Seahawks’ Justin Britt says Seattle is adjusting to NFL’s focus on holding
Thursday night’s game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans spawned one heck of a Twitter frenzy, not just because of the play of quarterback Gardner Minshew – an ex-WSU Cougar who has quickly become an NFL fan favorite – but also because of a post by one of the league’s most influential players.
“I’m turning off this game I can’t watch these ridiculous penalties anymore #TENvsJAC,” New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady tweeted in the first half of the Jaguars’ 20-7 win.
I’m turning off this game I can’t watch these ridiculous penalties anymore #TENvsJAC
— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) September 20, 2019
Eight of the 15 first half penalties on Thursday were for holding (which the NFL has identified as a point of emphasis in 2019) and there has been a 66 percent increase in offensive holding penalties compared to the first two weeks of the 2018 season, according to ESPN.com.
On Friday, Seahawks center Justin Britt talked to 710 ESPN Seattle’s John Clayton about the increase in offensive holding calls and how that could affect the Seahawks’ offense, in particular.
“As soon as your hand gets outside the frame, they’re throwing a flag,” Britt told Clayton. “Whether it’s right or wrong. So heading into Week 3, we’ve just got to kind of bite the bullet on it. They’re not budging, obviously, and it’s obviously a point of emphasis for them. And for whatever reason, I think teams with linemen that come off the ball and just straight out reach around and grab someone’s back… there’s a few teams like that throughout the league that kind of ruined it for everybody.”
One technique the league is trying to curb is the “lobster block,” according to ESPN’s Kevin Seifert.
“I think it’s whenever they reach around and grab the back of (a defender’s) shoulder pads,” Britt explained. “Look at the Rams; look at (Andrew) Whitworth. He does it every play. I don’t know if that’s it or that’s what they’re referring to. I’ve never done that, I’m not fortunate to have that long of arms.”
Britt said the Seahawks are just working to adjust their approach.
“We’re working at in practice,” Britt said. “Having cleaner hands, better hands. They change and adapt the rules all the time, but this is kind of the first one other than the cut blocks that’s gonna impact (the offensive line) in a big way…
“I would love for them to kind of chill out on that and just let us play ball. But I don’t think they will right now, so we just have to adjust as a group and go out there and try to be as clean as possible.”
Listen to Britt’s conversation with Clayton in the player below or download it here.
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