Rost: Brown’s emotional Seahawks return and more from ‘The Huddle’
Seahawks cornerback Tre Brown makes an emotional return to the field and cautions against underestimating a banged-up Rams offense. That and more from this week’s edition of The Huddle.
Here’s what you need to know:
Tre Brown makes an emotional return
Seattle found a promising young corner when they started Tre Brown for a handful of games last season, but his solid debut was cut short when he suffered a torn patellar tendon in November of 2021. He’s had a long road to recovery since then, but after one year of not playing football Brown finally made his return for Seattle last week.
“That day was kind of emotional,” Brown told The Huddle on Thursday. “I’m really not a guy who typically lives in his feelings, but on that day I can say I was definitely in my feelings, just (because of) everything I went through. Just going out there, happy to be out there flying, dying to make a play. Some people counted me out, didn’t think I’d make it back from the injury… so that was really a goal of mine. Not necessarily just prove people wrong, but challenge myself to do it.”
Brown isn’t wrong; even a few seasons ago, a patellar tear could threaten the careers of players. But there have been success stories since, and Seattle surely hopes Brown will be the latest.
This time though he’s got competition. Brown emerged last year as a pleasant surprise at a position that hadn’t seen much stability in recent seasons. But this year’s Seahawks have had two solid starters at either corner spot: rookie Tariq Woolen, who leads the team in interceptions, and Michael Jackson, with whom Brown is looking to compete. Jackson hasn’t anything to lose the job, so Brown’s challenges to return have doubled: get his feet under him again following a bad injury, and play well enough to take reps from a current starter.
The Seahawks would love to get the most out of a former pick from a draft with only three selections, so he’ll get his shots. And perhaps even more against a Rams offense that ranks 31st in yards per game, better only than the hapless Texans. Los Angeles will be without top receivers Cooper Kupp and Allen Robinson, but Brown cautioned against thinking the Rams are completely depleted.
“They still have a pretty good receiving corps,” Brown said. “Of course you’ve got Cooper Kupp and Allen Robinson, who are in a league of their own. But you can’t underestimate anyone, because that’s how you get beat. So you’ve got to respect your opponent. These guys can definitely compete. They’ve got Van Jefferson out there, who I was fan of watching him perform in the Senior Bowl. Was really paying attention to that. And then I’ve also played against one of their guys, No. 18 (Ben Skowronek) who went to Notre Dame, we was both at the Senior Bowl. So they’ve still got a group of young guys as well over there, and it’s going to be fun.”
Abe Lucas embraces a challenge
Starting rookie tackle Abe Lucas has had a season-long challenge and a more recent challenge.
The more recent one is a bit less fun: an illness that kept him questionable heading into the weekend.
“It was difficult,” Lucas said with a laugh. “It was a tough one… I was all out of routine, I was all out of whack, so I mean, what do you do but try to do the best you can with it?”
The season-long challenge is where the real growth happens, though.
Lucas hasn’t just been solid for Seattle; he’s been one of the best rookie tackles this season. Per Pro Football Focus, Lucas had allowed just 15 pressures on 388 pass-blocking snaps through Week 10. And he’s done against some of the best edge rushers in football.
“I recognize obviously who they are,” Lucas said of facing guys like Cam Jordan. “I mean how can you not? But at the same time I’m out there to do a job too. So I view it as a really good challenge for me just to compete against the best, and that’s what you want. Granted, it’s the first year, right? But it’s even better to test how far I am against future Hall of Famers.”
The goal is to improve his mechanics and footwork, but Lucas hasn’t felt like he’s hit a rookie wall.
“I feel alright. The way I looked at it was after the bye week I was like OK, seven guaranteed games left and the playoffs. I can do that. You know, and then just try to go with it as much as possible.”
Bobby Wagner is thriving in LA — if only the Rams could catch up for him
The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue joined The Huddle for a preview of Sunday’s showdown at SoFi and while there’s plenty of bad news for the Rams, Los Angeles is at least getting what they wanted from former Seahawks captain Bobby Wagner.
“I couldn’t talk enough about how phenomenal Bobby has been here in Los Angeles,” Rodrigue said. “As you guys know, it was a bit of homecoming of sorts for him in terms of his hometown and where his family is… and he’s been outstanding. It’s kind of like what we joked about earlier: everything that can go wrong has for the Rams. Bobby Wagner is everything that has been right for the Rams.
“What I mean by that is not only is he showing up on the field with that energy and that intensity, and also I would say too he’s having one of the best seasons in recent history of his career in terms of what he’s being asked to do right now for the Rams. He ranks number one from PFF among all inside linebackers, leads the team in solo tackles, is calling a defense that he just learned for the first time this season after playing in a different system for the last decade. Was named a captain in his first season. Just an outstanding year for him. Obviously things aren’t going great for the team itself so he’s kind of thriving among the wreckage right now. But the Rams have really leaned on him.”
And finally… say what?
How’s this for a wild stat from Rodrigue: the Rams last week were on their 11th offensive line iteration in 11 games.