Not long after Pete Carroll tried to quell any trade talk about Earl Thomas on Thursday, John Schneider made it clear the Seahawks are still listening.
“He’s a Seahawk. I don’t know what anybody’s talking about,” Carroll told KJR. “He’s a Seahawk and we’re happy to have him.”
Asked whether the safety would report for training camp, Carroll said, “He’d better be there. He’s on the roster. We’re counting on him.”
Asked why he was not at the offseason workout program, Carroll said, “Some guys make those choices. Not always do all of the players make it, for various reasons.”
A little while later, at his annual Ben’s Fund event, Schneider said Thomas would not hold out, but he also offered a much less optimistic take on the safety’s future with the team — basically the same stance the GM has had since the Combine.
“He is (on the team) right now. I mean, he’s on our roster,” Schneider said. But will he be in September? “I hope so. Yeah, I hope he is. He’s under contract.”
That is the same lukewarm endorsement Schneider gave at the NFL owners meetings, and it tells us Schneider is still hoping to get the right offer for the All-Pro safety. He said Thomas’ agents “know where we are at’’ regarding Thomas’ contract and “nothing has changed” since they talked at the Combine. Schneider previously said they were not talking extension, and it still sounds like Seattle is very open to trading him.
As for the report that the Hawks are going to cut Malik McDowell, Schneider said, “That’s ongoing. We are still waiting on some guidance on that.”
We take that to mean the Hawks are waiting to find out the financial and cap implications of cutting McDowell. They surely are hoping to avoid the $2 million cap hit from an outright release and recover some of his signing bonus.
Meanwhile, Carroll all but confirmed that Michael Bennett was traded at least partly because he had tuned out the coach. Bennett told SI.com that he read books during meetings last season.
Carroll told KJR, “He never brought a book to a meeting.” But then the coach reminded everyone that people can read books on phones these days.
“That’s my job to figure out who’s with us and who’s on it and who’s got their stuff together,” Carroll said. “I have no problem making those choices when the time comes. So you’ve seen some changes have occurred, and it’s time to keep moving.”