After Russell Wilson makes a few easy throws and Marshawn Lynch gets a couple token carries against the Chargers tonight, it’s time to watch some key position battles. I will be paying attention to defensive linemen and cornerbacks, receivers and running backs.
Coach Pete Carroll is excited to see Christine Michael run from scrimmage and return kickoffs. The rookie from Texas A & M has looked explosive in training camp. Rookie fullback Spencer Ware and former UCLA Bruin Derrick Coleman must show they can pass protect and catch the ball.
Doug Baldwin, Sidney Rice and Golden Tate are a lock as starting receivers. Jermaine Kearse in his second year from UW has drawn rave reviews from the coaching staff for his improvement. Phil Bates, Stephen Williams, and Juanita High School alum Bryan Walters must show up in game conditions and shine on special teams to win the 5th and maybe 6th jobs.
On the defensive side of the line I need to see someone push the middle of the pocket and make life uncomfortable for the San Diego quarterback. Penn State rookie Jordan Hill could be that interior pass rusher Seattle lacked last season. Veteran Tony McDaniel has the long wing span to tip passes at the line of scrimmage. Second year man Jaye Howard has potential to be a force in the trenches.
This Seahawks secondary might be the deepest in team history. Other NFL teams in desperate need of cornerbacks will no doubt be recording the plays of Jeremy Lane, Byron Maxwell, DeShawn Shead, and Walter Thurmond III.
If Luke Willson and Sean McGrath struggle to block their men, it would not surprise me to see the Seahawks bring in another veteran tight end in the next couple weeks. Zach Miller’s foot injury is improving, but Seattle’s run-first offense could use another proven player at that position.
-Bill Swartz, 1090TheFan
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