RENTON – Despite the persistent questions, Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll isn’t ready to announce a winner in the three-way battle for starting quarterback.
Carroll won’t even say what guy will start Saturday in the team’s first exhibition at home against Tennessee.
But he may have provided a not-so-subtle hint Sunday, when incumbent starter Tarvaris Jackson worked with the first unit in the team’s controlled scrimmage.
“That was his day today,” Carroll said. “It was important for him to have this first day and that’s the way it came out on the rotation.”
Jackson was not at his best, completing 4-of-12 passes for 22 yards and adding a 5-yard scramble for a score. But he didn’t need to make many plays, with Marshawn Lynch rushing for 125 yards on nine carries, including a 70-yard jaunt down the right sideline.
Carroll declined after practice to name a frontrunner for the quarterback job, saying instead he wants to watch the film and evaluate each candidate’s performance before making a decision.
Carroll said he’d like the starter for the team’s first preseason game in place by Wednesday, when the Seahawks begin preparation for the Titans.
“I’m really anxious to see the film and see what it tells me,” Carroll said. “The plan that we set in motion is right on course right now. It’s going just right. I would like to figure this out as soon as possible. I have thought that the whole time, but I felt like it was going to take awhile.
“And so we have a big day today and tomorrow evaluating it. And then we’ll come back on Tuesday and set it in motion. We start the game week on Wednesday. And we’ll let you know how that goes when we get there.”
Jackson said all he can do is be patient, with free agent addition Matt Flynn and rookie Russell Wilson also battling for the starting job.
“It’s different, but you just have to do your best whenever you’re in,” he said. “Whoever you’re in there with, it’s like a challenge. I just try to make the best of it.”
Working with the second unit, Flynn completed 9-of-20 passes for 118 yards and one touchdown on a 17-yard out route to tight end Cooper Helfet.
Flynn also threw one interception, on a fourth-and-goal play from the 1. His pass was tipped by defensive end Cordarro Law, and linebacker Mike Morgan came down with the ball in the end zone.
Working with the third unit, Wilson was 9-for-15 passing for 116 yards, no touchdowns and no interceptions.
The Seahawks made a minor roster move, releasing veteran receiver Antonio Bryant and replacing him on the 90-man roster by bringing back kicker Carson Wiggs.
Bryant had missed the last two practices with an unknown injury.
The veteran receiver’s repetitions had been limited during the first week of training camp. One of Bryant’s few highlights was a nice reception on a deep ball from Flynn while working with the second unit during team drills last week. But Bryant, 31, was a long shot to make the roster with younger players getting more reps at receiver.
Seattle has 13 receivers remaining on the roster.
The addition of Wiggs will allow starter Steven Hauschka to rest his leg.
T.O. COMING TO TOWN
The Seahawks, in desperate need of receiver help, confirmed a report by Seattle-area radio station KJR-AM that veteran receiver Terrell Owens will visit for a workout today.
Owens, 38, last played in the league in 2010, when he had 72 catches for 983 yards and nine touchdowns in 14 games with Cincinnati.
Owens had surgery to repair a torn ACL in June 2011, and did not recover in time to play last season.
However, Owens did play for the Allen, Texas, Wranglers in the Indoor Football League this year. He was cut after reportedly refusing to play two road games and skipping a charity event.
Owens, likely a future Hall of Famer, ranks second all-time in the NFL in receiving yards (15,934), fourth in touchdowns (156) and sixth in catches (1,078).
However, the Seahawks want to learn if the 6-3, 224-pound receiver can still beat one-on-one coverage.
Receiver Kris Durham made a nice grab on a 38-yard pass from Flynn, but suffered a hip injury on the play and did not return. Linebacker Bobby Wagner (quad), receiver Doug Baldwin (hamstring), linebacker Alan Bradford (groin), linebacker Matt McCoy (knee), defensive end Red Bryant (knee), tight end Anthony McCoy (hamstring) and linebacker Jameson Konz (shoulder) did not practice. Cornerback Walter Thurmond (leg) and offensive lineman James Carpenter (knee) remain on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. Former University of Michigan defensive coordinator Greg Robinson attended practice. Robinson played linebacker at the University of the Pacific, where he was Carroll’s teammate. The Seahawks will take today off before returning to practice Tuesday to prepare for the game against Tennessee.Eric D. Williams: 253-597-8437 firstname.lastname@example.org blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks