My story today focuses on the Seattle Seahawks running game, which has looked encouraging so far just a week into camp.
Running backs Marshawn Lynch, Justin Forsett and Leon Washington have squirted through big holes for impressive gains several times during training camp. A big reason for the better line play is talent. Seattle now has three first round picks in Russell Okung, Robert Gallery and James Carpenter, a second round pick (Max Unger) and a third round pick (John Moffitt) in the starting five. And they are bigger up front, averaging 6-5, 316 pounds across the line.
“They’re huge,” Forsett said. “And that helps us out a lot for us to be able to hide behind those big linemen, and being able to shoot out into those creases. It’s going to be good for us.
“I’m happily surprised that we’re able to get this thing started early. And I think that’s a credit to Coach Cable coming in with his coaching, and getting his guys up front right, and Coach Sherm (running backs coach Sherman Smith) working on us in getting our steps right. We’ve meshed early.”
Also, I confirmed an earlier report by ESPN’s Mike Sando through a league source that the Seahawks have placed wide receiver Deon Butler (leg), tight end Cameron Morrah (toe), defensive tackle Colin Cole (ankle) and defensive back Roy Lewis (knee) on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. That designation means those players are unable to play in exhibition games until they pass a physical with the team
And Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll talked about NBA player and UW product Nate Robinson seeking a tryout with the Seahawks.
Robinson recently stated via Twitter his interest in trying out for the Seahawks, with the NBA in the middle of a lockout. And Seahawks coach Pete Carroll responded to Robinson’s request via Twitter by jokingly inviting him for a workout.
Well, Robinson was serious and took Carroll up on his offer, showing up for practice Saturday morning. But the Slam Dunk champion was just a spectator, watching the defensive backs from the sideline and talking with fellow former Husky Roy Lewis.
Robinson originally attended UW on a football scholarship and played cornerback for the Huskies for a year before concentrating on basketball.
“We got to talking and having some fun, and all of sudden he got serious about it,” Carroll said. “He would have come out and worked out in a second. He was ready to go – brought his cleats and all.
“But I had to pull him back a little bit. I didn’t want to be the one that stood in the way of the great career he could have in hoops and making all of that money and doing all that stuff by him getting banged up.”
Carroll said that he recruited Robinson coming out of high school and he was almost a Trojan.
“Oh yeah, we had him coming to SC,” he said. “But then he asked me, ‘Is it OK if I play basketball after my first year?’ And I said, ‘Yeah, as long as you play football.’ And he said, ‘No, I mean just play basketball.’ And I said, ‘No, that isn’t going to work.’ ”
Dave Boling of The News Tribune profiles Seahawks’ renaissance man and romantic Justin Forsett, talking to him about his new music video, which you can check out here.
Jerry Brewer of the Seattle Times writes that Seahawks receiver Chris Carter is trying to distinguish himself from the likely Hall of Famer with the same name but spelled differently, Cris Carter.
Danny O’Neil of The Seattle Times delves into the wild two weeks of free agency, getting some perspective from agent Ben Dogra and Robert Gallery.
ESPN’s Mike Sando provides some notes from Saturday’s practice.
According to Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean, Matt Hasselbeck will earn $9 million in guaranteed money in the first year of his deal, which includes $6 million in guaranteed money and a $3 million in base salary. That $2 million more than the Seahawks reportedly, one-year $7 million offer. Hasselbeck will earn $5 million in 2012 and $5.5 million in 2013 if he plays out the life of the contract.
Dan Pompei of the National Football Post writes that the Seahawks did not get rid of Lofa Tatupu because he can’t play, but the team plans on running more three and four-man fronts, and the USC product did not have the versatility to play different linebacker positions in multiple sets. That’s an interesting concept and something I have not heard before. Pompei also said that Seattle has the most underrated free agent class.