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Seahawks' quarterback battle continues

Carroll has timeline in place for final decison

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By Eric D. Williams
The News Tribune
  • Matt Flynn, who signed as a free-agent during the offseason, is competing for the starting quarterback position along with Tarvaris Jackson and Russel...

    Jennifer Buchanan / The Herald

    Matt Flynn, who signed as a free-agent during the offseason, is competing for the starting quarterback position along with Tarvaris Jackson and Russell Wilson.

RENTON – With the starting quarterback job still up for grabs, the focus on the first day of training camp for the Seattle Seahawks centered more on the way that person will be selected more than the performance of the players involved.
As expected, incumbent Tarvaris Jackson took the opening snaps with the starters. Free agent signee Matt Flynn led the second unit and rookie Russell Wilson took snaps with the third stringers.
Seattle head coach Pete Carroll said the team put a rigid timetable in place in order to make a final decision. But Carroll's keeping that timeline to himself.
"We have it very well in mind here, and you guys are going to have to dig to try and figure it out, but you won't be able to."
Carroll added, pointing to his head: "It's like a steel trap that's placed right here."
Flynn said the quarterbacks can't get caught up in how the decision ultimately shakes out, and is just following Carroll's "always compete" mantra. All three quarterbacks had their share of highlight throws and plays they'd rather forget about.
"In training camp it's most important that you not look ahead," Flynn said. "Really you have to take it one day at a time, one slice at a time. Because if you start thinking about the first preseason game or what's going to happen at the end of training camp, that's when you start falling into mind traps."
One thing that was noticeable is Flynn looks more comfortable leading the offense. The LSU product said the reps during the team's offseason workouts, along with a six-week break to study the playbook helped him develop a better command of the offense.
Flynn also reiterated that West Coast version of the offense he ran in Green Bay is similar to Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell's version, making the transition easier.
"Any time you get more time and more reps -- more time in the playbook -- you're going to be more comfortable," Flynn said. "It's just the way it goes for anybody -- any position, any sport. The more you do it the better you get."
While the quarterback battle will be a daily storyline to follow during training camp, the one thing that had the 2,000 or so fans who attended practice on Saturday excited was the play of the defense.
Seattle's Pro Bowl secondary looked to be in regular-season form, with cornerback Richard Sherman returning an interception thrown by Jackson for a score, imploring the crowd to make some noise as he pranced into the end zone.
Linebacker Mike Morgan corralled an interception off a tipped pass by Flynn, defensive end Chris Clemons stripped rookie running back Robert Turbin of a ball recovered by Sherman and safety Earl Thomas had an interception slip through his grasp.
Seattle's defense finished tied for fifth overall in takeaways last season with 31, and the team appears well on its way to establishing that aggressive style of play once again in 2012.
"Rookies are not rookies anymore," Clemons said. "They're all grown now, so everybody is coming out and you're got to have an attitude going into it now. It's not the same as the first year."
Free-agent signee defensive tackle Jason Jones said that one of the reasons he chose to sign with the Seahawks is the swagger that the defense plays with.
"Seeing what type of defense they had last year -- a top-10 defense -- was a big factor," Jones said. "So just coming in and adding my little thing to it I think we can only get better. We do have a team that's capable of making the playoffs. We just have to work hard everyday."
Carroll hopes Saturday's practice is a start to what he believes will be successful season for the Seahawks that results in a postseason berth.
"We have high expectations," Carroll said. "We want to do a lot. We want to make this team a really sharp football team, and be very, very competitive against anyone that we play, wherever we play them. We aren't backing off that -- that's just how we feel."
Story tags » Seahawks

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