By Brady Henderson
Highlights from the latest edition of “Hawk Talk” with Danny O’Neil:
Jim O asked how linebacker K.J. Wright – who is entering the final year of his rookie contract – fits into the Seahawks’ plans.
O’Neil: That’s a really good question, and one that can be applied to the other linebackers as well: Bobby Wagner and to a lesser extent Malcolm Smith. We haven’t seen the Seahawks pay a linebacker big money yet. We’ve seen them cut a linebacker when he didn’t take a paycut: Lofa Tatupu. We’ve seen them trade an linebacker who was overpaid for his contributions: Aaron Curry. We’ve seen them let a productive linebacker walk in free agency: David Hawthorne. We haven’t seen them pay a linebacker yet, though.
GM fan asked whether Seahawks fans should be worried about another team’s owner luring general manager John Schneider away from Seattle with a huge contract and an opportunity to have complete control of an organization’s football operations.
O’Neil: What could another team offer that he doesn’t have here? I ask that in all seriousness because I don’t think there is a better job. And if you point out final say over football operations, are you sure that he won’t get that here in Seattle when coach Pete Carroll retires?
Jim O asked whether wide receiver Jermaine Kearse could have a significant impact next season if he’s given a bigger role.
O’Neil: There’s no reason to think he won’t thrive with more playing time. At the same time, we haven’t seen him exhibit that kind of consistency because he hasn’t been placed in that role. I would list Jermaine Kearse and Greg Scruggs as the two veterans who will have the most to gain after the offseason attrition.
tom page asked whether the Seahawks will be more inclined to look for offensive linemen later in the draft because of the early-round picks like James Carpenter and John Moffitt that haven’t panned out.
O’Neil: I agree with your observation, but don’t believe it will have the tangible effect you’re describing. I don’t think the Seahawks will avoid taking O-linemen early in the draft because they weren’t successful in the past. From what I know with the Seahawks, they would look at those past picks as experiences that would help them refine their draft rationale and avoid making similar mistakes in judgment.
howker asked about the nature of the foot issues that sidelined cornerback Tharold Simon during his rookie season.
O’Neil: It has been described in different ways. Coming out of training camp, Carroll said it wasn’t quite a stress fracture, but an injury that could become a stress fracture if he didn’t rest it. Then, toward the end of the season, Carroll said Simon was having a problem with his other foot, not the one that was previously the problem. Whether he plays or can contribute down the road is all projection at this point.