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Monday, March 2, 2009
Seahawks visit with tight end Owens


Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

John Carlson is firmly established as the Seahawks' starting tight end, but the Seahawks are considering their options in backup roles.

John Owens, who caught nine passes for the Lions over the last two seasons, is one of those options. The Seahawks visited with him and could seemingly use a blocking tight end to pair with Carlson, who set a franchise record for receptions by a tight end last season.

A quick look at the 6-foot-3, 255-pound Owens, courtesy of Scouts Inc.

Owens is a powerful, technically sound run blocker. He shows great snap and strength at the point of attack. He plays with some pop, getting movement off the line of scrimmage. He uses proper angles, good initial quickness and a low center of gravity to gain leverage. He brings toughness, attitude and solid special teams contributions.

But Owens, a converted defensive lineman, is pretty one-dimensional. He lacks quality pass-catching tools and hasn't developed as a receiver. He doesn't have great quickness or speed to create separation. His hands are inconsistent. His route running hasn't come along, and he isn't natural in and out of stems. He hasn't shown much after-the-catch ability and isn't a threat to stretch zones. Most clubs would prefer a more versatile player in Owens' role, but he could hang around as a third tight end.

Signing a player such as Owens could affect Will Heller's future with the team. Heller is an unrestricted free agent.