RENTON — When the NFL announced that defensive holding and illegal contact would be officiating points of emphasis for 2014, the assumption by many was that it would mean at best an adjustment period for Seattle’s physical secondary, and at worst it could be bad news for the Seahawks’ “Legion of Boom” secondary.
Or maybe not.
“We didn’t adjust anything,” cornerback Richard Sherman said. “We’ve been playing the game the right, we continue to play it the right way.”
As the flags continue to fly this preseason, there has been a lot of talk that the Seahawks and their dominant defense are the cause for the change. After watching Seattle’s defense stifle the league’s best offensive in the Super Bowl, it appeared the NFL decided to make yet another offensive-friendly change.
Players on other teams have talked about the Seahawks being the cause for these changes, as has Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. Yet maybe that blame is a just a little bit misplaced, or if the NFL did indeed make those points of emphasis with the Seahawks D in mind, perhaps the league was a bit off on its opinion of how the Seahawks secondary plays.
Through three preseason games, despite the increase in flags league wide, Seattle’s starting four defensive backs have yet to draw a flag, and no Seahawks have been called for defensive holding. Seahawks backups have drawn a handful of illegal contact flags, though at least one of those, the one that negated Tharold Simon’s 105-yard interception return for a touchdown, was a bad call by the league’s own admission.
“Everybody just complains and whines about us breaking the rules, etcetera, etcetera, but apparently they break the rules a lot more than we do. It’s just funny to watch it. The same thing that makes you laugh makes you cry, so it makes us laugh.”
Seahawks, Carroll fined
The Seahawks apparently were a little too physical during a June minicamp, and both the team and head coach Pete Carroll will pay the price.
According to a statement from the league: “The Seahawks will forfeit its first two days of on-field double practices during its 2015 mandatory minicamp for veteran players and will be permitted a single 21/2-hour on-field practice session on the final day of its minicamp. Seahawks players will be paid for the cancelled practice sessions. The violation was for permitting the club’s players to engage in excessive levels of on-field physical contact during the team’s 2014 mandatory minicamp for veteran players.
A league source confirmed that the Seahawks and Carroll are also facing a fine, which according to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen totals more than $300,000.
While the specific nature of the violation was not mentioned in the report, it is believed to have stemmed from a June 18 fight between Richard Sherman and Phil Bates. This is the second time in three years the league has come down on the Seahawks for physical offseason workouts, having also punished the Seahawks in 2012, the first offseason under the new collective bargaining agreement.
A team spokesman said the team will defer to the league for comment.
Seahawks trim roster to 75
The Seahawks announce seven more roster moves, getting their roster down to 75 before Tuesday’s deadline. The list did not include any surprises, and all moves were injury related, meaning nobody was an outright cut. DT Michael Brooks, WR David Gilreath, LB Horace Miller were waived/injured, meaning they’ll revert to injured reserve if they go unclaimed on waivers. Veterans LB Heath Farwell, CB A.J. Jefferson, G C.J. Davis were placed on injured reserve, while rookie CB Eric Pinkins was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list.
The most notable name on that list is Farwell, Seattle’s special teams captain last season. Carroll announced Monday that the linebacker likely needed groin surgery following an injury suffered against Chicago Friday. Jefferson injured his ankle after intercepting a pass in Seattle’s preseason opener, while Davis hurt his calf in the same game.
The Seahawks also made another move, claiming center Patrick Lewis off waivers from Jacksonville. Lewis, who went undrafted out of Texas A&M in 2013, spent time in Green Bay and Cleveland last season. LB Marcus Dotwin was waived to make room on the roster.
Herald Writer John Boyle: firstname.lastname@example.org.