Friday pre-season week one notes (@ Chargers)

Thoughts ahead of Seattle’s first pre-season game against the Chargers…

— A year ago Seattle’s first choice O-line performed pretty well in pre-season. The three interior linemen in particular (Glowinski, Britt, Ifedi) impressed, even if there were question marks at tackle. For that reason it might be difficult to judge Seattle’s O-line over the next four games. The hope has to be that there’s a level of consistency whoever’s on the field. In 2016 the second choice O-line was tossed around and dominated. If the drop-off in performance isn’t as steep this year, that might be a good gauge that we’re seeing progress.

— Sunday is a big opportunity for Shaquill Griffin. He’ll be starting at outside cornerback with Jeremy Lane out injured. Lane’s lingering soft-tissue problem has presented an opportunity for someone to steal a job. Now it’s up to Griffin to prove he’s up to the task. In 2011 an injury to Marcus Trufant gave rookie Richard Sherman an opportunity and he never looked back. Let’s see if Griffin can emulate Seattle’s #1 corner.

— We know who the impact players are on Seattle’s D-line but it’d be nice to see some depth emerge. The injury to Malik McDowell has impacted the rotation. The Seahawks don’t necessarily need more stars, just contributors. Someone who can maybe get five sacks from the interior and someone else who can take some snaps off the edge. It’d be a relief if players like Quinton Jefferson, Naz Jones, Garrison Smith and Marcus Smith have a good outing. Seattle has studs up front but the depth is a question mark at the moment.

— I want to see a lot of Alex Collins and Chris Carson. We know Eddie Lacy, Thomas Rawls and C.J. Prosise are going to make the team. There’s little need for any of the three to get a big workload this week. Collins has received praise for a productive off-season while Carson has been getting rave reviews in camp. Hopefully there’s an opportunity for Mike Davis to get some meaningful work in too.

— Nobody at camp has talked enthusiastically about the backup QB competition (even Pete Carroll has been unusually lukewarm). This is a chance for Austin Davis and Trevone Boykin to change a few minds. Seattle’s pre-season games last year turned into a difficult watch because of the inexperienced backup QB situation. If neither player performs well in this game, do the Seahawks stick it out or do they look elsewhere?

— It’s been a relatively quiet camp so far for Delano Hill, Tedric Thompson and Mike Tyson (at least in terms of camp reports in the media). Presumably all three will get plenty of reps in pre-season. It’d be nice to feel positive about Seattle’s depth in the secondary again following a 2016 season where it was somewhat exposed.

— Ethan Pocic has turned a few heads in camp and not just because of the shorts he’s been wearing. Is he legitimately going to bump Germain Ifedi at right tackle? Whoever starts at tackle (left or right) in this game is going to come up against Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. That’ll be interesting.

— George Fant has also received praise for his weight gain. It’ll be hard to judge him in the first pre-season game alone but it’d be nice to see signs of development, comfort and playing with greater instinct (not overthinking).

— Can someone stand out in the return game and possibly win a job as a consequence? Tyler Lockett’s return to injury and apparent good health is a boost but do the Seahawks want him returning kicks as usual during the season? Do they need to manage his work load?

— How does Blair Walsh perform? He’s likely on a short leash. If he misses kicks in pre-season they can’t roll the dice. If Seattle’s backup QB’s can’t move the ball and score touchdowns he might get a few opportunities to prove he’s a reformed kicker.

A couple of thoughts on pre-season elsewhere…

— Mitch Trubisky belongs. His debut performance for the Bears against Denver was highly impressive. Just as he did for North Carolina, Trubisky threw on the run with accuracy and velocity, extended plays and looked assured moving the football down the field. He has a ways to go of course but in terms of pure talent, he has a very high ceiling. That was always the case at North Carolina too. Let’s not forget he was only a one-year starter. If the Bears manage him carefully, Trubisky could be an exciting, accomplished passer. The talent is there. He just needs time, development and a not totally useless supporting cast.

— With Malik McDowell injured, prepare for a lot of ‘the Seahawks should’ve drafted this guy instead’ talk over the next few weeks. It’s worth remembering, however, that other teams’ rookies are having growing pains too. Take Kevin King in Green Bay for example:

He’s beaten badly on this play by the winning combination of Matt McGloin and Bryce Treggs. It’ll happen to a rookie. And while McDowell’s injury situation is bitterly disappointing and frustrating — it’s worth remembering that neither the Seahawks or Packers were banking on their first picks in the 2017 draft to launch a Super Bowl tilt this year.

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  1. BradCanuck

    Great stuff Rob. Can’t wait!

  2. Steve Nelsen

    Today was the first Blue Friday of the year. I love Fridays and the anticipation of Seahawks football on the weekend.

    Like you Rob, I am watching Griffin and the O-line. I am hoping to see a solid rushing offense regardless of who is carrying the ball.

    I am also looking to see if any receivers emerge. That is a position where less experienced players can flash.

    And I am wondering if Seattle will show some new plays like a Gronk-style man-to-man red-zone toss to Graham or some long-distance passes to RBs coming out of the backfield matched against LBs. I am hoping both of those types of plays show up more often in the play calling this year and it seems that they have been working on both quite a bit during practice so far.

    • cha

      They’ll probably keep some of the more explosive plays out of the preseason to avoid tipping their hand too much. But if the OL can keep RW clean for even an average amount of time, the vast amount of options even in the base set offense is really intriguing.

    • All I see is 12s

      They’re all blue Fridays

      • Kenny Sloth


  3. Aaron

    Great to see all the guys in action once again, even if the next few weeks are only preseason. Depth appears to be better across the board from last year, especially at running back, o line, linebacker, and corner. Glad to hear a realistic take on the McDowell situation. You’d of thought our team went 2-14 last year and McDowell was being counted on to start and single handedly will this team to the playoffs. It’s not a loss in my opinion, just a missed opportunity for him. Most important thing for him is his health as a human being, the play will come when it comes.

    • cha

      “It’s not a loss in my opinion, just a missed opportunity for him”

      If he’s out for the season as things seem to be leaning towards, yes it’s absolutely a loss. This is a guy who should be ready to assume a prominent role on the defense after 2018, just as the Hawks have to start thinking about making hard decisions on Clark, Avril, Sherman, Thomas, Wright, etc. An impact starter on a rookie deal will make some of those decisions far easier.

      Having 2017 as a lost year, and 2018 as a de facto “rookie year” just makes some of those FA decisions that much harder. Even if MM played and struggled some this season, at least the Hawks would have had 2 full seasons of tape on him and time to work with him in the training room and practice field. Now it could be just one.

      Here’s hoping Reed, Jefferson, and Jones can develop.

  4. cha

    KPL just busted through the line and blocked a punt. Good for him. I hope he finds something in KC.

    • Coleslaw

      They’re the perfect team for him, they are great at making sub packages for all their safeties and linebackers to shine. I could see him being a role player there if he cleans up his tackling and angles.

  5. Rey

    On King’s video it almost looks like he thought there was safety help and was supposed to play under. Just an observation. But great stuff as always!

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      I agree. He was playing a trailing technique, thinking he had help up the field and to the inside. The other CB and I assume S both collapsed on the shorter / underneath route… and that left King 1vs1 and out of position. A teaching opportunity.

  6. C-Dog

    Can not wait for this pre-season game. Excited to see the new blood, and just as excited to see which rooks from last year step up their games to the next level. In a David Letterman inspired Top 10, here’s my count down of the 10 things I am most eager to see starting with 10 this Sunday.

    10. Trey Madden’s conversion to Fullback. Yes, they brought in Reece, who I was excited to see back with the squad, but I’ve been pining for playmaker at that spot since Mike Rob retired and Derrick Coleman decided to drive on the synthetic weed, and preferably I’d love to see someone be that player for the long term. Some praise has started to go Madden’s way this week in his ability to catch, and his nose for special teams. I want to see this guy open holes and also make plays.

    9. I want to see solid LB depth, and not just who starts at SAM. Last year, I held onto a terrifying thought most games as to what would happen should Bobby or KJ be lost for any games. KPL and Coyle weren’t doing it for me, and the Marsh experiment at SAM was, at times, cringe worthy. Getting Mike Morgan back in the second half of the season felt like a God send. Yes, Mike Morgan, a mere depth player in year’s back. I’m excited to see what Wilhoite brings to SAM, as well as backing up Bobby. I’m really excited to see this supposed athleticism Garvin brings to SAM and WILL. I want to see what Alexander does, and I’m intrigued by rookie Otha Peters.

    8. I’m excited about rookies Amara Darboh, David Moore, and what second year player JD McKissic do at WR, and what we got out of TE’s Nick Vannett and the 18 Wheeler Swoopes. Hawkblogger projects Darboh to potentially not make the 53, and I don’t want what he’s smoking. He looked really good in the practice I caught. He practiced big and fast, and showed nice hands. I’m going to agree to disagree with the Hawkblogger; there’s no way they cut this player, and I can’t wait to see him in these games. Moore, I’m also very intrigued with, but McKissic is the x-factor I want to see making plays as a receiver, runner, and returner. If that practice hype be true, Seattle is doing to have some interesting decisions to make in those final weeks, but cutting Darboh ain’t one of them. This is an very interesting group of receivers. As for TE, I want to see Vannett take that next step as a blocker and receiver, and I’m intrigued to see what the 18 Wheeler does as a play maker.

    7. I’m want to see if any cream rises to the top at the back up QBs. A lot is being made how bad these guys have been practicing. The practice that I attended, I thought Boykin didn’t look that bad. Sure, some passes were a bit like, but he had a nice long TD pass on a seam with some good spin on the ball. The kid has some talent, I want to see if it comes to life a bit this Sunday. With Davis, I want to see how he commands and manages, and if he looks like a competent game manager that plays within himself, because let’s be honest, that’s the QB he is.

    6. I want to see how Tedric Thompson does at safety. While not a lot of hype has been thrown at Thompson, Dave Wyman was glowing about him the other day about his physical play against the run, and instincts in coverage. The former NFL MLB is seeing some things there, and I want to see it as well. We know McDougald should be solid, but I want to see if Thompson might be the draft steal that I think he might be. Unfortunately, doesn’t sound like we’ll see Delano Hill. Hopefully, we see him next week.

    5. Chris Carson. I want to see how this kid fairs when real tackling and hitting is involved. I’ve jumped all the way on his hype machine from the practice I watched. I saw a dynamic that is hard to put an exact finger on other than he ran big, and quick, and decisive, and controlled. He looked like a featured back. I’m expecting the hype to grow on Monday. I can’t wait to see this kid run against the Chargers.

    4. Shaq Griffin and friends. Can’t not wait to see what Griffin does running with the 1s, but I want to see what what second years players Pierre Desir and DeAndre Elliott, Neiko Thorpe do. I want to see that next leap and quality depth re-established in the LOB. I want to see what Mike Tyson does at nickel.

    3. Jarran Reed, Naz Jones, Quinton Jefferson, Garrison Smith, and company. The reports of a quicker Jarran Reed in camp are true from what I saw in pass rush drills. He was firing out fast, and his body type is different. John Clayton has thought on the radio that Naz Jones might assume the run stuff role, and the team is looking at Reed being the Clinton McDonald/Jordan Hill pass rushing nose, but I saw some legit pass rush moves during the 1v1s from Jones, as well. Jones could be an interesting player for this team, body type, he is put together similar to Kevin Williams. With McDowell out, however, I think it a Quinton Jefferson catching fire as an inside/out player being Mike B might be the biggest plus. I think Clark could play 5 tech if needed, and Naz has some makings there, but a healthy and active Q Jeff can really settle things. I think Smith is an interesting dark horse at nose. Depth on the DL is critical to the team getting back to the Super Bowl. I feel good about those ends, I want to see the boys inside makes plays. If Seattle decides they can ice McDowell for the season after six weeks, that might mean some quality cream has risen to the top, and that wouldn’t be a bid thing.

    2. The Offensive line. I want to see the starters look settled, and I want to see some much needed depth. I want to see Fant take that next step. He and Joeckel looked good together from what I caught. I really want Germaine Ifedi to come out on fire, but in control, and certain. Ethan Pocic is giving him legit push for the starter spot at RT, but I think the ball is still in his court and the coaches want to see him seise it for the simple fact he has the ideal physical profile that they want out of RT. If he looks tentative or unsure, I want to say it now, Ethan Pocic will likely snatch that job from him because Pocic looked really good in practice. I want to see Rees Odhiambo look like a player who can start and play well, I want to see Jordan Roos look like a player that deserves to be on the 53, but number one, I want to see the starting five settled on Monday so that they can move forward and grow together.

    1. I want to see Russell Wilson looking good, and exiting the game 100 % healthy.

  7. House

    I’m excited to see our guys on Sunday!

    Quill Griffin: I hope he has a good game and continues to progress. The kid seems extremely mature, focused and humble. Great qualities and he seems to fit in immediately.

    OL: It looks like the Left side to C (Fant-Joeckel-Britt) is locked up. RG seems to be a close race between Glowinski and Oboushi. I initially was a HUGE fan of Ifedi getting drafted and while it is now a 2nd season at a different position, I hope he’s not a repeat of the frustration like James Carpenter. Pocic is great insurance as a Jack-of-all-trades OL and could start at C or RT next year. Still way to early to know anything.An interesting tidbit of info I remember when Glow was drafted is that he has several games started @C and that could lead into some more interesting talk heading into next offseason.

    McDowell: It definitely is deflating to have a guy Pete/John were so excited about sidelined already. A Non-Football injury, with his maturity previously questioned, makes it worse. I was reading an interview with Q. Jefferson and he seems hungry. He also seemed positive about the McDowell situation and said he’d reach out to him and MM missing time could aid him in learning the playbook and stuff.

    WR Corp/Lockett: I’d personally prefer AGAINST Lockett on returns due to his growing role in the offense. I understand the dimension he brings on returns and worry about a huge step down without him there. I have heard McKissic is returning kicks. Any word on Grayson?

    and just for kicks and giggles… I think Walsh will have a good season with us. I can’t say I’m surprised Aguayo was waived yesterday. I don’t anticipate us playing games of FGs this year. I want DOMINATING performances!!!

  8. Kenny Sloth

    Im. So. Pumped!!!!!

  9. KD

    So, here is a ridiculous idea: Let’s take a look at NCAA Football 2014 on XBOX360 to take a look at top prospects. I know that the NCAA franchise ended in 2014 because of legal issues, but there are some dedicated people who update rosters every year, including 2017. Of course this is largely subjective, but it is interesting nevertheless. Here are the top 5 for every position, and a few extras (Numbers represent OVR):

    Baker Mayfield: 98
    Lamar Jackson: 98
    Mason Rudolph: 93
    Jake Browning: 92
    Jordan Ta’Amu: 92
    Sam Darnold (91)

    Derrius Guice: 98
    Nick Chubb: 97
    Saquon Barkley: 93
    Justin Crawford: 91
    Miles Gaskin: 91
    Ronald Jones II: 91

    James Washington: 96
    Christian Kirk: 95
    Antonio Callaway: 94
    Jazz Peavey, Keke Coutee, Equanimeous St. Brown, Austin Williams, Ahmmon Richards, Simmie Cobbs Jr, Deon Cain, Calvin Ridley: 91

    Mark Andrews: 92
    Troy Fumagalli: 91
    Dawson Knox: 91

    Connor Williams: 98
    Orlando Brown Jr: 97
    Mitch Hyatt: 96
    Mike McGlinchey: 94
    trey Adams: 92

    Cody O’Connell: 97
    Quentin Nelson: 93
    Wyatt Teller: 91
    Beau Benzaschawel

    Billy Price: 96
    Scott Quessenberry: 91
    Will Clapp: 91
    Coleman Shelton: 90
    Bradley Bozeman: 90

    • KD


      Michael Clemons: 98
      Dorrance Armstrong Jr: 94
      Ogbonnia Okoronkwo: 93
      Nate Howard: 93
      Bradley Chubb: 91

      Dexter Lawrence: 98
      Christian Wilkins: 98
      Ed Oliver: 97 <——— KEEP AN EYE ON THIS GUY
      Eric Crosby: 95
      Da'Ron Payne: 91

      Arden Key: 98
      Will Ignont: 93
      Tremaine Edmunds: 92
      Tegray Scales: 92
      Travin Howard: 91

      Greg Stroman: 95
      Tarvarus McFadden: 95
      Shaq Wiggins: 93
      Jordan Thomas: 92
      7 players @: 91

      Derwin James: 98
      Quin Blandin: 92
      Godwin Igwebuike: 91
      Kamari Cotton-Moya: 91
      Ronnie harrison: 91

      Minkah fitzpatrick: 97
      Jordan Whitehead: 92
      D'Cotta Dixon: 91
      Nick Orr, Breon Dixon, Tre Flowers, Dominik Sanders: 90

    • KD

      SPEED (Number represents player speed rating only)

      joshua Holloman: CIN

      Antoine Winfield Jr. MIN
      Donte Jackson: LSU
      Cornelius Sturghill: LOU
      Chauncey Mason: Arkansas State

      • Dave

        Antoine Winfield Jr? Is he a slot guy like his dad?

        • KD

          He was a freshman last year:

          52 tackles
          2.5 TFL
          3 PBU
          1 INT (82 yards retuned for TD)

  10. Kenny Sloth

    Other OL look at Ifedi like “Wow that’s a big dude”

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      He has heavy hands.. once he gets them on you… you move. ~ This was a quote off the Danny Dave and Moore show when they were talking with a former NFL OLer. His natural position is RT and the last few practices, after the “incident”, he has been playing/practicing much better according to PC during his radio interview Friday AM….

      So lets not give up on him yet, he is the mauler they want at RT.

  11. Dave

    Okay, I’ll be the first to say it. I wish we had drafted TJ Watt instead. While Malik was on an ATV being dumb, TJ was working out with his big brother.

    • Dave

      TJ had 2 sacks in his rookie debut.

    • Kenny Sloth

      The McDowell era has begun about as bone-headed and tragically disappointing as it possibly could have.

      This was the risk taking him and it’s absolutely hit full force.

      He’s not a bad egg, just a big kid.

      Was it a bad investment? Time will tell.

      Not the personality to which we are generally attracted, but he’s ours now and I hope he has a long productive career

  12. PPast

    Thomas Rawls gets the nod to start. Has he outplayed the other RBs, especially Eddie Lacy?

    • KD

      Either way, this is a post-Marshawn era. Someone needs to define the running game. Whoever it is, God Bless, this team needs to get the running game back.

    • Coleslaw

      I’m loosely quoting Pete here, “Thomas is back to the form he was in 2 years ago” I think he said something along the lines of him being past his injury that ended his 2015 season completely now. So, I’d say yeah he’s probably out playing everyone. Which isn’t surprising, 2015 Rawls was incredibly productive and dynamic.
      This actually has me really pumped. 2015 Rawls + Lacy + Prosise +healthy Russ could easily equal the Seahawks being #1 in rushing

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      Lacy is still recovering from the foot thing… so no need to get work in a meaningless game.
      I do not think Rawls will tote the rock more than 2 series.. then you will get to see the 20 other guys the rest of the game.

  13. Overtime

    Germain Ifedi is my biggest question mark going into the preseason. He has to step up and seize the RT position. If he doesn’t, where does he play? Pocic may beat him at RT but Pocic is better suited for a 6th man role this year because he can be plugged into any spot on the line. If Pocic wins the RT spot we may be forced to keep Hunt on the roster to backup the center spot and release Jordan Roos. If Ifedi loses the RT competition he could fall into the bust category quickly. This could affect next years draft strategy and make it more imperative to re-sign Britt and Joeckel to big contracts. Ifedi and QB2 are my only worries about the roster.

    • Kenny Sloth

      Yeah, but…. Ifedi a beast.

      It’s more a matter of which job is won next to him that defines his position.

      We have him and Glowinski at their natural positions I believe (Ifedi could be a guard w/e he’s so talented)

      Our OL just seems a little too brain-smart. I can’t explain it but there’s something very scholastic about Joeckel, Britt, Glow, and Ifedi.

      They’re all highly intelligent, but each kind of had a lot of nerves as they’ve come up.

      Such a strange OL project

      • Kenny Sloth

        Not to say they aren’t tough. They all have a ‘tough guy’ front at least.

        Ifedi is gonna stone some good pass rushers this year. He has a crazy first step for a RT. Time to see if the refs give him false starts for it like I theorized.

        Glowinski will have good rapport inbetween GI and Britt. Won’t have to worry about covering Fant so much.

        Joeckle is experienced in the NFL…. He’s not the LT but understands the position and can keep Fant out of trouble next to another vet in Britt.

        Fant can play a little more freely, at least mentally, with Joeckle next to him.

        I really like Aboushi, Pocic, and Odhiambo as depth across the line. Develop Roos and Senior i GUESS

  14. Kenny Sloth

    Predictions for this game;

    The JD McKissick Show;

    Get ready for your next preseason superstar. McKissick has shown well in camp and garnered universal praise throughout camp. He’s getting tons of touches and can catch as well as he runs fast haha.

    Run Game;

    We will see good push from the OL and the running backs will find space. Perhaps the dam won’t break when the starters are out.

    DL depth;

    Frank will have a sack. Can’t wait to see QJeff and Naz Jones get some interior pressure. Jarran Reeds development will be paramount as well.

    • Shady_Hawkster

      Spot on what I’m most excited about! I’d add finally getting to see Carson run, too. After seeing near daily reports of CC having wow-plays in practice, I’m ready to see him and (a more nfl-ready) Collins run through some defenders faces

      • Kenny Sloth

        I specifically left him out. We might not see him much in hopes of a practice squad stash

  15. FuzzyLOgic

    Carson has too much hype already to be a practice squad stash. I have a feeling Pete wants to see what he can do in live comp.

    • Kenny Sloth

      Eh. He doesn’t have Troymaine Pope hype yet.

      Let’s see him get ONE live snap rq

      • Steve Nelsen

        And there it is πŸ™‚ His first run looked good and then he and the OL made it look easy from the 1 on the TD,

        • Steve Nelsen

          Can we give Carson a Board nickname? Choo Choo works for me.

  16. Thy Hawk is Howling

    Yeah I’m stoked also on Chris Carson and as of now am hoping we will want to keep him and Collins both! Guess we’ll see soon game is under a hour away! Yes finally Football is amongst us once again. Also excited to see Griffin and Thompson play in the secondary!

    Go Hawks y’all!

  17. Thy Hawk is Howling

    Paul Richardson one series a Great catch then left with a trainer after to the room of lockers. F -all ! Unbelievable!

  18. nichansen01

    Ugh I hate this team. Getting smoked by the chargers. All my favorite players getting injured. Fuck this team.

    At least I have the huskies.

    • Kenny Sloth

      Get off the ledge nic πŸ“¦

  19. Kenny Sloth

    Marsh looking good.

    Ifedi and Joey Hunt look better.

    Kenny Lawler had a red zone td.

    Lacy picking up yards after contact. Garvin’s playing like a starter

    • Coleslaw

      Lawler almost had another, but his own hands got in the way lol

  20. Kenny Sloth

    I was right. Germain too fast off the ball he gets the false start

  21. Steve Nelsen

    The backup QB battle is over.

  22. KD

    I’d like to see more out of the run game, but aside from that, everyone is looking damn sharp. Pete has these guys well prepared

    • Steve Nelsen

      5 TDs?

      • KD

        Touche! Lel. To be fair, I typed that at halftime so I got what I wanted to see in the end πŸ˜€

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