Good sunny Sunday morning. The Seahawks were off Saturday and are off again from practice today — days off mandated by the most recent collective bargaining agreement. The players return to practice Monday through Thursday for Friday’s third exhibition, at home against Chicago. This week will likely be most starters’ final and most-extensive preseason action before the Sept. 4 opener against Green Bay.
–In today’s News Tribune I highlighted the three players I feel have gained the most through two preseason games: Terrelle Pryor, Robert Turbin and O’Brien Scholfield. Each has been in the league more than a day, which is why each doesn’t feel he’s done nearly enough yet to earn a roster spot. They are right; nothing is conclusive yet midway through the exhibition schedule. But after this third preseason game is when the coaches will make most of the key roster decisions.
–Columnist Dave Boling has found one defense that can slow down one-of-a-kind Percy Harvin this season: Seattle’s.
–seahawkfan97 brought up a great point in yesterday’s comments: how about the transcribed quotes?
Ask and receive.
While apologizing for dumping a batch of them on you for the first go-round, here is what the Seahawks said late Friday night in the locker room and — in the case of Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson — at the conference-room podium following the 41-14 win over San Diego in the second exhibition game.
Notice even Wilson’s signature “Go Hawks!” at the end of the interview is transcribed(!)
Friday, Aug. 15, 2004 — Postgame after 2nd exhibition game vs. San Diego
HEAD COACH PETE CARROLL
(Opening…) “We had a real nice night tonight; it’s great coming home playing here and getting off to a good start. What jumped out was just in general, I thought we played real hard and ran fast and it looked like we had full energy tonight across the board. Really happy with the first team offense to move the ball like that and score 4 times, it was great. The first team defense held up and didn’t give up a score all night, gave up a couple of first downs. So, that’s about as much as we can hope for in this first night coming home. I think also, we cut our penalties down to a third, that’s a big deal for us. We only had 40-something yards in penalties. We really felt like the night was pretty clean for the most part in that regard, and that’s a big step for us, we really wanted to clean up that line of scrimmage and we got that done tonight. A lot of real positive things. I can’t remember a game where four quarterback touchdowns were scored in a game. Maybe back in the Oklahoma days, when they were running the ‘bone or something, Thomas Lott, remember him? It was a real good night.”
(On the offensive line getting more push…) “We certainly ran the ball well. We had a very good week of practice, it felt like that week of work really translated to tonight. We came off the ball well and all of the running backs were able to get some running room, hit it nice and show some good stuff. Turbo ran really hard tonight, and I thought Christine did a nice job, too. When you get 240-something yards rushing that’s a big night, and we were proud of the offensive line play.”
(On whether there was concerns on Christine’s fumbles… ) “Yeah. Both of them the same. The tacklers got underneath him and he was low on both cases, but they got their helmet to the football, and he needs to protect it more. That’s not something that we’ve practiced. We’ve not been in that situation and I’m hoping that he’ll learn from it because it’s really the exact same situation, I believe. He allowed the defender to get under him where the ball is vulnerable and they knocked it out. He needs to fix that.”
(On the penalty on Simon’s long interception return…) “I can tell you that the official said that he had his hands on him 7 yards down the field, instead of 5. I got to see it again, but I thought it was a perfectly executed two-hand jam and press and turn and roll with the ball and made a great play. It was a great play. We’ll see if it was 7 yards down the field, I don’t know. If it was, it was a legit call.”
(On whether he felt that penalty was part of the new emphasis in 2014… ) “Yes. I think it’s pretty obvious. I know we talked with the officials during the game, too. I hope that the league office will be open to the conversation. They already are, I’ve already heard from them. They’re open to the conversation about how it’s going. It doesn’t seem quite right. It seems like there are too many calls being made and too many incidental calls that seem to be affecting the game. So, we’ll see. They were going to do a thorough job of it, and they’re really tuned in. It’s obviously different. So, the question is, is it better. I don’t know. Hopefully we’ll have a good conversation about it.”
(On the play of O’Brien Schofield…) “He was all over the place. He’s competing his tail off to make this football and make his mark here. It showed up last week and again this week. He’s doing it every day in practice, so I’m really fired up for him.”
(On Michael Bennett not playing tonight…) “His hammy was bothering him a little bit in pregame. He didn’t get hurt, he just felt it tighten up, and so we made the decision not to play him.
(On Unger…) “We just want to make sure we get him back and healthy and this is a big week for us with a few other guys, too. Hopefully, it will work out for us.”
(On playing Russell Wilson as long as he did…) “We were going to play him the half. As things went on, we made the decision to get him out. “
(On the play of Russell Wilson…) “He played really well. He threw the ball away, and he missed one pass on the night, I think. He really made great decisions, moving and getting out, and didn’t let them hit him and all that. I thought Russell, he was really dialed in. He played really good football.”
(On what he saw with the second team defense….) “The running game was better. We did a better job at the line of scrimmage. Because of the score, we didn’t get taxed the same way we were last week. I thought the pass rush was pretty hot. We had four sacks tonight, and we were close some other times, so that was nice. I thought Benson Mayowa showed up a little bit, too, with Schofield. Also, it was great to see Cliff Avril get off the rock so well a couple times. He had a couple great rushes in there. The fans helped us. The 12th Man was right there helping us on our pass rush tonight.”
(On the rushing of the quarterbacks…) “Everything worked out great. They took advantage of the opportunities exactly as they were prepared to, and again they let Terrelle take off, and boy, that was a tremendous play. It was a great burst of speed. We’ve seen him do that before, and so they gave him a chance, and he made it look awful easy, to score from 40-something yards out that easily. Pretty impressive”
(On how Pryor played tonight…) “He didn’t get enough chances. The game just went so fast. We were going to put Tarvaris in there, but then we thought the way the game was going, we wanted to get B.J. a chance if we could. So, Tarvaris will go with the Twos next week, and he’ll get a good dose to get him playing football. None of the guys got a big chance, the way the game went. Russell kind of stole the show early.”
(On Brock Coyle….) “He had 8 tackles from what I heard. He had a couple good knocks. He’s playing really good football, we’re really excited about him. He’s done nothing but positive stuff in every way. Like I said before, for him to jump in there and command that group on defense and call the calls and make the adjustments, and really not have a hitch to it, that’s really a statement of his preparation and smarts and his background. And, he’s tough, so we’re really excited about him.”
(On Turbin’s long run…) “It was a real nice read. He cut back great against the flow of the play. He got out in the open, and I love the finish. I’ve been trying to get Turbin to straight-arm somebody since he got here, and he had a dominant straight-arm. He finally used one in big fashion; I was really fired up for him. It was a great read, a great run, and then a great finish, too. So, it was a hell of a play”.
(On whether he schemed for third downs…) “No, we just kept doing the things that we’ve been doing, but it was a really good night for us. 8 of 11 we had on offense. Again, not quite as good on defense as we want, but to execute like that was really sharp for the offensive side.”
(On whether Baldwin was ok after the hit he took…) “Yeah, he’s fine.”
(On any other injuries…) “Horace Miller hurt his knee. We’ll have to find out. He’s going to get an MRI and all that. He got a good twist on his knee.”
QB RUSSELL WILSON
(On the good start and good momentum…) “I thought, offensively, we really clicked, we really made a lot of great plays out there. Our execution was unbelievable. Even backed up, we made some nice plays. The offensive line did a tremendous job tonight. The receivers did a great job. Zach Miller catching that ball down the middle was pretty awesome. There were so many different guys, and you think about a guy like Robert Turbin, who has worked so hard every day. He catches the ball extremely well. He protects extremely well. Obviously, he runs extremely well, too. When you think about his year last year, he had an unbelievable year, and he’s really in the groove right now. So, watching him run the football was really exciting.”
(On the offensive line play…) “I thought the offensive line was really clicking, the communication was great. We really executed. The running backs were making the right holes. The receivers did a great job on the flank blocking for them. I was able to get a couple runs, as well as the other quarterbacks, too.”
(On how much more explosive Turbin looks this year… ) “Robert Turbin looks so explosive out there. He’s so quick, and one of the things he’s been working on is his flexibility and his mobility. He gets in and out of his cuts a lot quicker. He’s physical as can be; he runs right at you. That’s one of my best friends on the team, he’s my roommate, so I root for him every time he gets the ball.”
(On whether he knew Turbin was that fast…) “I knew he was fast. He thinks he’s faster than me. I would have to take off the pads and see, one day. ”
(On whether he tries to be more careful running in the preseason… ) “I never play careful. I play smart, but I never try to play careful. I think that it’s really a lot of instincts, and trusting my guys, trusting what we’re doing. I’m always looking downfield, I’m never looking to run. When things happen, to just be able to extend the play, I still try to keep my eyes downfield and try to hit a receiver downfield.”
(On whether he feels the offense can be explosive this year…) “I definitely believe we can be that explosive, and it all starts first of all with the offensive line and how well they’re doing. I think they did a really good job running the ball in terms of fitting up on their blocks, and also pass protecting as well. Then also, you think about our receivers. We have so many talented receivers who can do so many different things. Obviously, Percy Harvin looked good tonight, very very quick, very fast, catches the ball extremely clean. He’s physical too, as well. To get him the football as much as we did. We were able to hop into that two-minute offense, because we really wanted to work on our no-huddle offense a little bit, no matter what the situation was, no matter what the score was, we really needed to practice that, because we’ve been working on that all training camp. We were able to do that tonight for a short period of time. I think we did a really good job of that, too. Just capitalizing, I think we want to be explosive, we also want to run the football extremely well, and still be explosive in the running game, but also the passing game.”
(On whether the stadium felt like a regular season game…) “The 12th Man fans make it a regular season feel, even though it’s preseason. The energy in the stadium, the electricity is something special. That’s what makes it so special to play here in CenturyLink. It’s truly one of a kind.”
(On whether there is significance that the Seahawks and Chargers play again in September…) “I’m not worried about messages, I think every game’s different. We play to win every time, no matter if it’s preseason or a regular season game or playoffs, we treat every game as a championship game. I think we really did that tonight. We got back in that groove of really believing that and seeing that. I think that we brought our energy and our effort. We made so many great plays out there, offensively, defensively and on special teams. If we can transfer that over to the season, that’s a great thing. In terms of sending messages, I don’t think it’s anything like that, I think guys are just trying to, first of all, make the team. Guys are trying to make sure they put their best foot forward on both sides, for the Seahawks and the Chargers. It was a battle but at the end of the day, we were able to make some plays.”
(On Pryor’s touchdown run…) “I told Terrelle as he got over to the sideline, I said you may be faster than me, just by a little bit, but I’m still quicker. He hit the edge pretty quick, and he was moving.“
(On Turbin’s 47 yard run…) “I had an unbelievable view. I like watching those guys run the football. The guys fit up really well in their blocks, and Zach Miller made a great block on the edge. Robert, like I said, has been working on his flexibility and getting in and out of cuts. He’s so fast and so physical. He put his foot down, stopped on a dime and kind of cut back to the right and just accelerated past everybody. He was physical at the end of the run, too. Those are the things that Robert Turbin brings to our offense, to have a guy like Robert Turbin. You obviously think about Marshawn, and what he can do too, obviously, but to have a guy like Robert Turbin, who last year had so many huge runs, and they got called back for whatever reason. The thing about his ability, catching the football, protecting and also running the football. He’s truly an exceptional player.”
(On the stiff arm at the end….) “He’s got those huge arms, so the stiff-arm was crucial I think. He’s really been working. Every day, all the running backs, all the players, really. That’s one thing I’ve noticed more than anything else in our offense right now, is the way we practice, we’ve really been trying to train and visualize, and this is the communication we’ve been talking about. Every time we touch the ball, we got to make something happen. Make sure you finish the run, finish the catch, get into the end zone every time. At least a 15 yard acceleration after the catch. Our offense is really training ourselves to get explosive like that. We have the guys to do it. You look at the receiving corps, you look at the tight ends, you look at the running backs. It’s pretty exciting.”
(On the value of winning a preseason game…) “There’s value every time you step on the field. Whether it’s practice, or a game, a preseason game, a championship game, like a playoff game. Even watching film, there’s value in everything that we do. I think the championship mindset that we talk about, there’s a purpose to everything that we try to do. The communication that we have, the execution, the visualization, all that plays into a major factor or role into the success of our football team, day in and day out. So, if we can continue to have that mindset of truly believing that and really seeing that, we have a chance. We got the right guys to do it, we have the right coaching staff, we have the best fans in the National Football League, so it makes it exciting every day.”
QB TERRELLE PRYOR
(On Seahawks QBs scrambling) Obviously we have four quarterbacks that can move, make plays, and throw the ball on the run. Coach sometimes says that sometimes when you get in the game you know, you may have to run and get some yards at first to get in a rhythm a little bit. Just to move the chains, we got a couple first downs off a couple scrambles, BJ made a great play off his scramble in the pass. That’s what it’s about. Taking advantage of those opportunities, getting out in the open throwing the ball whether you’re running and you know Russell ran two scores in pretty nice, one off of design and one off just scrambling. Just from that instance, I think we played a great game and doing what coach tells us to do.
(On Seahawks scoring) On the one drive coming out, we could’ve done a little better with that. Somebody dropped the ball on the sideline. We should’ve been able to score, that’s a touchdown. You have to take advantage of that. Russell did a phenomenal job; defense did a phenomenal job, just a team effort across the board. As I was talking to coach, I felt like I wasn’t in rhythm. So the couple times I ran I felt like I wasn’t in rhythm with the play after the first two reads. So sometimes it’s like that. You got to go make a play for your team and get the chains moving.
RB ROBERT TURBIN
(On improvement from last week) It’s just continuing to keep getting better and continuing to be disciplined as a runner. It’s not always going to be daylight, sometimes you have to create some, sometimes you have to make people miss and break tackles and things like that, and some games the run game just doesn’t work for us. You can’t go for 100 every time, but we just focused on the run game this week in practice, really emphasized the details of our blocking scheme and we did a better job today.
(On the 47-yard run) That was all offensive line, tight ends, fullback, just creating the seam for me. On something like that it’s just my job to stay disciplined to my read and make the cut. I was able to do that and my receivers did a great job of blocking downfield. I don’t think you guys understand, but they did their role too. Receivers a lot of times are the reason we have big runs they get up field, they block the safeties. I give the credit to my team.
(On improvement of offensive line) That’s the goal, we want to get better every week.
WR PERCY HARVIN
(On how things went) “We just want to come out here and establish our offense. Start to get our passing game going a little bit, starting to get a little rhythm. We were able to get a two minute drive towards the end of the second quarter, so that was good. So it’s all just being fluid, our running game that’s going to be dominant so we are just trying to pick up on our passing game, we are going to be tough to beat.”
(On Russell starting out 8-for-8) “Definitely He’s been on his game all camp. Receivers, we’ve been getting open all during camp so we’re just going to turn that over to the game. I think we did good stuff today.”
(On him not playing this much at this time of last year, and the fans being just as loud as regular season) “That was actually one of the first things coach said in our team meeting last night was to come down here and kind of establishing our fans, you know, setting the tone for this year and I think we came out here, made a couple plays so they’re ready.”
TE LUKE WILLSON
(On offensive rhythm) It was a good day. I felt like we’re really on schedule today. Converted extremely well on 3rd down, which was our focus for us and it’s nice to get the TEs involved. Me and Cooper with a nice couple grabs so it was good stuff.
(On feeling like a regular season game) I think it did. I think part of that is just being here at CenturyLink. We really take a lot of pride in being great at home. We didn’t really like the outcome of last week’s game so we kind of wanted to get on track.
(On 3rd down conversion) We went 8 of 11 so I think if we can keep that phase up we can be #1 in the league. So it’s one of those things where 3rddown its good execution and last week we struggled a little bit, it was the first game so we had to get back into it. Today we looked a little bit more relaxed and we got a lot more done.
OT JUSTIN BRITT
(On overall play of offensive line) The whole offensive line, not just the first group, the second group, the third group, everybody was clicking and it was good to see.
CB THAROLD SIMON
(On his positioning on his pass breakup as well as his nullified interception) Yeah, I just had to get my feet wet for the first time. When I went up for that first one I felt a little jitters and then I was locked in. I told myself “next play” and then the next play came – the next few plays came – I made sure I got the pick
(On if his fellow defensive backs will give him a hard time tonight) Yeah, they’re going to give me a very hard time. They gave me a hard time on the sideline. But once that happened like I said you got to go to the next one.
(On his conversation on the sideline with Richard Sherman after the nullified interception) Richard just came up to me and was like “that was a bad call.” He told me “great position, great play, they’re going to review it, and stuff like that.” He’s always in my ear telling me either “bad play” or “good play.”
(On the fact that despite the flag, he will still show up on film making an interception) It’s a great feeling. I mean, just to get out there and get reps, go out there and prepare for the next play, next game. It’s just fun being here.
FS EARL THOMAS
(On returning punts) I’m always going to make the first man miss and I just like to see myself try to take the game in a different way and just try to help the team out. We’ll see what happens, I’m just excited for the opportunity and I’m glad I’m just swagging out trying to catch the ball. I’m making it look like I’ve been playing as far as catching the ball, I’ve just got to make something happen.
(Getting use to the feel of returning punts) The more and more I watch myself carefully on tape, that’s how I really get better. I really just stare at myself and see the little missteps, maybe if I could have gotten my feet square, where do my eyes initially look as soon as I caught the ball when I look it in. Just every little detail to try and make it a better rep next time.
DE O’BRIEN SCHOFIELD
(On him being disruptive in the backfield tonight) I just came out and played as hard as I could, just showed my teammates that whatever game it is – anytime I’m out there on the field – I’m going to give 100% effort. I love the game so much, so it’s the least that I could do.
(On this game feeling like a regular season game) Yeah man, the 12s are always so supportive. It’s amazing to play in the Link [CenturyLink Field]. I mean that’s something special that we always look forward to. It’s great being at home.
(On the depth of the linebackers and defensive line) I think on this team, whether you’re a 1 or a 2, you’re going to get opportunities to play on this defense. We do a really good job of keeping guys fresh. Especially Coach [Travis] Jones our D-line coach, he really believes in keeping the pass rushers fresh. When you do that you can get some great results.
LB MIKE MORGAN
(On the team improving its overall performance from last week) Definitely, I think we came back, and we re-focused. There’s just some things we messed up on last week, we kind of got back to the drawing board and just focused and played harder today.
(On playing in front of the 12th Man again) Any time we got a game we know the 12th Man is going to be loud, and they showed up today once again.
(On the depth at the linebacker position) It’s awesome, man. Just having the depth that we have right now, it’s probably the best we’ve had since I’ve been here. So it’s just fun to get out there and just play with all those guys.
(On how the defense benefits from the offense playing well) It’s awesome, you know, sometimes it’s good to be off the field (laughter). When the offense is driving you get your rest.