Seahawks Insider

On the radio: John Schneider on the draft

Post by Eric Williams on May 6, 2011 at 10:47 am with 55 Comments »
May 6, 2011 10:47 am
Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider. (Joe Barrentine/TNT)

I know I’m late to the party on this stuff, but it’s worth calling your attention to anyway.

I wanted to direct you to two interviews Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider provided to the local sports talk radio stations in the past two days.

I think both interviews help to answer some questions that have cropped up after the draft, including where Seattle stands at the quarterback position and why they made selections like Alabama offensive tackle James Carpenter and Georgia receiver Kris Durham that some draft analysts have been highly critical of.

The first is Schneider’s interview with KJR’s Mitch Levy, which you can check out in this audio link. He addressed what he felt was the team’s No. 1 objective in the draft, improving the talent level at offensive and defensive lines.

Schneider:
“Our No. 1 objective was to rebuild either one of the lines as quickly as we could in the draft. It just so happened that with defensive line and offensive line, there were two huge groups of those guys in the first two rounds – that’s the way it looked to us – and so I was hoping maybe we could go one and one, or two and two on either side, and then try to work things the rest of the way with the rest of our depth.

“But really, truly it was trying to address our depth on both the offensive and defensive line, and then continually adding depth throughout. We wanted to get bigger at receiver. We wanted to get bigger at the corner position. And we were able to do those things. I was hoping we could move back at some point. I was hoping to pick at least nine or 10 times. Ten would have been great, because we felt really good about some of the stuff we had from the fourth round to the seventh round. And when drafts get over, everybody blows off the seventh-round picks, but when you’re sitting there and you actually have a lot of guys on your board, those are hard decisions – they’re not blow-off decisions at all.”

Schneider with head coach Pete Carroll. (Joe Barrentine/TNT)

On the James Carpenter Pick in the first round, Schneider had this to say: “We had James Carpenter rated so highly purely just based on his toughness and his versatility. I knew Pittsburgh liked him and they were at No. 31. And Green Bay liked him a lot, and they were at No. 32. And I knew if we got behind Buffalo (No. 34) for sure that was it.

“So actually when Cleveland moved back, there were questions regarding Phil Taylor’s medical, so when Cleveland moved back, they were the other team that was really, really high on James, and so when they traded back with Atlanta I thought that they were just going to stay put and take James. So I was a little concerned in that area, and so we had two or three deals that fell apart, and we were weighing one to go to Pittsburgh at 31, and that’s why we used the full amount of time. So we just decided to go to the final minute there, and just decided to sit there and take our guy.”

Schneider said that offensive tackle Nate Solder, who went to New England at No. 17, was been the team’s top-rated lineman as pure tackle, and that Carpenter was the team’s next guy on the board at that position. Schneider said that Carpenter was split between the tackles and the guards because he could come in and play both.

“He could literally come in and back up Russell (Okung) at left tackle to get us out of some games if we needed,” Schneider said. “And we felt like he could compete to start at left guard, right guard and right tackle. Now, ideally we’d like him to start at right tackle and have John Moffitt start at right guard.”

And Schneider confirmed that the Seahawks would have selected Carpenter ahead of USC’s Tyron Smith, selected by Dallas at No. 9 overall.

Why?

“He’s so mentally tough,” he said. “This guy isn’t going to win any public speaking awards or anything like that. But what he does is says ‘Yes, sir. No sir.’ He plays through two seasons with high-ankle sprains and kind of just kicks your ass. And that’s what he likes to do.”

“The best teams I’ve been around are the teams that have continuity on the offensive line,” added Schneider. “They actually end up being the leaders of the team. And I could see Moffitt and Max Unger, just with their personalities, I could see those two guys being the leaders of that group.”

So who’s going to be Seattle’s left guard?

“We have a couple of guys right now that can compete for it,” Schneider said. “But obviously that’s an area once free agency kicks in that we’d be looking at.”

Schneider also addressed the reasons for not selecting Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith, who went to Baltimore two picks later in the first round at No. 27.

“We just felt like we’re not that type of team yet that can bring guys that may have some question marks with their character, we didn’t feel like we could bring that into our locker room yet,” he said. “In my opinion you’ve got to have to develop a core. I thought Baltimore did a great job with Jimmy (Smith). Baltimore has Ed Reed. You know Ray Lewis is there. They’ve got guys that if somebody is going to be screwing off, they’ve got guys that can grab them by the throat. We’ve got a couple good leaders, but we don’t have guys that have been perennial Pro Bowlers, especially on the back end there, that can just grab guys by the throat and make them adhere to what are player rules are in the locker room.”

Schneider also spoke highly of Mississippi State linebacker K.J. Wright and Georgia receiver Kris Durham, both picked in the fourth round.

Schneider said that they envision Wright as a core special teams player that will push for time at linebacker at SAM and WILL, and that he could also serve as a situational pass rusher at LEO end.

Schneider called Durham a cross between Joe Jurevicius because of his ability to run polished routes, and Brian Finneran because of his ability to high-point the ball.

Schneider also said there’s a group of about six to eight draftable players that they have earmarked as rookie free agent they would like to bring in, including a safety, a quarterback and a linebacker.

“We had some guys still left on our draft board that are rookie free agents, and we feel like we can address some spots there,” Schneider said. “So as soon as they turn on the lights for that, we’re going to hit that running very hard.

“Obviously we’re going to address our quarterback situation. And we need to address our defensive line in a big way. And so you can’t fix everything in one draft. If we’re able to put together two or three of these things and start supplementing, and have a real nice, young core of young, tough, competitive fast guys, all of a sudden this is going to be something where we’re able to take a chance on a guy here or there.”

Schneider said the team has a plan A, B, C and D in terms of addressing the quarterback situation, but for obvious reasons did not go into specifics as to what those plans entail.

Schneider went to say that there’s a 50-50 chance Charlie Whitehurst comes in as the starter at the opening of training camp.

“In my opinion he’s going to have a better chance to compete just because of his familiarity with the situation,” Schneider said about Whitehurst. “Last year when he came in he was totally behind the 8-ball. He was learning a completely new offense.

Here’s what Schneider had to say about not selecting Andy Dalton in the first round while talking with ESPN 710 Seattle’s Kevin Calabaro and Jim Moore, which you can check out in this audio link.

“Regarding the draft, I think I said going in that we’d be looking at a quarterback every year,” Schneider said. “But we just didn’t have a guy at certain spots in the draft where we could have grabbed one. Now we debated on Andy Dalton, there’s no question about it. But I think we felt like we were at a point of our development where we couldn’t pass on a starting tackle.”

Schneider went on to say that the team would rather have more of a developmental guy like Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay that is going to come in and sit for a year or two.

Schneider said that offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and quarterback coach Carl Smith spoke with Matt Hasselbeck during the short period when the lockout was lifted last weekend.

“I think that going into this thing everyone knows we were negotiating with Matt,” Schneider said. “Everyone knows how much respect we have for him. And we’re just in a very unique year. I think it may build in the media a little bit. It may build on talk radio, and I get it. I think it is fun to talk about. It is entertainment, but really it is business that can’t be had. We can’t be discussing anything with agents. We can’t be talking with players, so it’s like a huge gap. And whether or not everything comes out rosy at the end of the day, I can’t answer that.”

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Leave a comment Comments → 55
  1. Dukeshire says:

    Thanks Eric. Had only read a couple short excerpts before, this was good. I’m so impressed with how they are going about building this franchise up.

    This was interesting to me; “We just felt like we’re not that type of team yet that can bring guys that may have some question marks with their character, we didn’t feel like we could bring that into our locker room yet,”

    Yet. Sounds like a point will come, like the Ravens now, where there is a culture established and solidified, strong lockerroom leadership in place and they can take liberties with so-called “red flags”.

    And I can’t help but crow a little about Schneider comparing Durham, in part to Joe Jurevicius. I may have said something like that as well when they selected him… ;)

  2. IBGoofy says:

    I like the way Schneider answers questions….. Of course he’s limited about what he can say, but he really comes across well….

  3. Soggybuc says:

    “But what he does is says ‘Yes, sir. No sir.’ He plays through two seasons with high-ankle sprains and kind of just kicks your ass. And that’s what he likes to do.”

    That is an awesome line right there and very much the kind of lineman we need. love reading that.

  4. JMSeaTown says:

    I wonder if #24 is getting as excited as me about the chance of our starting line being Gallery & Okung on the left and Moffit & Carpenter on the right??

    On a side note, can’t decide who I dislike more, Dilfer or McShay. (douche & turd)

  5. Better late than never Eric!

    I really love the they handled the draft this year, going after their board and not the consensus best players, which mean they must’ve loved every single player they drafted, which might not always be the case when someone falls right into your lap. I cannot wait to see how it pans out, this draft will wither make them look like geniuses or… well, the opposite of that. I’ve said that I already love both Durham, Moffit and Legree, all whom I feel will be great players in this league, but certainly Carpenter is the guy I’ll be looking at all season long (provided there’s going to be a season, I’m actually beginning to doubt it) because our right tackle play has not been good for several years now.

  6. AaronCurryIsBUST says:

    I’m moat excited by the fact that this basically spells the end for Chris Spencer in Seattle. Nothing but wasted potential, and potential is a fancy way for saying you haven’t accomplished anything yet.

  7. IBGoofy says:

    JacD…. The draft room sure showed significant excitement when Carpenter & Moffitt were selected…. They didn’t have the time for it in the later rounds….

  8. ruminator1 says:

    i don’t understand all the animosity towards Dilfer. yes he gives opinions that don’t seem to make sense or at least can’t be regarded as anything more than opinions. sometimes they seem way off the mark. but this is not a bad guy nor was he a bad player. he was tough, played a tough position, played through pain and WAS a leader, just didn’t have the natural talent the really good ones have. he played hard for Seattle, he was no dummy either. moreover, he has been kind to others. finally his personal story ought to earn some empathy. call him wrong. call him idiotic on some statements he makes. but douche? some of the other comments about him also show no class.

  9. BobbyK says:

    The more I “get to know” and understand Mr. Happy and the Duke Boy, the more I am “buying in.”

    I love:

    1. They understand the importance of reinforcing (or building) the trenches. I especially love the fact that they drafted a RT/RG 1/3 (no 2) and are willing to play them together (think continuity). Even if Moffitt is a bit older than the average rookie.

    2. They understand the importance of the QB position, but won’t reach for somebody they don’t deem worthy getting the keys to the franchise.

    3. They won’t draft someone like Jimmy Smith because of his character concerns until they have a structure of leadership in place where the vets can/would put them in their place(s). They don’t have a problem gambling on guys, but they are responsible about it (not taking clowns with 1st round picks).

    Unless they pull something stupid like sign T-Jack to compete with Charlie for the starter job (no Matt or Kolb), I’m going to continue to “buy in.”

  10. raymaines says:

    Right now I’m 100% supportive of JS. I love the plan he’s made and how he’s sticking with it.

    That said……

    I REALLY, REALLY hope he’s a good talent evaluator. It would just suck to make totally stupid moves in a very critical draft.

  11. Soggybuc says:

    bobby could you please elaborate a bit more on what it is you dislike so much about T-Jack? I only remember watching one game of his and recall he showed some genuine talent but raw. the kinda guy that with the right coaching and system could be decent and I never saw anything that showed me Childress was either of those scenarios.

  12. BobbyK says:

    Great talent. I won’t deny that. Not for one second. Good arm. Good mobility (better than a guy like Matt Hasselbeck could have ever hoped for) But there’s more needed in an NFL QB.

    He isn’t accurate. He’ll throw some perfect passes and then follow it up with a one-hopper in the turf and one over the head of a WR. He’s also had the benefit of a good/solid offensive line (like Hutch) and running game (AP) and hasn’t been able to take advantage of it. He’s had a goood defense, too. I have seen games where he’s made terrible passes and yet a guy like Sidney Rice will make some miracle catch and move the chains. Simply put, I don’t believe in him and I never got the sense that his teammates necessarily believed in him either (based on what players said “off the record” or just opinion from the media, fans, coaches, etc.). Some guys have “it” and some don’t. I think T-Jack has talent, but he doesn’t have “it.” Whatever “it” is. Whereas a guy like Tebow has “it” but I doubt he has enough talent. If you could put Tebow’s work ethic into T-Jack’s brain… then I’d be all for signing him! Since we can’t, I don’t want anything to do with either of those two.

  13. AaronCurryIsBUST says:

    I agree, T. Crapson can look like a decent QB one game and look like the league’s worst in another. I remember him flattening the 08 Cardinals tram that eventually went to the Superb Owl but then looking like a complete turd the next (or maybe game after next) game.

  14. It would be so nice to see a solid OL after all these years.

  15. First of all, nobody loves/respects o-line play more than me. However, we have to remember that the ’05 “OL” had a great blocking TE (Hannam), a Pro Bowl blocking FB (Mack), and the best blocking WR in the NFL (Jurevicius). Granted, our “OL” these past 5 years have basically sucked, but, still…

  16. Soggybuc says:

    Ahha, thanks for clarifying I must have just caught those games where he was “on”

  17. Dukeshire says:

    First things first. Blocking TEs, WRs and FBs are compliments to a solid foundation up front which is only now being assembled. In time…

  18. OakleyD says:

    Do you get the sense that there was more to the Durham pick e.g: 2 x 6ft 5, 210lbs guys blocking outside for our run game?

    Also, I hear Maxwell (think that’s his name – 2nd cornerback drafted) was like a premier gunner on special teams and thats the role he will fill for us whilst he improves his coverage. Although he may not be in the cornerback rotation, to get a ST starter on day 2 that impacts the opposition return game – all of a sudden sounds more of a value pick to me?

  19. JRocket says:

    I loved what Jurevicius brought to the 05 season. He was a very good downfield blocker, and remember how many games DJack and Bobby missed that year. It was Joe who had his best season ever filling in, and it was also the best rushing season the Seahawks ever had.

  20. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I am looking forward to what Schneider and Carroll will do for the team in this years free agency.
    I like this years draft, however I don’t expect the o-line to be much better this year. With the lockout there just won’t be enough reps. That’s why I think that much of our success this year will be determind on how well we do in free agency. And I think we will do very well.
    With Schneider and Carroll leading the way, free agency is just as exciting to me as the draft.

  21. OakleyD says:

    My Free Agency wish list for this year (sometime in December):

    QB – Carson Palmer
    OG – Davin Joseph
    DT – Kullen Jenkins
    SS – Donte Whitner

  22. About Dalton:

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2011/05/07/jay-gruden-andy-dalton-was-the-best-in-the-draft-for-bengals-offense/

    If the stay is lifted sometime after the appeal is heard on June 8th (thx chuck_easton) and the lockout is over, then I’d assume that players already under contract can start practicing/training, but not sure. Even then, the NFL may still be reluctant to “plug-in” the last year of the old CBA as rules to go by for signing FAs (if that’s even legal) unless the NFLPA union recertifies itself. But the same 3 judges that granted the stay are hearing the appeal, so maybe the stay stands. Mediation is sposed to start again soon, but it really doesn’t sound much like it’s gonna get anywhere (per chuck). A real can of worms. If the stay stays, and mediation doesn’t go anywhere, I have no idea what will bring the two sides together. No lawsuits by players, maybe the UFL substitutes for the NFL until the players cave?

    It sounds like us football fans could get t.b. waiting for free agency, training camp, regular season, etc to start, but. . .

    If the regular season does start on time, we’ll maybe see just how good Dalton is on Oct 8, in Seattle. Carson Palmer is believed to stick to his word of retiring (throwing away $11M) and CIN’s OC Jay Gruden is saying he believes Dalton will be ready to start. If FA starts in December, then maybe we won’t see Andy Dalton, except vs other teams.

  23. bayareahawkfan says:

    Regarding free agency, something i think is going to be a potentially huge downer is whether or not the league reinstitutes FA with the ’10 rules. If so, according to Clayton (repeated numerous times on various KIRO guest appearances), the ‘Hawks, as a final 8 team, cannot sign any free agents until they lose someone in free agency. Also, the guy they sign will have to be for approximately the same amount of money as the guy/guys they lose.

    In other words, we can’t sign, for example, Gallery, until Spencer or Locklear leaves. And if either does sign somewhere, it’s very unlikely they’ll get 8 million from some team (Gallery’s reputed asking price).

    If Hass signs somewhere else for 8 million, we could probably turn that around for Gallery, but I’m not sure that’s a trade off i would seek out.

    Anyway, that consequence of making the playoffs and winning seems to me much worse than the lower draft pick.

    I guess pray, if they reinstate FA temporarily, that they fall back to the ’09 rules (Hawks would be in great shape there, as i understand it).

    We

  24. rgbuckl says:

    Let’s hope for those ’09 rules if that’s the case.

    Since JS says they’re looking at QB, S, & LB for UDFA, I’m hoping they’re looking at Froman, Silva, and Herzlich.

  25. Dukeshire says:

    bayareahawkfan – Good call. That is something I had forgotten, as a matter of fact. Here is an article Sando linked regarding that very issue during the ’09 playoffs.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/nfcwest/post/_/id/12850/putting-final-eight-rule-in-perspective

  26. Soggybuc says:

    I dont think Cullen Jenkins would be a good signing. he is 30 yo and seeming to getting to the injury prone point.
    If we go for a big FA signing i’d rather see us go hard after Charles Johnson from Carolina or Kiwanuka from the Giants. there are alot of second level FA if we ever get to that point and i see them looking at the little known(and cheap) guys to bolster the depth more than looking for starters. nice list here.

    http://www.footballsfuture.com/2011/fa/dl.html

    I think the FO doesnt view the line as our weakest link by far and are going to look for depth.
    Look at our drafts and you will note that secondary is the big area of concern for them.
    2010 drafted Safety 2 CB 1 with notable FA Lewis and Pinkard
    2011 drafted Safety 1 CB 2 with notable FA Browner so far
    Thats a lot of additions to the backside when everyone keeps talking D line

  27. rgbuckl says:

    I still can’t wait to see what Browner has.

    This all reminds me of something I read in here in the last couple of days. Someone was making the point that if we can sustain drives with our overhauled OL, our D won’t be so worn out and will likely play WAY better. I think that has to make a huge difference. Likewise, if our secondary is exponentially better, it will also take the pressure off of our DL to sack the QB every down.

    Regarding our OL in the past, weren’t the majority of that ’05 OL in the Pro Bowl? I seem to remember most of the NFC OL wearing Seahawks uniforms. Jones, Hutch, Tobeck, Strong, Hass, & Alexander on the O side of the ball?

  28. Soggybuc says:

    Very true that a significantly better secondary will result in more coverage sacks. hell even CT can get there given enough time.
    I havent said it in a while but i was beating the TOP horse quite a bit last year. it really is the most important overlooked stat. our D actually played very well early in games last year but as the inept offense kept going 3 and outs they wore down fast and looked horrible as games wore on.

  29. BobbyK says:

    Yeah. A great secondary can make a below average group of pass rushers look good. Just like a great group of pass rushers can make a bad secondary look good. All things being equal.

    Ideally, you would have an offense that spends more time on the field than your defense. Your defense would play with a lead more often, too. And your defensive line needs to be good enough against the run or there’s no reason having a good pass rush or great coverage guys, b/c your defense is going to get run over, anyways.

  30. raymaines says:

    I haven’t heard John Clayton speak about this but I’m thinking all of the ‘Hawks free agents are already gone. They are already “lost”. They don’t have a contract and they aren’t SeaHawks. Their gone, totally gone. It doesn’t matter if another team signs them or not. Right now all of them are just unemployed former professional football players.

    When the lockout ends the ‘Hawks can/will compete with 31 other teams to sign anybody and everybody they want to. They may or may not have an inside track to sign FORMER SeaHawk players, but it can’t possibly matter whether former players who are currently unemployed would sign with a different team.

    I can’t imagine how things wouldn’t be this way. Somebody tell me what JC said.

  31. GeorgiaHawk says:

    BobbyK,

    Do you think now that overall the Vikings o-line sucks, perhaps we have a chance to get Hutch back in the next few years?

  32. BobbyK says:

    lol

    LT – Some think he’s still good. More think he sucks. He’s in the middle, IMO. Definitely overpaid for his production.
    LG – Still great, but wear and tear catches up to all of us, eventually.
    C – Sucks, IMO.
    RG – Below average, IMO.
    RT – Not good, not bad. He’s fine, but he’ll never be playing in Hawaii.

    It’s funny, b/c they had a really good LT/LG/C situation a few years ago (when McKinnie played at a higher level and they still had Birk).

    That line would really be hurting if they didn’t have Hutch. He’s their only legitimately good offensive lineman anymore. Getting rid of Hutch would really hurt AP and would be almost throwing Ponder to the wolves.

  33. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I would bet that in the next few years Hutch will be secretly wishing to be part of our new O-Line! Especially having to face the Lions D-Line. lol.

  34. williambryan says:

    I think TOP is way overrated. Look at the Oregon Ducks (and Auburn for that matter) and the Patriots record setting offense. My favorite thing about pete carroll is that he understands and emphasizes the turnover battle. When the hawks had success last year, they won the TO battle, and when they suffered, they lost the TO battle. That is the main reason why I am not in favor of bringing Hass back (I’m not COMPLETELY against him coming back but would prefer he doesn’t…) He has become a turnover machine lately.

  35. rramstad says:

    The rule of eight is actually way more complicated. If I recall correctly, we can only sign one free agent over a certain threshold (5.7 million per year?) but can sign as many as we want below that number as long as an equivalent number are lost. As noted above, every unsigned free agent is technically lost, and we have a few, so it would be a matter of deciding to resign them or let them go and sign someone else.

    It would be annoying but anyone who deals with salary cap issues for a living would only find it a relatively minor impediment — you can’t just go out and get anyone you want, but you weren’t going to do that anyway, and this is just one more consideration.

    That’s all I’ve heard on the subject, anyway.

  36. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I agree with what you say williambryan!

  37. BobbyK says:

    In almost any argument in the history of the world, we can find some type of exception (like the Patriots offense a few years ago, which was the greatest scoring machine ever… in the real world, that’s not the norm). We can also go to the college ranks (where I think it’s easy for numbers to really get distorted… I remember Nebraska rushing for over 500 yards per game back in the day, but do you really think they did that when they played Oklahoma?). On average, let me say that again, ON AVERAGE, it’s pretty important to win the TOP battle unless you have some freak of nature team. I remember when the Rams were turnover machines and Martz and Kurt Warner even basically talked about how big of a deal it was because they were so good/great at what they did (that it didn’t matter as much). You can win here and there, but I don’t believe the consistent success if you’re not a freak of nature team can’t be sustained if you don’t win the TOP battle more than you lose it.

  38. BobbyK says:

    This is Matt last year… QB on a team that coudn’t run the ball. They sucked at it, actually. They didn’t have a #1 WR type of guy either. They were forced to throw way too often, which means that defenses knew what they had to do. It’s easier to be a “turnover machine” when the deck is stacked against you and your opponents know what you’re going to do and they don’t even have to worry about you having a great receiving weapon, either.

    Wouldn’t it be easier if he (or anyone) had a team that could run the ball and opponents had to respect it (at least a little bit)? Do we really think he’d be the same “turnover machine” if he were dealt a better hand? If you play cards, you know that some hands are good and some suck. You’re probably not going to win as often when you’re dealt crappy cards. Our offensive talent sucked last year. The line couldn’t run block to save their lives. The WRs had no big play option (until Obo gave a little spark later in the year) and couldn’t get much for separation. It wasn’t pretty to all of us who watched the games.

  39. BobbyK says:

    It’s the same thing with Lynch this year. He WILL greatly improve his rushing yardage with a healthy Okung, *Gallery, Unger, Moffitt, and Carpenter. Does anyone think he’ll gain less yards per game (since he started in Buffalo) this upcoming season than last season? I don’t and it’s pretty easy to figure out why (surrounding talent).

    I’m not saying Carpenter/Moffitt are going to be as good this year as they are going to be in ’13, but we can all agree that they are going to be an upgrade on our right side from what we had last season (since they sucked so bad). Lock got blown up too often in running plays and Andrews was a pretty bad RG (until he became a healthy scratch for a team with a worthless line… pretty bad when you can’t even be active on for one of the worst lines in the NFL). Even if Carpenter/Moffit, as a tandem, are a little below average on the right side… they will still be an upgrade from last years right side.

  40. Dukeshire says:

    rramstad – Those rules were correct before the owners opted out of the CBA and operated with no cap and extended times for both RFA and URFA in ’10. The rule of 8 was also adjusted is much the same way. The rules you laid out are correct, but only under the previous CBA, sadly.

  41. williambryan says:

    I agree we should expect improvement in all facets of the offense with the improved talent on the OL. and on AVERAGE, TOP is a pretty good indicator but overall it is not the deciding factor to who wins and who doesn’t. TO battle almost always indicates who will win the game. But it I agree it would be really nice to see a few games where the hawks have close to 40 minutes of possesion instead of it always being the other way around. I just don’t really value stats that much when it comes to team play. Bill Polian of the colts was asked the other day about his teams pathetic running game and he basically said ‘Hello? we are always in the top 3 in offense in the league. We run what we need to run to be successful, and if the stat geeks are mad that we dont average 4.5 yards a carry so what?’ I agree.

  42. BobbyK says:

    Peyton Manning is a freak of nature QB. I’d like to have him so certain rules wouldn’t apply to us as most teams.

  43. Dukeshire says:

    Yet the Colts generally dominate TOP. Year in. Year out. TOP is a byproduct of some very fundamental necessities to winning football; Success on 1st down (4+ yards). Convert on 3rd down. Lack of dropped passes. Lack of turnovers. Lack of penalties. etc… I would argue that TOP is the single most accurate measure of a fundamentally sound team.

  44. rgbuckl says:

    Duke,

    I totally agree with those fundamentals being the key. I don’t see how it could be argued differently.

    Watching those dropped passes killed me during the Bears playoff game. Hopefully, Durham has better hands.

  45. “I would argue that TOP is the single most accurate measure of a fundamentally sound team”

    Then we are in real trouble. We can blame the Off all we want for TOP – and yes some blame lies there – BUT how many times did the Def give up third and long and have to stay on the field?? FAR, FAR too many – that has been a huge problem for years now – it make me sick. Sometimes in games I would rather see 3rd and 2 then 3rd and 12 because we are more likely to hold.

  46. rgbuckl says:

    If you haven’t noticed, it’s when the defense is worn out from being on the field too long that they give up a lot of those 3rd down conversions and big plays. What bugs me more, is that they don’t just give up 3rd and longs, they often give up huge plays when it was 3rd and short.

  47. Dukeshire says:

    xcman – I didn’t say a fundamentally sound offense and wasn’t implying it all lays at the offense’s feet (that just happened to be the context of the previous comments). Defense has it’s own role in a team’s TOP, of course. From a defensive perspective; Denying success on first down. Getting off the field on 3rd down. Creating turnovers. Lack of penalties. etc… I absolutely stand by what I said, that TOP is the single most accurate measure of a fundamentally sound team. Team. All units.

  48. pabuwal says:

    I don’t even know if Hutch is an average Guard anymore. We’ll see if he can stay injury free next year, but I think his body is breaking down on him. You can’t separate an injury related decline with a general skills decline when it comes to aging players in football.

  49. GeorgiaHawk says:

    The Seahawks give up 3rd down conversions and big plays because of poor execution and talent, not because of being on the field too long. How can the defense be more worn out then the offense? The defense should be much less worn out because they substitute more than the offense.

    I don’t hear those excuses in pittsburgh, New York, Baltimore, and Chicago.

    I always shake my head when someone says,” the defense gave up big plays because they must have been on the field too long and bless their hearts got all worn out”. lol.

  50. rgbuckl says:

    I’m not a betting man, but I’d wager that those teams’ defenses don’t spend very long on the field.

    Since I’m bored, I thought I’d post this:
    I watched our abortion of a Super Bowl for the first time since it originally aired on the NFL Network yesterday. That was painful to watch and everyone knows it should have been 24-14 Seahawks when you take away the botched calls that were made–and admitted to last year. Anyway, I loved watching Jurevicius and am really anticipating Kris Durham being that guy for us again. You gotta love his potential and his hands in addition to his ability to separate and go up and grab those passes at their high point. So, if you haven’t watched this already–and even if you have–check this out!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jphhv_vzEfc

  51. Dukeshire says:

    It might be, he is 33 now. But he hadn’t missed a start in 7 years before that so I’ll wait another year before I presume he’s “breaking down”.

    “I don’t even know if Hutch is an average Guard anymore.” No offense, but that was pretty funny. Before the injury shortned ’10, he was an all-pro 5 consecutive seasons.

  52. Stevos says:

    One real tragedy of this offseason has been playing out this past week, when undrafted free agents would normally be the focus of front office efforts. In the current clusterf&c! that is the NFL, teams were able to contact prospective free agents as soon as the draft ended, but could only signal their intent and not sign them.

    For a rebuilding team like the Seahawks, this potential loss of talent and roster depth is a worse problem than it is for more established teams. The longer this goes on and the longer we can’t get young guys signed and practicing, the uglier the Seahawks will look when/if the hit the field in September.

    Clayton seems to be one of the few writing about it this week:
    http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/draft2011/columns/story?columnist=clayton_john&id=6492415

  53. Dukeshire says:

    That and no rookie mini-camps. Actual football is now being missed and it sucks.

  54. The Def. not getting off the field on 3rd downs happened early and often the last few years. it didn’t wait until later in the game when they were “tired”. Although that didn’t help either.

  55. klm008 says:

    Just give me a team that can block and tackle.

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