Thanks to Jayhawk for posting this in the forums (thats why I love those things!)
Eric Williams over at the TNT reports that the Seahawks have signed long snapper Jeff Houser. Houser was released quite unceremoniously just three weeks ago (to the day). Williams also clears up a little mistake made here (and elsewhere) earlier -- the Seahawks released Ryan Senser earlier in the month of July, so we've got two veteran long snappers now. I sense a monumental snap off coming!
Houser's main claim to fame may be more that he is involved in a little bit of sticky business (whether his fault or not), and ended up dragging about two dozen Saints players in with him as investors in "Louisiana Film Studios." More information on that "tax credit fiasco," here.
A few months ago, the NFL floated the idea that they might extend draft day to three days and would start it on a Thursday night, primetime, and would include only the first round. Friday night would be all about rounds two and three. Saturday morning would kickoff early and finish off rounds 4-7. Wow, what a flippin' terrible idea.
So, y'know. It's official now.
PFT has the schedule and, no shock here, it is miserable to live on the West Coast and be a diehard football fan. Thursday's festivities start off at 4:30 pm PST. That's, y'know, the time that you're still at work. Don't worry though, by the time you get off work at 5 (or later), commute home, and flip on the TV you will have only missed the first 10-20 draft picks. And, y'know, no one really cares about those anyway. Friday it will be even better as they get started at 3:30 PST all but insuring that you will miss the second round. After a long night of bellyaching and bemoaning this absolutely idiotic idea, you get to wake up and be ready to go by 7:00 am. Rise and shine. And fume.
The idea behind this is that, WOW, the draft is really popular! Imagine how much ad revenue we could pull in on a Thursday (Must See TV?) night! What the NFL is overlooking is that the NFL draft is largely popular because there's no other game in town. What does your wife care if you're watching football on Saturday morning? Not to mention the fact that for many people, Draft day is a big party day. You will now not have the option to plan a party and start it right when the draft does (since even if you take off some time from work, your friends won't likely do the same). Beyond that, many people like to imbibe in the less soberiety-friendly beverages at Draft parties... well, there's going to be hell to pay come 6 am Friday morning.
This is as stupid as it was when first floated, and in case it's not obvious, I consider this another strike in the column for "NFL vs. West Coast". What do you guys think? Will you still party hardy? Take time off work? Not care since the Hawks will be picking 32nd (our pick) and will likely already have named our #1 overall (Denver's pick)?
Jason Burlew of the Associated Press wrote up a preview of the NFC West. Not surprisingly, Burlew states that the Cardinals should repeat as the NFC West champions based on the fact that they have the same basic core on the team. The Seahawks and 49ers, he says, could "surprise." If you ask me, the Seahawks taking back the crown would not be a surprise -- they had worn it proudly for four consecutive years, after all. The 49ers would be a slight surprise, but most people probably agree that they should be a decent team this year, and certainly in the mix for the NFC West title. I agree with the underlying point that it should be a three-way race this year and sure, lets give the Cards the edge...
Still, the only genuine knock against the Seahawks is that our running backs stink. Yeah, yeah, we get it. They've proven nothing yet. There is almost no question that our running backs are the weak spot of this team at the moment. Still, that is actually quite weak considering Knapp's success with the run game in the past. I don't expect him to work miracles, Julius Jones is not likely to come out of nowhere and lead the division in rushing like his brother did last year for the Jets. A balanced run-pass attack and disciplined play on the line will be the key to a successful offense.
Forget the old idiom about opening up the passing game with the run or vice versa. You open up the run by being a good running team, and you open up the pass by being a good passing team. Bottom line is that you have to do both well -- but especially passing -- to succeed in this league. Teams that win run, teams that run don't necessarily win... Just look at the Raiders.
According to Danny O'Neil, the Seahawks are hosting former New Orleans Saints long snapper Kevin Houser for a visit this week. Houser was released earlier in the offseason. He is in town for a physical and a tryout with the team.
If signed, Houser will be the third long snapper on the roster (along with favorite and local boy Bryan Pittman and Ryan Senser). Last year's snapper, Jeff Robinson has retired (again), and as we reported a few weeks ago, 2008 Draftee Tyler Schmitt was released by the Seahawks after an undisclosed existing back injury was reagitated in camp last year. Based on Schmitt's facebook page, it appears the injury has effectively ended his career.
The Seahawks have been struggling to find a long term replacement to LS stand-out JP Darche who was lost in 2006 to a season-ending hip injury.
Good ol' Touraj Houshmanzadeh has been doing a pretty good job of staying in the news lately. He's made predictions, he's been bold, he's boycotted Madden because he's only the sixth-best receiver in the NFC, and so on, and so forth. A lot of fans have been jumping on his case, calling him a primadonna, saying he needs to shutup until he proves something, and, well, you know. Stuff like that.
So, the question arises -- what is the difference between Swagger, which for years we've been saying we need more of, and Arrogance, which is generally looked at in Seattle as a locker room buzzkill?
An arrogant player, especially an arrogant wide receiver, is the guy who insists on making himself the center of attention. He doesn't do this because he wants to be the center of attention, he does this because he cannot see a situation where he wouldn't automatically be the center of attention. 'Of course you care what I think, I'm Ocho Cinco!' Arrogance is a mix of two things -- a) pride and b) a superiority complex. Pride isn't so bad, you want a guy to be proud of his skills and his work -- but you also need a guy who can be proud of his teammates and what they can do together.
The superiority complex is where the real trouble begins. If a player believes that he truly is superior to the rest of the team, regardless of whether or not its true, he will damage that team. He will carry himself in a way that affects the others. He will be less apt to help others, because in his mind they are intrinsically less talented than him. Yes, he's worked hard, and sure, they work hard, but they just won't ever touch him. Did Chad Johnson ever imagine lowly ex-community college wideout TJ Houshmandzadeh would be getting the big bucks in free agency? No, because he's not at the same level and never can be (in Johnson/85's mindset.
Swagger, however, is different. Swagger is one of the key ingredients that this team has been missing lately. Our swagger was decimated in February 2006 and we have not recaptured it yet. To succeed in the NFL, a team has to be confident that it can win every game, they have to look at that schedule and think in their minds "Wow, we could go 16-0." The 2007 Patriots had swagger. The 2008 Ravens had swagger. The 2005 Seahawks had swagger.
TJ Houshmandzadeh has a big mouth of late, but it's not like he's getting caught saying things he didn't mean for people to hear. He didn't stumble. And guess what -- the Seahawks have given him pretty much free reign on the radio shows to do just that. To be the verbal leader that this team hasn't had in years. Houshmandzadeh is not a True #1 Receiver until he proves otherwise, but he has the talent to be respected, the boldness to be honest, and the willingness to take the bullets for a team that has had no clear, vocal leader for years now. If Housh can put up solid numbers on the field and bring some much needed confidence and swagger to the locker room, he'll be worth every penny and more.
Here's to 2009 -- the year Seattle got it's Swagger Back!
Just as the 4-3’s keys to success were the savvy of its middle linebacker and the production of its defensive ends, the 3-4 relies heavily on the endurance and immovability of its nose tackle and even more on the play of its linebackers. After all, if you’re going to yank out a D-lineman to bulk up your linebacking corps, then those linebackers had better be doing some pretty special things for you.
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We've tried this once before, but I think this time it's going to stick.
Seahawk Addicts has joined the Bloguin network! What does this mean? Well, for you it's going to mean a more reliable, faster site that is clearly quite a bit more attractive than the Blogspot site ever was. It means that the forums are back and won't be going anywhere this time. It means a more dynamic site that we can expand upon and really build up this community that you guys have helped build over the last year and a half.
It helps us in that it puts a more professional face forward and provided some real design help so that we could create a brand and use it. It gives us additional abilities to network with other blogs and bring some cool features to you -- game breakdowns with the opponent blogs are something I've had in my mind. What's best is that nothing editorially will change. We retain 100% ownership of everything on this blog, and we retain full editorial content. In other words...
Nothing. will. change.
Except, of course, that we'll look quite a bit better doing what we've been doing.
So, saying nothing further, please look around and tell us what you think. There will probably be some tweaks going on over the next week or two, but for the most part this is what we've got. Let us know if you're having problems with the site and we'll do our best to fix it / get back to you on it. If you want to read on for some more detail about what I was thinking during the redesign and how I think it's going to help, please click "Read More" below.
Hey guys, there are definitely still a few bugs to be worked out. Still, doesn't it look pretty?
We're having some trouble switching the domain over -- http://seahawkaddicts.com works but http://www.seahawkaddicts.com does not. Also, we've got an issue where the first, explanatory article is, uh, not working. So this will have to do until we get it going. I encourage you to create a "Bloguin Login" so you can access things like the forums here, but keep in mind you can comment without doing so (see, better than last time, eh eh eh?).
Please let me know what you think of the site, and bear in mind that the first couple of days will potentially be bumpy. Rest assured we're working on it, and very soon we'll get this puppy runnin' like Usain Bolt.
Word from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (one of the best remaining newspapers around) is that Seahawks kicker and eyebrow model Brandon Coutu has been working out with former Atlanta Falcons kicker, and NFL all-time scoring leader, Morten Andersen. Coutu, a University of Georgia alum, was arguably the best placekicker coming out in the 2008 draft, but eventually lost the starting job to Olindo Mare. In order for Coutu to see any playing time this year, it is clear that he going to need to step up his game a bit, and that is where Andersen comes in, saying:
“With all due respect to special-teams coaches, they are schematic. They are great at scheming. Not a lot of them are really good at teaching the art of kicking and what it takes. There are a lot of misconceptions and misnomers about what it takes to be a kicker. It’s very detail-oriented. It’s a high-performance business. A lot is demanded of the position.”
While Andersen ran Coutu through a number of field goal drills and gametime situations, the focus inevitably turned to kickoffs, the determining factor in 2008.
“Kickoffs are the thing right now for him,” Andersen said. “We’re trying to get more power through the kickoff, better hang time and better distance. His ball-striking on his field goals is exceptional, but in order to be a complete NFL kicker you have to both of those skill-sets. The field-goal skill-set I’m pretty confident with, and I’m adding some of the mental specific things, putting him in tough situations.
You might recall that Coutu's only knock last year was his kickoffs. It is fantastic that they are working hard on improving that skill-set. As bad as our defense was last year, Mare did everything he could to help them with field position, getting 31% of all kickoffs into the endzone -- that's in the top 5, as it usually is for him. In a league where field goal percentage is essentially random year-to-year (Mare was top 5 in 2006, worst in the league in 2007, top 5 or so in 2008), kickoffs are where a kicker can truly prove himself and earn his keep. Looking forward to seeing Coutu and his caterpillars come August 3!