We got a chance to talk to new Seattle Seahawk safety Atari Bigby today after practice.
The 29-year-old told reporters that he’s been brought in as a backup, which means Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor remain the starting safeties for Seattle.
“My role from what I get is on special teams and to come in a little bit on defense,” he said. “But they’ve told me they have their starters.”
Bigby looked to be in good shape, and got reps at strong safety with the second unit, with Josh Pinkard at free safety. Bigby also worked as the nickel WILL backer some reps with the first unit.
“Right now we’re just trying to get him going,” Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said. “He’s catching up now. We’ll see how it all fits. I’d like him to be able to work his way into the nickel thing, and keep going.”
Rookies Jeron Johnson and Mark LeGree are both working with the third unit with Bigby in the fold.
Bigby talked about the fact that he’s the greybeard in the safety group now, with just first and second-year players currently at the safety position.
“This is the first time for me that I’m the veteran,” Bigby said. “Guys are looking to me for leadership and for help.”
Besides the opportunity to play football, Bigby said the attraction for him coming to Seattle is playing for a young, and up-and-coming team.
“It looks like it’s a team on the rise, and I jumped at the chance to be part of that,” Bigby said
Bigby also talked about his health, saying he feels good. The Miami, Fla., native has not played a full season since 2007.
“I’m feeling great,” he said. “That’s the one plus. I had a long offseason, and I got time to recoup.”
Bigby said he doesn’t think it will take too long to get into playing shape, and plans on getting some reps this Saturday against Minnesota.
“Most definitely,” he said. “I want to see what I got.”
On spending the first two weeks of free agency waiting by the phone, here’s what he had to say:
“No player wants to really go through camp because it’s the most grueling time of the football season,” he said. “But I didn’t expect to be out so long. I thought as soon as the lockout was over, I was going to be one of the first guys picked. So year, that was hard swallowing that.
* Carroll said starting quarterback Tarvaris Jackson will play the first half of Saturday’s game against his old team, the Minnesota Vikings.
“We’re going to play him through the first half, and get our first group out there with some substitutions,” Carroll said. “But those guys will play, hopefully it will work out the first half. And if we get that done we’ll feel like we’ve accomplished something.
“Last week was just (a chance) to get them on the field and get them out of there. There just wasn’t any time for extended duty, but now we need to go forward. And we have to jump ahead. We have to catch up a little bit here.”
* Jackson said he’s looking forward to going against his former teammates. “It’s going to be just like practice,” joked Jackson. “I saw them a lot. I practiced against them for five years straight, and that was always fun because the guys always competed.
“I’m pretty sure guys are going to try and get a hit on me – especially guys on defense because I always had that red jersey on in practice. I’m going to be in a different color jersey, so I’m pretty sure they’ll try and get a couple licks on me.”
* Tight end John Carlson missed his third straight day with a shoulder injury. “He has a little labrum issue that we’re working through,” Carroll said.
* Cornerback Kelly Jennings got hit in the head a couple days ago and will not practice until he’s cleared, according to Carroll.
* Receiver Kris Durham was out working with the second unit after missing a little over a week with a hamstring issue. “He was fresh today,” Carroll said. “He looked good. We didn’t finish the drills with him today, just in an effort to not overwork him his first time back, but he did some good stuff.”
* Receiver Doug Baldwin (knee) also came back, so the receiving group now has the full complement of players, except for Isaiah Stanback, who did not practice today.
* Also, defensive linemen Jimmy Wilkerson did not practice today. We’ll try to get injury updates on both Wilkerson and Stanback on Thursday.
* Carroll had good things to say about rookie middle linebacker K.J. Wright, saying that he played better than expected against San Diego last week.
* Mike Williams returned fully from a toe injury had a good practice, making several catches over the middle of the defense today.
* Carroll said running back Justin Forsett, who missed the San Diego game with a neck sprain, will play on Saturday against Minnesota.