Following Sunday's win that improved their record to 3-2, the Seahawks are off this week, giving players and coaches a chance to relax and get ready for the rest of the season. Seahawks.com is still here to serve you, however, so it's time once again to answer questions from you, the fans. Since it's the bye week and we have time, this week's Q&A is a two-parter, so be sure check back tomorrow for more answers. As always, thanks to everyone who submitted a question this week, and apologies if I wasn't able to get to your question this time around.
@NibblesDBun asks, "So how often does Earl Thomas watch Bruce Lee movies?"
A:In case you missed it, this question is a reference to Earl Thomas saying, after he chopped Todd Gurley's arm to force a fumble on Sunday, "I did a good job watching those Bruce Lee movies, and it kind of carried over to the football field."
Well to answer your question, Thomas diligently watches "Enter the Dragon" in his hotel room, alone and in the dark, the night before every game… OK, I definitely made that up, but as unique and intense as Thomas is, you believed it for a second, didn't you? I don't know how often Thomas watches Bruce Lee movies, but players have pointed out how former Seahawks assistant Rocky Seto used unorthodox methods, such as Bruce Lee movies or even Animal Planet footage as teaching tools. So it's likely that at some point, Thomas really did watch a Bruce Lee movie and maybe, just maybe, that contributed to him forcing a fumble Sunday, as well as in Week 17 of the 2014 season when he made an almost identical play against the Rams.
That play, as well as seven tackles and an interception, helped Thomas earn NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors.
@HolliWinters asks, "How fast is Russell Wilson?"
A:This run against the Colts would suggest he's pretty darn fast:
If you're looking for something more specific, Wilson ran a 4.55-second 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine, which is, well, pretty darn fast, especially for an NFL quarterback. Wilson might not be quite that fast anymore, not because he's slowing down, per se, but because players specifically train to test well at the combine, so what Wilson does now to best prepare for football might not leave him quite as fast as he was in 2012. But again, as he shows almost every Sunday, Wilson still has plenty of speed to make him a dangerous weapon with his legs and his arm. And more important than his straight-line speed is Wilson's elusiveness in the pocket that allows him to turn potential sacks into big plays.
@stefan_denz asks "Will we continue to see Jimmy Graham lined up as a receiver? Looked good in L.A."
A:As Stefan notes, Graham was split out away from the line a bit more in Los Angeles than he has been at other times this season. But while that was effective—Graham caught six passes, including a touchdown—I wouldn't expect Graham to only be used that way going forward. One thing the Seahawks like about Graham is that he has become a more complete tight end since coming to Seattle, meaning he does occasionally line up as an in-line tight end who can help block. That being said, Graham will always be a player the Seahawks move around, because he does create serious matchup issues for opponents, as we saw on Seattle's only touchdown last week.
"It depends on the matchups and how they want to match and stuff," Carroll said of how Graham is used. "It's a good thing to be able to do everything with him. It makes him very versatile and he has become an effective blocker and also an effective helper in the pass-protection when we do need him, which is just a few times a game. When we do, he's done a great job of it, he just spreads the wealth a little bit on all of the things that he is capable of doing, and I think that's good for us. He did a nice job outside though."
@RAYKation asks, "What defensive player would you like to see on offense for a trick play?"
A: @SchalkerMyth0s jumped in a with a few good suggestions, including using Richard Sherman as a receiver (he played there at Stanford), using Bobby Wagner as a running back (did you see his moves on the fumble return against the Colts?), and best of all, using Sheldon Richardson as a fullback and having him run a wheel route.
While the Richardson idea sounds like a ton of fun, I'd come up with some sort of play that lets Kam Chancellor throw the ball seeing as he was a highly recruited quarterback out of high school before eventually settling in at defensive back. Remember the play last year where Doug Baldwin threw to Wilson for a touchdown? How about something similar, but giving Chancellor an option to run if he'd prefer, because who wouldn't want to see one of the league's hardest hitters trying to deliver punishment as a ball carrier.
Professional funny person, author and punting enthusiast @sarahcolonna asks, "Why is it called a 'bye' week and not 'buy' or 'by' or even 'bi'?"
A:Well, Sarah, I know you're just making a joke, because, well that's your job, but I'm going answer anyway. Bi is a prefix meaning two, and teams only get one weekend off per season, so that wouldn't make sense. By is a preposition meaning, in proximity to, so again, that really doesn't work. And I guess it could be a "buy" week if a certain red-headed punter wanted to buy his wife some nice presents (you're welcome, Sarah). Bye, meanwhile, is a sports term for advancing to the next round of a tournament without playing, or in the case of the NFL season, taking a weekend off.
How's that for a serious answer to sarcastic question?
@angelnek1 asks, "How's Cliff Avril's recovery coming along?"
A:While the Seahawks still aren't sure of Avril's status going forward, they should learn more information in the next couple of weeks, Carroll said Monday.
"He's got some tests coming up, I'm not sure if it's two weeks or a week and a half, something like that," Carroll said. "Pretty soon. I think when we get back, we'll know more and we'll find out. Like I've said all along, we're going to do everything we can to help him for the long haul and not rush any decisions, make any conclusions in a rush. We don't need to. He's a bright guy, he's got family, all kinds of support and all that. We'll make a really good decision on whatever it is, but we'll have to wait and see."
Team photographer Rod Mar shares exclusive behind-the-scenes images from the Seahawks' 16-10 win over the Los Angeles Rams during Week 5 at L.A. Coliseum.