By SCOTT M. JOHNSON
KIRKLAND – If communication is the key to any relationship, Mike Holmgren may have been wise to stop at a flower shop Monday.
Mixed signals with the quarterbacks led to a meeting between the Seattle Seahawks coach and his signal-callers Monday, and for no other reason than to clear the air.
“These are young guys, they’re sensitive guys, and I’m kind of gruff on occasion,” Holmgren said Wednesday. “It was one of those meetings, I just wanted them to know where I’m coming from. What I think of them. How I’m going to coach them. What to filter out and what to listen to.
“Young people, sometimes they hear you but they don’t hear you,” he said.
Holmgren has been frustrated by the passing game all season, so he called Jon Kitna, Brock Huard, Matt Lytle and Travis Brown into his office to find out the basis of the confusion. The meeting was designed to make sure everyone was on the same page while keeping communication lines open.
“It’s good to have the door open,” Kitna said. “Not that it was ever closed, but the perception was that it wasn’t open. To sit down and have him say, ‘What do you guys think?’ was great.”
Holmgren also wanted to make sure the players themselves weren’t getting any mixed messages about their future. He made comments Monday that indicated he might look elsewhere for help at the position beyond 2000. After explaining his direction to the quarterbacks later that day, Holmgren was a bit miffed at how the media played up the team’s search for a long-term signal caller.
“I like the fact that you’re interested, I really do,” Holmgren told a group of local media members Wednesday. “But nothing, nothing has been done. And we have not moved in any direction yet. It’s premature at this point.
“At the end of the season, we’ll make hopefully a good value judgment on how we have to do this and then it will be clear to everybody. Myself included.”
“The test with him will be, every week, at the end of the week they will work him out and get him going and see then how he responds to that,” Holmgren said, adding that a Tuesday CAT scan came up negative.
Huard underwent physical tests for the first time last week, but felt some of the symptoms of an Oct. 22 concussion return Sunday night. Huard did not practice Wednesday and will probably sit out today’s session as well.
That kid, better known as Kurt Warner, got cut before the season began but eventually found his way back into the league. He was named the NFL’s MVP while leading the St. Louis Rams to the Super Bowl last season.
“He got a little hazing,” Brunell said of Warner’s lone training camp in Green Bay. “We probably should have watched our mouths. Now he could be teasing all of us a little bit.”
Still, Brunell hasn’t quite learned his lesson. When asked if he’s lightened up on rookies since then, he said: “Oh, heck no. Someone’s got to carry the helmet and shoulder pads.”
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