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Monday Round-Up: NFL Legend Steve Smith Sr. Excited About 2023 Seahawks  

After a visit to Seahawks training camp with the NFL Network team, former All-Pro receiver Steve Smith Sr. breaks down what he saw and how Seattle may look in 2023.


Good afternoon, 12s. Here's a look at what's out there today — Monday, August 14 — about your Seattle Seahawks.

NFL Legend Steve Smith Sr. Excited About Seahawks

Before Steve Smith Sr. was an NFL Network analyst, he was a five-time Pro Bowl selection at wideout for the Carolina Panthers, and one of the league's premiere trash-talkers. Following NFL Network's tour of league training camps in preparation for the season last week, Smith got an opportunity to get an eye on the Seahawks. This weekend, Smith Sr. and co-host Coley Mick broke down why they are excited about the Seahawks in 2023 on Smith Sr.’s “Cut To It” show.

Smith Sr. defied the odds, going from a 5-foot-9 junior college transfer to one of the league's premiere talents of the 2000's. Over 16 seasons with the Carolina Panthers and Baltimore Ravens, Smith Sr. was a two-time First Team All-Pro selection, along with the 2005 NFL Comeback Player of the Year. The outspoken Los Angeles native has always been quick with his words, whether trash-talking opponents or riling up teammates. But after retiring and joining the NFL Network staff in 2017, Smith Sr. is using his voice to enlighten fans about the nuances of the game and provide mentorship and motivation to players following in his footsteps. In addition to discussing current NFL route runners, Smith Sr. has used social media and appearances on podcasts and shows to spread his thoughts on upcoming prospects. Leading up to April's draft, Smith Sr. was a stout advocate for new Seahawks wideout and Ohio State alum Jaxon Smith-Njigba. In a March episode of "Cut To It," Smith Sr. declared the Buckeyes wideout had a "degree in route running." At Ohio State's Pro Day, Smith Sr. was on-hand to interview Smith-Njigba immediately after, evaluating his performance and giving him words of encouragement in person. In November, Smith Sr. praised fifth-year wideout DK Metcalf for “working on” his route-running over the years.

In the pair's latest episode, Mick asks Smith Sr. to break down what he saw in his time at the Seahawks training camp last week, and how it'll translate to 2023.

"Well first of all," said Smith Sr. "One of the biggest things I saw is the high-energy. You hear about Pete Carroll and what he did at USC, how he loves using philosophy and psychology. Everything is high pace, the coaches and assistant coaches. Everything that Pete Carroll does there is very interesting. You hear about it, and seeing it, I can understand when you become an older player how it can get old. Also, as an older player, sitting back - it is refreshing to know that it can be unpredictable what kind of energy we will get each and every practice. It was just interesting to watch man, I never experienced it…For me, it was new, and for some of the young guys it was a little familiarity of what they're used to coming out of college. And I kind of liked it. I'm not there everyday, and it was kind of refreshing to me."

Smith Sr. painted the scene of the Blue Angel Fighter Jets flying over the Virginia Mason Athletic Center, as quarterback Geno Smith connected with wideout DK Metcalf to describe a high-paced practice atmosphere that everyone could enjoy.

"Geno Smith dropping a dime to swole bones himself, DK Metcalf in the back of the endzone, setting him up real good," Smith said. "And ZOOM! Here comes a Blue Angel diving down, it was crazy. Just the festivities."

But when it came down to the intricacies of practice and the development of players like 2022 AP Comeback Player of the Year Geno Smith and Seattle's young talent, Smith Sr. was focused on the task at hand.

"It was cool," said Smith Sr. "When I saw him (Geno Smith), I congratulated him and said 'Hey man, you're doing a heck of a job.' He looked in my eyes and said 'Cousin Smith, I'm just getting started bro, I got a lot of unfinished business. I said 'Oh. Well let me get out your way.' It was just great man, he was dropping dimes, going through progressions. (Drew) Lock was out there, he was doing his thing. You can see, it's Geno's job, but they're really emphasizing making good decisions, throwing the ball where it needs to go, running the football. Just utilizing a lot of different formations and personnel. The Seattle Seahawks you know, whether it's Marshawn or Rashaad Penny, no matter who's back there. Coach Carroll believes and understands, running the football always makes your quarterback better. And they're doing that and participating in practice and emphasizing that in every period. Pass play, they still snuck in some type of run play just to keep the defense honest."

Smith commented on Seattle's wideout group, praising Metcalf's developed patience at the line of scrimmage and letting it be known that wideout Jake Bobo is a sleeper (in his own way).

"Bobo is like one of those old guys," said Smith Sr. "You remember Uncle Drew? They all roll off the bus looking like old men, and then all-of-a-sudden they get that basketball and you're like 'What in the world?'. Bobo is the same way, he comes out looking not-stretched and going through the motions. They got drills going, and he put a DB in the blender bro. I'm talking about a straight bullet. Blend him up, bro he gave an indicator step - he went right, right to left, right again and went into slant. The quarterback, because the linebacker flashed underneath, the quarterback had to go to the left. He was jumping up and down and the corner had that look like 'I'm glad he didn't see it'. That's one of those where they had the right coverage, but the DB didn't have the right leverage. Jake Bobo is a guy, he had an outstanding Senior Bowl. Alot of people were talking about how good he did. I can see Jake Bobo kind've slowly integrating himself, where he might not be seen this year. He may catch 15-20 passes, but you won't be able to hold him back. He reminds me of a Joe Jurevicius, where he can do okay, go somewhere else and you'll say 'Man who is this, and where did he come from?'.

Smith wasn't only focused on the offensive side of the ball, giving high praise for Seattle's young core of talent led by returning linebacker Bobby Wagner.

"He's the calm before the storm," said Smith Sr. "But, when he's out there playing, he's also the storm as well. They will take several steps forward, because of his great leadership with these young players who are thirsty and hungry to continue to show the last couple of years with these young guys are not a fluke."

Add Smith Sr. to the list of national media personalities that believe in Seattle's potential to ascend past their 9-8 2022 finish. To hear Smith Sr.'s full thoughts on his trip in the 49-minute episode, listen here.

Social Post Of The Day

The UCLA Bruins social team congratulating alum wideout Jake Bobo for his performance in Seattle's Preseason Opener 24-13 win over the Minnesota Vikings.

Go behind the scenes with team photographer Rod Mar as he shares moments from the Seahawks' preseason debut against the Minnesota Vikings on August 10, 2023 at Lumen Field. Eye on the Hawks is presented by Western Washington Toyota Dealers.

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