Category Archives: The roster

Special changes could net big returns

NFL draftIn the last two weeks, the Seahawks’ special teams have undergone a major upgrade — and they might get better yet.

Sure, the field goal game is again a question — the team apparently relying on a 40-year-old who missed last season with a back injury and can’t kick from 50 anymore. But the rest could be really strong, thanks to a new punter, another dynamic returner and potentially big rule changes.

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Cliff Avril: A great leader and ‘statesman’

Avril on NFLNThis day was destined to come, but it doesn’t make it any less sad to see a stellar player’s career end (at least in Seattle) due to injury.

If you measure the best by (1) how they played and (2) how they comported themselves on and off the field, Cliff Avril goes down as one of the best Seahawks ever. He was pure class as a player and remains so as a person. (Just check out his Players’ Tribune tribute to Seattle.)

As Pete Carroll said after rookie minicamp Friday: “He has been a great leader and a bit of a statesman for us. He always says the right thing and stands for the right stuff and he has been a really high-character guy who you can just always count on. He has been a great competitor in the program, and I love him, and we’d like to keep him connected with our club as long as we can, because he’s just exactly what you’d hope to represent you.”

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Hawks should have what they need for the O-line

NFL draftSome — maybe even many — people thought the Seahawks screwed up by not drafting an offensive lineman before the late fifth round last weekend.

Sure, they could have selected Austin Corbett or Will Hernandez instead of Rashaad Penny with their first pick (after trading down, of course). But the Seahawks have put a lot of resources into the line over the past couple of years, and Pete Carroll obviously is betting Mike Solari will do a much better job with that talent than Tom Cable did.

Carroll is expecting Solari to boost the Hawks out of a two-year funk that has seen them rank second only to Detroit in fewest rushing yards by non-quarterbacks. (Russell Wilson’s 845 yards raise Seattle to 11th worst.)

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A look at the roster after the draft

NFL draft“You never hear a doctor come out of a surgery, ‘You know what, I don’t know if that was such a good surgery.’” — John Schneider

As always, and as with every team, the Seahawks think their draft went well. Of course, they got their typical mixed reviews from analysts (the NFL’s worst grade in this composite) — understandable considering they drafted Rashaad Penny and Will Dissly higher than most ranked them and then traded up for a punter.

We’ve long known Schneider is not great at getting the best value for his picks — certainly not like the Patriots and some other teams are — but, throwing draft strategy out, it looks like the Hawks landed five roster locks and a couple of potential projects. And they kept Earl Thomas (reportedly ignoring Dallas’ offer of a third-round pick on Day 2).

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Schneider overrules Positive Pete on Thomas

Pic -- Schneider at CombineNot 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.

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Topic of the day: Quarterbacks

Draft -- Schneider and CarrollQuarterbacks were the topic of the day for Pete Carroll and John Schneider on Thursday. The gist of their individual messages: Colin Kaepernick still could be an option (don’t count on it), Russell Wilson’s contract is not a problem (it really isn’t) and Schneider feels like he has done a poor job of acquiring quarterbacks behind Wilson (he has).

In separate interviews, Carroll and Schneider were asked about the recent Kaepernick brouhaha, and both waved off the protest topic and gave lip-service answers about their level of interest.

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Secondary queries: A 2 for Thomas? And use it on a corner?

NFL draftWith the draft fast approaching next week, the Seahawks have solidified almost every position on the team.

After re-signing Austin Davis and Paul Dawson, they at least have a pretty full complement at every position — some obviously stronger in talent than others. The one spot that is still very unsettled is the secondary.

Yeah, they have re-signed Bradley McDougald and Justin Coleman and added Maurice Alexander, Dontae Johnson and C.J. Smith. But we still don’t know whether Earl Thomas will remain a Seahawk or who will be the No. 2 corner opposite Shaquill Griffin.

Continue reading Secondary queries: A 2 for Thomas? And use it on a corner?