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Pete needs to get back to playing rookies early & more often

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  • It's like he's scared to play them, as if he doesn't have enough confidence in his team, and he's going away from what has made this team a great finisher.

    I've been frustrated over this, as have others, and some of the local pundits have noticed it also. The ones that frustrated me most were LJ Collier, Ugo Amadi, and John Ursua. These are physically talented players, yet Pete played everybody and anybody except rookies.

    I didn't understand why he was forcing TT and Lano, along with other random DBs, out on to the field all of the time, when he had some fast rookies that NEEDED reps!

    As horrible as our pass rush was, WHY did Ziggy Ansah soak up all the reps while LJ sat on the sidelines? Collier is nver going to improve on the bench. Pete used to follow his philosophy that he brought from USC, not so much anymore. Now he's following the Jim Harbaugh policy of run your most experienced players in to the ground, so that when they get injured, you have no one to back them up.

    I heard Dave Wyman talking about this very thing, and Danny O'Neill hits the nail on the head with his article.

    O’Neil: Seahawks finishing kick is gone, and their young players are why

    The Seahawks, who used to be known for their finishing kick, have become a team that tends to flail down the stretch. Instead of streaking through December, the Seahawks seem more likely to sputter.

    But there’s something more going on here, too, which I think relates to the team’s willingness to play rookies, especially on defense. It used to be the Seahawks believed in getting young players on the field whether it was high draft picks like Earl Thomas and Bobby Wagner starting from Week 1 of their rookie season to having both K.J. Wright and Richard Sherman in the lineup by the midway point of their rookie seasons.

    Those players made strides over the course of the season and by the time they reached December, they weren’t playing like rookies any more.


    https://sports.mynorthwest.com/813529/o ... kick-gone/
    ivotuk
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  • I hear you and the others, and I agree. In his first couple of years, there wasn't a lot of choice, because everybody was young and inexperienced. ;)

    Last season, he should have brought guys in sooner, but I'll cut him some slack toward the end of the season. When you're in the middle of a playoff hunt, it is hard to sub in young guys and rookies over experienced players. It might have worked out better giving the young guys some playing time early in the season, even if it meant losing a couple of those close games. Having to bring them in later, in emergency situations, is a bit much to ask of young guys like that.

    Hopefuly this is better handled better in 2020. There is a lot of exciting young talent that I think could help us win some games if we give them a chance.
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  • Of course, the flip side this past year was that we started off stronger. Playing rookies early (or late) has a cost.

    Also, it's not as if he's really deviated all that much. Sherman didn't start until November. Kam not until year 2. Same with Golden Tate. Paul Richardson -- the same. Frank Clark not until year three. About the only players to start right away were our OL selections.

    I think we're so far removed from the beginning of the program, that we easily forget that a lot of our best players rode pine for months in their rookie seasons. That, and the perpetual cycling of rookies on the OL -- a position group of severe need almost every year -- maybe gives a false impression that we played them earlier. In reality, we routinely hedged rookies with veterans.
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  • Seeing TT and Hill in at safety over Blair was frustrating. Blair brings a level of speed and intensity and a bit of recklessness those two don't.

    And Amadi being sidelined for Taylor for a bit of the season was aggravating.
    Jaron Brown over Ursua was infuriating.

    These arent red shirt freshmen Pete!
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  • That must mean that DK is a freak. ;)
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  • Seahwkgal wrote:That must mean that DK is a freak. ;)

    :drool: :0190l:
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  • ...I heard Dave Wyman talking about this very thing, and Danny O'Neill hits the nail on the head with his article.

    O’Neil: Seahawks finishing kick is gone, and their young players are why

    The Seahawks, who used to be known for their finishing kick, have become a team that tends to flail down the stretch. Instead of streaking through December, the Seahawks seem more likely to sputter.

    But there’s something more going on here, too, which I think relates to the team’s willingness to play rookies, especially on defense. It used to be the Seahawks believed in getting young players on the field whether it was high draft picks like Earl Thomas and Bobby Wagner starting from Week 1 of their rookie season to having both K.J. Wright and Richard Sherman in the lineup by the midway point of their rookie seasons.

    Those players made strides over the course of the season and by the time they reached December, they weren’t playing like rookies any more.


    https://sports.mynorthwest.com/813529/o ... kick-gone/



    I think this is always Pete's leaning, for the reasons observed above, and it now completes the picture for me of why he gets so bummed about rookies missing training camp, it ruins this plan.
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  • Jerhawk wrote:Seeing TT and Hill in at safety over Blair was frustrating. Blair brings a level of speed and intensity and a bit of recklessness those two don't.

    And Amadi being sidelined for Taylor for a bit of the season was aggravating.
    Jaron Brown over Ursua was infuriating.

    These arent red shirt freshmen Pete!


    Those are pretty much the worst examples of the OP's principle. Blair was terrible schematically when he played, constantly out of position. Taylor was bad; so was Amadi. And Jaron Brown isn't necessarily the reason Ursua didn't see the field. It might have just been because Ursua is entirely remarkable and not a good candidate for ST given his size.

    I want the best players out there. The desire to play rookies is easily mistaken for simple "someone else HAS to be better" syndrome.
    MontanaHawk05
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  • I think there's a lot of revisionist history in this line of thinking.

    First, one of the surprises about the 2010 roster was that despite the radical rebuild going on Pete still had the roster stuffed full of old veterans. He brought in Brandon Stokley and Lawyer Milloy to provide wisdom and then littered our depth with savvy vets like Colin Cole, Craig Terrell, Raheem Brock, Junior Siavii and Stacy Andrews.

    In fact the same arguments here were also occurring back then. Posters, such as myself, wondered why we weren't playing (promising at the time) rookies Dexter Davis, Walter Thurmond, and Joe Pawelek more often in what was clearly a rebuilding year. The answer turned out to be that Pete wanted to win immediately and we snuck into the playoffs that season - in a year that we started out as having the 5th worst odds in the preseason of any team.

    It was no different in 2019. Playing Amadi or Blair over Lano Hill was clearly the better long-term move, but Pete's focus is always about winning the next game. There are downsides to that admittedly short-sighted approach. Still, one of the things that I most admire about the current Hawks regime is that they have won without ever tanking for high draft picks like our three division "rivals" have.

    I also agree with Attyla here, who lists just some of the good youth that we have develop great players over the course of multiple seasons. It may be frustrating seeing LJ Collier on the bench but that is much closer to continuing the trend rather then departing from it if you look at our history of youth on the defensive line. When you're drafting at the end of the first round every year then you're unlikely to fail upwards into a Nick Bosa prospect who is ready to dominate day 1.

    All three of our division rivals have mainly rebuilt their teams lately by failing upwards due to NFL parity. I do not believe that fans around here should envy them nearly as much as some of you do.
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  • I’ve always been a proponent for playing the rookies and sophomores.

    If Carroll didn’t play Sherm and Kam, they wouldn’t have developed.

    I’m not sure why Carroll all of a sudden stopped and rather played vets more so.

    Maybe at the time the division wasn’t as strong and he thought he can get away with possible losses.

    Gotta play the young guys at some point.

    Better early in the season so they can get some reps and get comfortable than forced to play them when you have no choice at the end due to injuries.
    TheLegendOfBoom
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  • Pete started playing rookies early when WE HAD GREAT ROOKIES. That, with a few exceptions, hasn't been the case recently. I'm in hopes this year's rookie class changes that, but picking late isn't all that encouraging.
    One might argue our offense is trying to mirror our draft pick schedule. Late start with a lot of points late.
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  • MontanaHawk05 wrote:
    Jerhawk wrote:Seeing TT and Hill in at safety over Blair was frustrating. Blair brings a level of speed and intensity and a bit of recklessness those two don't.

    And Amadi being sidelined for Taylor for a bit of the season was aggravating.
    Jaron Brown over Ursua was infuriating.

    These arent red shirt freshmen Pete!


    Those are pretty much the worst examples of the OP's principle. Blair was terrible schematically when he played, constantly out of position. Taylor was bad; so was Amadi. And Jaron Brown isn't necessarily the reason Ursua didn't see the field. It might have just been because Ursua is entirely remarkable and not a good candidate for ST given his size.

    I want the best players out there. The desire to play rookies is easily mistaken for simple "someone else HAS to be better" syndrome.


    Amadi and Blair would've provided some much needed speed to the defensive side of the ball.
    And they won't improve their positioning on the bench. They were drafted for a reason. Get those guys on the field and watch them grow.
    2011 season was a prime example of growing pains. Sherman got his opportunity, KJ Wright got better each game, Kam and Earl got better. The defense consistently took strides forward the more they played together.

    The defense last year was awful. It held the team back. To say that those players are a bad example is mind blowing.
    Jerhawk
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  • The Youth movement problem is an example of trying to do two things at once, be relevant and stay in the hunt while attempting to replace aging and expensive players.

    Pete is going with what he knows till something happens that gives these guys a chance to step in and prove the belong in the group, the issue is his tolerance for error is much less now then while building the team.
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  • Yup, being afraid to play your first two picks behind JAGs is unacceptable IMO. They changed their whole program, and it's sad.
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  • Field the best players available regardless if they are 22 or 32 . It's about winning now ; not about rookies getting a shot on game day . IMO
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  • xray wrote:Field the best players available regardless if they are 22 or 32 . It's about winning now ; not about rookies getting a shot on game day . IMO

    Strongly disagree. You see this in every sport, and you've seen in play out in Seattle recently. Players that are holding on, typically don't end up being very good, and even if they are, there is usually little juice about them. Young players typically play better than you thought they would, and add needed energy. These guys sat behind Tedric Thompson, Lano Hill and Branden Jackson. Can't sit your talented rookies under fringe roster guys. You're never going to get better that way. Rookies are definitely a mixed bag, but Blair had splash plays nearly every game he played in, and those are what this defense was lacking the most. Pete gets attacked for all his game management stuff/clock management stuff, but I don't view that stuff as very important. Being afraid to play your young talent, however, I believe is a cardinal sin. And it's so strange because Pete was so willing to play guys in the past. It must be a middle of the defense kind of thing, because we've seen Quill and Flowers play recently. But it just can't happen.
    Tical21
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  • I'm not looking for any of these guys to Start early, but to get more playing time. LJ Collier missed a lot of training camp, but it seems like Pete's philosophy this year was to bench him. How is LJ going to improve when he's not active? And to play Ansah ahead of Collier?

    Same with Amadi and Blair. Get them more playing time, let them learn on the fly. With last years roster, there really wasn't anyone besides Clowney and Wagner that one would hesitate to take off the field...or cut.

    Try to stay relevant only gets you one thing, mediocrity.

    I remember some coach, I think it was Pete, saying "With the lack of time in training camp, and the lack of padded practices, you have to play younger players now to get them up to speed."

    That's why I think it would have really benefitted LJ to get more reps. Because the amount of time he missed, was comparable to missing a complete off season with the shortened version we now have.

    Get these young players more reps, so that when your older players get injured at the end of the season, you can still be competitive.

    Ursua and Travis Homer should not have been mysteries when it came to December. Who are these guys? Can they play? We had no idea. But they both showed that they could. Imagine if they'd gotten more playing time during the season.

    I believe it's foolish to base a player's abilities, solely on how they look in practice. You need to see them in live game play also. And not just a couple of plays! Rookies have to get over the newness of the NFL, they have to get in a groove.

    There have been a lot of players throughout NFL history, that we've heard "there game speed is much faster than their 40 times." Which to me means that you MUST see them in live game action in order to get an accurate judgement of how their complete skill set.

    After the Bengals game Pete said "TT has done great in practice on judging those deep balls! But he missed it in the game." Yes Pete...some players do not translate their skills from practice to live game speed.

    But instead, our rookies don't get any playing time, until the Playoffs! Imagine what that's like for them!

    So to reiterate, I'm not looking for rookies to start, just give them more reps. So that when you run low on vets, you're not throwing these guys to the Wolves.
    ivotuk
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  • ivotuk wrote:I'm not looking for any of these guys to Start early, but to get more playing time. LJ Collier missed a lot of training camp, but it seems like Pete's philosophy this year was to bench him. How is LJ going to improve when he's not active? And to play Ansah ahead of Collier?

    Same with Amadi and Blair. Get them more playing time, let them learn on the fly. With last years roster, there really wasn't anyone besides Clowney and Wagner that one would hesitate to take off the field...or cut.

    Try to stay relevant only gets you one thing, mediocrity.

    I remember some coach, I think it was Pete, saying "With the lack of time in training camp, and the lack of padded practices, you have to play younger players now to get them up to speed."

    That's why I think it would have really benefitted LJ to get more reps. Because the amount of time he missed, was comparable to missing a complete off season with the shortened version we now have.

    Get these young players more reps, so that when your older players get injured at the end of the season, you can still be competitive.

    Ursua and Travis Homer should not have been mysteries when it came to December. Who are these guys? Can they play? We had no idea. But they both showed that they could. Imagine if they'd gotten more playing time during the season.

    I believe it's foolish to base a player's abilities, solely on how they look in practice. You need to see them in live game play also. And not just a couple of plays! Rookies have to get over the newness of the NFL, they have to get in a groove.

    There have been a lot of players throughout NFL history, that we've heard "there game speed is much faster than their 40 times." Which to me means that you MUST see them in live game action in order to get an accurate judgement of how their complete skill set.

    After the Bengals game Pete said "TT has done great in practice on judging those deep balls! But he missed it in the game." Yes Pete...some players do not translate their skills from practice to live game speed.

    But instead, our rookies don't get any playing time, until the Playoffs! Imagine what that's like for them!

    So to reiterate, I'm not looking for rookies to start, just give them more reps. So that when you run low on vets, you're not throwing these guys to the Wolves.


    The problem with that is this past season we didn't really have much margin for error in all but one of the games. The first Cardinals game was the only one where we were not fighting with everything we had to get a victory.

    As far as Ursua, exactly when did he show he could play in the NFL? His preseason catches were beating single coverage against a third string LB in one game (after play action that sucked up the LB), a LB that was cut two weeks later and never got picked up by anyone (after play action that sucked up the LB), and one against a soft zone designed to protect a lead by the Vikings that were playing guys in the fourth quarter that wouldn't make a roster. That is not to say that I think Brown or Turner are better than Ursua, but to think that what he showed in the preseason was proof that he can play in the NFL is a bit of a stretch.
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  • Might not be a complicated problem. Pete had to think there was virtually no upside to playing those younger guys. LJ, Amadi, Blair, Ursua will never be impact/big contributors in the NFL. If they are starting, that team will likely be sub .500. Our drafts have plain and simply SUCKED! We've traded down to stock up on middle of the road special teamers.
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  • ivotuk wrote:It's like he's scared to play them, as if he doesn't have enough confidence in his team/


    It's the latter, not the former.

    Pete didn't all of a sudden at the ripe old age of 68 become afraid of starting talented rookies, it's 100% confidence (or lack there of).

    Which is really what this is about, he and John haven't done a good enough job of drafting enough young talented defensive players that Pete has the confidence to play.......or had the time to develop them to the point where they're an asset, and not a detriment.

    Or when he does play them, they cost us games (Quem Griffin, Thompson, Hill, Flowers, etc). All these guys have gotten torched to the point where it would make any coach nervous putting them in the lineup week after week.
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  • Always compete!

    and when you're older I may play you.
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  • Jerhawk wrote:
    MontanaHawk05 wrote:
    Jerhawk wrote:Seeing TT and Hill in at safety over Blair was frustrating. Blair brings a level of speed and intensity and a bit of recklessness those two don't.

    And Amadi being sidelined for Taylor for a bit of the season was aggravating.
    Jaron Brown over Ursua was infuriating.

    These arent red shirt freshmen Pete!


    Those are pretty much the worst examples of the OP's principle. Blair was terrible schematically when he played, constantly out of position. Taylor was bad; so was Amadi. And Jaron Brown isn't necessarily the reason Ursua didn't see the field. It might have just been because Ursua is entirely remarkable and not a good candidate for ST given his size.

    I want the best players out there. The desire to play rookies is easily mistaken for simple "someone else HAS to be better" syndrome.


    Amadi and Blair would've provided some much needed speed to the defensive side of the ball.
    And they won't improve their positioning on the bench. They were drafted for a reason. Get those guys on the field and watch them grow.
    2011 season was a prime example of growing pains. Sherman got his opportunity, KJ Wright got better each game, Kam and Earl got better. The defense consistently took strides forward the more they played together.

    The defense last year was awful. It held the team back. To say that those players are a bad example is mind blowing.


    You need more than speed. You also need to have guys in the right position. The Packers game should have provided ample reason of why speed isn't enough, even though both Amadi and Blair showed promise.
    MontanaHawk05
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  • Are we still throwing out the tired tropes of thinking we know more than the coaches about a rookies readiness to play?

    Pete played Metcalf from day one because he knew he was ready. Pete played Will Dissly from day one because he knew he was ready. When a rookie is clearly ready, Pete plays them. When they aren't ready he holds them back until they are ready. 90% of that determination comes from practice which none of you are privy to.

    The concept that we have gems just ready to break out as rookies is misguided. Only a rare rookie is ready to handle the NFL. College is a vastly different game and experience and not everyone makes an easy transition.

    Sherm, ET, Wilson, Wagner all played in their rookie season as starters because they were damn good players. We got lucky in a few drafts. Most SB teams are based on a couple outlier drafts. Most will then autocorrect like the stock market. If you think you can draft better than the experts then you likely think you can time the stock market. Both are foolish notions.
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  • You're singing the right song mad dog.
    Nearly every game we played this year we were fighting for our life the entire game. Most of those games came down to the final possession. Our rookies this year, with exception of DK, were not of the caliber to be considered dependable or trustworthy in critical situations. Had Pete insisted on playing the rooks we probably/certainly miss our trip to the playoffs. That's a steep price to pay for getting playing time for subs.
    Appyhawk
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  • The reason young guys don't play much under Pete? Look no farther than Malik Turner's drop against the Packers which effectively ended our season. The only reason he was even on the field at that moment is because we didn't have anyone else. Giving rookies who are not ready to be in the game more playing time does not mean they'll develop quicker. It just means we'll lose more games.
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