Reporting Bill Swartz
While Friday night’s game in Green Bay, Wisconsin is just an exhibition, it matters plenty to Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll. With first stringers playing well into the third quarter, Carroll and his staff will get a read on what strengths and weaknesses the Hawks might have in the real season.
Following Thursday’s light walk-through practice Carroll stated, “Pre-season is very important to us. There are so many lessons here and we take them very seriously. While we don’t game plan, we grow and learn more about who we are and what we are capable of doing.”
That said, several front line Seahawks will not play against the Packers because of injuries, or just so they don’t aggravate old injuries.
Carroll said tight end Zach Miller, receiver Sidney Rice, and defensive lineman Jesse Williams will be held out. Rookie defensive lineman Jordan Hill has a strained bicep and will be day-to-day according to the coach. Fullback Michael Robinson has been sick all week, and won’t make the third pre-season game.
Those absences open the door for other players to bolster their hopes of making the 53 man roster. Carroll said veteran defensive lineman Tony McDaniel will start. The former Miami Dolphin is 6′-7″ and has a long wing span, which could influence the passes of opposing quarterbacks.
Veteran defensive back Antoine Winfield missed Thursday’s practice with a sore knee. Expect Walter Thurmond III to cover the Packers slot receivers in the first half.
Cliff Avril (foot) and Bruce Irvin (groin) are both game time decisions according to Carroll.
Rookie Spencer Ware is expected to see plenty of action at fullback in his battle with Derrick Coleman.
Defensive back Will Blackmon is very excited to play at Lambeau Field. He was drafted by the Packers and made his mark by returning punts for Green Bay between 2006 and 2010. Blackmon told me he did the “Lambeau Leap” in both end zones and still has several friends in the organization.
Will James Carpenter be ready to play the first regular season game? Pete Carroll said the big offensive lineman is making progress from his planter facsiitis injury and could return to practice next week. If Carpenter answer the bell, it gives Seattle the option of moving Paul McQuistan to right guard instead of starting J.R. Sweezy.
Bill Swartz, 1090TheFan
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