Swartz: Seahawks Linebackers Worthy Of Nickname
Seattle’s fabulous secondary of Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor and Byron Maxwell is collectively known as the “Legion of Boom”. What do you call a group of linebackers which made dozens of important plays in the 2013 Seahawks’ championship season?
Middle linebacker Bobby Wagner is open to suggestions, but doesn’t believe the group has been worthy of a lofty nickname quite yet.
“Those are pro-bowlers and all pros, (LOB), so we got to earn some stuff first. I feel that’s going to happen this year, ” said Wagner after Monday’s OTA session in Renton.
Wagner had a solid second NFL campaign with a combined 120 tackles, two interceptions, and a fumble recovery. His goal in 2014 is to stand out more.
“As a middle linebacker I feel you have to be the leader of this defense. I know the secondary does a great job, but I want to make a lot more plays, and be a lot more vocal, and really just stand out.”
Each member of Seattle’s highly ranked defense is raising the bar from a year ago. Wagner wants to improve his “man” pass coverage, and gap fits on running plays.
Seattle has a stable of talented linebackers in their third and fourth years in the NFL. Eventually the team must decide whether to reward them with long-term contracts like Seattle has with the “Legion of Boom” members.
“I think it’s good. As far as in the locker room you know they’re not looking for somebody outside to fill spots, ” said Wagner. “They’re trying to stay in house. That makes you feel good the team believes in the players they have in the building. So, that makes you work harder.”
Wagner initially signed a four year deal and won’t be an unrestricted free agent until 2016. Former first-round draft pick Bruce Irvin is also under contract another two years.
Versatile K.J. Wright and Superbowl MVP Malcolm Smith are free to shop the open market in 2015. Veterans Mike Morgan and Heath Farwell have been competent back-ups and vital special teams contributors the past three years, but will be pushed in open competition in the coming weeks.
University of Idaho product Korey Toomer is healthy and Seattle used a fourth round draft pick on Kevin Pierre-Louis from Boston College.
The 1972 Miami Dolphins had the “No-Name Defense”. Perhaps the Seahawks’ linebackers can just call themselves good.
-Bill Swartz, 1090thefan-
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