The Seahawks’ first five moves on offense

Jul 20, 2011, 1:50 AM | Updated: 2:11 am

Guard Robert Gallery, right, played under new Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable, center, in Oakland. (AP)

By Brock Huard

I spent some time at Seahawks headquarters Tuesday, and there was a hum and buzz of excitement. Everyone is ready to get to work, and if I were in John Schneider and Pete Carroll’s position of power, my first five moves on offense would be the following:

1. Get a reasonable deal done with Matt Hasselbeck. Carson Palmer and Kevin Kolb are too expensive in both salary and draft picks. With August just 11 days away and meaningful football just over a month from now, Hasselbeck is the best short term solution. He has been leading your offseason workouts, could lead and install the new offensive scheme, and is the leader an incredibly young and green offense needs.

On top of that, the 2012 draft class for quarterbacks should be deep. As the season progresses watch San Diego State’s Ryan Lindley, Texas A&M’s Ryan Tannehill, Michigan State’s Kirk Cousins, Oklahoma’s Landry Jones and Oklahoma State’s Brandon Weeden along with Andrew Luck and Matt Barkley grow into NFL-ready quarterbacks.

2. Leverage Tom Cable further and get a veteran offensive guard with not just pelts on the wall, but antlers, tusks, rattlers and anything else a road grader can devour. Cable knows exactly what he wants up-front, and whether it’s Deuce Lutui, Robert Gallery, Brian Waters or another difference-making veteran, the offensive line definitely needs an identity-creator and mauler ready to grab the bull by more than just the horns.

Sidney Rice
Sidney Rice had eight touchdowns and 1,312 receiving yards in 2009, but missed 10 games last season due to a hip injury that required surgery. (AP)

3. Out-flank the defense with a Z wide receiver (flanker) that can threaten and scare a defensive coordinator. I believe when healthy Sidney Rice is that guy, and he knows this system well. His hip is paramount to the negotiation, but if he can get back to the 2009 form he immediately makes Marshawn Lynch and Mike Williams better. He can be your cleanup hitter that Smoak and Ackley desperately need. Think Atlanta’s Roddy White for “The Burner” Michael Turner and Matt Ryan, or Dwayne Bowe in Kansas City for Jamaal Charles and Matt Cassel.

An elite wide receiver tilts the field his way, and can take some pressure off not just his wide receiver counterparts, but an offensive line and run game that should see less bodies hovering around the line of scrimmage.

4. Schneider and staff must find another Mike Williams or Leon Washington, and preferably this time around at fullback or tight end. Find that hungry and talented player that is either on the street or will be discarded by his current team because of depth or a schematic misfit. This is where the scouts and front office make a name for themselves.

5. Sign Olindo Mare. I put the kicker in the offensive discussion because this offensive line will make long, sustained touchdown drives difficult to achieve, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be enough talent to get into field goal range. Mare is also adept on kickoffs, and with all the youth and inexperience on this team, having a dependable kicker/punter is almost mandatory.

Also Receiving Votes: Golden Tate must make substantial strides in his second season. Can new offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell put him in a similar position as he did Percy Harvin in Minnesota? Tate must come to camp lean and mean and force Bevell and Cable to create a package of plays for him.

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