Good morning folks. I'm in Kansas City now and will be heading over to Arrowhead Stadium this afternoon after another pit stop for BBQ. I'm taking recommendations, so if you know of a good spot here let me know. I already stopped by Arthur Bryant's for a late-night snack on Thursday.
Here are five things to look for as the Seattle Seahawks take on Kansas City in the third exhibition game.
Get the end zone: For a number of reasons, whether it’s been dropped passes, settling for what the defense has given them or a lack of execution on third down, the first unit offense has not scored a touchdown in two preseason games. That streak needs to stop today. Seattle’s starters need a couple sustained drives that finish with touchdowns in order to build some confidence heading into the regular season.
Prime time opportunity for Wilson: Rookie quarterback Russell Wilson finally gets his chance to play with the starters in exhibition play, with potentially the starting quarterback job riding on his performance. Wilson will have to fight trying to do to much to make the most his first start. Wilson needs to just play within himself, but also if there is a chance to make a play down the field, either with his arm or with his feet, he has to take it.
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Wide receiver roulette: Which receivers in crowded competition for a roster spot are going to standout and makes plays on Friday. Will it be Braylon Edwards again, who I believe is having a strong camp? How about Terrell Owens making up for a poor performance against Denver? Deon Butler continues to be a solid contributor, and Ben Obomanu also should get some run as well. And will Kris Durham or Ricardo Lockette seize the moment tonight. There’s definitely some storylines to watch there.
Get Irvin going: He’s been in the backfield a couple times, most notably the hit against Peyton Manning last week, but for the most part we have not seen rookie first round draft pick Bruce Irvin creating havoc and making plays. Part of that is Irvin hasn’t had a lot of opportunity because of the substitution scheme, and Seattle has played pretty vanilla and not implemented any of the team’s pressure packages. I’d like to see that change today in order to give Irvin some confidence heading into the regular season.
No injuries: The starters likely will play the most reps during exhibition play today, so Seattle needs to make sure they get through the game with all their frontline players healthy and ready to go for the team’s opener in Arizona on Sept. 9. Get you’re work in, play well and then get out.
Here’s my advance on today’s game, focusing on Seattle’s running game. The Seahawks are averaging 181.5 yards a contest in exhibition play, third-best in the league.
ESPN’s Mike Sando gives us six thoughts on the quarterback position.
Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports writes that the Seahawks can finish as high as 10-6 and take the NFC West in this camp overview.
Clare Farnsworth of Seahawks.com writes that Pete Carroll has good things to say about tight end Anthony McCoy, despite the perception of the USC product. Carroll: “He does have really good hands. There’s been times when he’s coming up, getting ready to play NFL football, that he hasn’t been able to keep his concentration that’s needed to catch the football. But he’s on it now. His attitude that he brings and his effort every day is just really, really positive. I’ve never seen him so full of spirit and the kind of mentality that he has. It’s infectious. He’s been a real good factor for us. I’m really excited for him.”
Danny O’Neil of the Seattle Times writes that Carroll is not afraid to play rookies.
Nate Davis of USA Today provides a nice overview of Trent Dilfer’s comments on ESPN last night during the Titans-Cardinals game about how Matt Hasselbeck pulled him out of a deep depression when he lost his 5-year-old son, Trevin, to heart disease. And how Hasselbeck is helping to mentor Jake Locker in Tennessee.
ESPN’s John Clayton ranks Seattle’s quarterback situation at No. 27 in the league.
KJR’s Mitch Levy talks with Seattle defensive coordinator Gus Bradley in this audio link.
Bob Stelton and Dave Grosby of 710 ESPN Seattle talk with Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell about Matt Flynn’s situation with his sore arm.