Posts Tagged ‘Seattle Seahawks’

Seahawks Somehow A Sleeper Heading In To 2016 Season ?

seahawks

The Seattle Seahawks have been led by Pete Carroll for six seasons. During that time frame, Carroll led the club to five playoff berths, three division titles, two conference titles and one Super Bowl title. Seattle is just one year removed from making back-to-back Super Bowls. And yet,

The Seattle Seahawks have been led by Pete Carroll for six seasons. During that time frame, Carroll led the club to five playoff berths, three division titles, two conference titles and one Super Bowl title. Seattle is just one year removed from making back-to-back Super Bowls. And yet, it feels as though the Seahawks are slipping out of the NFL forefront.

Part of that is self-explanatory. The salary cap has been catching up with this organization for a couple of years now. With so many highly talented players reaching the end of their deals, Seattle was forced to jettison a lot of depth as well as pay stars their market worth.

It started by moving on from players like Red Bryant, Percy Harvin and Zach Miller. Then it was Golden Tate, Super Bowl MVP Malcolm Smith and Brandon Browner.  As the years went, Max Unger and Cary Williams were out the door in a trade and a release respectively. Russell Okung, Bruce Irvin, Brandon Mebane, Jaye Howard and J.R. Sweezy ventured elsewhere as well. Then Marshawn Lynch retired. Suddenly, the Seattle roster, which had been the envy of the league in terms of depth, looked like a stars-and-scrubs knockoff.

With those changes, it was only natural that the team would begin to decline. Even still, last year, while they were worse than they had been, the Seahawks still put together a pretty impressive season overall. I mean, making it to the to the second round of the playoffs is a huge achievement to most organizations. But that was far from the level of expectations of the fan base or the team itself.

This brings us to the 2016 NFL season, where Seattle seems to have taken yet another step back in the public consciousness. Another offseason has resulted in even more roster turnover. Perhaps more importantly, another season has seen the advancement of the Arizona Cardinals, who are now deemed the cream of the NFC West crop to most observers. It’s not necessarily that Seattle has gotten any worse, though its offensive line will certainly be an area of concern even after the selection of 2016 first-round pick Germain Ifedi; instead it’s that Arizona has passed it over.

But the Seahawks still have a case as an NFC title contender. They are still led by Pro Bowler Russell Wilson at quarterback. They have the breakout star at running back, Thomas Rawls, to fully take over for the departed Lynch after he played so well in a relief role a season ago. They have another full year of Jimmy Graham pending as the former Pro Bowl tight end gets acclimated into the offense. They still have the Legion of Boom and most of its founding members, as well as a fearsome linebacking corps.

Suddenly, the two-time conference title winner is looking like an underrated and under appreciated foe entering this season. Even the fans were starting to question some of the moves made by the Seahawks, leading to this feeling of disappointment. It is hard to imagine that a team that has won double-digit games for four straight seasons is being disregarded, but here we are. Just don’t bury the Seahawks among their past cap casualties just yet.

Joe is a co-founder of Rukkus, a web & mobile marketplace for sports tickets. As a former Division I pitcher, he has a deep love for sports and a passion for writing.

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3 things the Seahawks need to do to make the playoffs

Thanks to a rough start that included an upset loss to the St. Louis Rams and a defeat in the hostile environment of Lambeau Field, the Seattle Seahawks are 0-2 and don’t look at all like the Super Bowl favorites they were supposed to be. It’s not too late for the Seahawks to

Thanks to a rough start that included an upset loss to the St. Louis Rams and a defeat in the hostile environment of Lambeau Field, the Seattle Seahawks are 0-2 and don’t look at all like the Super Bowl favorites they were supposed to be. It’s not too late for the Seahawks to right the ship, but their task is a serious one. With a great Arizona team cruising at 2-0 and competitive divisions around the conference prepping potential Wild Card teams, the Seahawks stand a very real chance of missing the playoffs. They also have a great chance to reverse course and head to the postseason – as long as they do these three things.

Bring back Kam Chancellor

Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor has been holding out for a better contract and hasn’t yet played a game for the Seahawks this year. By the standards of these things, you have to think that this holdout is going pretty well. With the Seahawks 0-2 and showing an uncharacteristic tendency to give up big pass plays, it’s time to start listening to Chancellor’s demands. Aaron Rodgers is good, but James Jones isn’t Jordy Nelson and shouldn’t be burning your secondary for 30-yard touchdowns in crucial situations. This is a defense-first team that relies on their secondary, and Kam Chancellor is an essential part of that.

Beat the Cardinals

The best thing you can say about the Seahawks’ first two losses is that neither was to the Arizona Cardinals. Sure, they lost a head-to-head with Green Bay that puts their odds of a conference-leading record on life support, but the Seahawks are in no position to whine about number one seeds right now. They need to win their division, and thanks to their schedule, they still technically control their destiny in that respect. Two wins against Arizona would make up for the two losses to start the season while giving the Seahawks an important tiebreaker. The two Arizona showdowns are the Seahawks ninth and 16th games. Don’t be surprised if the division comes down to the final week’s game in Arizona.

Throw the ball to Jimmy Graham

The Seahawks picked up Jimmy Graham to make a difference at tight end. So why aren’t they throwing to him? He was targeted just twice in the Seahawks’ loss to Green Bay. The biggest play by a Seattle tight end in that game came courtesy of Luke Willson. Jimmy Graham is better than Luke Willson. This should be a no-brainer.

Graham is explosive, of course, but he also needs to a threat in short yardage situations. There, he can draw defenders off of Marshawn Lynch (and vis versa). Targeting Graham benefits the entire offense. Why this isn’t already a huge part of the Seattle game plan is a mystery. Why pull of a blockbuster trade if you don’t plan to use the player you gain?

No time left

It’s going to take all three of these things – at least one big win against Arizona, improved play from Jimmy Graham, and the return of Kam Chancellor – to get the Seahawks back to the playoffs. Plenty of observers think the Seahawks can right the ship, but make no mistake: this situation is dire. Teams that start 0-2 miss the playoffs more than 95% of the time. The Seahawks are talented and should have better odds than that, but how good could their chances be? There’s no more time to lose. The Seahawks need to be better starting right now.

Follow @joemess17 on Twitter

Joe is a co-founder of Rukkus, a web & mobile marketplace for sports tickets. As a former Division I pitcher, he has a deep love for sports and a passion for writing.

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Solutions to Marshawn Lynch’s holdout

<p> The end of running back <a href="http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Marshawn-Lynch-holding-out-from-Seahawks-camp.html" target="_self">Marshawn Lynch’s holdout</a> doesn’t appear to be anywhere in sight with both sides firmly entrenched in their respective positions. The Seattle Seahawks expect Lynch to play under the four-year, $30 million contract (with $17 million in guarantees and additional $1 million in incentives) he signed in 2012

<p> The end of running back <a href=”http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Marshawn-Lynch-holding-out-from-Seahawks-camp.html” target=”_self”>Marshawn Lynch’s holdout</a> doesn’t appear to be anywhere in sight with both sides firmly entrenched in their respective positions. The Seattle Seahawks expect Lynch to play under the four-year, $30 million contract (with $17 million in guarantees and additional $1 million in incentives) he signed in 2012 while Lynch would like his contract redone.</p> <p> Lynch is subject to a fine of $30,000 for each day of training camp he misses during his holdout. Since Lynch’s holdout reached six days on Tuesday, the Seahawks can also recoup $225,000 of his $6 million signing bonus. 15 percent of the $1.5 million prorated amount of Lynch’s signing bonus became recoverable on the sixth day of his holdout. Another one percent ($15,000) can be recouped for each additional missed day with a maximum of 25 percent of the prorated amount ($375,000) forfeitable during training camp. An additional 25 percent can be recovered if Lynch misses Seattle’s first regular season game. After four missed weeks of the regular season, the Seahawks can recover 1/17th of the prorated amount ($88,235) for each additional week of Lynch’s absence. The most that can be recouped from Lynch’s signing bonus during 2014 is $1.5 million, the entire prorated amount of his signing bonus. Teams will typically reduce or waive the penalties accumulated as a gesture of goodwill once a player ends his holdout.</p> <p> Contrary to reports, Lynch isn’t subject to a fine of one week’s base salary (1/17 of $5 million) for each pre-season game missed, which would be $294,117 per game. This fine is applied to players who signed contracts as unrestricted free agents. Lynch signed his current deal about a week before he was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent.</p> <p> The Seahawks are content to follow their “Next Man Up” philosophy with 2013 second-round pick Christine Michael and 2012 fourth-round pick Robert Turbin serving as the primary ball carriers during Lynch’s absence. Michael and Turbin are the main components of Seattle’s succession plan at running back. The team was already planning on reducing Lynch’s workload before the holdout. The 28-year-old has a league-leading 901 rushing attempts over the last three seasons as the centerpiece of Seattle’s run-oriented offense. There has been speculation that the Seahawks could release Lynch in 2015.</p> <p> Lynch is adequately compensated by most standards. Although Lynch is currently the NFL’s sixth-highest paid running back by average salary at $7.5 million per year, he ranks third in the NFL in rushing yards (2,847), first in rushing touchdowns (23) and tied for fourth in yards from scrimmage (3,359 yards) since signing his deal. Lynch has the fifth-best cash flow in the first three years of running back deals ($22.5 million). He’s also fifth in compensation for running backs over the last two years with $17 million, ranking behind only Ray Rice ($25 million), Arian Foster ($23.5 million), Adrian Peterson ($19.75 million) and Chris Johnson ($18 million).</p> <p class=”co_image co_image_right inline_right”> <img alt=”Marshawn Lynch” src=”http://cdn.cloudfiles.mosso.com/c1910342/media_center/images/rendered/blog/wysiwyg/lynch3-2286.jpg” />Should Lynch honor his current contract or does he deserve a raise?</p> <p> Lynch is in a different financial situation than Jamaal Charles, <a href=”http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Chiefs-sign-Jamaal-Charles-to-twoyear-extension.html” target=”_self”>who received an additional</a> $5.1 million over the remaining two years of his deal as a part of a two-year, $18.1 million contract extension signed on August 23. Charles was dramatically underpaid. The $18.57 million Charles made from 2010 to 2013 was $1.57 million less than Lynch earned over the last two years.</p> <p> The Seahawks don’t have any plans to deviate from their position but might be able to quickly end the stalemate by extending an olive branch to Lynch where they attempted to rework his deal within its existing framework. Interestingly, fans are almost evenly split on Lynch’s holdout according to an ESPN.com poll. 51.2 percent are in favor of reworking his contract while 48.8 percent think Lynch should honor his deal.</p> <p> Lynch is scheduled to make $5.5 million this year with a $5 million base salary and $500,000 as a per game 46-man active roster bonus ($31,250 per game). His 2015 salary is $7.5 million consisting of a $5.5 million base salary and $2 million as a per game 46-man active roster bonus ($125,000 per game). Lynch also has a $500,000 incentive in each of these years for 1,500 or more rushing yards.</p> <p> One easy cosmetic change would be to convert Lynch’s $500,000 roster bonus into base salary to ensure that he earned the money. The per game amount is only payable if Lynch is on the 46-man active roster for that particular game. For example, if Lynch suffered a season-ending injury during Seattle’s fourth game of the season, he would only earn $125,000 of his $500,000 roster bonus. Percy Harvin, Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas <a href=”http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Breaking-down-Richard-Shermans-57431-million-contract.html” target=”_self”>don’t have per game roster bonuses</a> in their contracts. Per game roster bonuses were a rarity in Seattle contracts when Lynch signed in 2012, but have started becoming more prevalent in their deals. Michael Bennett has $1 million and $1.5 million of per game roster bonuses in the last two years of the four-year contract he signed this off-season.</p> <p> The Seahawks could convert this year’s $500,000 rushing yards incentive into 2014 base salary, if not the entire $1 million in incentives for both years. The conversion would use $1 million of Seattle’s $7.55 million of existing salary cap room (includes Lynch’s $5 million base salary in calculations which isn’t counting while he is holding out). If the Seahawks wanted to spread out the cap hit over two years, the $1 million could be a signing bonus instead. The Seahawks are in good shape cap wise in 2015, with $116.922 million of cap commitments (top 51 players).</p> <p> Another possibility would be to also fully guarantee a small portion (no more than $1 million) of Lynch’s $5.5 million 2015 base salary. As an alternative, the amount guaranteed could be tied to Lynch’s 2014 performance. Seattle would insist on any 2015 guarantees containing an offset so Lynch couldn’t “double dip” (get paid Seattle’s guarantee and the entire amount of his contract with another team) if he’s released next year. Additionally, Seattle could convert Lynch’s $2 million per game roster bonus in 2015 or $2 million of 2015 base salary into a first day of the 2015 league year roster bonus. If Lynch wasn’t a part of Seattle’s plans next year, he would hit the free agent market while teams had all of their cap room available to sign players.</p> <p> Another impediment to reworking Lynch’s deal is that NFL teams are reluctant to establish contractual precedents, especially a precedent of giving into a player’s demands for a new contract through a holdout. Although teams should be able to easily make distinctions based on each player’s particular circumstances, they don’t want to send a signal to the other team members that they could get rewarded by holding the team hostage. Seattle doesn’t want to give Sherman or Thomas ammunition to approach them about renegotiating their deals in a couple of years because of how they handled Lynch’s situation.</p> <p> Seattle did make some changes to Brandon Browner’s contract last year to give him the opportunity to earn an additional $250,008 in the final year of the three-year deal he signed in 2011. Browner received a $125,000 signing bonus and $125,008 as a per game 53-man roster bonus ($7,813 per game). Browner’s situation can be differentiated because he was only making minimum salary in his deal and a portion of the salary increase may have been a reimbursement for him accepting a four-game performance enhancing drugs suspension without pay at the end of the 2012 regular season instead of appealing so he would be available during the playoffs.</p> <p> Outside of a serious injury at running back or extremely poor performance of the rushing attack during pre-season games, it’s hard to envision anything else that could shift leverage before the start of the regular season. Unless Seattle eventually softens its stance, Lynch’s holdout will likely end the same way Maurice Jones-Drew’s did with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2012. Jones-Drew returned to the Jaguars at the end of the pre-season without getting his contract adjusted.</p> <p> <strong>Follow Joel on Twitter:</strong> @<a href=”http://www.twitter.com/corryjoel” target=”_blank”>corryjoel</a></p> <p> <em><strong>Joel Corry is a former sports agent who helped found Premier Sports & Entertainment, a sports management firm that represents professional athletes and coaches. Prior to his tenure at Premier, Joel worked for Management Plus Enterprises, which represented Shaquille O’Neal, Hakeem Olajuwon and Ronnie Lott. You can email Joel at jccorry@gmail.com. </strong></em></p>

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Seahawks’ Anthony McCoy hurts Achilles again

<p> Seattle Seahawks tight end Anthony McCoy may have torn his right Achilles tendon.</p> <p> He spent last season on injured reserve with a torn left Achilles.</p> <p> McCoy got hurt in practice today, and the Seahawks fear the worst.</p> <p> “Early indications are he hurt his other Achilles,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said of

<p> Seattle Seahawks tight end Anthony McCoy may have torn his right Achilles tendon.</p> <p> He spent last season on injured reserve with a torn left Achilles.</p> <p> McCoy got hurt in practice today, and the Seahawks fear the worst.</p> <p> “Early indications are he hurt his other Achilles,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said of McCoy, who caught 18 passes for 291 yards and three touchdowns in 2012. “If it is what they think it is, it’s just a real heartbreaker. He worked so hard to get back and all. If it was the same Achilles you might understand it but we think it’s the other one. So we’ll see what happens.”</p> <p> Follow me on Twitter: <a href=”http://www.twitter.com/RavensInsider”>@RavensInsider</a></p> <p> Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun</p>

Aaron Wilson covers the NFL for National Football Post, his second stint at the Post. He has previously written for Pro Football Talk and FOX Sports-Scout. Entering his 13th year covering the Baltimore Ravens, he’s a beat writer for The Baltimore Sun. Wilson has also covered the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans.

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Seahawks signed Terrell Thomas, Randall Carroll

<p> Beside signing offensive tackle Eric Winston, the Seattle Seahawks have signed veteran cornerback Terrell Thomas and wide receiver Randall Carroll.</p> <p> The Seahawks placed wide receiver Taylor Price on injured reserve. Cornerback Chandler Fenner and offensive guard Bronson Irwin were released.</p> <p> Thomas played for Pete Carroll at USC. He's a former New York

<p> Beside signing offensive tackle Eric Winston, the Seattle Seahawks have signed veteran cornerback Terrell Thomas and wide receiver Randall Carroll.</p> <p> The Seahawks placed wide receiver Taylor Price on injured reserve. Cornerback Chandler Fenner and offensive guard Bronson Irwin were released.</p> <p> Thomas played for Pete Carroll at USC. He’s a former New York Giants second-round draft pick.</p> <p> In 2010, he had 101 tackles and five interceptions. Knee injuries have affected him in recent years.</p> <p> “I’m so thankful for the Seattle Seahawks giving me an opportunity to continue my dream,” Thomas wrote on Twitter. “Can’t wait to hit the field with my new teammates.”</p> <p> Carroll was previously with the Minnesota Vikings. He played at Sul Ross State and UCLA.</p> <p> Follow me on Twitter: <a href=”http://www.twitter.com/RavensInsider”>@RavensInsider</a></p> <p> Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun.</p>

Aaron Wilson covers the NFL for National Football Post, his second stint at the Post. He has previously written for Pro Football Talk and FOX Sports-Scout. Entering his 13th year covering the Baltimore Ravens, he’s a beat writer for The Baltimore Sun. Wilson has also covered the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans.

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