Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said the competition for the starting running back job remains open, with Julius Jones and Justin Forsett splitting carries with the first unit during this morning’s practice.
“We’re leaving this thing wide open,” Carroll said. “There’s no reason to call it. Julius has done everything he needs to do to represent. He’s done a beautiful job so far. Justin continues to do real well, too. I love the way he’s showing out here. Those guys are certainly in the one-two spots. Whoever is first, it doesn’t matter to me right now. I can’t tell and I don’t care. Right now we’re just playing football.”
Asked if he was disappointed things didn’t work out with his former player at USC Lendale White recently released, Carroll had this to say.
“Sure,” Carroll said. “We had given that some hope we could get something going there, but it just didn’t come around right. So we wish him the very best and hope things work out for him.”
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So what happened?
“It was just time to move ahead,” Carroll said. “I think he needs to go somewhere else and find a spot. And it wasn’t going to be here. That’s it.”
With White now out of the picture, the Seahawks appear to need a bruising, short-yardage runner. That’s why the rumors of Seattle potentially pursuing Buffalo’s Marshawn Lynch have surfaced. But Carroll believes there’s the potential for a short-yardage back to emerge from the team’s current list of runners.
“Sure, that could happen,” Carroll said with a wry smile.
Carroll confirmed that the team releasing White was a football decision.
“He came out here and competed, and we took a look and I think it’s better for us this way,” Carroll said.
Seahawks receiver Golden Tate addressed a report by TMZ that he was caught trespassing in Top Pot Doughnut shop in downtown Bellevue at 3 a.m. in the morning last Saturday.
Top Pot recently signed a deal to be a partner and sponsor with Qwest Field, home of the Seahawks.
“A buddy made the mistake of going in, grabbing a couple,” Tate said. “He came out, we ate them. There’s nothing much to the story other than that. I’m very apologetic to it. This is the wrong type of media I want to bring to this organization. I apologized to the team, the coaches and even Top Pot. As of now I think that’s the end of it.”
Tate said he lives in the same building in downtown Bellevue where the doughnut shop is located. Tate said he was not arrested for the incident and was just told by police not to do it again.
Asked by our own Dave Boling if the smell lured him in, Tate gave us his best promo for Top Pot: “When I got here it was one of the first things I had. I had heard about it. They’re irresistible. It was kind of a foolish mistake that won’t happen again. But if you ever want some maple bars, that’s the place to go.”
Tongue firmly implanted in his cheek, Carroll also addressed the Tate issue.
“I’m not disappointed in the guy being at a doughnut shop when they’ve got maple bars like Top Pot has,” Carroll quipped. “However, under the circumstances I think they were closed, or something like that, or they were trying to close or whatever. So that’s definitely wrong, and we’ve talked about it and addressed it. And he’s most remorseful and all of that.
“But I do understand the allure of the maple bars.”
The possibility of linebacker Leroy Hill returning to the Seahawks remain uncertain. Hill has not been allowed to report to the team’s off-season workout as he works through legal issues.
Hill has a court date this week regarding allegations he was involved in a domestic dispute with his then-live-in girlfriend at his Issaquah home. Carroll admits the practice time Hill is missing could prove costly.
“If that didn’t matter, then why would you practice,” Carroll said. “Practice is hugely important. There’s a new system. There’s a whole new approach to how we’re doing things. And it’s certainly hindered his opportunity. Without question the other guys have rocketed ahead with their chances and taken advantage of that.
“That’s just part of the competition. You do what you can with your opportunities. So he’s going to have to battle back if we can get him back out there.”
* Defensive tackle Kevin Vickerson, who came over from Tennessee along with White in a draft day trade, saw his first practice time today and looks like he could develop into a decent run stuffer for Seattle.
* New receiver Isaiah Stanback caught a couple balls during team drills and looked quick in his first day with Seattle.
* Receiver Ruvell Martin had a good day, making a couple nice catches in the middle of the field during team drills.
* Lawyer Milloy started alongside Earl Thomas at safety with the first unit.
* Quarterback J.P. Losman continues to look impressive throwing the ball, as he showed good velocity in completing a couple passes during team drills down the middle of the field. Losman also showed good poise in the pocket.