Seahawks Insider

Less than a week

Post by Dave Boling / The News Tribune on July 19, 2014 at 7:16 am with 32 Comments »
July 19, 2014 7:16 am

Surely you remember the big revelation on the first day of Seahawks training camp last year. New threat Percy Harvin had a hip injury that might need surgery. Wait, you mean that the guy who cost three draft picks and $26 million guaranteed is broken?

It was giant news at the time. As it was when it turned out his surgery would endanger his entire season. In the end, the team excelled in his absence.

By this time next week, we’ll know a lot more about  the 2014 Seahawks, as Friday’s first practice of training camp will be our first look at them in more than a month. And if any Harvin-esque bombshells developed during the Seahawks’ summer vacation, we’ll hear about them.

A couple developments that will intrigue will be how well the rehabilitation of post-surgical Pro Bowl talents has gone since the last minicamp. Safety Kam Chancellor and left tackle Russell Okung are the two most concerning. Chancellor (hip) and Okung (foot) were on the hoof but not participating during OTAs, with their readiness for training camp pending this last month of recovery.

Coach Pete Carroll’s standard approach is to be cautious and patient when bringing players back from surgery. And there’s no need to rush veteran players like these two.

Linebacker Bruce Irvin is coming back from hip surgery, too, but since it was conducted this spring, he’s not expected to be back as soon as Okung or Chancellor. Irvin’s game is about speed, so a full recovery is crucial to his effectiveness. And while Okung and Chancellor have enough experience at their positions to be able to slip back into the lineup when health permits, Irvin was in his first season at linebacker last year, and could be fairly considered as someone still developing in that role.

Of curiosity, of course, will be the drama that attends back Marshawn Lynch.  Lynch conspicuously missed OTAs and sat out minicamp with what was called a sore ankle. Speculation held that the workhorse back is unhappy with his contract. He’s the engine that drives the Seahawks’ run-based offense. But he’s 28, been heavily used, and the Hawks have been stockpiling depth behind him. He gets such limited action during training camp as it is, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be a story for either his ankle or his contract situation.

Super Bowl MVP Malcolm Smith is coming back from ankle surgery, too. And receiver Sidney Rice continues his recovery from knee issues that cost him much of last season. As we look back to last year’s early days in camp, another hot item was Rice’s trip to Switzerland to get treatment for his knee. He ended up having a small impact (15 catches) on the team in a season when the depth and talent of the Seahawks made so many of the big camp concerns fade into minor stories.


Leave a comment Comments → 32
  1. SandpointHawk says:

    Nice, having coffee and a new Insider post from none other than Dave Boling. Thanks Dave, for starting my weekend right…

  2. montanamike2 says:

    Great work, a new post that was long overdue. Thanks Dave.

  3. Dave Boling says:

    You’re welcome guys. If you’re like me, the start of training camp is one of the best days of the year. Back when it was in Kirkland, I remember getting to the headquarters before anybody was there to unlock the doors. I was one who actually loved it being in Cheney, where it was pretty much double-days steady for a couple weeks. It was wall-to-wall football: Morning practices and interviews, interview access when the guys were done with lunch, afternoon practice and interviews afterward. You really got a chance to get to know the team and the staff in that setting. Now, at the headquarters, and just single practices, it feels a lot more like the regular season. Would be really stupid, though, to abandon that amazing facility for somewhere else.

    Hope some of you are going to be at camp practices. If you see any of us on the sidelines, feel free to give a shout and introduce yourselves.

  4. Dukeshire says:

    Cheney was amazing. Even us fans had such incredible access to the players. You’d seem them around town, get right up to them at practice, it was really fun.

  5. Southendzone says:

    Ahh the memories. We focused so much of our attention to Percy last year. I was among the most worried of all playing the what if game.

    Now with him healthy coming off a killer SB performance, I’m psyched to see what he does this year. From what I’ve seen & heard from him the guy has a great attitude and we know he’s one of the top athletes in the entire NFL.

  6. Southendzone says:

    Oh, this is a cool tape breakdown of the tip. Check it out

  7. sluggo42 says:

    Gee, a new thread!

    I remember each year we have gone thru the “dead zone” where we wouldn’t get a new post for a week or so, and have hundreds of posts… Everyone would be jacking each other up as the tensions mounted. Then finally the preseason would begin, and everyone would begin their personal analysis of whatever, proclaiming their inside knowledge and brilliance! Yes, it’s a grand time of year, and we are all Sooo ready for this year to begin.

    A year unlike any before. A year in defense of a Super Bowl. Insane expectations, lofty goals of repeating, accolades from every corner of the sporting world. Fresh new gear to be worn for every game, ( I got a $300 game jersey #12, with my last name sewn on, badassed you bet!) the fan base has probably tripled or even more as the entire world of bandwagoneers has climbed aboard the Seahawk train.

    We truly sit atop the sporting world right now, and the glory is great. We earned it as faithful fans for almost 4 decades. On paper, we will repeat. The games are a mere formality. But, we play in an arena that is cruel and fleeting, and aptly named, the NFL


    I will continue to absorb this era of Hawk football, with every fiber of my soul, for who knows how long it will last. History shows it’s nearly impossible for the stars to align twice, can we do it again?


  8. djbargelt says:

    Thanks Mr. Boling ( heavy on the Mr. ! ) for another nice post. Along with Dave’s list of camp “what if’s”, I am looking forward to how the O’line positions shake out, and the battles for receiver spots. Man, it’s been a long/short summer wait!

  9. CDHawkFan says:

    Don’t like to see those Pereira tweets (rules against DB) up on this page, stay away from the LOB.

  10. Macabrevity says:

    Really interested in seeing (or rather hearing/reading about) how the O-line looks. I’m curious if you guys know whatever happened to the most highly touted O-lineman of last years camp – Rishaw Johnson? PC seemed to be glowing about this guy and then he sort of disappeared. I know he’s with KC now, but wondering why?

  11. Dave Boling says:

    As you say, Rishaw ended up with the Chiefs, and not only got on the field late in the season, apparently impressed them. As I recall, the talk was that they liked him here, too. I think he was just pretty raw. It’s not as if the guard spot was locked down to any degree, so if he had shown more he likely could have had a shot. As I was looking back at the start of last training camp, it was interesting that we focused on the competition at right guard between JR Sweezy and John Moffitt. Interesting how that turned out, and also a reminder how things can change fairly dramatically.

    I’m with you on wondering about the offensive line, especially when considering that they have only two really proven starters, and one of them is coming off foot surgery. Even if Okung comes back to full health and Pro Bowl form, it’s still going to be a very young group. I think another thing I’m eager to see early in camp — and this could have a huge part in how that group performs — is whether James Carpenter can continue what I thought was an impressive career revival in the off-season. He not only looked leaner, but also was playing with a lot of energy and passion. Again, staying healthy has been an issue, but he was pretty impressive in OTAs and minicamp, and if he can start performing at anywhere near the level expected of a first-rounder, that will greatly solidify the front.

    We’ve talked a lot about Bowie and Bailey here, and I thought they looked as if they continued to advance. But the real addition, of course, could be Britt. He’s very close to Breno’s size, and moves really well. To me, he looked very mature and game-ready. In that way, he reminded me a little of Unger when he came in — smart and tough.

  12. SandpointHawk says:

    For the love of mike TNT let (or make, or ask, or plead, or twist his arm even, etc…) Mr. Dave Boling run the blog. I’ll buy a subscription to your online paper just yo help a little…Bliss, bliss and happiness. Thanks Dave….

  13. SandpointHawk says:

    *to help

  14. Ray_Maines says:

    The thing about James Carpenter is that we’re hearing he’s lost 15 lbs. and that’s not very much for a man of his size. If he looks noticeably leaner he must have dropped 30 or more. No matter how much weight he’s lost, his knees will be happier. Good for him.

    What if….

    What if it all comes together for the O-line this year? What if Okung and Unger stay healthy, if JC plays like a first round pick, if JRS totally gets it, and if the right tackle plays like Tom Cable envisions? What if RW doesn’t have to run for his life and BeastMode just runs anywhere he wants? In my Glass Totally Full world, this could be a very wonderful year for the ‘Hawks and all of us.

  15. Macabrevity says:

    I’ll add my vote for Dave here… the added value is some personality comes through on his posts which always makes it a more interesting read.

    I’m guessing Boling is in high demand though and running a blog ranks exactly where on his to-do list?

    If DB doesn’t take this thing over, then whoever’s next might at least want to take a peek at how it should be done.

  16. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I third that!!!

    A little bit of Boling goes a long way.

    He wouldn’t have to check in much or even post links.
    We can handle that.

    Just bring us those great stories from time to time & some tidbits now & then.

    Just five minutes a day? Please?

  17. Thank you Mr. Boling, for the new post and your answering comments.

    I wont push to have Boling run the blog, being a slave to the blog doesn’t sound like a lot of fun to me, and he’s valuable enough elsewhere. But if he took the reins, I would be thrilled.

    A Blog by committee might work. Boling could drop by whenever, and add whatever, and wouldn’t have to feel tied down and having to give us links and a new post on the weekends before 9 am to suit the rabid geeks…

    The line is the most important group on the team to watch this season. As the line goes, so goes this team. Im excited to watch every positions group, but mostly the Lines and the WR’s. Everything else should be pretty much the same.

    I am very excited to see Britt at RT and the new and improved Carpenter at LG. I wish Bowie was backing up Carp and not being forced to be a square peg in a round hole at RT.

    Preseason is actually my favorite time of year, because their is no pressure to win. I love watching the young guys and fringe players, trying to guess who’s going to make the team. Its armchair GM’ing at its best, even more fun than the draft.

  18. I fourth it and second what Georgia said. Just 5 min a day and an occasional inside story would be super huge. I mean Dave even answers in the comments from time to time and not just to say he fixed a word or link pointed out by one of the bloggers. The dude gets “it” thanks Dave. :)

  19. Good I get to fifth it! I like fifths anyway. Dave is a GREAT writer!

  20. Dave is and has been the best TNT guy for a long time. He clearly loves covering football and it shows. TNT is lucky to have him. And so are we when he posts and is interactive with us.

  21. Here. I’ll start the chant: “We want Dave! We want Dave! We want Dave!”

  22. We want Dave! We want Dave! We want Dave! etc……

  23. seatowntp says:

    Since were are waiting for real football to begin, just thought I’d forward this link.

    Very, very cool spoiler alert.

  24. AzulVerde says:

    We want Dave!! We Want Dave!! …… repeated 100times!!
    Go Dave..
    Oh wait thats suppose to be go Hawks


  25. Ray_Maines says:

    I see that 31 year old RICHIE INCOGNITO is unemployed. Any takers? Umm, I didn’t think so.

  26. Ray_Maines says:

    Danny O’Neil says that for every one of us there is a simple line graph, and we all have to stay under the line or we get dumped. The vertical axis is the “Pain In The Butt” score, going from zero to 100%. The horizontal axis is the “Value To Me” score, again going from zero to 100%.

    Richie Incognito is a pretty good lineman, lets give him a 65% score along the horizontal axis. But RI is a huge pain in the ass, so we give him a 90% score on the vertical axis. In other words, he’s above the line. And he’s unemployed, imagine that.

  27. banosser says:

    by Southendzone

    Oh, this is a cool tape breakdown of the tip. Check it out

    There was a really well done video breakdown (Hawks biased of course) of the tip posted some months back.. google searches yield bupkis.. anyone remember which one I’m referring to and can help me out?

  28. FleaFlicker says:

    Bruce Irvin will definitely be an interesting story line this year. He did not exactly impress last year at LB. But was that a function of a new role or a nagging injury? Maybe a healthy hip make Bruce the LB envisioned, or maybe a year of experience makes the difference, or a combination of both. Fingers crossed…he’s not rushed back into the mix and we get to see Bruce at 100% go speed for the first time in a while.

    Like Dave B, I’ve got high hopes for Justin Britt. It was a radio spot with Cable a a while back, maybe on Brock and Danny. Tom Cable was saying that he was particularly impressed watching him line up against ends in the SEC. Specifically, against some guy named Clowney, where [I'm paraphrasing here], “It was just another day at work, didn’t faze him, and he shut his guy down; I love that.”

    The two other intriguing picks I’ll be watching: Kevin Pierre-Lewis and Eric Pinkins. One has speed (fastest 40 time in the LB group at the combine), the other has uncommon size (or maybe perfect LOB size) at 6’3″, 215 lbs. Based on the track records of Ken Norton Jr. and Rocky Seto, those two lower half draft picks could turn into real ballers.

    It’s hard not to like every single guy in this draft class, as well as some notable UDFAs like Jeffcoat, and I just wish that all of them would have the opportunity to stay on the team in some capacity to see how they turn out with some development time and NFL level coaching.

    And speaking of redshirts, Jesse Williams, Jordan Hill, and Christine Michael have me all sorts of intrigued.

    So many great stories/players to follow in the next few weeks!

  29. Macabrevity says:

    I was actually impressed with Bruce’s athletic ability at LB, made some plays that other guys just wouldn’t be able to, and yet the thing that keeps him from being an every down pass rusher is the same that will limit him as a LB…. dude shies away from contact.. Once contact is made, he’s out of the play period, and I don’t know how many times I’ve seen a pile-up at his feet with him backpedaling to stay out of it. I’d say try him at CB (j/k) but our corners are way more physical.

  30. CDHawkFan says:

    The Hawks (and other teams) always seem to be playing around with TE, I thought if Irvin doesn’t beat out the other guys at LB or DE they could try him at TE. He can run, tall and freakishly athletic. Has a hard time taking on a OL blocks so might be the same vs DL, but he will most likely be up against another LB of S, I would like his chances, but time is running out for that kind of change.

    BTW, I liked him enough at times last year to give him another year on D, but just watching him move makes me think he could excel at TE.

  31. confucious says:

    Always good to hear from Boling! It always helps when the author of the blog is a fan of the team the blog is about.
    Great post sluggo42. Well said.

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