I could talk all day about what I'm looking forward to watching in tonight's game and a large part of it would involve talking about the second and third team roster bubble guys, but I'm going to narrow it down to five players for this game, all presumptive starters going into this season. Also, check out another 'what to watch' piece on SBN Seattle that covers some of the more obscure guys to keep an eye on -- I did a little double dipping last night (ew, that sounds dirty) by writing a bit for the Seattle site, and since Jacson's "What to Watch" was so much longer than mine (ew, that sounds embarrassing) I figured I'd include a shameless plug (ew, that sounds gross too).
One, Mike Williams. He's seemingly sat out as many training camp practices as he's participated in and he stood on the sidelines of the Hawks' first game at San Diego. We've haven't heard the glowing reviews from camp that we've heard with Sidney Rice, Ben Obomanu, Doug Baldwin, or even Ricardo Lockette. He's just been... quiet.. to start the season. That doesn't necessarily mean anything one way or another but I'll be watching him closely. Can he shake off the rust? Can he get separation? Can he beat the jam?
Two, Sidney Rice. Duh.
Three, Brandon Frickin Mebane. Another guy that we've heard nothing but good reports on from camp. He's been disruptive, effective, even 'unblockable' in camp so I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do from the nose tackle position, a spot he hasn't held down since the 2008 season. Look to see him get penetration into the backfield and play effectively against the run. It will be interesting to see where they use him as well, and whether they switch him back and forth from the 3-tech spot and the nose tackle spot.
Four, Aaron Curry. He played the first series against the Chargers last week at the weakside linebacker position so I am anxious to see if that is a real move or just simple position shuffling. He has the prototypical size, speed, and strength you'd want from any linebacker spot but it'd be very interesting if he could thrive in that role. The Will linebacker needs to be rangy and fast, but an effective tackler. How does he look running in pass coverage? How does he look blitzing? I'm really holding out hope that Carroll and company can finally tap his potential.
Five, Tarvaris Jackson. Again, duh. Poise in the pocket. Command of the huddle. Good tempo and rhythm in the offense. Can he throw the ball to his receivers? Can he play good? These are the things I'm going to be looking for.
Gameday baby. Gameday. Who you got?