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NFL Pre Season Week One In the Books

It’s here (and it’s about time)! The pro football season officially got moving over the weekend with a full slate of preseason action. Even though the games don’t count in the standings, there is plenty happening on the field and on the sidelines that have relevance for the regular season – and for next week.

For instance, the Seahawks failed to cover against Tennessee, but they did get a win for new Coach Pete Carroll while rolling up 322 yards. Carroll had hinted all week that he wanted to win in preseason and QB Charlie Whitehurst threw for 214 yards. Carroll bolted from the edge of the field to the bench in the second quarter to congratulate the defense following a three-and-out stop in the second quarter. He had a hug for Whitehurst for his first TD throw. Who says preseason is meaningless? Not the emotional Carroll.

Of note is that Seattle’s pass defense was shaky, a problem last season, and pass pressure is still the biggest question mark on Seattle’s defense. With Saturday’s victory, Seattle now has won its past six exhibition games. Seattle was undefeated in exhibition games last season, which didn’t do much to prevent the Seahawks’ 5-11 belly flop in the regular season.

The Patriots got a win over the Saints after building up a 24-7 lead. The offense has new looks – not just with personnel, but with a slight change of strategy. Last season the Patriots relied heavily on wide receivers Randy Moss and Wes Welker to carry the offense. QB Tom Brady went to the shotgun a lot, too. Sports Betting at the Sportsbook

What they showed in the preseason opener is that there appears to be a slight change in philosophy. Brady was far more under center than usual and they used 2 and even 3 tight ends at times. Part of that was that they drafted two potentially talented tight ends in Rob Grankowski and Aaron Hernandez, while adding veteran TE Alge Crumpler.

The Patriots were a weak red zone team last season and it’s clear they want to spread the football around more, possibly run more and use the tight ends in an attempt to bolster their red zone efficiency. In the preseason opener, they were 6 of 13 on third down and very strong in the red zone.

What team looked the worst? Let’s call it a tie with the Lions, Rams and Bills, three bottom feeders from last season. The Lions lost 23-7 at Pittsburgh, though there was room for optimism. Detroit outgained the Steelers and held Pittsburgh to 3.3 yards per rush. With the starting defensive line on the field, the Steelers offense gained 12 yards.

The Rams got flattened at home by the Vikings and the big story was not Sam Bradford but the St. Louis offensive line, which looks as bad as ever. Bradford’s NFL debut consisted of six completions in 13 attempts for 57 yards and a passer rating of 58.8. But the real story came in all the hits Bradford absorbed by the Minnesota pass rush. Bradford was sacked four times and hit at least three other times. “We had some issues up front,” Steve Spagnuolo said. So, what else is new?

The Buffalo Bills’ backfield took a major hit as running backs Fred Jackson and Marshawn Lynch were hurt early in the 42-17 preseason-opening loss to the Washington Redskins. Jackson is believed to have a broken left hand, while Lynch hobbled off with an injured ankle. Jackson’s injury is the most serious as head coach Chan Gailey said Jackson will miss the rest of the preseason. Gailey has been demanding a tough, physical game, and it’s taking a toll as they are loaded with injured players.

The final word of the weekend goes to the Kansas City Chiefs coaching staff, who punished receivers by sending them to the toilet. Kansas City coaches hauled a mobile outhouse onto the practice field and told pass catchers to go in, have a seat and close the door. The port-a-potty was used for a unique kind of pass-catching drill that players, suppressing a laugh, hailed as effective in developing some quick hand-eye coordination.

The Chiefs, you see, led the NFL in dropped passes a year ago. Assistant head coach Maurice Carthon, who introduced the Chiefs to the port-a-potty drill, stood about 10 feet away and shouted to another coach when to fling open the door. The second the door opened, Carthon fired the pass and it was on the player to hang on.”It teaches you hand-eye coordination,” rookie wide receiver Dexter McCluster said. So if they bounce the football to them would it be a one-hopper in the hopper? Just asking.


Seahawks sign Bears Adrian Peterson

The Seattle Seahawks signed running back Adrian Peterson on Thursday. But as he has heard every time he does anything in recent years, the accompanying line is … no, not THAT Adrian Peterson.

This Adrian Peterson is a 31-year-old running back who spent the last eight years with the Chicago Bears as a backup before becoming a free agent this offseason, as opposed to the Minnesota Vikings All-Pro running back of the same name.

The newest Seahawk was on the field Thursday afternoon wearing No. 42.

Wide receiver Matt Simon, signed just two days ago, was released to create a roster opening.

Peterson rushed just seven times for 51 yards for the Bears last year. In his career, he’s played 106 games with 1,283 yards rushing and eight touchdowns on 311 carries.

His best season was in 2007 when he rushed for 510 yards and also caught 51 passes for 420 yards.

Peterson joins a running back competition that already includes Justin Forsett, Julius Jones, Leon Washington, Quinton Ganther and Louis Rankin.

UPDATE (4:25 p.m.): Coach Pete Carroll said after practice that Peterson was brought in because the team is concerned about running back depth in Saturday’s game, largely because Rankin has been sidelined with a sore hamstring.

Carroll indicated Peterson, who practiced today without having even seen a playbook yet, would get some action in the preseason opener. Though the coach wasn’t giving any clues on how much the starters will play Saturday, my guess is Washington won’t play much — if at all — as he returns from last year’s broken leg.

The team won’t want to overuse Forsett or Jones in the preseason opener either, thus Peterson’s arrival.

Peterson said he was still living in Chicago just being patient and waiting for a call.

“It’s still early,” he said.

Breakdown of the Seattle Seahawks Starting Wideouts.

T.J Houshmandzadeh:

Seattle’s passing game wasn’t pretty last year, despite the high-priced addition of Houshmandzadeh who flirted with a 1,000 yard season. He gave the Seahawks some reliability at wideout, but only found the end zone three times. Those aren’t top WR numbers. Houshmandzadeh turns 33 this year and had off-season surgery for a sports hernia — an injury that has a way of re-appearing. Given the unsettled situation at QB, expect this former Bengal’s fantasy numbers to continue their decline.

Golden Tate:

Tate, taken 60th overall, could end up as the steal of the 2010 draft. He’s a tough, yet dynamic playmaker who helped make Jimmy Clausen a household name. The sensible move would be to phase Tate in opposite T.J. Houshmandzadeh as the team’s starting flanker. The Seahawks are likely to use Tate as the team’s utility man a-la Minnesota’s Percy Harvin in 2009. Tate can stretch the field at flanker, run routes out of the slot, return kicks and punts or even man the wildcat. Loaded with potential, this is a guy dynasty leaguers should be interested in.

Read More At Seahawks Fans Blog

Which Seahawks Will Rush for a 1000 Yards?

Justin Forsett

Justin Forsett/ Sleeper Pick

Justin Forsett:
Forsett was one of very few pleasant surprises for the Seahawks last year and stood out in contrast to under-performing Julius Jones.Forsett has a chance to battle Leon Washington for the starting RB spot. Forsett has shown he can be a dynamic force, but now he has to convince a new coach of his value to the team. Once he carves out his niche, he should see plenty of action and has a legitimate chance to claim the number one role.

Leon Washington:
Washington is an interesting addition. The Seahawks took a risk in trading for Washington, given the severity of the leg injury that shortened his 2009 season and had many thinking his career was over. Healthy, Washington is a versatile playmaker who would be a welcome addition to the Seattle backfield mix, but there’s no guarantee he’ll ever return to form. He suffered a compound leg fracture — that’s where the bone actually breaks through the skin — against the Raiders last year; breaking both his tibia and his fibula. He’s running already and has a few months to get back into form. Playing with a metal rod in his leg, it’s hard to imagine he’ll be the same force he was before the injury.

Julius Jones:
Still not an ideal feature back. Unfortunately, that role won’t include much scoring. Jones split playing time fairly evenly with Forsett last season,will likely look to split the backfield duties 60/40 with Forsett doing most of the heavy lifting and Jones playing the Warrick Dunn role. Jones will have a decent chance to crack 1,000 yards rushing this season, but don’t expect more than a handful of touchdowns.

So weighing in what Seahawks running back will rush for a thousands yards Justin Forsett.

Read More at Seahawks Fans Blog

Seahawks Predictions: 2010 NFC Division Title

Seattle Seahawks 2010


Last year: In their one and only year under coach Jim Mora, the Seahawks flopped again. Left tackle Walter Jones never made it back from major knee surgery and eventually retired. Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck crumbled with more injuries in one of the worst statistical years of his career. The lack of a pass rush exposed a porous secondary. How bad was it? Punter Jon Ryan was Seattle’s best weapon on offense. And kicker Olindo Mare has been made the team’s franchise-designated player.

Read More At Flight of the Seahawks

Seattle Seahawks Team Breakdown

Seattle Seahawks: Who starts at running back?

With the quarterback situation settled for now — sorry, Charlie Whitehurst, but this is still Matt Hasselbeck’s show heading into the season — every practice and exhibition game becomes a tryout at running back.

Justin Forsett and Julius Jones are the favorites to start. Both are good all-around backs with a nose for pass protection. Jones lacks panache. Forsett became the more appealing runner last season and I suspect his talents and running style will continue to grow on coach Pete Carroll.

Leon Washington will push for playing time if his surgically repaired leg heals sufficiently. Even Quinton Ganther has a chance to get some carries. This position is pretty wide open.


Seahawks: Deion Branch. On the surface, this was a tough call between Branch, who has had problems staying healthy, and linebacker Leroy Hill, who has had problems staying healthy and out of trouble. Both are scheduled to earn fat salaries this season, but only Hill’s deal features guaranteed money. Seattle needs Branch, so he’s safe as long as he’s healthy, but can he stay healthy enough to be a factor?


Seahawks RB Leon Washington. The 49ers’ Ginn might have been a candidate here as well, but Washington is more intriguing because he was a better player before suffering a ghastly leg injury while with the New York Jets last season. Washington is scheduled to make his Seahawks practice debut at training camp. If the leg heals correctly, Washington could become a player defenses must worry about.

Washington is a rarity among running backs in that he realizes he isn’t an every-down back. He will not require 20 or 25 touches to get into a rhythm. He’ll be fine getting limited touches.

Carroll is known to covet gadget players. Washington is more than that when healthy, but he does fill a specific role. He’s definitely a secret weapon at this point because no one, including the Seahawks, can be sure what he’ll offer this season. He could become a home-run threat or he might not make it out of camp.

CBS Sports Provides In-depth Fantasy Look at Seahawks

Posted by Devon Heinen

players around the country prepare for another season in the National Football League, football fans are preparing also.

Fantasy football, the international phenomena that’s continuously taken football fandom to new heights, is starting to heat up once again as fans prep draft sheets and strategies to see if they have what it takes to piece together the best team in the fantasy universe.

Over at CBSsports.com, Senior Fantasy Writer Jamey Eisenberg is in the midst of helping fantasy owners with his in-depth 32-team breakdown of the NFL’s choice players and the ones that should be avoided on fantasy Draft Day.

In his analysis of the 2011 Seattle Seahawks, Eisenberg tabbed running back Justin Forsett as the team’s fantasy sleeper, wide receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh as the team’s bounce-back candidate and wideout Golden Tate as the player fantasy team owners should look at in keeper leagues.

On Forsett, Eisenberg said:

The Seahawks will open training camp with Julius Jones as the starting running back, but Forsett will eventually see the majority of carries. He has to if Seattle wants its best players on the field. Last year, Forsett had 114 carries for 619 yards (an impressive 5.4 yards per carry) and four touchdowns. He also added 41 catches for 350 yards and a touchdown, and he’s a candidate for 1,200 total yards and seven touchdowns. We consider Forsett the best offensive player in Seattle, and he should be drafted as a No. 3 Fantasy running back with a mid-round pick. But don’t be surprised if Forsett is starting for you by the end of the season because he has potential to be a star.

Eisenberg writes that Houshmandzadeh’s worth a mid-round pick:

Houshmandzadeh will look to improve in his second year with Seattle this season. Last year, Houshmandzadeh finished with 79 catches for 911 yards and three touchdowns, his lowest stat totals in each category since 2004. He said he played last year with broken ribs and had surgery this offseason to repair a hernia, so hopefully he’s healthy. We expect Houshmandzadeh to play better this year, but he’s no longer an elite Fantasy option. He’ll have big weeks at times — he had three games with double digits in Fantasy points in 2009 — but those won’t be the norm for Houshmandzadeh.

We view Housh as a low-end No. 2/high-end No. 3 Fantasy option. He’s still good enough to start in deeper leagues since he’s the No. 1 target in Seattle, but this passing game has a lot to be desired. Take Houshmandzadeh with a mid-round pick after the top-tier wide receivers are off the board.

On Tate:

Tate could end up being useful in seasonal leagues since the Seahawks need playmakers, and Tate was a star in college at Notre Dame. He’ll likely end up starting this season opposite Houshmandzadeh once he outplays Deion Branch, but the passing game in Seattle has a lot to be desired. You’re probably not going to draft Tate in the majority of formats, but he should be drafted with a mid-round pick in keeper leagues. He could end up being a solid contributor in the near future.

Monday, I’ll put my fantasy hat on and provide my take on who fantasy owners should look at and steer clear of when fantasy Draft Day comes this NFL preseason.