Position paper: Guards and centers
Posted by Danny O'Neil
So one thing that I'll be watching for when the team's minicamp begins Friday afternoon is where Willis is lining up.
One of the most noteable differences this minicamp will be the offensive line. Earlier this month, Ray Willis and Mike Gibson composed the left half of the first-string line. Now, it's going to be Russell Okung and Ben Hamilton, the veteran from Denver Seattle signed.
After Seattle picked Okung, offensive line coach Alex Gibbs said Hamilton will serve as a mentor for Okung much the way he did for Ryan Clady, the Broncos' first-round draft choice.
One of the surprises of the last minicamp was that Chris Spencer was back at first-string center with Max Unger -- who finished his rookie season as the starting center -- was at right guard.
"Alex evaluated that early on," coach Pete Carroll said of Spencer's spot at center. "He thought he saw some stuff and then showed really good quickness and gives us good play there and we saw nothing but that. He looks comfortable with it.
"Alex really counts on that position to be a guy that captains the calls and the leadership spot there in terms of communication and all that. Chris did a nice job. He has very good quickness and that is something that we really champion in our offensive line play. I think it looks like a really good thought and we are going to stay with it right now."
Spencer is an athletic center, and he's one player that stands to benefit from the coaching switch because. Last year, he went from being complimented for his toughness -- playing through a broken bone in his snapping hand -- to having his coach question why he was still wearing a cast after struggling in Seattle's loss at Houston.
It's worth watching to see whether the switch to Gibbs marks a turning point in Spencer's career.
|RETURNERS||ACQUISITIONS||DRAFT PICKS||UNDRAFTED SIGNEES|
|C Chris Spencer||G Ben Hamilton||G/C Jeff Byers (USC)|
|G/C Max Unger||G Mitch Erickson||C Adrian Martinez (Col.St.)|
|G Mansfield Wrotto|
|C Steve Vallos|
|G Mike Gibson|
As noted in the comments, I left out a temperature guage for this position battle. There's not much uncertainty on the line given the additions made in the past two weeks. Things seem settled ... for now.
Dec 24 - 6:10 AM Looking back: Revisiting Sunday's scouting report
Dec 24 - 1:09 AM Seahawks' scoring binge
Dec 24 - 1:01 AM Video: Summing Seattle's victory
Dec 24 - 12:58 AM Video: Russell Wilson post-game comments
Dec 24 - 12:21 AM Rookie passing roll call