Seattle Seahawks

Seattle Seahawks' LB K.J. Wright's injury-filled year got a little brighter

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USA Today

Seattle Seahawks' LB K.J. Wright's injury-filled year got a little brighter

Seattle linebacker K.J. Wright has had a season to forget. A knee injury has limited him to three games and the former Pro Bowler will miss his 10th contest of the year on Monday night when the Seahawks host Minnesota in a huge game with playoff implications.

Yet, when it's all said and done Wright, 29, might ultimately remember this year fondly. 

Last week he received one of 32 nominations for the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award, which recognizes NFL players for their community service activities and on field excellence.

While the latter has been lacking, Wright’s contributions off the field have been exemplary.

“It’s always been a goal of mine since I stepped in the building,” Wright told reporters when asked about being nominated. “I didn’t know what it was and then I found out about it and I was like, ‘man, I want to be that guy one day.’ So I’m very excited that the community voted me, the people in the organization. I’m pretty proud to represent.”

Here are some highlights of Wright’s work, according to NFL.com:

 

  • Wright raveled to Kenya where he delivered books and helped teach English to children in Kenya's Maasai Mara region.Wright plans to return to Kenya in 2019 and has pledged to donate $300 for every tackle he makes this season. The money will go toward construction of a well to deliver fresh water and to build a primary school in Maasai Mara.
  • Wright joined former Seahawks defensive end Cliff Avril on his annual trip to Haiti where he is building a school in La Chanm.
  • Wright also assisted in coaching a youth football camp in Port-au-Prince.
  • Wright mentors area youth through Rainier Athletes, a local program to support and motivate students to achieve their greatest
  • Wright champions the team's Legion of Youth program, which provides Seahawks tickets to community organizations that serve kids throughout the Northwest. 

 

Walter Payton is the NFL’s second all-time leading rusher and was routinely recognized for his charitable work when he played for the Chicago Bears from 1975 through 1987. He passed away in 1999 at the age of 45 because of a rare cancer.

“Man, he and my mom went to the same college,” Wright said. “They both went to Jackson State. He’s just a legend. He’s from Mississippi I believe, so he’s always someone that I’ve watched. He’s just a legend and I didn’t know until I got here how much he did for his community and how much he meant to the city of Chicago as well.”

Wright said his dedication to giving back stems from his grandmother.

“I’ve been like this since I was a kid,” he said. “My grandma, she did a lot of stuff when we were growing up just giving back. We went into St. Jude’s Hospital, we went to visit nursing homes, we went to the middle of Mississippi to just give out clothes and video games – so we’ve always been that kind of family and that’s how I was raised.”

Seattle middle linebacker Bobby Wagner said he Wright’s actions reflect his personality.

“I think it just shows his personality, shows he’s a caring person who wants to give back and wants to see everybody around him do well,” Wagner said. “I’m super happy for him, I’m excited for him and it’s a pretty dope moment for him.”

So when will Wright return to the field?

Wright said that Seattle coach Pete Carroll would not allow him to talk about his injury. He missed the first six games before returning for the team’s win at Detroit on Oct. 28. He played in three games before going down again and has missed the team’s last three games. He did not practice this week. Carroll said he is upbeat about Wright’s progress but remains uncertain about his return.

“We’re hopeful,” he said. “Right now, we’re hopeful. We’ve got another month here. Hopefully we can get him back.”

Wright is in the final year of his contract, which recently has meant that Seattle players in that situation have been in their final year with the team. Gone from the team’s Super Bowl winning defense of a few years ago are Avril, Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor, Michael Bennett and Earl Thomas, injured earlier this season, the final year of his deal.

Coming off of a season limited by a knee injury at age 29 could lead Seattle to move on from Wright in the offseason.

Wright said he would certainly like to remain in Seattle even when his playing career comes to an end.

“Me and my wife talked about it,” he said. “It’s either going to be Seattle or Florida. She wants Florida. I said ‘we’re staying here.’ This is home, man. I really love it here. I love the people, love the mountains, the lakes, all that good stuff so I want to stay here.”

 

Fantasy Focused: Which Seahawks should you own in 2019?

Fantasy Focused: Which Seahawks should you own in 2019?

The best part about the NFL preseason, in my opinion, is that it means the return of fantasy football – in particular, the return of fantasy drafts. There’s nothing more satisfying than feeling like you’ve built the perfect roster and then spending the ensuing days admiring the list of names you’ve put together.

Because in that moment, you’re invincible. Your entire team is healthy and poised for a monster season (that is of course unless you’re spending anxious moments hoping Melvin Gordon and Ezekiel Elliott show up for Week 1).

I’ve won several fantasy leagues over the years – sick brag, I know – but even coming out on top in the championship game doesn’t compare to the excitement of the draft. Because if you’re doing it right, the draft is done in person with all of your friends or coworkers. There’s constant banter and trash talk towards those who make a bad pick, or, worse, try to take a player who’d been selected three rounds prior. There's the relief of landing a player where you sweated it out, hoping he’d fall back to you or the gratification of hearing someone else bemoan the fact that you just stole their guy – those are the emotions that make fantasy drafts so enjoyable.

If you share any of these sentiments, then you're probably also someone who enjoys studying up before draft day. Allow this article to assist you in your preparations. Below is a comprehensive overview of which Seahawks players you should target and who you should avoid.

Here’s the snapshot.

Who I’m targeting (in order of priority)

RB Chris Carson

WR Tyler Lockett

WR DK Metcalf

QB Russell Wilson

Who I’m avoiding (in no particular order)

RB Rashaad Penny

WR David Moore

Seahawks DST

Any Seahawks tight end

Now let’s dive into my thought process on each. I’ll compare my opinions to each player’s Rotoworld ranking to help give you some perspective. (Note: I’m going to use Rotoworld’s PPR rankings because most leagues nowadays are at least .5 point per reception.)

Who I’m targeting

Chris Carson – Rotoworld RB ranking: 23

Early rounds are all about avoiding risk, and I don’t think you’re going to find many safer running backs than Carson. He’s the clear No. 1 running back in Seattle, and I think it will be less of a timeshare with Penny than Pete Carroll might suggest. Carson quietly had the fifth-most rushing yards in 2018 (1,151), and I think 1,200 yards and double-digit rushing touchdowns are reasonable expectations. The plan to double Carson’s targets in the passing game only raises his already high floor.

I think Rotoworld is a little too low on Carson. I prefer Carson to Phillip Lindsay (22), Derrick Henry (16), Leonard Fournette (13) and Melvin Gordon (12). I’d also pass on Le’Veon Bell (6) and Todd Gurley (8) in favor of a wide receiver in Round 1 and then scoop up Carson in the third or even fourth round if you're lucky.

Tyler Lockett – Rotoworld WR ranking: 21

I’m buying into the narrative that Lockett is poised for a monster year following Doug Baldwin’s retirement. The Seahawks will remain a run-first team, but Wilson’s pass attempts have to go to somebody, and Lockett is the only proven receiver on the roster. He put up a line of 57-965-10 in 2018 with Baldwin still on the roster. Lockett’s chemistry with Wilson is also notable, given that Wilson had a perfect 158.3 quarterback rating when targeting Lockett last year. That’s unheard of.

Lockett had three catches for 27 yards on four targets in just two drives last Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings. He should easily surpass the 70 targets he saw last season. He’s already shown to be one of the most efficient players in fantasy, and now he’ll have the volume, too.

So, yeah, I’m in on Lockett, especially given his price tag. I’d take him above D.J. Moore (20) and could make a case for him to be taken above Kenny Golladay (18) and Robert Woods (17). He’s also worth snagging ahead of Cooper Kupp (22), A.J. Green (23), Jarvis Landry (24) and Robby Anderson (25). It’s very possible this is the last time you’ll be able to draft Lockett without the price tag of a WR1.

DK Metcalf – Rotoworld WR ranking: 53

Metcalf getting knee surgery isn’t ideal, but I’m still taking a flier on the rookie wideout. My belief is that the Seahawks expect Metcalf to be great, and they expect him to be great immediately. Wilson hasn’t been shy about throwing to Metcalf in practice, and the rookie should be one of the Seahawks top red zone targets. A receiver other than Lockett will get targets this season, and I’d rather put my money on Metcalf than Moore or Jaron Brown.

He has a low floor, but he’s also a worthwhile lottery ticket given his skill set and price tag. Selecting Metcalf really comes down to your approach to risk. You can find safer plays at that price point, but probably not many who share as high of a ceiling so late in the draft. I’d take him ahead of Michael Gallup (52), Golden Tate (50), Kenny Stills (48) and DeSean Jackson (45).

Russell Wilson – Rotoworld QB ranking: 8

OK so hear me out, I’d love to have Wilson on my roster. But I’m also not going out of my way to make sure I draft him, either. There are simply too many quarterbacks poised for big seasons. Wilson will never have the passing volume of other QBs, and while his rushing numbers help offset that concern, he’s a little too touchdown dependent for my taste. Wilson threw a touchdown every 12.2 pass attempts in 2018, which is why some regression seems inevitable.

What makes Wilson so great is that he’s steady and has a high floor. If he’s on the board, and there’s nobody else there you’re dying to select, go ahead and grab him. I’ll probably opt to wait for guys like Kyler Murray (10), Carson Wentz (11), Jameis Winston (12), Lamar Jackson (16) and a number of other players ranked behind Wilson. The position is so deep this year that I think you could stream QBs from week to week and have success.

Who I’m avoiding

Rashaad Penny – Rotoworld RB ranking: 36

Over the course of August, I’ve become more and more averse to drafting Penny. I believe Carson will be more of a workhorse than the head of a committee. Penny will enter the season as a boom or bust flex play, and it’s probably going to take an injury to Carson for Penny to enter the RB2 conversation.

He's going to have a role. Penny may even see 8-12 touches a game. But for me, he’s a handcuff option to Carson at this point. I’d much rather pay up for Miles Sanders (29) or Tevin Coleman (31). Waiting on Peyton Barber (41), Kalen Ballage (46), Adrian Peterson (48) or Duke Johnson (49) would also be a better move in my opinion.

David Moore – Rotoworld WR ranking: Not ranked

I’m not rostering Moore in any league, even if Metcalf misses a few games to open the year. Moore showed he’s a capable NFL receiver as a rookie in 2018, but I don’t see him getting the volume to make him relevant in fantasy. From Weeks 13-17, Moore caught just four passes and never eclipsed 16 yards in a game. He doesn’t have the physical tools nor the ceiling like Metcalf to take a flier on. There are too many options out there with more upside.

Seahawks DST – Rotoworld ranking: 20

I’m a believer in streaming defenses and gone are the days where Seattle’s group is a must-start every week. Use your last two picks to take a defense and a kicker, and spend the rest of the draft building depth throughout your roster. That said, if the Seahawks are still on the board in the final two rounds, scoop them up and take advantage of a tasty Week 1 home matchup against the A.J. Green-less Cincinnati Bengals.

Any Seahawks tight end

I like Will Dissly, and I even think Jacob Hollister has a chance to contribute, but I don't see either guy (or Nick Vannett for that matter) seeing nearly enough volume to spend a draft pick on. Put Dissly on your watch list following the draft, and keep tabs on him just in case he recreates his early-season magic from a year ago.

Jacob Hollister has chance to shine in Seahawks TE by committee approach

Jacob Hollister has chance to shine in Seahawks TE by committee approach

Jacob Hollister’s hot start to Seattle Seahawks training camp begged an obvious question: Why on Earth would the New England Patriots, a franchise that just lost the best tight end in NFL history to retirement, trade away a player who seems to be a more than capable playmaker?

“To be honest with you I really don’t know,” Hollister said of the April 29 trade that sent him across the country in exchange for a 2020 seventh-round pick. “My job is to play, and so I don’t know what the coaches are thinking sometimes. I respect all the staff over there and the organization as a whole. They traded me for a reason. I don’t know what that reason is, but I’m really happy to be here. It’s been great.”

Hollister came out of the gates looking like Seattle’s best pass catching tight end, and he shined in the Seahawks mock game with a team-high four receptions. A groin strain derailed his momentum and kept him out for more than a week, including Seattle’s preseason opener against the Denver Broncos.

What works in Hollister’s favor is that Ed Dickson (knee) remains out and won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Working against Hollister is that while he was out, Will Dissly (knee) continued to progress and has reclaimed his spot as Seattle’s No. 1 pass catching tight end.

But Hollister is right in the mix, and his spot on the 53-man roster appears safe. Being on Seattle’s gameday 46-man roster in Week 1 is the objective. His speed is what sets him apart from Dissly and Nick Vannett. It’s also the attribute that will help Hollister earn the role he’s pursuing.

“That’s one of the biggest reasons why we brought him here,” Seahawks tight ends coach Pat McPherson said. “He’s really fast. I think he’s a legit 4.5 guy. He’s got a really good sense of how to get open and work (defenders) with his speed. He’s got good hands and he’s smart. He’s real intense, and he gets after it.”

Hollister couldn’t remember his exact 40-time at his Pro Day, but the Wyoming product is convinced he’s even faster now.

“I’d hope to be just under the 4.5s,” he said. “As a receiver I’m a lot faster now than I was.”

The third-year tight end has played in 23 career games (three starts) with eight receptions for 94 yards. This may be the season he gets the expanded role he’s been working for.

McPherson anticipates the Seahawks using a committee approach at tight end, and given how often the Seahawks utilize two tight end sets, there should be plenty of snaps to go around.

“I have really high expectations for myself,” Hollister said. “The more I can contribute to the team, the happier I’m going to be,” Hollister said. “I feel like I’m capable in every way. I’m excited to be able to show that and prove it to my teammates and coaches.”

9 Seahawks player updates from Pete Carroll

9 Seahawks player updates from Pete Carroll

Pete Carroll had a laundry list of updates on Wednesday regarding some of the most notable names on the Seattle Seahawks roster. The team will practice on Thursday and Friday before they depart for Los Angeles ahead of its third preseason contest against the Chargers on Saturday night.

Here are all the player updates from the Seahawks head coach.

1.    DK Metcalf, WR

Metcalf had minor knee surgery on Tuesday and Carroll called him week-to-week.

“It was a minimal surgery with minimal findings,” Carroll said. “We don’t have any concern that he won’t get back soon.”

But how soon? Potentially in time for Week 1 against the Cincinnati Bengals? Carroll wouldn’t commit to any specific timetable.

“There’s no indication that it’s going to be a long return,” he said.

At this point, it’s probably safe to consider the high-profile rookie wideout a longshot for the opener. David Moore and Jaron Brown would see an uptick in usage for as long as Metcalf is sidelined.

2.    Marquise Blair, S

Blair remains day-to-day with back spasms. He might be able to make it back in time for Saturday’s contest, but don’t be surprised to see the Seahawks opt to rest him, either.

3.    Shaquem Griffin, LB

The second-year linebacker is still nursing a bruised knee. According to Carroll, Griffin had a good day on Tuesday but took a step back on Wednesday. He’s very questionable at this point to play against the Chargers.

4.    Rashaad Penny, RB

Carroll was adamant that he’s all in on Penny, adding that the 2018 first-round pick is “fighting with Chris (Carson) every day” for reps. Seattle’s head coach made it sound like it will be a committee approach between the two, but I’m not sure I buy it. Carson has been the better player, and I don’t see Seattle forcing the issue with Penny if Carson continues to be the more productive runner.

“I love the way Chris plays, and I love the way Penny plays. We’re really fortunate to have two guys who can carry the load like that,” Carroll said.

5.    Jamar Taylor, CB

Taylor continues to impress in the competition at nickel corner, and Carroll said the veteran has earned the opportunity to start there vs. the Chargers.

6.    Paxton Lynch, QB

Lynch is yet to clear the concussion protocol, and Seattle is going to be cautious by keeping him out all week. Lynch’s neck is still sore from what Carroll classified as a “nasty hit.”

7.    L.J. Collier, DL

It doesn’t sound like the team’s first-round pick is anywhere near returning to action. Carroll said that Collier is able to run, but his ankle hasn’t healed enough to cut yet. For all of the injuries to rookies this month, Collier’s high-ankle sprain has been the most troublesome for Carroll.

“L.J. is the one who is frustrating for me because he hasn’t had a shot yet,” the coach said.

8.    Ethan Pocic/Mike Iupati

Mike Iupati has missed the last few weeks with foot and calf injuries, and Ethan Pocic has started at left guard in Iupati’s absence. Although Pocic has done well, Carroll is still expecting Iupati to be in the lineup in Week 1 as long as the veteran’s health permits.

“Ethan has done a great job stepping up with the starters,” Carroll said. “I’m really counting on Mike, but he’s got to get well.”

9.    Preseason debuts

J.D. McKissic, C.J. Prosise and Lano Hill are all expected to play on Saturday.

Fann Mail: What to make of Seahawks RB Rashaad Penny's slow start in preseason

Fann Mail: What to make of Seahawks RB Rashaad Penny's slow start in preseason

It’s hard to determine how much each preseason game impacts looming roster decisions. The Seattle Seahawks lost to the Minnesota Vikings last Sunday, 25-19, and we were left with more questions than answers. In this week’s mailbag, we dive into some of those unknowns facing Seattle with two games left in the preseason.

As always, thanks to those who asked questions.

There hasn’t been any report to suggest Rashaad Penny is nursing any sort of injury. But you’re right. To say he’s been ineffective through two preseason games would be putting it mildly. Penny has just 13 yards on 12 carries. There haven’t been many running lanes to speak of, but Penny hasn’t shown much burst or make-you-miss ability, either. I’m not one to overreact to what happens during the preseason. He may be poised for a breakout sophomore campaign.

“We’ve got to block for him better,” Carroll said regarding Penny on Sunday. “He didn’t have a chance.”

Even so, I’m seeing a guy fall further behind Chris Carson, who has established himself as Seattle’s clear No. 1 option. Seattle is going to give their 2018 first-round every opportunity to show himself. Penny will get touches – maybe even up to 10 a game. It’s understandable, though, why fans feel like they aren’t seeing enough from the second-year running back just yet.

I think John Ursua is good enough to make the team and I think he’s got a chance to make the team, but ultimately I don’t think he will. Ursua has just two receptions in the preseason – a 21-yarder against the Denver Broncos and a 25-yarder against Minnesota – but he showed impressive run after the catch ability on both.

Ursua is simply falling victim to the numbers game. I’m of the belief that Jazz Ferguson will make the team (more on that in a second), and I’m also betting that Seattle keeps Jaron Brown around. If I’m wrong about either of those things, then Ursua would be the next in line for a roster spot.

Ferguson failed to put together an encore to his standout preseason debut against Denver. After catching all four of his targets for 54 yards and a touchdown versus the Broncos, Ferguson secured just 2-of-7 targets for 24 yards and a fumble in Minnesota. To his credit, the fumble was a fantastic play by the defensive back, and several of his targets were uncatchable. Paxton Lynch struggled to get on the same page with any receiver on Sunday.

As I mentioned above, I’m still anticipating Ferguson will make the team. The fact remains that 6-foot-5 receivers with 4.45 jets don’t grow on trees, and Ferguson has shown enough to take a chance on. His ceiling is much higher and harder to find than Ursua’s. I also think the Seahawks have a much better chance of sneaking Ursua onto their practice squad. If Seattle opts to cut Ferguson, another team is likely to claim the big-bodied lottery ticket.

I’m having a really hard time projecting what kind of year David Moore is going to have in 2019. He seems to be behind DK Metcalf when the rookie is healthy. On Sunday, Jaron Brown also played with the first-team offense over Moore.

Moore did some good things as a rookie, finishing with 26 receptions for 445 yards and five touchdowns in 2018. But he disappeared down the stretch (just four catches for 32 yards over the final five weeks) and has been quiet overall during training camp. I’d be cautious about predicting much more than the 53 targets he saw last season. I think it’ll be in the same ballpark in 2019 unless Metcalf misses significant time.

Someone asked in last week’s mailbag if I anticipated the Seahawks making a move for Jadeveon Clowney. They may have inquired with the Houston Texans as to Clowney’s price tag, but I’m sure it was too rich for John Schneider’s blood. And if not Clowney, I don’t see why Seattle would pursue anyone else.

Seattle seems content to go to battle with the names that are currently on the roster, hoping that Ezekiel Ansah and L.J. Collier will make an impact sooner rather than later. In the meantime, Cassius Marsh, Poona Ford, Rasheem Green, Al Woods and others should be able to hold it down until Jarran Reed returns from his six-game suspension.

Shaquem Griffin’s knee injury isn’t doing his case for a roster spot any favors. Thankfully for him, Ben Burr-Kirven hasn’t been stellar, either. I still think Griffin beats out Burr-Kirven for one of the final spots on the 53-man roster.

For starters, congratulations on being able to make your first Seahawks home game. I’m sure that’s going to be a thrill of a trip for you and whomever you’re coming with. Arrive early and make your way to touchdown city in the CenturyLink Field events center. The biggest thing I’d stress to anyone coming to their first game is to make sure they’re in their seat for the raising of the 12th Man Flag. For my money, that’s far and away the best pre-game tradition in the NFL. Then hang around and bar hop a bit on Occidental after the game. Please let me know if you have any more specific questions. I’d be happy to help any way I can. Have a fantastic time!

2019 Seattle Seahawks 53-man roster projection 1.0

2019 Seattle Seahawks 53-man roster projection 1.0

We’ve reached the midway point of the preseason, and although the Seattle Seahawks still have nearly two weeks until cut down day (Sat. Aug. 31 at 1:00 p.m. PT), we’re still getting a clearer picture at who will be on the 53-man roster.

Below is an initial projection for the names who will be on that list, including analysis for which players on the bubble are still in the mix. It’s important to note that Seattle is likely to tweak its roster immediately depending on who else gets cut from around the NFL. End-of-preseason trades are also fairly common.

Away we go…

Quarterback (2)

Russell Wilson and Geno Smith

Analysis: I was already of the belief that even though Paxton Lynch had closed the gap, the backup job remained Smith’s to lose. Then Lynch struggled against the Vikings (6-of-15 passing for 67 yards), and left the game after taking a brutal hit to the head from Minnesota corner Holton Hill. Now Lynch is in the concussion protocol, and there’s no telling when he’ll be cleared to play again. Smith, who didn’t play on Sunday after having a cyst removed from his knee, still came out of the game a “winner.” He should be a full participant when Seattle returns to practice on Wednesday, and he’ll have the chance to secure the job next Saturday against the Los Angeles Chargers.

Running back (5)

Chris Carson, Rashaad Penny, Travis Homer, J.D. McKissic and Nick Bellore

Analysis: My gut says that the Seahawks go with Homer over Prosise and keep McKissic because he offers a unique skill set to the group. Pete Carroll has always kept a fullback on the roster, and until that changes, I see no reason to assume Bellore’s roster spot isn’t safe. Regardless, unless Carson or Penny get hurt, I don’t envision anyone else having a sizeable role in 2019.

Wide receiver (6)

Tyler Lockett, DK Metcalf, David Moore, Gary Jennings, Jaron Brown and Jazz Ferguson

Analysis: There’s still a chance that John Ursua unseats Brown or Ferguson. He’s probably the only name outside of the six listed above that has a realistic shot at a roster spot. Metcalf is having knee surgery on Tuesday, but Carroll is optimistic that the rookie can make it back in time for the regular season opener on Sept. 8. He’ll occupy a spot on the active roster regardless unless there’s an unforeseen setback that puts Metcalf on IR to begin the season.

Tight end (3)

Nick Vannett, Will Dissly, Jacob Hollister

Analysis: This one is pretty straight forward. Ed Dickson (knee) won’t be ready for the start of the regular season, and Seattle may opt to part ways with the veteran anyway.

Offensive line (9)

Duane Brown, Mike Iupati, Justin Britt, D.J. Fluker, Germain Ifedi, George Fant, Jamarco Jones, Ethan Pocic and Joey Hunt.

Analysis: The first eight names here should be locks for the roster. If Seattle views Pocic as their backup center, Hunt could be cut in favor of keeping an extra player at a different position. Phil Haynes (undisclosed injury) is the wildcard. The Seahawks 2019 fourth-round pick is yet to practice and appears destined to remain on the Physically Unable to Perform List when the regular season begins.

Defensive Line (8)

Cassius Marsh, Quinton Jefferson, Al Woods, Ezekiel Ansah, L.J. Collier, Rasheem Green, Poona Ford and Jacob Martin

Analysis: Jarran Reed will move to the suspended list on cut day, vacating his spot on the active roster for the first six weeks of the season. It wouldn’t surprise me if Earl Mitchell and Barkevious Mingo ended up on the team. But Mitchell is behind Woods and Ford at nose tackle on base downs. He may also be trailing undrafted rookie Bryan Mone as well. Mingo appears to be behind Marsh and Martin on the edge. If Ansah is ready for Week 1, Mingo becomes even more expendable. Someone like Bellore could assume Mingo’s special teams workload. The big question here is whether or not Collier will be on the active roster as the season opens or become one of Seattle’s IR designated to return players.

Linebacker (6)

Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, Mychal Kendricks, Cody Barton, Austin Calitro and Shaquem Griffin

Analysis: The first five names here are givens. The only real unknown is whether or not Griffin can stave off rookie fifth-round pick Ben Burr-Kirven.

Secondary (11)

Shaquill Griffin, Tedric Thompson, Bradley McDougald, Tre Flowers, Neiko Thorpe, Ugo Amadi, Akeem King, Marquise Blair, Lano Hill, DeShawn Shead and Jamar Taylor

Analysis: I kept an extra defensive back simply because I had no idea who to cut. There’s so much depth here, particularly at safety, which means Seattle is going to face several difficult decisions. I ultimately picked Taylor over Kalan Reed and Shead/Hill over Shalom Luani.

Specialists (3)

Jason Myers, Michael Dickson and Tyler Ott

Analysis: Nothing to see here.

Peter King predicts three teams in the NFC West that can make deep playoff runs this year

Peter King predicts three teams in the NFC West that can make deep playoff runs this year

The NFC West division has been two teams for some time now. Since the 2013 season, the Seattle Seahawks or Los Angeles Rams have won the division five out of six times. Russell Wilson and the rowdy 12th man up North have proved it be a tough road victory for any visiting team. Then there is quarterback Jared Goff, running back Todd Gurley and that Rams’ defensive front who have dominated the division these past two seasons. 

But there is one other team that could push for the NFC title in 2020. 

“In my opinion, I think it’s a three team division now instead of two,” says NBC Sports football writer Peter King who our Seahawks Insider Joe Fann caught up with last week at Seahawks Training Camp. 

The San Fransisco 49ers could make that push. A team with great potential that relies on the health of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, who held the second overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft and selected Nick Bosa, defensive end from the Ohio State University, and still have corner Richard Sherman lurking in the secondary.

“If Jimmy Garoppolo doesn’t slip on a banana peel in September… I mean if he plays 16 games, the 49ers are going to be good,” says King. 

The fourth team is in a bit of a rebuild. The Arizona Cardinals held the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft and selected quarterback Kyler Murray. They have a new coach (Kliff Kingsbury), a new offense, a rookie quarterback, and let’s not forget Hall of Fame receiver Larry Fitzgerald. 

This will be quite the division to watch this season.

Seahawks WR DK Metcalf to get knee surgery on Tuesday

Seahawks WR DK Metcalf to get knee surgery on Tuesday

Pete Carroll dropped a bit of a bombshell on reporters during his postgame press conference Sunday night after the Seattle Seahawks fell to the Minnesota Vikings in Week 2 of the preseason.

Carroll shared that DK Metcalf is scheduled to get knee surgery on Tuesday. He added that the procedure isn't serious, and the hope is to have Metcalf back for the regular season opener on Sept. 8. Metcalf didn't play against the Vikings with what was reported pregame as a sore leg. Now we know that it was more serious than just some general soreness.

It's hard to know the impact of the news without a definitive timetable for how long Metcalf will be out. My best guess is that the injury will diminish Metcalf's role in the early part of the season. Seattle's expectations for the rookie phenom are too great to rush him back, no matter how minor the operation is. It also shouldn't have any bearing on who makes the team at wide receiver. It doesn't sound like Metcalf is in any danger of being a short-term IR candidate, which means he'll still assume a spot on the 53-man active roster.

We should find out more about Metcalf's prognosis on Wednesday when the Seahawks return to practice and Carroll addresses the media once again.

Other injury notes:

- Marquise Blair left the game due to back spasms.

- Demetrius Knox has a "nasty" quad injury. He was carted off late in the fourth quarter.

- Paxton Lynch is in the concussion protocol after absorbing a brutal hit to the head from Vikings corner Holton Hill, who was ejected following the play.

Instant Analysis: Poona Ford is a problem and other takeaways in Seahawks loss to Vikings

Instant Analysis: Poona Ford is a problem and other takeaways in Seahawks loss to Vikings

The Seattle Seahawks (1-1) fell to the Minnesota Vikings (2-0), 25-19, in Week 2 of the preseason from U.S. Bank Stadium. Russell Wilson made his preseason debut and played for two productive series. Seattle’s starting defense also played the entire first quarter with mostly positive results.

Here are three quick takeaways from what transpired Sunday night.

1.    Poona the problem

Poona Ford was the Seahawks MVP against Minnesota. The second-year defensive tackle had three total tackles, including one for loss. He wrecked the Vikings offensive line at the point of attack on several occasions. Ford’s signature play of the game was his tackle for loss against Vikings running back Alexander Mattison.

Ford stood Mattison up behind the line of scrimmage and appeared to force a fumble as he threw the running back to the ground. However, the refs ruled that Mattison’s forward progress was stopped and blew the play dead, negating a takeaway that would have given Seattle the ball inside Minnesota’s 5-yard line. The play was impressive nonetheless.

NFL Network’s Peter Schrager called Ford his “winner of the night.” The Seahawks will need Ford to be a force this season, especially in Jarran Reed’s absence for the first six games. He's one of the defense's biggest x-factors.

2.    Wilson impressive in brief showing

The Seahawks starting offense only put up three points, but the two drives accumulated a combined 116 yards. Wilson completed 6-of-9 pass attempts for 82 yards and ran the ball twice for nine yards. Chris Carson posted 25 yards on five carries for a healthy 5-yard average. Tyler Lockett caught 3-of-4 targets for 27 yards.

Most of Wilson’s damage through the air came off of play action. Brian Schottenheimer did a nice job getting the entire offense into a nice rhythm as there were several receivers schemed wide open. There were things to improve upon, sure, but the starting offense showed all you could ask for all things considered.

3.    Lynch’s poor play, potential injury adds layer to backup QB battle

Geno Smith (knee) didn’t play on Sunday which meant it was the Paxton Lynch show following Wilson’s exit from the game. Lynch completed just 6-of-15 pass attempts for 67 yards. To make matters worse for the quarterback, Lynch took a vicious shot to the head from Vikings cornerback Holton Hill.

Hill was ejected for the hit, and Lynch was replaced by J.T. Barrett. A concussion or any other injury would keep Lynch out just as Smith is getting back to full strength. It’s an unfortunate series of events for Lynch given how well he played against the Denver Broncos in the preseason opener.

Odds and ends:

-    Rashaad Penny was entirely ineffective, losing two yards on six carries. He also caught 2-of-3 targets for 10 yards.

-    Jaron Brown led the Seahawks with two receptions for 52 yards.

-    Travis Homer made his preseason debut and ran for 16 yards on four carries.

-    Marquise Blair was carted to the locker room with what was later reported as a back injury. That could be a significant development for the Seahawks secondary.

WATCH: Highlights from the Seattle Seahawks preseason loss to the Minnesota Vikings

WATCH: Highlights from the Seattle Seahawks preseason loss to the Minnesota Vikings

There were a lot of incredible moments in the Seattle Seahawks Week 2 preseason matchup against the Minnesota Vikings, even though the Seahawks didn't walk away with a W. 

There was Ugo Amadi's perfectly timed blow, the chemistry between Russell Wilson and Tyler Lockett and oh, don't think we forgot DeShawn Shead's 88-yard pick-six. 

Here’s a look at some of the highlights from the game, including this gem from Russell Wilson Helmet Cam. You can also check out Seahawks Insider Joe Fann’s three takeaways from the game here.