Seattle Seahawks

Fann Mail: Why you shouldn’t be worried about Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett

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Fann Mail: Why you shouldn’t be worried about Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett

There’s a month left in the 2019 regular season and at 10-2, the Seahawks are sitting pretty. The problem is that there are two other teams in the NFC with the same record. Seattle, although it hasn’t officially clinched yet, is a lock for the playoffs.

The biggest question over the final quarter of the season is whether the Seahawks can claim a first-round bye, or even the top seed in the NFC. This week’s mailbag focuses on the topics that will help Seattle accomplish that goal. Thanks, as always, to those who asked questions.

Tyler Lockett has just four receptions for 64 yards over his last three games, but I don’t think it’s time to panic or worry that he’s lost his early-season magic. Even the best of receivers are susceptible to down games. Beyond that, he’s had a brutal stretch of luck in that span. He suffered a leg contusion against the 49ers that resulted in two nights at Stanford Hospital. Lockett then caught a nasty flu bug that was still clearly affecting him on Monday night against the Vikings.

Seattle’s No. 1 receiver should be getting closer to 100% this week, and the Seahawks need him to get involved in the offense once again. Russell Wilson’s MVP-caliber first half of 2019 was in direct correlation with Lockett’s breakout season. The Seahawks offense is at its best when those two are connecting on a regular basis. I expect things to get back to normal against the Rams on Sunday.

I think Jarran Reed, a potentially elite interior defensive lineman, should be the priority over Germain Ifedi. Reed has begun to look like his 2018 self of late despite battling through an ankle injury. He has four quarterback hits over his last three games. Finding a way to keep Reed and Jadeveon Clowney would be a huge boost to the defense heading into 2020.

There’s still a chance that Seattle brings back Ifedi as well. He could be affordable, somewhere in the $5-7 million range, depending on the free agent tackle market. The Seahawks could also look to take a tackle in the early rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Regardless, Reed is the better player and would be much harder to replace.

Akeem King is four inches taller than Ugo Amadi and is the preferred matchup against teams with bigger slot receivers or an emphasis on throwing to tight ends. That’s why it’s been King against the Eagles (Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert) and the Vikings (Kyle Rudolph and Irv Smith). This weekend’s matchup with the Rams could be Amadi’s chance to see the field against Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp. We could even see a mix of both nickel corners as King would likely play when the Rams go to 12 personnel (two-tight end sets with Tyler Higbee and Gerald Everett).

George Fant has been a staple in Seattle’s offense all year, but his playing time jumped from 34% of snaps to 56% of snaps in Weeks 12 to 13. That likely has more to do with game script and Seattle’s success on the ground against the Vikings. He will still play even when Luke Willson (hamstring) is back in the lineup. So while Fant’s role definitely isn’t a stop gap, it isn’t likely to be quite so big in every game.

As for Trader Joe’s, I love their frozen food section. Endless options!

Josh Gordon has shown to be a master of the third-down slant. All four of his receptions with the Seahawks have come in that exact fashion and each has moved the chains. But your point is valid, we haven’t seen much from Gordon otherwise. My best guess is that Gordon’s role is what it is at this point. He’s going to be used in selective situations, but he may never become a focal point of Seattle’s passing game.

And I think the Seahawks are OK with that. Even one clutch catch on third down is enough for him to warrant a spot on the gameday 46-man roster.

If I’m a Seahawks fan, it’s less about “who” and more about “where.” There’s a massive difference between a first-round bye and hosting a Divisional round game than going on the road Wildcard weekend. Winning the NFC West would drastically improve Seattle’s chances of making it to the Super Bowl.

I don’t want to be the guy who doesn’t answer a semi-serious question. I thought they were OK – didn’t love them, didn’t hate them. I think if you’re going to do action green, though, just go all in and wear the pants as well. I do still think the half-and-half that we saw Monday night is better than any combination of grey on white.

I think it depends on your supply of nanobubbles. Hopefully you’re starting to feel better!

Is backing up Russell Wilson what’s next for Marcus Mariota? It could be...

Is backing up Russell Wilson what’s next for Marcus Mariota? It could be...

Is there any shine left on Marcus Mariota’s star? 

That’s what we’re going to find out this offseason as Mariota is set to become an unrestricted free agent when the new league year begins in March. The former No. 2 overall pick in 2015 has fallen from the pedestal of the Titans franchise QB to a signal-caller whose future is a gigantic question mark.  

Mariota was benched after six games (2-4) in 2019 in favor of Ryan Tannehill, a fellow first-round flameout… or so we thought. Tannehill sparked a turnaround in Tennessee and led the Titans to a 9-7 record and a Wild Card berth in the postseason. The Titans magic continued through the Wild Card Round against the Patriots and the Divisional Round against the top-seeded Ravens – two stunning upsets. Tennessee lost on Sunday to the Chiefs in the Divisional Round, and the Titans must now decide what they want to do at quarterback in 2020. 

The one thing that feels evident is that it won’t be Mariota.  

The former Oregon Duck has a 29-32 record in 61 games as a starter with 13,207 passing yards, 76 touchdowns and 44 interceptions. The highlight of his five seasons in Tennessee was a playoff win against the Chiefs in 2017.  

Now, he’ll presumably pursue an opportunity to compete for a starting job elsewhere. Here is a list of teams that could potentially sign Mariota in such a capacity: Dolphins, Chargers (if Rivers leaves), Colts, Bears and Panthers.  

There’s no guarantee any of those clubs will view Mariota as the stopgap QB they want running the show in 2020. Should all of them pass, Mariota would then be relegated to taking a backup job (or even competing for a backup job). That won’t be a problem. 

On that note, the Seattle Seahawks will be in the market for a backup quarterback as Geno Smith is also scheduled to be a free agent. Mariota’s mobility and experience as a starter could potentially be a perfect fit behind Russell Wilson. From Seattle’s standpoint, the Seahawks could do much worse for an insurance policy should Wilson miss a game for the first time in his career. 

There’s potential that Mariota would welcome a return to the Pacific Northwest. Seattle is about as close to the quarterback’s home of Hawaii as you can get in the NFL, and he’s already familiar with the region from his college days. 

This scenario is purely speculation at this point, but it’s not one that can be ruled out. 

Seahawks CB Shaquill Griffin named to first Pro Bowl

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Seahawks CB Shaquill Griffin named to first Pro Bowl

Shaquill Griffin is Pro Bowl bound.

Griffin became the Seahawks first defensive back since Richard Sherman in 2017 to be named to the Pro Bowl. He was initially an alternate, but was moved up the roster on Monday. Several reports suggest he will take Sherman’s place.

Griffin’s first Pro Bowl appearance will be a coming home of sorts. The Seahawks cornerback will be returning to Orlando, where his alma mater University of Central Florida is located. UCF sent out this tweet in support of Griffin on Monday morning:

In 2019, Griffin had a 55.9 completion percentage when targeted and was third in the NFL with 14 pass breakups. He allowed just three touchdowns and had 407 air yards allowed, 141 yards after the catch.

The 24-year-old spent the offseason honing his craft and perfecting his diet. He dropped down to 194 pounds, a loss of 12 pounds, by eating smaller meals with lean proteins. The extra work appears to have paid off. 

“He’s had a terrific season,” Carroll said of Griffin in early December. “He’s been productive. He’s been consistent. He’s been really active. It’s a whole step forward from where he was last year. He’s playing lie he was capable of playing. I really hope that this would’ve been year two. I think last year, he and I both realized it, didn’t set it up the right way in the way we approached it. He fixed that this offseason and you can tell the results. He’s been consistently on it. He’s been fast, flying the whole time, the whole season. He’s been really aggressive and wanting to challenge everything. He’s had a great season.”

Griffin will join quarterback Russell Wilson and linebacker Bobby Wagner as the third Pro Bowl selection for the Seahawks this season. 

These impressions of Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson are spot on

These impressions of Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson are spot on

If you're not following Andrew Hawkins on social media, you're missing out!

The former NFL wide receiver who played six seasons in the NFL, three with the Cincinnati Bengals and three with the Cleveland Browns, is now with the NFL Network as a host and multi-platform contributor. 

In his role, Hawkins hosts a variety of content on NFL Media’s digital and social channels, including new show formats and other engaging VOD content. The two-time Sports Emmy Award nominee also appears on various NFL Network shows such as NFL Total Access and Good Morning Football.

And if there's one thing Hawkins knows about the NFL, it's that the league has a lot of unique characters. 

In recent years, all professional sports leagues have stepped their fashion game up.

Game day arrival fits have become a major trend.

Some athletes try extra hard and have stylists. Others choose to go the opposite route and dress for comfort. And some use props or try to be extra goofy to garner attention. 

Hawkins took all of those figures and released a parody video, which includes two Seahawks.

Hawk parodies Cam Newton's arrival look. A non-existent Andrew Luck. Daniel Jones and Eli Manning, too.

But his impersonation of Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson are spot on. 

In the video, Hawkins is seen walking, stroking a large, feathered chicken head mask before he eventually attacks the camera. Awesome!

Then, a depiction of Russell Wilson's look pre-Ciara and post-Ciara, where Hawkins is dressed nerdy to being dressed in the freshest of fits. 

Bravo, Hawk! So good...

Déjà vu: Richard Sherman seals Super Bowl berth with an interception

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Déjà vu: Richard Sherman seals Super Bowl berth with an interception

The match-up is set! The Kansas City Chiefs will meet with San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl Super Bowl LIV. 

Kansas City defeated Tennessee earlier in the day Sunday to clinch the AFC, leaving the winner of the 49ers and Packers in the NFC to battle it out. 

From the jump, it wasn't even close. 

San Francisco steamrolled their way past Green Bay, despite a late surge from the Packers. 

But, inside of the two minute warning and no timeouts, Aaron Rodgers, with the ball on the 49ers 38-yard line, let it fly.

With the game coming to a close, to clinch an NFC Championship and a Super Bowl berth, where have we seen this before?!

It was 6 years to the day.

Now, Sherman didn't actually catch the pass, but he might as well have.

And then, who could forget the postgame interview...

Things didn't go quite the same way with Sherman and Andrews this time around.

Sherman, who was drafted in the fifth round by the Seahawks, was in Seattle from 2011-2017. He ruptured his Achilles in 2017 and was eventually released by Seattle on March 9th of 2018. He signed a three-year deal with the 49ers the following day and now finds himself punching a ticket to Miami and Super Bowl LVI. 

“People want to hate me,” he said earlier in the week. “They want to treat me like a villain... They just never want to give me credit.”

“They always want to make an excuse for why I’m great.”

Sherman continues to prove it time and time again, just now in different colors. 

Russell Wilson: Not playing in NFC Championship Game "makes me sick"

Russell Wilson: Not playing in NFC Championship Game "makes me sick"

The Seattle Seahawks were fighting for the playoff lives just one week ago. 

Inside of two minutes, Aaron Rodgers dropped back to pass, connecting with tight end Jimmy Graham in what was a controversial third down conversion to ice the game for the Green Bay Packers. Achieving that yard of gain effectively punched Green Bay's ticket to the NFC Championship game vs. the San Francisco 49ers. 

And all Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson could do in that moment was watch. 

Final score: 28-23 Packers. 

In that game Wilson, who flashed MVP-like brilliance throughout the season, finished the game 21/31, 277 yards and a touchdown. He rushed for 64 more yards. 

He left it all out on the field. The entire team did. 

But just like that, season over. 

Seattle was faced with the reality that there was nothing left for them to do but clean out their lockers, which happened last Monday. 

The offseason began, and the work towards next season, for some, began immediately. 

Coping with that new reality can be tough, especially for the competitor that is Russell Wilson.

"Not playing tomorrow makes me sick... wish I was playing tomorrow fighting for the Championship."

Instead, the 49ers will host the Packers at Levi's Stadium at 3:40pm for a chance to advance to the Super Bowl.

Despite Seattle's consistency in making the playoffs, the Seahawks have been unable to advance to the NFC Championship round or Super Bowl since their back-to-back Super Bowl appearances in 2013 and 2014.

They were bounced from the playoffs in the Divisional Round three times (2015, 2016, 2019) and suffered a first-round loss a year ago to the Dallas Cowboys.

“A lot of people think that we overachieved," Wilson said. "I think we underachieved, in my opinion, because I think the goal should be always winning the Super Bowl. That’s got to be our standard. That’s got to be our focus."

“The reality is that we’ve been very, very good for the past eight years or so, and to go to the playoffs seven of the eight, and to do all those things are special, special things, to go to two Super Bowls, to win one. We’ve got to capture that throughout the whole entire season going into next year. We’ve got to find ways to get better. We’ve got to find ways to get past just the first or second round of the playoffs and get to the final push. That’s the reality. I know that’s why I play the game. I know that’s why a lot of guys in this locker room try to play the game (is) for that. We’ve got to find ways to get better and we’ll try to do everything we can to figure that out.”

Wilson does have a lot to be proud of in his 2019 campaign, though, finishing with 4110 yard passing, with 31 touchdowns against five interceptions. He also rushed in three more touchdowns on 342 total yards.

He'll just have to wait impatiently until the 2020 campaign begins.

Steve Shimko leaves Seahawks, will Pete Carroll’s son, Brennan, be next?

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Steve Shimko leaves Seahawks, will Pete Carroll’s son, Brennan, be next?

The Seattle Seahawks could soon have some coaching vacancies to fill this offseason. 

According to Bruce Feldman of FS1 and The Athletic, Pete Carroll’s son, Brennan Carroll, has emerged as a candidate for the vacant head coaching position at Hawaii. Former coach Nick Rolovich has since departed to Pullman as Washington State’s new head coach.

Carroll joined his father’s coaching staff after serving as a recruiting coordinator at USC and Miami. With the Trojans, Carroll spent time with the offense, special teams and tight ends. Carroll begin his coaching tenure at Miami in 2010, as coach of the tight ends and recruiting coordinator. When Mario Cristobal, now head coach of Oregon, joined Miami’s staff, Carroll moved to wide receivers coach.

He’s currently an assistant offensive line coach for Seattle, meaning a head coaching gig in Hawaii would be quite the leap for the 40-year-old. 

Seahawks assistant quarterbacks coach Steve Shimko was named as Boston College’s tight ends coach on Friday. Shimko joined Pete Carroll’s staff in 2018 and helped tutor Russell Wilson to an MVP like season. Wilson finished with 4,110 yards and 31 touchdowns and just five interceptions in 2019.

Clowney, Reed make Pro Football Focus' list of top 50 upcoming free agents

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Clowney, Reed make Pro Football Focus' list of top 50 upcoming free agents

Free agency is still about two months away, but that didn't stop Pro Football Focus from coming up with an early list of the top 50 impending free agents. The list will undoubtedly change as players re-sign with their current club or get the franchise tag.

Two Seahawks players made the cut: Jadeveon Clowney and Jarran Reed. You can find the full list here.

Clowney came in at No. 7:

"Clowney put up an 88.0 overall grade in 2018 — the highest mark of his career — and he followed up with an 87.3 grade after a trade to the Seahawks despite seeing his sack total drop from nine to three. Clowney has the 11th-best overall grade among all edge defenders since 2017, including the third-best mark against the run (91.3), but his pass-rush grade of 83.9 ranks just 25th among that same group. Pass-rushers earn massive contracts for their ability to get after the quarterback, but Clowney has always been good, not great, in that department. The price tag may be too high for many teams, but Clowney brings top run defense and solid pass-rush to the table, though his game has never really lived up to his draft hype and he’s never matched the production of other dominant edge defenders."

Reed just made the list at spot No. 49:

"Suspension derailed Jarran Reed’s career, but before that, he was coming into 2019 on the back of a career year with the Seattle Seahawks. Reed is a solid player across the board, whose 11 sacks two years ago may have flattered his pass-rushing a little. Perhaps suited to more of a rotational role on defense, he isn’t bad at any one aspect of defensive line play, but he's not spectacular either, which ultimately may see him slip through the cracks of free agency until the later waves when the big names have been cleaned up."

Rookie report card: How the Seahawks draft class fared in 2019, including future outlook

Rookie report card: How the Seahawks draft class fared in 2019, including future outlook

The Seattle Seahawks got a mixed bag of production from their 2019 NFL Draft class this season. There were a few rookies who made noticeable impacts, others who fans clamored to see more of and a few who were complete non-factors for one reason or another.

Here’s a recap of what Seattle got out of each of its rookies in 2019.

1st round (29 overall) – L.J. Collier, DE, TCU

2019 overview: Collier played in 11 games but mustered just three tackles. He spent several regular season contests as a healthy scratch as well as both of the Seahawks playoff games. I’m always wary about throwing around the term “bust” after just one season, but there isn’t any reason for optimism with Collier. Seattle lacked quality defensive line depth all season, both from a pass rush standpoint as well as setting the edge in the running game. The fact that Collier couldn’t even make the gameday 46-man roster, let alone crack the lineup, was alarming.

2019 grade: F

2020 outlook: Again, I’m not sure where to find optimism with Collier. Pete Carroll said he wants Collier to play some inside, some outside in 2020. That tells me that the Seahawks aren’t quite sure where he might be most effective. What is his best trait that Seattle can tap into? Does he have one? Those are all valid questions after Collier’s invisible rookie season. I’m also a believer in the “young defensive linemen need to mature into their bodies” rationale. Unfortunately, some of that (most of that?) goes out the window for Collier. He’s uncharacteristically old and will be 25 in Week 1 of 2020. Nobody is rooting against Collier. Everyone, myself included, would love to see him flourish and be a productive player. That’s just hard to envision at this point. The best-case scenario is that Collier has a Rasheem Green-type jump in Year 2. Green posted four sacks and three forced fumbles in 2019.

2nd round (47 overall) – Marquise Blair, S, Utah

2019 overview: Blair showed promise with a handful of big hits, two forced fumbles and one pass defended. He started three games, played in 14 and posted 25 tackles. Fans’ biggest gripe is that Blair took a back seat to Lano Hill late in the season. It was Hill who started two games at free safety when Quandre Diggs (ankle) was out of the lineup. Carroll cited experience as the lone reason why Hill played over Blair, which to the credit of angry fans, did seem a bit peculiar.

2019 grade: B

2020 outlook: As things stand right now, even if Blair jumped Hill, he’d still be behind Bradley McDougald and Quandre Diggs on the depth chart. That would relegate his role to dime package situations. It will be interesting to see if Blair is able to beat out McDougald at any point in 2020.

2nd round (64 overall) – DK Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss

2019 overview: No need to spend too much time here. Metcalf was an absolute home run of a pick and is the crown jewel of this draft class. He posted 900 yards and seven touchdowns during the regular season before exploding for 160 yards and a touchdown against the Eagles in the Wild Card Round.

2019 grade: A

2020 outlook: Metcalf and Tyler Lockett have the potential to be one of the more formidable 1-2 punches in all of football. His biggest challenge will be continuing to develop his route tree and add a bit more consistency to his game. Metcalf should be a lock for 1,000 yards next season and a good bet for double digit touchdowns.

3rd round (88 overall) – Cody Barton, LB, Utah

2019 overview: Barton’s shining moment came in the Wild Card Round against the Eagles. He posted one sack and defended two passes. Barton also posted his first-career game with double digit tackles against the Panthers in Week 15. His four starts (playoffs included) will pay dividends in the future.

2019 grade: C+

2020 outlook: His added versatility to play SAM linebacker should help the Seahawks down the road. It also will likely keep the Seahawks from bringing back Mychal Kendricks in 2020. Seattle is likely still penciling Barton in to take over for K.J. Wright at WILL at some point in the next few years as well.

4th round (120 overall) – Gary Jennings, WR, West Virginia

2019 overview: Jennings was nearly cut out of training camp and again when the Seahawks promoted Adrian Colbert off the practice squad early in the season. He was officially shown the door when Seattle claimed Josh Gordon off waivers. Jennings was claimed immediately by the Dolphins but was placed on Injured Reserve shortly thereafter. He ended his rookie season without a single catch and was never active for a single game with the Seahawks.

2019 grade: F

2020 outlook: Should Jennings breakout and turn into a stud, it’ll make the Seahawks regret claiming Gordon. That feels like a longshot at this point.

4th round (124 overall) – Phil Haynes, G, Wake Forest

2019 overview: Haynes spent most of the season on PUP following sports hernia surgery in July. He stepped in for Jamarco Jones (concussion) in the Divisional Round against the Packers and showed promise.

2019 grade: incomplete

2020 outlook: I expect Jones and Haynes to compete for the starting left guard job next season.

4th round (132 overall) – Ugo Amadi, DB, Oregon

2019 overview: Most of Amadi’s work came on special teams. He did start the final few games at nickel and played pretty well overall. Unfortunately, the lasting impression from his rookie season will be getting beat by Davante Adams on that crucial third down play late in the fourth quarter against the Packers.

2019 grade: C
2020 outlook: Amadi is the likely Week 1 starter at nickel next season.

5th round (142 overall) – Ben Burr-Kirven, LB, Washington

2019 overview: Burr-Kirven played in all 16 games, but mostly from a special teams standpoint. He did force a fumble in Week 1 on punt coverage. He only played four defensive snaps all season.

2019 grade: incomplete

2020 overview: Barring an injury, Burr-Kirven’s role will likely be the same as it was in 2019.

6th round (204 overall) – Travis Homer, RB, Miami

2019 overview: Homer’s best game came in Week 17 against the 49ers when he posted 62 rushing yards and 30 receiving yards. He showed he’s capable of playing in the NFL, but not enough to suggest he’s a difference maker at the position.

2019 grade: C-

2020 overview: Homer isn’t likely to have a role on offense unless there are a number of injuries as there were in 2019.

6th round (209 overall) – Demarcus Christmas, DT, Florida St.

2019 overview: Christmas spent the entire season on PUP with a back injury.

2019 grade: incomplete

2020 outlook: It’s hard to envision Christmas having a sizeable role on defense, at least not immediately.

7th round (235 overall) – John Ursua, WR, Hawaii

2019 overview: Ursua is much like Blair in that fans are baffled as to why he didn’t play more as a rookie. He was buried on the depth chart by Malik Turner, Jaron Brown, David Moore, and, for a few weeks, Josh Gordon. His one catch was an 11-yard grab against the Niners in Week 17.

2019 grade: incomplete

2020 outlook. Carroll sounded hopeful that Ursua could be a factor out of the slot for the Seahawks next season.

Of course Marshawn Lynch is already selling "take care of yo'chicken" t-shirts

Of course Marshawn Lynch is already selling "take care of yo'chicken" t-shirts

Last Sunday, Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch went viral when he spoke about his advice to his younger teammates about financial responsibility.

"Take care of y'all chicken."

Well, it appears that Lynch wants some more chicken of his own.

Three days after losing to the Green Bay Packers in the divisional round, Beast Mode has put "take care of yo' chicken" t-shirts on his website, beastmodeonline.com. 

The quote on the t-short isn't the exact quote from the press conference but "yo'" flows better than "y'all" so it makes sense. 

[RELATED Marshawn Lynch to his younger Seahawks teammates: 'Take care of y'all chicken']

The shirt is selling for $39.95 and only available in black. 

Now it's up to you if you want to save your chicken, or send it Beast Mode's way.