Undoubtedly, the Seahawks' biggest move this off-season has been the signing of Head Coach Pete Carroll. Carroll comes to Seattle after going 97-19 during his tenure at USC. Obviously that is a very impressive record, but there is a big difference between the Pac-10 and the NFC West.
Perhaps a better indicator of his success is the 33-31 record he compiled as the Head Coach of the New York Jets and New England Patriots. While it is hard to quantify what kind of impact Carroll will have in his first year with the Seahawks, his signing will certainly bring some additional excitement to the division. Be sure to answer our poll and let us know what you think of Carroll's chances for success.
Thus far, there has not been a huge amount of turnover on Seattle's roster. One exception is the release of SS Deon Grant. The 31 year old was due $17 million over the next three years, and his declining performance made him a prime candidate to be cut. The team's safeties struggled mightily in 2009, and this move may have cleared the way for the Seahawks to select a safety in the early part of the first round.
On special teams, kicker Olindo Mare has been slapped with the Franchise Tag. Mare made 24 of 26 field-goals this past season, including a long of 47. He is a very capable player, and his franchise tender will make him one of the highest paid kickers in the league.
The Seahawks traded a 2010 3rd round pick and moved down in the 2nd round to acquire back up quarterback Charlie Whitehurst from the San Diego Chargers. After the deal was completed Whitehurst signed a 2-year $8 million extension. That is a very rich contract for a back-up quarterback who has not completed a regular season pass in the NFL, so it seems likely that they will want to see him on the field at some point this season.
Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck is expected to be under center to start the 2010 season, but if he struggles out of the gate he could quickly find himself on the bench. Hassellbeck is 35 years old and is in the final year of his contract, making it past time that Seattle found a successor at the position.
Longtime back-up Seneca Wallace, was traded to the Cleveland Browns for a conditional pick in the 2011 draft, meaning Whitehurst is the most likely in-house option to replace Hassellback. However, the team also has last year's 6th round pick QB Mike Teel on the roster.
We'll examine the team's remaining needs and their 2009 Draft after the jump...
Left Tackle: The team has still not addressed the tackle position. They need to find a player capable of starting at left tackle in case Walter Jones does not play in 2010.
Quarterback: The acquisition of Charlie Whitehurst does not necessarily preclude the team from drafting another quarterback. You can never have enough good ones.
Safety: The release of SS Deon Grant makes it very likely that the Seahawks will draft a safety early in the draft. They desperately need to improve their production at this position.
Guard: Incumbent Rob Sims has signed a RFA tender, but it appears likely that he will be traded this off-season. The team need to get more consistency from the interior of the offensive line.
Defensive End: Seattle has added some depth along the defensive line, but in a 4-3 defense you're always in need of more ends who can rush the passer effectively.