Category Archives: Russell Wilson

Update: Big bucks for Wilson ($87.6M) and Wagner ($43M)

NOTE: Some new links and an update on Wagner’s deal have been added.

It’s official.

Russell Wilson signs a four-year, $87.6 million extension with the Seahawks with $60M guaranteed.

That’s an average of $21.9M per year. Only Aaron Rodgers of the Packers has a higher average ($22M). But if you include the $1.5M Wilson is scheduled to earn this year, he’s making $89.1M over five years, or less than $20M a year.

Andrew Brandt of made a good point in this tweet:

Why deadlines work: good agents know that teams never reveal their best offer until they absolutely have to. #WilsonContract

Brandt compared Wilson’s unique negotiations to other QB negotiations in a story last month.

Bucky Brooks of explains why Russell Wilson deserves the big bucks. One of  the reasons, besides helping the team win a Super Bowl and get to another one: He’s orchestrated 15 fourth quarter or overtime comebacks in three seasons.

This is what Warren Moon had to say about Wilson’s negotiations the day before the Seahawks signed him.

Wilson and Carroll discuss the QB’s extension after it was announced.

And Sports Illustrated’s Peter King of weighs in on the deal, too.

The Seahawks have done a nice job of taking care of their own. They locked up safety Earl Thomas (4 years, $40M) and cornerback Richard Sherman (4 years, $56M) to big deals. They also came up with a 2-year extension to keep running back Marshawn Lynch happy, paying him $12M for 2015 and another $12M in 2016, providing he comes back for another season.

Safety Kam Chancellor and defensive end Michael Bennett got new deals, but they’re reportedly interested in re-doing them. Chancellor is playing under a 4-year extension he signed in 2013 that pays him an average of $7M a year, but he didn’t report to training camp, which opens Friday.

Bennett, who signed a 4-year $28.5M deal prior to the 2014 season, has threatened to holdout but he is in camp.

Seattle has also locked up defensive end Cliff Averill (4 years, $28.5M) through 2019 and linebacker A.J. Wright (4 years, $27M) through 2019.

The Seahawks can now turn their attention to linebacker Bobby Wagner, who is next in line for a significant pay raise. Russell Okung’s contract also expires after the 2016 season, as does Bruce Irvin’s deal.

Considering the salary cap, can the Seahawks keep everybody happy?

For updated Seahawks’ contract information, go to

UPDATE: The Seahawks kept Wagner happy, announcing late Saturday the inside linebacker signed a 4-year, $43 million extension. It makes Wagner the highest paid player in the NFL at his position.

Mike Sando of points out that many of the players the Seahawks signed are only 26 or 27, keeping the window open for  potential championships in the coming years.

ICYMI, check out Greg Bishop’s story about Pete Carroll in the latest edition of Sports Illustrated. It’s all about grit, his philosophy and moving past the disappointing Super Bowl loss.

“It’s been thrilling to learn from this. It really has,” the always upbeat Carroll said of the offseason.



Quick hits: Robbins/Jonson, Vettleson, Pumas, Montero/Zunino, QB Wilson

Conner Robbins, former University of Washington golfer and a Central Kitsap grad, tied for second and Bainbridge’s Carl Jonson, who just turned pro after playing four years at UNLV, tied for fourth at the 52nd Lilac City Invitational in Spokane earlier this month. Here’s the story from The Spokesman Review.

The long-hitting Robbins gave the mini-tour grind a while a few years back, took some time off and has played well in the tournaments he’s entered. He’s now playing out of the Tacoma Country Club.

Jonson is playing in this week’s Colorado Open at Green Valley Ranch Golf Club in Denver.

Drew Vettleson update: Drew, another Central Kitsap grad, turned 24 on Sunday. The former first-round (42nd overall pick in 2010) of the Tampa Rays, is with the Washington Nationals’ Double-A club in Harrisburg, PA. Vettleson, an outfielder, went on the DL early last season and it took him some time to find his swing. Once again, he found himself on the DL this year after breaking his hamate bone. He is hitting .211 after going 2-for-5 on Saturday. He got off to a slow start, but has had five multi-hit games in his last nine going into Monday.

Harrisburg hitting coach Mark Harris had this to say about Vettleson at the league’s All-Star break:

“Drew missed a lot of time last year as far as experience in this league. … In Drew’s case, I think he’s adjusting to getting pitched a certain way. He’s learning the value of doing something with your pitch to hit when you get it, so you’re not always down in the count all of the time. … With him, I think he just needs to get at-bats.”

Pumas stand for defense:  The Kitsap Pumas start their USL Premier Development League postseason journey on Friday in Tucson, Arizona, where they will play host FC Tucson in a Western Conference semifinal at 8 p.m.. The Pumas (10-0-2) are one of two PDL teams in the 63-team league to finish the season without a loss.

Kitsap surrendered a league-low four goals in its 12 PDL games.

Pumas assistant coach Shaun Scobie praised the defense on the team’s website after its 1-0 win over the Sounders 23 last week:

“To have the best defensive record in the entire league is not a fluke. The boys work hard every day trying to be better than they were the day before and it’s that mentality that’s got us to this point.”

If the Pumas win, they will face the Sounders FC U23-Burlingame (Calif.) Dragons winner on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.. The champion moves on to the PDL’s Final Four. Kitsap won the tournament in 2011 when the Pumas hosted at Memorial Stadium and they were second a year ago to the Michigan Bucks.

On another Pumas’ note, The Sun’s Jeff Graham had an interesting take on owner Robin Waite’s interest in taking the team from the fourth-tier PDL to the third-tier USL.

More Montero, less Zunino: Jim Moore, who writes a weekly column for The Sun, also writes for 710 ESPN Seattle, where he co-hosts an afternoon radio show. Moore’s latest column for ESPN centered on why the Mariners didn’t keep Jesus Montero around. They sent Montero back to Triple-A Tacoma Monday. I’m thinking the same as Moore on this move. Why not send Jesus Sucre to Tacoma and make Montero the backup catcher? Yeah, yeah, he wasn’t much of a defensive catcher in the past, but he’s slimmed down, and according to what everybody is saying, he’s a more dedicated player than in the past. His bat just might be worth any defensive deficiencies he might have. ‘K’unino entered Monday’s game with a .158 batting average and was striking out almost 36 percent of the time. He’s the worst hitter in major league baseball. What do the M’s have to lose by letting Montero catch 2-3 games a week?

Wilson links: The quarterback’s contract-extension negotiations with the Seattle Seahawks has taken on a life of its own. Here are a few recent stories about it:

Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk says the time to do a new contract it is now.

During an interview at the ESPYs Wilson said once again that his contract situation “will work out.” 

Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times wrote about Wilson’s agent, Mark Rodgers, and the relationship he has with Seattle’s young star.

Here’s what Pete Carroll had to say about the contract talks between the Seahawks and Wilson. “He’s crucial, as all of our guys are,” Carroll told the media in Los Angeles while accepting an award from ESPN for his humanitarian work. “We love Russell and we want him back playing for us forever. There’s a lot of work being done. It’s underway right now and maybe it happens, I don’t know. We’re hoping for it.”


Some Super Bowl storylines

Coming to you live from Arizona (no, I’m not staying for the Super Bowl), where the locals seem pretty pumped up about XLIX.

This is Cardinals country, and a lot of Arizona football fans don’t like the Seattle Seahawks, but judging by the comments I heard on Monday and the tone of the reports I’m hearing on the local television stations, there seems to be a lot of respect for the Hawks.

That said here are a few storylines you’ll be reading and hearing about in the days leading up to the Feb. 1 game against New England at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale:

Tom Brady vs. Russell Wilson: The Patriots quarterback will play in a record sixth Super Bowl and will be going for his fourth ring. That’s Joe Montana (and Terry Bradshaw) territory. Wilson, meanwhile, is back for this second straight Super Bowl and has a shot to do something no quarterback has ever done: Win two Super Bowls in his first three seasons. It’s the classic drop back passer (Brady) against the elusive play-maker (Wilson) who can beat you with his arm and his legs. A story in USA Today bills it as old-school vs. new-age QBs.

Richard Sherman vs. Tom Brady: Sherman will get more than his share of news, and not all of it will revolve around the elbow injury he played with over the final minutes of Seattle’s OT win against Green Bay. Remember the “You Mad Bro” moment following Seattle’s regular-season upset victory over the Patriots in October of 2012 at CenturyLink? It was, more or less, Sherman’s coming out party as a big-time trash-talker who has shown that he can back up all of that talk.

Former Legion of Boom member Brandon Browner vs. his old team: Browner’s now a cornerback with the Patriot. He was a big part of the LOB, but had to sit out the big game a year ago because of violating the NFL’s substance abuse violation. After Sunday’s games, Browner said he felt all along that a New England-Seattle matchup in Arizona was inevitable. 

Pete Carroll vs. Bill Belichick: Carroll was fired by Patriots owner Robert Kraft in 1999 after an 8-8 record in his third season.  Kraft then hired Bill Belichick and we all know how that worked out: six Super Bowls in 14 seasons. Carroll went on to turn USC into a powerhouse and now has the Seahawks knocking on dynasty’s door. Carroll’s youthful appearance and emotional coaching style seems the opposite of the dour-looking Patriots’ boss. There’s a mutual respect between the two. “I like Pete. I like him a lot,” Belichick told

Tight end Rob Gronkowski vs. Seattle safety Kam Chancellor: Everybody’s waiting for The Collision in the Desert between those two hombres. If it happens, you might feel it back in Seattle.

Finally, Marshawn Lynch vs. the media: Will he talk? You remember Lynch’s memorable Super Bowl Media Day interview with Deion Sanders a year ago in New Jersey? “I’m just about that actin boss?” Can he top that one? Here’ s what I wrote a year ago after listening to that exchange:

Marshawn Lynch lasted 6 minutes, 20 seconds at Super Bowl Media Day before escaping the big stage.

Deion “Prime Time” Sanders of NFL Network hunted Beast Mode down, and the interview with the Seattle Seahawks star was priceless. Here’s a portion of it.

“You look good,” Sanders told Lynch, who was wearing sunglasses and had the hood of his Seahawks’ jacket pulled up.

“(Bleep), so do you,” said Lynch, fingering Prime Time’s suit coat.

Sanders told Lynch it looked like he was ready to play.

Lynch: “Yep, that’s what time it is.”

Sanders then asked if Lynch was a little shy.

Lynch: “I’m just about that action boss. … I ain’t never seen no talk win ya nothing. Been like that since I was a little kid. I was raised like that.”

Asked if he was excited about the game, Lynch, wearing sunglasses, said, “Hell, yeah. … yeaaahh!”

Sanders then said some think the Seahawks will be in trouble if Lynch doesn’t get untracked.

Lynch: “They gonna have to stop all of us. I’m a beast, but we got some dogs.”

Sanders: You don’t like podiums do you? What is your thing?

Lynch: “Lay back, kick back, mind my business, stay in my own lane.”

Sanders: He told Lynch that NFL Network and former star back Marshall Faust loved him.

Lynch: “That’s huge. He’s a great.”

Sanders: “We all love you.”

Lynch then went third-person on us.

“That’s big time. Beast Mode love and appreciate that.”



Get ready for a Thanksgiving treat: Hawks vs. Niners

Thanksgiving might be my favorite day of the year, and the NFL made it even better this year.

They added a third NFL game to the schedule this season and it turned out to be the Seahawks vs. the 49ers. The Thursday game starts at 5:30 p.m. and will be televised by NBC.

There’s a lot on the line as both teams — the NFC West preseason favorites — are 7-4 and two games back of the Cardinals.

The Seahawks’ defense dominated the Cardinals, 19-3, on Sunday, and San Francisco is coming off a hard-earned 17-13 win over the Redskins.

Neither team has been scary on offense, but the defenses are as good as ever. Seattle’s coming off its best defensive effort of the season at just the right time. San Francisco got to RGIII for five sacks on Sunday, and Russell Wilson was sacked seven times by the Cardinals.

We all remember what happened the last time the Niners and Hawks met. It was the NFC West championship game a year ago at Century Link and it was an emotional game with the momentum swinging back and forth.

I might have to dial it up and watch it again to get ready for Sunday’s Thanksgiving Day matchup.

The game came down to the final possession. San Francisco was driving and looking for the go-ahead touchdown. Richard Sherman came up with the game-saving play, tipping away a pass in the end zone that was intended for Michael Crabtree, and Malcolm Smith came up with the interception. Victory Seahawks, 23-17.

Sherman gave Crabtree a little slap, then tossed in the choke sign for good measure before he went off on Erin Andrews in the that memorable post-game interview.

Here’s Thursday’s schedule, which also includes a couple of college games:

Chicago at Detroit, 9:30 a.m., CBS

Philadelphia at Dallas, 1:30 p.m., FOX

No. 5 TCU at Texas, 4:30 p.m., FOX

LSU at Texas A&M, 4:30 p.m., ESPN

Seattle at San Francisco, 5:30 p.m., NBC


Bill Simmons: Seahawks’ 12th Man MIA; Cardinals now have best home crowd

Bill Simmons of isn’t sold on quarterback Russell Wilson, and he pretty much dissed the Seattle Seahawks crowd in this column. He might be right. What do you think?

Here’s his take on the 12th Man:

That’s right, Seattle. You know I love your city and you know I hate how OKC stole the Sonics from you. But save for opening night, your crowds have sucked this season. Peyton Manning went 80 yards in like three seconds to force OT on you. You lost to Dallas at home. You couldn’t blow out the lowly Raiders last week, for God’s sake. Are you suffering from Pink Hat Syndrome (a.k.a. too many bandwagon fans)? Are you taking this stuff for granted now? What’s up? You’re like the husband who marries his dream girl and immediately stops working out and puts on 25 pounds. Get back on the treadmill. “The 12th Man” used to mean something.

Oh, and by the way, Arizona took your “Best Crowd in the League” corner. The Cardinals fans just swooped right in and stole it from you. You’re Avon, they’re Marlo. That’s a fact. Do you care? Do you care at all? NOW GO OUT THERE ON SUNDAY AND BE THE CROWD I KNOW YOU CAN BE!

The column started with his take on quarterbacks who have won a Super Bowl in this century. This is what he had to say about Wilson:

It’s too early to have an opinion on Russell Wilson’s Super Bowl, but the “Luck or Wilson?” debate finished filming in October. (Spoiler alert: Luck won.) Is Wilson an infinitely more athletic Brad Johnson? Is his 2014 performance suffering because his offensive line collapsed and he doesn’t have enough weapons (and not because we overrated him)? Or, could you say he’s where Brady was in 2002 — one year away from jumping a level, and three years away from jumping two levels, and five years away from finishing the video game? To be continued.

Tough road ahead for Hawks, Dawgs & links

OK, maybe we let our heart get in the way our our brains last week.

I didn’t pick the Washington Huskies to beat Oregon, but I thought the Dawgs were ready to give the Ducks a game. Surely, they’d cover the spread (20.5 points).


I thought the Seattle Seahawks would regroup and handle the Rams in St. Louis.


They did regroup, but it was too late. The Rams rode some special teams tricky to a 28-26 victory and the Seahawks are suddenly 3-3.

Seattle’s defense isn’t nearly as dominating as it was a year ago, but the biggest problem remains the Hawks’ offensive line. They allowed three sacks and had three holding penalties and QB Russell Wilson was running for his life, especially in the first half when the Seahawks fell behind 21-3 at one point.

At the start of the season, I thought these Seahawks might be even better than last year’s Seahawks.


Even after last week’s loss to Dallas, I thought the Hawks were still the team to beat in the NFC.


Arizona (5-1) might be the best team, even better than Dallas (5-1) and Philadelphia (6-1) and don’t forget about the Packers (4-2) or 49ers (3-3). The Seahawks are still in the mix, but they’ve put themselves in a precarious position. At 3-3, they don’t have a lot of room for error and the schedule is far tougher than it was a year ago with road games left against Carolina (Oct. 26), Kansas City (Nov. 16) and Philadelphia (Dec. 7) and home-and-home games still to play with the Cardinals and 49ers.

We were reminded that the previous eight Super Bowl champions didn’t win a playoff game the following year. So the Seahawks didn’t have history on their side when the season started, but to suggest they might not make the playoffs seemed pretty far-fetched.

Now? Well, maybe not so much.

Pete Carroll, interviewed on 710 ESPN radio Monday morning, said, “The story is not written right now.”

What about those Huskies?

The Oregon-Washington game was a total mismatch. Oregon’s 45-20 victory, their 11th straight over the Huskies, was far more convincing than I figured it would be. Washington’s defense, so impressive the week before while holding Cal to seven points, couldn’t stop the run or the pass. And Washington’s offense didn’t look so hot either against an Oregon defense that has struggled at times.

Quarterback Marcus Mariota played like a Heisman Trophy winner and the Ducks didn’t look anything like the team that barely beat Washington State 38-31 and lost to Arizona 31-24.

If Oregon runs the table against Cal, Stanford, Utah, Colorado and Oregon State, they should wind up in college football’s four-team national playoff. But in college football’s most unpredictable season, who can say for sure what’s going to happen from week to week?

As for Washington, it’s back to the drawing board, as a disappointed coach Chris Petersen pointed out after the loss.  The Huskies were also beat up physically in Eugene. QB Cyler Miles left with a possible concussion, and if he’s not available, it appears redshirt  freshman Troy Williams will be the starter. He won the backup job over Jeff Lindquist and played most of the fourth quarter after Miles was injured.

The UW has six games left, including a tough home game against Arizona State on Oct. 26 (7:45 p.m., ESPN), and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Huskies went 4-2 or 1-5. At the start of the season, I predicted Washington would finish 10-3, tied for second in the Pac-12 North. Now my brain tells me they’re looking more like an 8-5 team that will find itself playing in the Cactus Bowl (Jan. 2 at Tempe, Ariz.) or Las Vegas Bowl (Dec. 20).

Some links

The St. Louis Surprise. Mike Silver of writes about Jeff Fisher’s call for a fake punt on fourth down, the play that sealed the Rams’ upset of the Seahawks on Sunday.

Mike Sando of writes about how the Percy Harvin trade hurts Seattle’s chances to repeat.

At 3-3, Seattle is not in desperation mode, but the Seahawks’ flaws are showing, writes Don Banks of

Percy Harvin trade makes sense for Jets.

Art Thiel of puts the latest Seahawks loss on coach Pete Carroll and GM John Schneider.

Remember Steve “Bye Bye” Balboni? Well, if you’re old as dirt, like me, you do. He was the slugging first baseman for the Kansas City Royals’ 1985 World Series champions. Now? He’s an advance scout for the San Francisco Giants. It’ll be a strange, trip for Balboni when he returns to KC this week for the start of the World Series.

Hard to believe but Tim Lincecum, only 30, is now a bit player with the Giants, the backup long relief pitcher as San Francisco heads to the World Series.

MNF Links: Seahawks vs. Redskins

From the Washington Post:

Since the Seattle Seahawks and Washington Redskins met in a 2012 playoff game, the franchises have gone in different directions.

Richard Sherman and DeSean Jackson are former Little League teammates. Tonight, they’ll play against each other.

Sherman, by the way, is still looking for his first interception. A couple of Post writers provide answers to the question: Can the Redskins have success throwing to Sherman’s side of the field?

QB Kirk Cousins is coming off a game in which he threw four interceptions against the Giants, and now he has to face the Legion of Boom.

Columnist Jason Reid writes that Washington coach Jay Gruden is the right man for the job, but his roster is lacking.

There’s no timetable for RGIII”s return.

From the Washington Times:

Look for Washington to try and take a page out of San Diego’s playbook and attack Seattle’s defense with its tight ends.

Washington QB Kirk Cousins played against Russell Wilson twice in college. “You make me nervous,” Cousins told Wilson when the met following their rookie NFL seasons. “When I’m standing on the sidelines and the ball’s in your hand, I’m always nervous, because you never know what the next play’s going to be.”


Fifteen things to know about Monday’s game. Here’s an example:

Amazingly, since the start of the 2012 season, Seattle is 17-1 at home with an average margin of victory of 16.5. But during that same span on the road, they’ve gone just 9-8. That’s why, despite so many obvious discrepancies between these two teams, Monday’s game could be closer than many expect.


Another profile on Richard Sherman. This one covers Sherman’s relationship with Stanford and his mentor, coach David Shaw.


Washington tackle Trent Williams on Seahawks: “They’re not robots.”

Here’s a video preview of the Monday Night game. One of the top match ups is Washington’s defense against Seattle’s running game. The Redskins only allows 3.3 yards per carry to opposing offenses, and Seattle has the third-best running attack in the game.

From The Seattle Times:

The Seahawks have won eight straight Monday Night Football games and are 10-1 under Peter Carroll in primetime games.  Columnist Larry Stones writes about how the Hawks have thrived in those big games.

Beat writer Bob Condotta previews the game.


Safety Kam Chancellor grew up a Redskins fan and patterned his game after the late Sean Taylor.

Marshawn Lynch has surpassed what the Seahawks thought he’d bring to the team when they acquired him in a trade from Buffalo on Oct. 5, 2010.

From the News Tribune: 

Stopping the Redskins on third down will be a key for Seattle.

John McGrath writes about the QB showdown between Wilson and Cousins.



Links and quick hits: Villopoto to forego Supercross series to race in Europe


Nobody has ever won five straight AMA Supercross Championships and Poulsbo’s Ryan Villopoto has a chance to do it, but he has decided to compete in the FIM 450 World Championships in Europe in 2015. Villopoto has reportedly signed a multi-million dealt to race in Europe. Here’s the link to the story on his own website A couple side notes: Villopoto, 28, was nominated for his third ESPY this year, and he also threw out the first pitch at a Padres game in late August.

Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson says he used to be a bully when he was a young kid.

“Truthfully, I used to beat people up a lot,” Wilson wrote for, a new website started by Derek Jeter. “Many of you readers probably think I have been Mr. Goody Two-Shoes my whole life, but honestly, I was a bully growing up. In elementary and middle school, I threw kids against the wall. I rubbed their heads in the dirt at recess. I bit them. I even knocked teeth out.”

Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated digs into the suspension of ESPN’s Bill Simmons. Interesting stuff, indeed. Simmons was suspended for three weeks after calling NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a liar on his podcast.

Here’s a couple different takes on the Hope Solo story. Kate Fagan of equates Solo’s alleged assault of her 17-year-old sister and nephew to what Ray Rice did and thinks USA Soccer should suspend her immediately. Ta-Nehisi Coates of The Atlantic has a different take on the issue. Coates writes that there is a reason why we have a “Violence Against Women Act,” not a “Brawling With Families Act.”

Nobody wants to host the Olympics, writes Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports. 

“Essentially the entire world has told the IOC it’s a corrupt joke,” he writes.

Quick hits

I’M STILL THINKING about Kansas City stealing seven (count ’em, SEVEN) bases in its wild-card victory over Oakland. And I’m think the Seattle Mariners need to find a way to keep James Jones in the lineup. Of course, a lot of that will depend on the development of Jones. He hit .250 with 27 stolen bases in 108 games (312 at bats). He hit .292 in June and looked like he could be the Mariners’ everyday center fielder. Then he crashed. He hit .287 before the All-Star break and .114 after. The M’s traded for Austin Jackson and Jones went back to Triple-A Tacoma before being recalled in September. It’ll be interesting to see what becomes of Mr. Jones. He could become a valuable piece of Seattle’s puzzle. Speed kills. If it’s not Jones, then they need someone like him.

I’VE ALREADY GOT a lot of positive feedback about my column on the late John Jarstad and his thoughts about the late Roosevelt Field in downtown Bremerton. Roosevelt was located just off the Warren Avenue Bridge, next to Olympic College. It’s now a … parking lot. It pains me to write that. Anyway, here’s the column in case you missed it.

OLYMPIC COLLEGE VOLLEYBALL coach Beth Donnelly has put together another strong team. The Rangers were second in the NWAC (Northwest Athletic Conference) and already own a victory over North Division rival Bellevue. They play an excellent brand of volleyball. Go see it for yourself. Next home games are Oct. 10 (Shoreline) and Oct. 15 (Edmonds).

LARRY DIXON KEEPS moving up Army’s career rushing list. The senior fullback from Olympic High is currently seventh in Army history with 2,424 yards on 400 carries. He has carried 62 times for 338 yards (5.5. per carry) and four touchdowns this season for the Black Knights (1-3), who host Ball State (1-3) on Saturday at 9 a.m. PST (CBS Sports Network).

“AMERICA’S ST. ANDREWS” a book about Chambers Bay written by Blaine Newnham, is available at Chambers Bay and can be ordered online at The book chronicles the story of how Chambers Bay, which opened in 2008, was selected to host the 2015 U.S. Open.Robert Trent Jones Jr., the chairman and master architect of RTJ II, has written the book’s foreword.



Morning reading after a pretty impressive Week 1 Seahawks’ victory

Earl Thomas needs to call some fair catches.

If that’s the biggest criticism of the Seattle Seahawks following Thursday night’s 36-16 victory over Green Bay — and Peter King of writes that it is — then it’s safe to say that this is going to be another fun season for the 12s. He also writes about that read-option pass play where Russell Wilson pulled the ball out of Marshawn Lynch’s belly and instead of running it, he threw a quick pass to Ricardo Lockette for a 33-yard touchdown. The story details how the Seahawks came by the play, which was used by Auburn and other college programs. Look for it at the high-school level, too. When I talked to Bremerton coach Nate Gillam about his team a couple weeks ago, he said they were installing the same play. The Knights got it from UCLA.

Before I get to the links, Zach Miller gets my vote for most underrated Seahawk. He’s the perfect fit for their offense. Here’s another look at that catch he made against the Packers.

And here’s what Vic Ketchman, editor of had to say about the Seahawks in a Q&A column with Green Bay fans:

” You can run any scheme you want if you have the talent to run it well. That’s a college offense: Bootlegs, spread-option fakes, jet sweeps. They made it work, though, didn’t they? On defense, the Seahawks were pure vanilla. The Seahawks are a breath of fresh air. That’s not a Madden team, that’s an old-fashioned, line up and knock your block off team.”

OK, here we go. Here’s what some others are saying about the Hawks:

Mike Silver of wrote this about Marshawn Lynch:

The question I asked was this: After all the talk coming out of Seattle over the offseason, and particularly during his short-lived training camp holdout, that the Seahawks were preparing for life without the eighth-year runner, that he’d be splitting carries with young understudies Christine Michael and Robert Turbin, that he plays a position that simply isn’t that valuable, was Thursday night’s performance a de facto rebuttal?

“Well, you know … people say stuff,” Lynch said, shaking his head before offering up an abiding smile. “(Screw) ’em.”

You’ve got to admit, the Beast looked really good. Maybe better than ever. He was hitting the hole fast, reading his blocks, cutting when he needed to and dragging people all over the field.

Speaking of offensive weapons, how about Percy Harvin? That “jet sweep” was pretty effective, huh? Here’s what Terry Blount of wrote about Harvin.

Art Thiel of writes: ” … No Golden Tate, No Breno Giacomini, no Red Bryant . . . nobody noticed.” No hangover for the Seahawks was the theme of his column.

The Packers didn’t test Richard Sherman. No once. They never threw at him. Kevin Petra of addresses that angle.

Here’s another story that I came across later in the day. Andrew Sharp of writes about Marshawn and Percy and how they’re proving some skeptics wrong.


Hawks’ Wilson still proving doubters wrong; Is there a ’95 run in these M’s?

Back from Cabo and my mind’s still a little mushy, but these thoughts have been rattling around my brain:

Russell Wilson: The Seattle Seahawks’ QB hasn’t won everybody over. Ron Jaworski at ESPN ranks Wilson the ninth-best QB in the NFL. This Buck Stanton guy at, wrote last month that Wilson is the most overrated player in the NFL. Here’s what he had to say:

Yep, he’s 24-8 during his first two NFL seasons. And there’s no taking away his Super Bowl ring. All of that makes Wilson’s résumé look great. But in reality, there are a ton of quarterbacks – many of whom are much-maligned – who could have won a title with the Seahawks last year. For now, he’s a modern-day Brad Johnson and Trent Dilfer. He can’t carry a team.

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless of ESPN’s First Take aren’t sold on Wilson either. Here’s what they had to say the day after Seattle’s Super Bowl victory.

Me? I’m sold. He’s not the prototypical QB like Andrew Luck, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t an elite quarterback. He’s got a ring and his numbers do not lie. As Warren Moon put it, maybe the game is evolving in a new direction? Maybe Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger — traditional pocket passers — will fade away. Maybe mobile, athletic guys like Wilson, Colin Kaepernick, Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III will become the prototypical quarterbacks of the future.

Refuse to lose: I’ve been thinking a lot about the Seattle Mariners’ run in 1995 when they came from waaaaay back to win the AL West. They were 11.5 games behind the Angels on Aug. 23. When I looked Saturday, they were seven back. The Angels just lost their best starting pitcher, Garrett Anderson, for the season, and the Oakland A’s are scuffling. Seattle entered Sunday with a 1-game lead over Detroit in the race of race for the AL’s No. 2 wild-card spot. Yeah, I was the guy who picked the M’s to win the AL West at the start of the season. People thought I was crazy. Well, I still think they have a chance. They’re playing with a lot of confidence, and that’s huge. Here’s what a few of those players on the 1995 Mariners said about their magical late-season surge:

LEE ELIA, BATTING COACH: “We get hot, they (Angels) get cold, and all of a sudden, we cut the gap pretty good. I can remember walking out when the other team was taking BP, and I came back into the coaches’ room and said, ‘Is this a special night, bat night or something?’ They said, ‘Why.’ I said, ‘There’s 35,000 people out there.’ The juice the people brought to the park, that kicked us. That got us going.”

MIKE BLOWERS: “Junior missed a ton of time, and when he came back, we were playing real good baseball. One of his first games back, he ended up hitting a home run off John Wetteland, upper deck, to win a game. We all looked around. If this guy is healthy and ready to go, we had a chance to do something special. His injury had been so serious, we didn’t know what we’d get. He comes right back and turns a 96-mph fastball right around. We all smiled and said, ‘Here we go.’ ”

JAY BUHNER, RIGHT FIELDER: “I think that’s when everyone kind of said, ‘Hey, something really special is happening.’ We got on a roll, and we had an unbelievable amount of confidence. We had the mentality we could beat anyone. Anyone could be the hero. People were contributing in every way, from top to bottom. The few games we did lose, we thought we just ran out of outs.”

Yankee numbers: I was a big-time Yankee fan growing up, then went through a period where I fell off the bandwagon. Then, I jumped back on, mostly because of Joe Torre. Liked him as a player, and he always struck me as a classy guy when he became the manager of the Yanks. And then I had the opportunity to cover the 2000 Subway World Series when I was working for CBS Sportsline, and I learned to respect Torre even more. The Yankees were an easy team to pull for. Bernie Williams, Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Paul O’Neill, Don Zimmer, Torre.

Anyway, I think it’s pretty cool that the Yankees are going to retire Torre’s No. 6. When Jeter’s No. 2 is retired, and they might as well do it on the final home game of the season instead of delaying the inevitable, every Yankees number form 1 to 10 will be retired. Thurman Munson (No. 15) and White Ford (No. 16) also had their jerseys retired.

No. 1 Billy Martin

No. 2 Derek Jeter

No. 3 Babe Ruth

No. 4 Lou Gehrig

No. 5 Joe DiMaggio

No. 6: Joe Torre

No. 7: Mickey Mantle

No. 8: Yogi Berra and Bill Dickey

No. 9: Roger Maris

No. 10: Phil Rizzuto

Fantasy football: My league drafts tomorrow. Let the trash talkin’ begin.