Seahawks general manager John Schneider held an off-camera discussion with the Seahawks media on Wednesday afternoon, and while much of the conversation was centered around next month's NFL Draft, Schneider offered several bits of news, notes, and Seahawks personnel updates that bear mentioning.
Schneider said he "absolutely" expects wide receiver Sidney Rice to be available by the beginning of the 2014 season. Rice, who is coming off an injury to his ACL that he suffered in a game against the St. Louis Rams last October, re-signed in Seattle earlier this month after he was released from the club in a salary cap-related move prior to the start of NFL free agency.
"He's coming in as a quarterback" were Schneider's words when asked about the possibility of trying the 6-foot-4, 230-plus pound Terrelle Pryor elsewhere on offense. Pryor, who was acquired for a 2014 seventh-round draft pick in a trade with the Oakland Raiders last week, ran a 4.36-second 40-yard dash during his pro day back in 2011. Seattle is already stocked at quarterback with entrenched starter
Schneider said offensive lineman Michael Bowie "would be first up" at replacing Breno Giacomini at right tackle, who signed with the New York Jets in free agency. Bowie, a seventh-round draft pick by the Seahawks in 2013 who saw playing time at right tackle, right guard, and left guard during his rookie season, made nine starts along the offensive line last year. Schneider said fellow second-year offensive lineman Alvin Bailey would look to compete at the left guard spot vacated by veteran Paul McQuistan, who signed with the Cleveland Browns this offseason.
Asked if second-year cornerback Tharold Simon would be ready to go by the time Organized Team Activities (OTAs) get going near the end of May, Schneider replied, "That's my understanding." Foot injuries sidelined the Seahawks' 2013 fifth-round draft pick for his rookie season, but the coaching staff has said they expect big things from the 6-foot-3 Simon in 2014 after the free-agent departures of cornerbacks Brandon Browner (New England Patriots) and Walter Thurmond (New York Giants).
Monday saw the addition of former Miami Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland to work as a consultant for the Seahawks during the 2014 NFL Draft. The hire adds another "draft guy on draft day," as Schneider put it today, pointing to Ireland's experience with the annual event and recalling the friendship the two have maintained since working together as members of the Kansas City Chiefs (1997-99).