The Seahawks kicked off preseason play over the weekend, which makes now a good time to take a pause from our regular training camp coverage to answer questions from you, the fans. As always, thanks to everyone who asked a question this week, and apologies if I couldn't get to yours this time around.
@swooshdave asks, "What happened on Saturday? It was a highly disorganized mess?"
A: The Seahawks lost 20-7 Saturday, were shut out in the first half, struggled to get off the field on third down and, as head coach Pete Carroll put it, "What we did tonight was not good enough to win a football game. Really on both sides of the ball we needed to do some things better, particularly on third down—third down was a nightmare for us, particularly on defense, and it made it really hard for us."
So yeah, things didn't go well, but I'd hardly say it's time to panic, especially considering the Seahawks had 31 players who didn't play, including almost all of their starters. On offense in particular, the Seahawks rested or held out due to injury almost all of their top players, including their starting quarterback, their top two receivers, their top two running backs, their top two tight ends and, either their entire starting offensive line, or if Kyle Fuller wins the starting job, four of their five starters.
Yes, the Raiders rested a lot of their top players too and they were the better team Saturday, but until we get to see most if not all of Seattle's starters on the field, I'm going to withhold judgement on the team's performance.
@eanorlin asks, "With three preseason games, can we expect to see any starters play?"
A: I have no inside info here, and Pete Carroll generally is intentionally vague when discussing who will play in preseason games and how much they'll play. For example, on Friday before his team left for Las Vegas, Pete Carroll said, "All of the questions about who's playing and how we're doing it and all of that, you've got to wait and see."
If we're basing things on previous preseasons, then yes, the starters should play some, and perhaps in either the second or third game they'll get significant playing time—under the old four-game format teams traditionally played their starters more in the third game. How much the starters play remains to be seen, but I would imagine we'll see at least some playing time for everybody who's healthy.
@ChiSeahawk asks, "Who is going to be the No. 1 tight end?"
A: If you're talking No. 1 in terms of targets, my guess would be Gerald Everett, who has looked really good as a pass-catcher in training camp. If we're talking about playing time, I'd imagine it will be very close between Everett and Will Dissly, who is more of the traditional in-line tight end and is the better blocker of the two. Game plans and opponents could dictate which of those two plays more on any given Sunday, but my hunch is that both see the field a lot, sometimes together in two tight end sets.
@ORCWIZARD asks, "If he plays well, how many snaps are available for Darrell Taylor?"
A: About as many as he shows he deserves. Taylor has been working as a hybrid defensive end/linebacker, similar to the role Bruce Irvin used to have in Seattle's defense, and if Taylor proves effective in both of those roles, he should be on the field quite a bit. The Seahawks, like every team, will play a lot of nickel defense, which means Taylor or whoever lines up at strongside linebacker might only play a third or so of the team's defensive snaps, though that number can fluctuate quite a bit from week to week depending on the opponent. The Seahawks have a deep pass-rush rotation, so Taylor won't be on the field play, but again, if he proves to be an effective edge rusher, he'll have a chance to play a lot between the two roles.
@markrootshawks asks, "Do you think we'll see more dime packages this year to have both Marquise Blair and Ugo Amadi on the field?"
A: This is a great question and I've wondered the same thing myself. Blair won the nickel job in camp last year and looked fantastic leading up to the season, only to tear his ACL in Week 2. Amadi played very well after taking over that role, and now that both are healthy, it's hard to imagine one of them won't be a part of the defense. Teams can only play so much nickel so I can't foresee those two both on the field on a regular basis—at least not against opponents with any semblance of a running game—but against more pass-happy offense, it certainly seems like a possibility that the Seahawks will try to find ways to get both Amadi and Blair on the field.
@rtsolari asks, "Are the Seahawks looking at bringing in another center?"
A: Well, Robin, are you by chance related to offensive line coach Mike Solari? If so, you might know the answer to this better than I do. But in broad terms, the answer to this and any similar question at another position is, yes, they're always at least considering other options, because as general manager John Schneider always likes to point out, roster building is a year-round process. Do I know of any specific potential signings in the works? No. But particularly if Ethan Pocic isn't able to get back from his hamstring injury soon, then the Seahawks very well could look to add there. If Pocic is fully healthy soon, however, then he goes back to competing with Kyle Fuller for the starting job.
@kingains23 asks, "Any updates on a Duane Brown extension?" and @TB12isThanos asks, "Is Jamal Adams close to an extension?" (Editor's Note: These questions were submitted on Monday, August 17, prior to Jamal signing a four-year contract extension with the Seahawks on Tuesday)
A: I'm lumping these two together because, A. I know there's a ton of interest in both of these situations, and B. I can't only tell you what's been said by John Schneider and Pete Carroll because—and I know this is shocking—those don't keep the digital media team in the loop on things like contract negotiations.
During his pregame interview with Steve Raible, Schneider said "there's nothing new to report," on those two, while Carroll has repeatedly said negotiations are ongoing and amicable with Adams, and that Brown was "making a statement" by not practicing, but that there was nothing to report in terms of contract negotiations. So what does that all mean? Your guess is as good as mine, but for now at least, there's no need to panic about these situations. The regular season opener is still four weeks away and we're talking about two experienced veterans, players who are in the building and going through meetings and walkthoughs, so even if they don't do a lot in practice or play in the preseason, they can be ready come Week 1.
@HolliWinters asks, "Will Geno Smith play in the upcoming game? If not, how does that affect the Seahawks playing Russell Wilson?"
A: Smith, who left Saturday's game with a concussion, will have to go through the league's concussion protocol, a process that takes some time, so we won't know until late in the week, if not gameday, if he'll play. Teams don't have to give injury designations such as questionable or doubtful ahead of games, so if Pete Carroll doesn't give Smith's status when he talks to the media late in the week, we may not know until gameday.
Whether Smith can go or not shouldn't affect Wilson's playing time, however. If the Seahawks want to get Wilson some work on Saturday, they'll do so and then, if Smith were unavailable, they'd hand the offense over to Alex McGough and Sean Mannion when Wilson is done. And if the Seahawks don't want Wilson to play at all, they could just have McGough and Mannion play the entire game, which is what they almost ended up doing Saturday with Smith leaving in the first quarter.
@Avaholic91 asks, "Excited for the Seattle Kraken?"
A: Absolutely. I'm not going to pretend to be a hockey expert or a diehard fan, but having been to a couple of NHL games and having been lucky enough to cover games at the 2010 Olympics, I do know that hockey is an incredibly fun sport to watch live. Plus, one more sports team in Seattle to cheer on is always a good thing.
All we need now is an NBA team to join the party.
The 12s showed up in numbers at Allegiant Stadium to watch the Seattle Seahawks take on the Las Vegas Raiders in their first preseason game of the year on August 14, 2021.