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Carroll: TE Carlson to have season-ending shoulder surgery; Carpenter and Giacomini split reps at RT

Post by Eric Williams on Aug. 30, 2011 at 4:49 pm with 35 Comments »
August 30, 2011 4:49 pm

There’s lots of stuff happening today, so let’s get to it.

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll announced the tight end John Carlson will have season-ending shoulder surgery to replace a torn labrum, and will be place on the injured reserve list.

Carlson has missed the last two preseason games with the hopes that he could avoid surgery, but know will have to spend the final year of his rookie contract rehabbing from shoulder surgery.

The move makes you wonder what the Seahawks knew about Carlson’s health when they signed free agent tight end Zach Miller during the first week of training camp.

Carroll said losing Carlson is a blow to the team, but that they have decent depth at tight end, with Anthony McCoy and Dominique Byrd playing well, and Cameron Morrah (toe) working to get back on the field.

“We were so excited about having Zach and John playing together,” Carroll said. “And unfortunately that’s not going to happen now. … It’s disappointing because John had a great start to camp. He was rockin’ and rollin’, and those two guys out there together looked really good.

“But fortunately our tight ends have really played well. Anthony has done a good job, and Dominique Byrd has done exceedingly well catching the football and getting open.”

The other big news is rookie James Carpenter and Breno Giacomini split reps at right tackle with the first unit today. Carroll said that Giacomini will be given an opportunity to compete for the starting right tackle job.

“It’s a competition that we’re just continuing,” Carroll said. “And Giac has done a nice job. He’s put together a really good preseason, and he’s been very solid. He hasn’t played against the same guys all the time, but he has had a very solid preseason.

“And he’s been around a little more. And so we want to make sure that he has the opportunity to show and see if he can help us. So we’ve decided to give him some opportunities with the first group.”

Offensive line coach Tom Cable understands that Carpenter has been through a lot in a compressed amount of time because there has been no OTAs or minicamps. But he doesn’t want to make excuses for him either.

“It can’t be an excuse,” he said. “If you notice, we try to give them as many reps as we can. We’re probably playing that group more than you normally would. But we need to. And I think Saturday was a perfect example of how much they need to continue to play, and continue to grow.”

Carroll said offensive tackle Russell Okung is pretty close in returning from his left ankle injury, but likely will not play against Oakland. Okung again was a limited participant in practice, working in some individual drills and against air in team drills.

“He feels really good,” Carroll said. “I think if this was the opener he would try and go this week. And we don’t have to do that. We can make sure we put together some really good days back-to-back, and make sure we take advantage of this long weekend and all of that. And so that’s the plan at this point. But he’s really close.”

Carroll went to say that Okung has to work a little more laterally before trainers can free him up to do more things, but he can run around and he’s not feeling any pain.

Carroll wouldn’t say how long the starters would play on Friday against Oakland, other than they need a lot more work.

“I don’t know that yet,” he said. “I want to see how the next couple days of practice go, and then will determine that. But in my mind they need to play some. So whatever that means.”

Some tidbits

* Carroll confirmed that the team had recently released veteran center Andre Gerode in for a visit.

“That’s just us taking advantage of the opportunities,” Carroll said. “He’s kind of taking a tour right now and looking at some places. And so we were fortunate to get in on him and visit with him.

* WR Sidney Rice got a little banged up in practice and had his shoulder treated with ice, the same shoulder that kept him out of the first preseason game at San Diego.

Rice had a couple spectacular plays during one-on-one drills today, including a one-handed, back shoulder grab against Brandon Bronwer, and a two-handed grab where he went over Marcus Trufant.

* Ben Obomanu had to leave practice after he hit his head on the ground as a precautionary measure.

* Josh Pinkard (knee) did not practice, and neither did Isaiah Stanback (hamstring).

* Carroll said Marshawn Lynch (ankle) and David Hawthorne (knee), who both did not practice today, will not play against Oakland on Friday. Aaron Curry (knee) also did not practice. David Vorbora worked a strong side, outside linebacker today, with Leroy Hill at weak side, outside backer and K.J. Wright at middle linebacker.

Notes from practice
Leave a comment Comments → 35
  1. Looks like Byrd will make the cut until Morrah gets back

  2. Giacomini was a 5th Rounder taken by Green Bay…We signed him off of their practice roster. Seems that Schneider must like this guy. I hope he takes the opportunity and kicks ass!

  3. Carpenter wasn’t jus struggling during games. I noted before watching him closely and him proving to have difficulty with speed rushers showing obvious signs of frustration and even recieving one on one coaching from cable and Okung. In succession he was beat by brock twice and Jameson Konz once. Jameson beat carp off a straight edge rush and ran around carp and Brock feigned inside to out then fiegned a bullrish then peeled to the outside… All three maneuvers beat carpenter handily.

    I don’t care if he was put on an island. He needs to step up in a big way..

  4. DisplacedSeahawkFan says:

    Giac splitting the reps at right tackle is the best thing that could happen to Carpenter. This should let him know that he can be replaced for not performing, regardless of when he was drafted. Hopefully he’ll take the hint and live up to his talent.

    Sucks about Carlson though.

  5. seahawk44 says:

    Giacomini earned 2nd team all big east honors his senior season at Louiville while allowing only 4 sacks and 2 pressures on 491 pass plays.
    If Gurode signs and the starting line is:
    Okung / Gallery / Gurode / Unger / Giacomini……that looks really good on paper. Moffit and Carpenter can then get their experience by spelling the right side and providing more muscle on run plays.
    I wouldn’t doubt this happens. Coach wants to win and with our QB situation, The O-line must be solid asap.
    Too bad about Carlson. I truly believed he was going to have a great season and be a major weapon in two TE sets.

  6. Just curious am I the only one on this blog that is not enamored with John Carlson?

    He runs great routes and reads coverages for a TE at the expenditure of poor blocking….

    Zach miller is an immediate upgrade. I don’t feel we lose much of anything with Mcoy replacing Carlson.

  7. SeahawkFan12 says:

    I may have missed this, but have we cut from 82 to 80 yet? And if not, perhaps Carlson’s move to IR makes one of those tight roster spots free up (i.e. the safety position, for one).

  8. Dukeshire says:

    For those of you who thought Carpenter was struggling, wait until you get a load of Breno. Unless he’s gotten significantly stronger since his 2 years in GB, this will not go well. (He looked a little less stiff in the preseason opener against SD, at least.) I suspect this “move” serves only to focus Carpenter’s attention.

  9. Carlson may not be a great blocker but he’s better than all the other TEs we had last year at it or they would have gotten the crap assignments of staying in and blocking when he would have been freed up to run routes (like Morrah in pass patterns and Carlson blocking when they were on the field together last year).

    Carlson may not have become the TE that some of us thought he would (or hasn’t yet) but he’s far from a bad player.

    I feel bad for him and hope he’s resigned. I want to see him and Miller together next year (catching passes from Flynn, Palmer, Luck, Barkley, etc. – i.e. anyone not named Jackson).

  10. RT is the new LG. lol (with a painful “laugh”)

  11. Dukeshire says:

    Carlson is a fine TE. He’s not the dynamic athlete guys like Finley and Graham are but he’s absolutely a contributor. With Miller under contract now, his future is may be somewhere else, sadly.

  12. I’d like nothing more than to have him resigned this year so some of his “new” contract could/would go against the salary cap this year instead of in the future (assuming we’re still under, which we are). However, it’d be pretty tough, I understand, to wrap that much money into the TE position and he’s probably going to get definite good starter money from someone else.

  13. I have a real feeling (and yes, I know it’s early), that Carpenter is going to turn out to be like another Ruskell O-Lineman. Locklear, Spencer, etc all over again.

    I really would like to have seen Gabe Carimi instead of him.

  14. Don’t get me wrong I don’t think Carlson is a bum. I absolutely believe he is a contributor but once miller signed Carlson became more than expendable. The inhumane seahawk fan in me was actually bummed when i heard about his injury because i felt we could have gotten a solid return on Carlson..

    Color me cynical…

  15. AaronCurryIsBUST says:

    Yeah with each passing day with more negative reports about Carpenter struggling, I wish more and more we drafted Gabe Carimi :(

  16. Hopefully you don’t have to change your name to “James CarpenterIsBUST” when Curry is eventually shown the door.

  17. Ruskell actually didn’t draft Locklear. But he did resign him once he was about to hit free agency.

  18. I know I mentioned this yesterday, but how weird is it that we all wanted Carimi and that’s who Ruskell traded up to get? Or part of the regime that did it.

  19. That’s a strange ordeal IMO. I see he figured out how to get cutler to stay on his feet, too bad it cost him his job before he figured out what to do in SEA.

    I guess in terms of 1st rounders, 2/3 aint bad. I may just be stupid for thinking a first rounder should be able to contribute in his rookie season…

    Then again, when there’s only 1 of 32 teams giving him a 1st round grade, maybe that’s expecting too much. I’ll never forget nick saban dropping his jaw and saying “wow? The first round?”. When the pick was announced.

  20. SeahawkFan12 says:

    In case you missed it (I know I did) we released defensive tackle Jay Alford and safety Ricky Thenarse to get down to 80:

  21. No word on Mike Karney’s visit?

  22. Yeah. That’s pretty bad when his college coach and former NFL coach not too long ago was shocked he was a 1st rounder.

  23. SteelBlueLime says:

    Another Tidbit:

    Chicken-N-Rice, Rice-N-Beans, SeattleQB to Rice…..?????

    Why is it we only get to read about this – wouldn’t it be nice to see in an actual game where there is contact and blocking; not just read about in “practice” drills.

    6-wins – HA HA HA, I’m taking the under!!!

  24. BobbyAyala says:

    James Carpenter is going to be fine. He came in out of shape, he’s learning a new position, and his head is spinning like a top.

    All of this panic button crap is way, way out of line. Football players develop, they must have time to learn.

    The best thing this team can do is throw him out there and let him learn.

  25. williambryan says:

    I have a feeling Carpenter will be just fine. I also expect Chicago’s line to continue to be a turnstyle (Carimi included) and be near the top of the league in sacks allowed. It would be ridiculous not to expect Carpenter to struggle.

  26. Soggybuc says:

    Karney flew in and was supposed to get 2 days of practice and Fridays game for evaluation. but they just sent him back home instead. poor guy, they yanked his chain twice (and his family) was hoping to see him play for us as he seems to be more of a pure blocking FB and Robinson a better pass catcher. and lord knows we need blocking help.

  27. EyeAmBaldman says:

    Agreed, Bobby. Carp has to learn by being on the field. If Breno was any good he would have played more last year. Didn’t the Niners start 2 rookies on the O-line last year? And they struggled to protect their QBs as well. I remember everyone saying how awesome their line would be, and they were not impressive. It takes time. Not every lineman can be Walter Jones, unfortunately.

  28. williambryan – How is it that Carimi has looked good and Carpenter has not when both have been LTs and both are learning to play RT? And why do you think Carimi is going to struggle on the Chicago OL when he’s looked good up to this point, but Carpenter is going to be fine when he’s looked as bad as he has up to this point?

    I wrote a big post on the last topic about how Unger/Moffitt/Carpenter need to start all 16 games together this year and we take our lumps as we go so I’m certainly in no way, shape, or form writing him off. He needs to play and we need to see what he can do with a year of experience and an off-season to get his ass in shape and ready to roll in ’12. But I am curious as to how one bases an assumption that the one who has looked bad is going to be the good one moving forward and the one looking good is going to be a problem? There may be logic to it, but I’m just not seeing it right now.

  29. “Ben Obomanu had to leave practice after he hit his head on the ground as a precautionary measure.”

    What’s he doing hitting his head on the ground as a precautionary measure? Trying to get the cobwebs out?

  30. Soggybuc says:

    LOL canfan, maybe he was just prepping for the bad mid field hits TJ is going to lead him into.

    i think what carpenter really needs is some DE talking S*%# and getting him pissed off! then maybe he’ll lay the jack ass out a couple of times and thats when he’ll understand that he CAN do this and he DOES belong. he just doesnt look confident out there.

  31. freedom_X says:

    Interesting how so many people can decide that after 4 weeks one player is going to be good and one player is going to be bad.

    Historically, the tackle position has been a lot like QB – it took a while to learn the trade. The advent of endless offseason programs, OTA’s, etc. accelerated the learning curve and enabled rookie tackles to contribute faster than ever.

    But this year’s crop had nothing. So less polished products are going to be exposed more. If Seattle didn’t take this into account, then they miscalculated. But I assume that they feel Carpenter has more upside than Carimi, and it’s worth the wait.

    A classic Ruskell pick is to take the more polished, accomplished college player and shy away from the higher upside, but unfinished or flawed product. So people here want a Ruskell pick now?

    Orlando Pace was a big disappoinment his rookie year, Walter Jones outplayed him by a mile. But Pace came around, obviously.

  32. I don’t think anyone is calling Carpenter a bust yet. It’s just that we’d all be feeling better right now if he hasn’t been looking like crap in his first month of football (whereas other rookies haven’t looked that bad).

  33. Kind of like when Ruskell took Mansfield Wrotto and his massive upside over one of the best OL in football?

  34. nighthawk2 says:

    I had severe reservations about Carpenter’s pass blocking skills when he was drafted, coming from a run oriented college team. But with drafting Moffitt next, I thought it signaled a shift to a power run game.Then came Darrel Bevel and his ego, he seems to think lke Shanahan, that he can make chicken salad out of any old chicken crap, and talks the team into signing some severe chicken crap at QB and throwing the ball all the time. Lo and behold, Carpenter’s lack of pass blocking skills are exposed. Here’s an idea, put a TE on the right side or Clayton in the backfield to pick up Carpenter’s whiffs. Problem is, our top draft pick from last year has a glass ankle and we’re likely to need a TE on the left side to help too. Well, Carroll did say he wanted to run a lot of two TE sets.

    Speaking of which, if they knew or strongly suspected the condition of Carlson’s shoulder, then signing Miller was a stroke of genius. A much needed contrast to the idiocy of the other “big name” free agent signings, and makes a lot more sense.

    “Kind of like when Ruskell took Mansfield Wrotto and his massive upside over one of the best OL in football?” Who is one the best OL in football that we passed over? Jermon Bushrod? Maybe you’re thinking of Ruskell taking Baraka Atkins (DE) that round and passing on Doug Free. Atkins went at 120, Free at 122 to Dallas, Wrotto at 124 and Bushrod at 123 in 2007. I agree that if we had taken Free and Bushrod we wouldn’t be talking about OT right now, but Bushrod didn’t come on until the 2009 season and Free was not talked about much until last season. However, we’d be looking pretty good with those two now.

    How about when Ruskell traded our 1st round pick in 2007 for Deion Branch and missed out on drafting Ben Grubbs? Or took Aaron Curry instead of trading down and getting a tackle?

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