Posted August 30, 2012 on
AP on Fox
Conventional doesn't suit Pete Carroll. Never did in college. Certainly doesn't calling the shots in the NFL.
Since taking control of the Seattle Seahawks, he's given second chances to those with checkered pasts at previous NFL stops, tried players in nontraditional positions and given lower round picks plenty of chances to make their mark.
Now comes Carroll's biggest gamble - choosing to start rookie quarterback Russell Wilson after paying handsomely to sign one of the hottest free agents available in the offseason in Matt Flynn.
If successful, Carroll could be on the brink of turning the Seahawks into the regular contenders they were during a five-year run of playoff appearances in the middle of the last decade that included four division titles.
If he fails, and the Seahawks struggle, Carroll will face increased pressure and scrutiny after going 14-18 in his first two regular seasons in charge.
''We need to always be in tune with conventional wisdom,'' Carroll said. ''However neither (general manager) John (Schneider) or I feel like we have to operate under that particular guidance system. And we're not. And we haven't since we got here.''
If the Seahawks are going to be successful, Wilson will not be that much of a factor. Yes, he'll need to make plays if the balanced offense Carroll wants is to be successful. The team is built around the bullying running of Marshawn Lynch - and rookie Robert Turbin - and a young, aggressive and confident defense on the rise.
Pound the ball with Lynch, use arguably the best young secondary in the NFL to create havoc, and Wilson doesn't need to be a star. And, if Wilson continues his stellar play from the preseason when the season starts, then Seattle may have its next franchise quarterback.
''Even though I'm a rookie, I believe in the fact that I can help this team win and do a lot of great things,'' Wilson said. ''We have an unbelievable defense, we have a very strong offense and great special teams. We just have to keep improving. It's a great opportunity. I'm fired up about it, that's for sure. I can't wait.''
The three-way quarterback battle between Wilson, free agent Flynn and Tarvaris Jackson stole most of the headlines during training camp. But Carroll also didn't shy away from generating more attention. He signed wide receiver Braylon Edwards then brought in Terrell Owens for a look, creating a circus around the normally ignored Seahawks.
Jackson is gone, sent to the Bills, and Owens is gone, too. Edwards likely will be a significant contributor. Seattle also added tight end Kellen Winslow in a trade with Tampa Bay.
There was some trouble, too, with Lynch being arrested for DUI in California in July. On the field, his rugged running style made him the most productive back in the NFL over the second half of the season.
Wilson can only hope Sidney Rice and his surgically repaired shoulders can stand up to a full season and a return to form that saw him make the Pro Bowl in 2009, when he caught 83 passes for over 1,300 yards in Minnesota. While Edwards gives Seattle another veteran target, the continued development of young receivers Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin will be equally important.
The Seahawks' secondary is solid, with cornerbacks Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman and safeties Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor perhaps one of the best foursomes in the league. Ten of 11 starters are back on defense, with rookie middle linebacker Bobby Wagner replacing David Hawthorne.
If there's a defensive concern, it's the pass rush. Chris Clemons is back, and the Seahawks used their first-round draft pick on rush specialist Bruce Irvin. They also signed defensive tackle Jason Jones from Tennessee.
''I just want to win; however we can do it, whoever can get the attention,'' linebacker Leroy Hill said. ''We know we're good, we know we have all the components in the world to be a (good) defense. That showed last year.''
Online: http://bigstory.ap.org/NFL-Pro32 and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL
Follow Tim Booth on Twitter: http://twitter.com/ByTimBooth
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Russell Wilson isn’t the only rookie making some noise in Seattle.
J.R. Sweezy, a defensive tackle in college (North Carolina State) converted to playing guard in the Seattle offense, and so far has looked pretty good in the preseason.
"I couldn't be more pleased with J.R.," head coach Pete Carroll told the Daily Herald. "He is so far ahead of expectations...
The Seattle Seahawks released wide receiver Deon Butler today and activated guard James Carpenter from the PUP list. The emergence of Braylon Edwards made Butler expendable.
#Seahawks released WR Deon Butler, which means WR Braylon Edwards made the team.
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_RealUpdates) September 1, 2012
#Seahawks 2011 first round pick OL James Carpenter was removed from...
Braylon Edwards made the Seahawks' 53-man roster, with the team waiving former draft picks Deon Butler and Kris Durham amid a flurry of moves to reach Friday's roster limit. Charly Martin also made the receiving corps for now, with promising speedster Ricardo Lockette let go. Among the notable names of players waived was quarterback Josh Portis, meaning the team will...
Wide receiver Kris Durham, a fourth-round pick in 2011 who has struggled with injuries, was among the Seahawks' roster cuts down to Friday's 75-player limit, according to The Seattle Times. Durham had three catches as a rookie before landing on injured reserve with a shoulder injury. He has been struggling to stay on the field this preseason as well, and was expected to...
The Seattle Seahawks have kept veteran wide receivers Braylon Edwards and Ben Obomanu on their final 53-man roster and waived returning young receivers Deon Butler, Kris Durham and Ricardo Lockette.
The Seahawks waived 16 players on Friday night. They waived/injured tight end Cooper Helfet and running back Vai Taua; reached an injury settlement with defensive lineman Pep Levingston...
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin has been out with a hamstring injury and likely won’t play in this week’s preseason finale.
“It’s doubtful receiver Doug Baldwin will play against the Raiders, either. He is still recovering from a hamstring problem. Doctors had to drain some fluid last week,” wrote Bill Swartz of 710 ESPN in Seattle.
Baldwin had a great...
No word yet on the Seahawks cuts. The deadline is 6pm PT.
But Danny O'Neil the Seahawks writer for the Seattle Times just tweeted that Deon Butler is on the list of players not being retained.
Butler is a 3rd round pick from the Mora/Ruskell days.
Danny O'Neil @dannyoneil
Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll admitted that he was worried about whether Sidney Rice was going to be ready for the regular season. But now he believe’s he’s good to go.
“It really guided a lot of our thinking in the decisions that we made … with the receiver position,” Carroll said per 710 ESPN in Seattle. “We weren’t sure, you know? But he’s proven...
Big Red Bryant is a beast of a man. He can't jump to high. Today I bet he's wishing he could jump just a couple inches higher though.
HE chipped his tooth last night jumping, no wait, head-butting Jaye Howard after his 4th qtr safety.
Howard got the end zone sack for a safety to slap an exclamation point on the final quarter. It was a hell of a play.
He then ran...
By 6PM Friday, all NFL teams need to cut down to a roster of 53 players. This means that NFL teams have to cut 22 players from their current 75-man roster. At first, 53 doesn’t seem like a very small number; there are only 22 people on the field at any one time. It would seem that a roster size of more than twice the number of people on the field would allow teams to have all the...
Rookie quarterback Russell Wilson played just one quarter in his final tuneup before the regular season, so high-priced backup Matt Flynn led Seattle on a three scoring drives. The Seahawks closed out the second perfect preseason in franchise history with a 21-3 win over the Oakland Raiders on Thursday night.
Wilson saw limited action just days after winning the quarterback competition...
Braylon Edwards has made himself quite at home in Seattle. The receiver recently gave statements on the difference between his current QB, Russell Wilson and Jets Mark Sanchez who he played with during the 2010 season. Seattle Seahawks receiver Braylon Edwards has played with rookie quarterbacks before. In Cleveland it was Brady Quinn. In New [...]
A long time ago, 'Diva' wide receivers roamed the earth and these types of wide receivers are increasingly becoming added to the endangered species list according to every major sports journalist on the planet right now. With the recent releases of Chad Johnson and Terrell Owens, are diva wide receivers really on the endangered species list?
Seahawks Raiders Story-lines
I’m sitting here writing this at 1:00 Thursday morning, in large part because I spent the day traveling to Eastern Washington to pick up my nephew. He will be attending his first Seahawks game.
I have to be honest here, he is not a Seahawks fan, he’s a Buccaneer’s fan. Even-though he is not a member of the 12th man he has a deep hatred of the...