll be 29 when the next season begins. Not that he can’t or won’t develop, but the slow learning curve is a concern, I would think.

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