Here are our weekly players to watch for the Seahawks. First, Jayson Jenks picks his three players to keep an eye on against the Chicago Bears:
1, Running back Christine Michael. Bold choice here, I know, but Michael continues to show flashes of explosiveness and potential while mixing in moments of mental lapses and mistakes (he’s fumbled twice this preseason). Coach Pete Carroll called him the “most improved” player this season, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a ways to go.
2, Safety Kam Chancellor. Chancellor should play this week, and more than anything it will be worth watching how he moves and hits after having offseason hip surgery. Chancellor has been practicing with the Seahawks for a couple weeks now, so he should be ready to go.
3, Defensive lineman Kevin Williams. Williams, the veteran defensive lineman who joined the Seahawks as a free agent this offseason, has played prominently at defensive tackle so far when the Seahawks use their nickel package. Williams is a good bet to make the roster at this point, but how the Seahawks use him is still worth keeping an eye on. Will he give them a similar look that Clinton McDonald did as a third-down rusher from his defensive tackle position?
And three from Bob Condotta:
1, Offensive tackle Justin Britt: I think the battle is over and Britt is the starting right tackle to begin the season. Still, he, uh, bears watching in this one to see how he does against a good pass rusher in Chicago’s Lamarr Houston, one of the team’s big free agent pickups. Britt has impressed coaches with his quick thinking and ability to adjust in-game, as well as his physical prowess on the edge. But it’s a pretty key spot Britt is being entrusted with, and we should get a good, long look tonight at how he holds up against a revamped Bears front with starters likely to play at least the first half.
2, Linebacker Korey Toomer: Toomer was one of the stars of the spring, showing all the athleticism that compelled the team to take him in the fifth round in 2012 out of Idaho. But as has unfortunately happened often with Toomer, the injury bug again hit and a hamstring injury has held him out of training camp until this week. Carroll was pretty frank Thursday about Toomer’s situation, saying it was time for him to show what he can do. Expect to see Toomer quite a bit. As the team’s website has reported, Mike Morgan has been limited this week in practice and while Malcolm Smith may be back, there sh0uld be enough reps to get Toomer some quality action in this one.
3, DT Jordan Hill: The second-year player from Penn State was off to a nice start in camp, then had a groin injury set him back for a while. He returned to play last week against San Diego and is healthy now. He’s one of several young players on the line — Greg Scuggs, Benson Mayowa, Cassius Marsh being others — the team needs to step up to fill some of the depth roles up front and going against a pretty good Chicago offense should be a good test. Here’s what defensive coordinator Dan Quinn said about Hill earlier this week: “Definitely has gotten stronger. I think he was set back by some of the injuries he had last year. We’re counting on Jordan, can he be a factor in this nickel group, that’s where we’re looking at him first. That competition is still underway inside, and it may take us a few more games to figure that out, but he’s certainly in the mix with hose guys. We’ve been pleased with him so far.”