Today’s practice was cut relatively short, as the Seahawks only practiced for about one hour and 45 minutes. Both starting units looked very sharp. Briefly, an area of concern I walked away with today was the backup offensive line. They could not block the pass rush to save their lives and Russell Wilson and Josh Portis were consistently under pressure, often taking a sack.
With the Signing of Terrell Owens, the Seahawks wide receiver corps has been thrown into a fire of questions. Many people believe the T.O. signing is because of a lack of talent among the receivers. Like I have previously stated I only expect six or seven wide receivers to be kept on the 53-man roster. After much debate with my buddy Ned, who I went with to practice today here are my predictions as to who will make the regular season roster.
Sidney Rice: We are counting on Rice to be our starting flanker. He has the richest contract of any of our receivers and although he is coming off of two shoulder surgeries, Rice is expected to make a big impact on the field this season as long as he can stay healthy.
Golden Tate: Tate is challenging for the other starting wide receiver spot and has made a strong impression so far in training camp. I expect Tate’s play in camp to translate during the preseason. Tate can also be used on punt returns. Barring injury or a complete meltdown of on-the-field performance, Tate should be a lock to make this roster.
Doug Baldwin: Dbfresh led the team in receptions and yards last season and will see a lot of playing time out of the slot this season. Baldwin does not have much competition at the slot so he should be a lock to make the roster.
Terrell Owens: I believe the Seahawks will only keep one of their veteran free agent acquisitions and Owens will be that guy. Through two practices, T.O. has proven he knows the offense and has the height and length to make great plays. I am especially impressed with his cuts and hands.
Ben Obomanu: Obomanu is the only wide receiver who contributes on special teams consistently. He has experience in this offense and has made some pretty good plays in camp so far. Obomanu has not been overly impressive, but his play has been solid enough to earn a roster spot.
Ricardo Lockette: Just like Russell Wilson at the quarterback position, the Seahawks believe Lockette has a lot of potential. He is fast and his play in the final two games of last season has given the 12th Man a preview of what he can do on the field.
If the Seahawks keep seven receivers, I would not be surprised to see Braylon Edwards also make the team and assign Ricardo Lockette to the practice squad. The only problem with this scenario is Lockette would have to clear waivers before being placed on the practice squad. I would not be surprised at all if Lockette is picked up off waivers by a different team.
Today was the final practice before Saturday’s preseason opener against Tennessee. The team will conduct a walkthrough tomorrow. Check back tomorrow night for my post previewing Saturday’s game against the Titans.