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Postby Homeless » Wed Jul 16, 2003 8:44 am

The most notable offseason “move” was actually a stall in offensive tackle Walter Jones’ contract negotiations. Jones, a Pro Bowl left tackle, held out three games in 2002 because of an ugly contract dispute and we’re hoping those sour feelings don’t resurface again this year. To date, the two parties have failed to reach an accord with each other but get another chance at it now that it’s past July 15—the date teams can start to negotiate with their franchise-tagged players.

Jones is absolutely critical to the success of Shaun Alexander and the Seahawks’ running and passing game. Offensive tackle Michael Thompson, an Atlanta Falcons cast-off, was brought in to provide temporary help, but he’s little more than a bandage over a broken leg. The line needs serious attention, and not just a quick fix. We’re hoping Jones signs shortly so we can watch the complete first team offense in preseason games. However, if Jones ends up in another ferocious contract battle we may have to push Alexander out of our top 10, and that would cause fantasy anarchy. The effects would be far reaching, even hampering our rankings of receivers Koren Robinson and Darrell Jackson. OK, I think you get the point. Without the big left tackle, the Seahawks’ offense would be in “Davey Jones’ locker.”

Position Battles: Jerramy, Jerramy, Jerramy (shaking our heads in disbelief). This guy needs to get some hobbies in the offseason. Train on the beach with Randy Moss, or run some hills with Simeon Rice (since you seem crazy, this might be the right choice for you), but don’t drink and drive anymore! That caused him to be thrown into jail twice during June—and he’s making it very difficult for us to accurately rank him.

Take away Stevens’ off-field transgressions and you’ve got yourself a potential top-10 tight end, but his shenanigans leave the door open to Itula Mili. Mili had 43 catches for 508 yards and two touchdowns in 2002, so the Seahawks don’t have to wait for Jerramy to grow up, they can do just fine without him. For now, however, Stevens seems to be the No. 1 tight end on a very explosive Seattle offense.

Keep an Eye On: Trent Dilfer lost his 5-year-old son to a heart virus this offseason—and if that wasn’t enough to bear—couldn’t practice with the team until June because of his torn Achilles’ tendon. When he was able to get back on the field, he said it was a relief to be back with his teammates.

“Today was a big step, because [the team] is my family as well,” Dilfer told reporters at his first practice back since losing his son, Trevin. "These guys and this team meant a lot to Trevin. It's been hard, but it's been great, too, being back with the guys and getting my blood hot for football again. It's exciting, and…[Trevin] would be excited for me." Needless to say, he’s in bad shape emotionally, mentally and physically. The good news is Coach Mike Holmgren anticipates he’ll be ready to back up Matt Hasselbeck by the start of the season.

The bad news is, if Dilfer isn’t ready on time, Jeff Kelly or Seneca Wallace would be the team’s temporary No. 2 quarterback. Neither has started a game in the NFL and the Seahawks thrilling offense would be stuck in neutral if one of those guys had to start.

It almost seems like a bad dream, but unfortunately I’m here to tell you it wasn’t. Do you remember when Holmgren was flirting with the idea of giving backup running back Maurice Morris more touches? If not, let me remind you of how he responded to reporters’ questions on that same topic. "We're trying to find something to make us click, this will give us maybe a little spark, a little change. ... We've been throwing mud against the wall and it keeps falling off. Maybe some of this will stick." If Morris ends up sticking in the Seahawks game plan even a little—and I’m not saying that he will—it would cause do serious damage to Alexander’s value. Watch closely how the Seahawks choose to rotate Morris into the backfield to make sure he’s not pilfering any touches from Alexander.
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Postby 9er Fan » Wed Jul 16, 2003 5:07 pm

This would worry me if I owned Alexander. He didn't exactly set the NFL aflame while Jones was holding out last year. The Rams are in a similar position with Pace.
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Postby awwchrist » Wed Jul 16, 2003 11:34 pm

No, BUT they did sign Chris Terry, who by all intensive purposes can be pointed at/to as a reason to the Seahawks 2nd half success.

Also, having Hutchinson back this season (injured for most of last season) will help tremendously.

It's almost common to forget about Jones anymore. Us Hawk fans are living without him for the last 3 seasons. It's a plus if he is suited and playing, but we don't count on it.
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Postby NITRO » Fri Jul 18, 2003 4:09 pm

posted this question in another part of the forum...before I found this part...the question is if Alexander is going to split carries this year?...it seemed like Holmgren wanted to give Morris about 10 carries a game or so...I was just wondering if Alexander is the everydown back...or if they still want to split him some this season?...and I know the few injuries he had last year were not that serious...but is he healthy at this point as well?
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Postby awwchrist » Fri Jul 18, 2003 7:22 pm

I have read uncertified sources on other boards saying how there is a thread of speculation that not only will Alexander lose carries to Maurice, but if Maurice performs and produces well enough, they would look at replacing Alexander to eventually move him to another team.

Take that with a grain of salt of course, however it's no falsehood that Maurice is a damn fine back.

Eventually somethings gotta give right?
Last edited by awwchrist on Sat Jul 19, 2003 12:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby awwchrist » Fri Jul 18, 2003 7:22 pm

And yes Alexander is healthy so far this year.
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Postby NITRO » Fri Jul 18, 2003 7:54 pm

yeah...well thank you...not exactly what I wanted to hear...but I knew something was up with what was happening last year...people think its just an easy decision to keep Alexander over Owens...but if something like that is going to happen...I would lose a lot by giving Owens up and keeping Alexander...so I'll keep my eye on this one...thanks for the news again...and if you have any updates...I would be glad to know
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Postby DUKE » Mon Jul 21, 2003 11:57 am

I have bought into the Seahawks Offense this year, so I'm hoping like Hell, that they get Jones signed. For a few teams, I've already invested stock into: Hasselbeck, K-Rob, DJax, and Alexander. Please don't scare me w/ the Morris talk. :-o Alexander was my 1st pick in my money league.
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and they've signed...

Postby awwchrist » Thu Jul 24, 2003 9:46 am

http://msn.espn.go.com/nfl/columns/pasquarelli_len/1584735.html

Trufant and Hamlin are signed.

I feel better now. Let's hope for a healthy injury free camp.
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