Saturday, July 30, 2011
Tarvaris Jackson's quick rise to starting role
By Mike Sando
RENTON, Wash. -- Rules prevent Tarvaris Jackson from practicing with his new Seattle Seahawks teammates before Aug. 4.
Coach Pete Carroll thinks Jackson needs to be the Seahawks' starting quarterback anyway.
Carroll, speaking following the Seahawks' morning practice Saturday, declared Jackson the team's starter out of necessity even though Charlie Whitehurst is the one taking first-team reps while rules prevent Jackson from participating. Carroll cited Jackson's familiarity with offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell's offense from their days together in Minnesota as a critical factor under these unusual lockout-induced circumstances.
This announcement brings clarity to the quarterback position without Carroll making a long-term commitment. It also reinforces perceptions that Whitehurst hasn't convinced the organization he's ready to become more than insurance at the position.
Jackson's knowledge of the offense is clearly a strong factor in the decision. For evidence, Carroll pointed to similar thinking related to other moves the team has made. Robert Gallery's addition to the offensive line made more sense because Gallery's former coach in Oakland, Tom Cable, is now coaching the Seahawks' offensive line. Receiver Sidney Rice's addition from Minnesota also played into the Bevell connection.
"The more we saw it coming, the more we realized we needed continuity and we needed continuity that we could generate in a very short amount of time," Carroll said. "We realized with our background on offense with Tom and Darrell coming together, if we could capture Tarvaris, who has been with Darrell for five years, we could hit this full speed."
Making a quick announcement on the quarterback situation prevents Whitehurst vs. Jackson from becoming an overriding storyline throughout camp.