In honor of Canada Day, take a look back at the best photos of the Seahawks' two Canadian players, punter Jon Ryan and tight end Luke Willson.
Happy Canada day, everyone. What does that have to do with a Seahawks Q&A? Not much, since none of you asked about Jon Ryan or Luke Willson, but we want you to enjoy your day nonetheless, Canadian Seahawks fans. As always, thanks to everyone who asked questions this week, and apologies if we couldn't get to yours this time.
@BPGoose41 asks, "What's the position battle that you're most looking forward to watching?"
A:Seahawks coach Pete Carroll actually addressed this topic at the end of minicamp, and he's just a tiny bit more qualified than me to speak to position battles on his team. But if you want my opinion anyway, I would say in terms of starting job, strongside linebacker and center stand out, and for roster spots and depth, receiver and the secondary will be very competitive. It will also be very interesting to see how the two rookie defensive linemen, Jarran Reed and Quinton Jefferson, fit into the rotation once pads go on and they can really start to show what they're capable of doing.
@mbakerlax asks, "Who gets the most carries in 2016?"
A:Ask me in January… Oh, you wanted an answer now? OK, well if I had to guess on July 1 who is getting the most carries this season, I'd have to stick with Thomas Rawls based off of what he showed last season, averaging a league-best 5.6 yards per carry before going down with a season ending ankle injury.
That being said, the Seahawks did draft three talented running backs this season, and Rawls does have to show he is all the way back from his injury—Carroll said he expects Rawls will be back for the start of the regular season—so nothing is certain at this point. But for now, it's hard to see Rawls not having a big role in the offense after such a strong rookie season.
@Shaunblahblah asks, "Any chance the Seahawks would do something like "All or Nothing?" I sense Pete Carroll and John Schneider don't want the distraction, but 12s would love it."
A:While the Seahawks, a team full of interesting, passionate and humorous personalities, would be an entertaining team on a show like "All or Nothing," Amazon's new behind-the-scenes show on the Arizona Cardinals' 2015 season, or HBO's "Hard Knocks," that's not something that seems to be in their future. While you can never completely rule anything out, Carroll did tell the NFL Network back in 2012 that the Seahawks turned down a chance to do "Hard Knocks" and that they weren't interested in doing it in the future.
"That's just not going to suit what we're trying to get done here," Carroll said prior to his third season in Seattle. "I think it's a great show, I love watching it."
"I just don't want to put that in the middle of our process. We're trying to win football games and hopefully we can entertain that way than rather on the show. It's just not our style here."
@StewartExpress asks, "Who is the frontrunner to grab the fullback position and why?"
A: I probably should have mentioned fullback in the earlier question about interesting position battles in training camp, because that job appears to be wide open. The Seahawks had two fullbacks on the roster last year, neither of whom was re-signed, so as of now there is a battle going on between undrafted rookies Taniela Tupou, a University of Washington product, and Tre Madden, who played running back at USC, as well as Brandon Cottom, who is listed as a tight end but has spent time playing both positions with Seattle. Rookie defensive tackle Brandin Bryant is another player who could factor in there as well, according to Carroll, though so far Bryant has mostly worked with the defense.
"Brandon Cottom is an unusual player," Carroll said when asked about the fullback battle in OTAs. "He was a tailback in college, so he has good instincts about running the football. He's got excellent hands, he has played some tight end for us too, and he's 270 pounds. It's an unusual package, and he's learning the spot, just like we've taught other guys over the year. Tre Madden has done a really nice job. He's a very versatile football player. He's tough, he's a good special teams guy—he's done all the kinds of things that you like out of that spot. He's not quite as big, but he looks well equipped. He's going to be right in there battling. It's a nice variety of guys at this point."
@MoneyLynch24 asks, "Where do you think Kevin Durant ends up?"
A:I'm no expert on NBA free agency, but my answer would be: hopefully anywhere but Oklahoma City… Yes, I'm still bitter about the Sonics being stolen from us.
@haaenson asks, "Which veteran has improved the most this offseason?"
A: There are a lot of ways to look at this depending on how you're defining veteran and what kind of improvement we're talking about. Justin Britt has made a lot of progress this offseason, but that is at a new position, so there's obviously more room to grow. Second- and third-year players also have a lot more room to grow just because they're relatively new to the league, so it's more likely that somebody like Frank Clark is going to take a noticeable step forward than is an older player like, say, Cliff Avril.
One name Pete Carroll brought up unsolicited earlier in the offseason is defensive back DeShawn Shead, who took on a much bigger role on the defense last season, starting at cornerback, safety and nickel corner, and has built on that progress this offseason.
"DeShawn has really come along, great story for us in our program," Carroll said during minicamp. "He had played safety and corner, but he is doing a really nice job at the line of scrimmage. He has had a fantastic offseason this year, the best by far he has ever had."
And as good as he has been already in his career, don't forget that Carroll noted that Russell Wilson is "a clear step ahead" of where has been in past offseasons.
@Tablerdotcom asks, "How has Jermaine Kearse looked so far?" He also asks about the battle for the last roster spots at receiver.
A:It's only natural this time of year, and even in camp, to focus on the roster battles rather than the established veterans, but I'm glad you brought up Kearse, because his re-signing in free agency was a big deal for the Seahawks offense, and he has come in looking like a player who will only build off of the success he had last season. Kearse, Doug Baldwin and Tyler Lockett are the clear-cut top three right now, and all have looked very good in offseason workouts.
As for the battle for roster spots, as I mentioned earlier, receiver will be one of the most competitive positions on the roster. Between Paul Richardson, Kasen Williams, Kevin Smith, Douglas McNeil III and rookie Kenny Lawler, there are a lot of talented players battling for playing time and roster spots behind Kearse, Baldwin and Lockett.
@GoHawksGoCougs asks, "Any kind of financial windfall at work requires one to bring in donuts. What did Doug Baldwin bring to work?"
A:Well, I didn't see Baldwin deliver them, but there were donuts in the break room Thursday. So if that was you, Doug, thanks.
@poketheswirl asks, "How do the Seahawks plan to use Paul Richardson?"
A:Funny you should ask, we just published a story on Richardson on Seahawks.com earlier this week.
While it's too early to see how Richardson, a former second-round pick who missed all but one game last season, will fit into the offense, it's safe to say that the Seahawks are excited about what a healthy Richardson can bring to the offense.
"Paul is off to a great start in camp, gosh he has done really well," Carroll said earlier in the offseason. "Obviously the hard work that he had, he had so much work on the sidelines last year. He is strong and really fast. We clocked him as fast as he has ever been for us in the OTAs, he is ready to compete and really help us."
@Gink_1228 asks, "Is there a team lunch lady?"
A: No, there is not. There is, however, a fantastic kitchen staff, led by executive chef Mac McNabb, that feeds players, coaches and staff. McNabb, Ernesto de la Torre, Pedro Flores, Stuart McNabb, Rudy McLean and Nick Acord take very, very good care of us all.
With players out until training camp begins in late July, take a look back at the best photos to come from the Seahawks 2016 offseason workout program.