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Coffee & Cigarettes: Seahawks links for Saturday

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports


How early should you draft the Seahawks DST? -
You hear it all the time: Don't draft a defense early. Good advice, generally. But are the 2014 Seahawks an exception?

Seahawks roster ranked as NFL's best by Pro Football Focus
Perhaps it comes as no surprise to Seahawks fans, but Seattle’s roster is the best in the league — or at least Pro Football Focus thinks so.

Andrew Luck and Quarterback Help —
It’s no secret that Andrew Luck’s efficiency numbers aren’t quite up to par with his reputation. Over the past two seasons, Luck ranks just 18th in ANY/A, far behind some of the other young quarterbacks in the NFL. Nick Foles, Russell Wilson, and Colin Kaepernick rank in the top 6th in that metric, Robert Griffin is 11th, Cam Newton is 14th, and even Andy Dalton is 16th. Luck tends to fare much better in ESPN’s QBR than in ANY/A (and Andy Benoit wrote an interesting pro-Luck piece yesterday), but today I wanted to try to quantify another issue: quarterback help.

New coordinators could shape season for Ravens, Giants, more - ESPN
When the Baltimore Ravens and New York Giants won two of the past three Super Bowls, their quarterbacks shredded playoff opponents for a combined 20 touchdown passes with just one interception. It was a beautiful thing to watch unless your team was on the losing end, but now the beauty is a faded memory. Those same quarterbacks have combined for more picks (64) than TD passes (63) since winning it all, and now both teams are hoping new offensive coordinators can orchestrate turnarounds.

Schottenheimer under pressure to ignite Rams offense -
In an NFC West teeming with some of the league's most creative offensive minds, St. Louis Rams play-caller Brian Schottenheimer must make good on the team's faith in quarterback Sam Bradford.

Mike Pettine: Recent Tom Brady talk 'ridiculous' -
Mike Pettine said the idea that Tom Brady no longer is a top-five quarterback is nonsense. What else did the Browns coach have to say about the three-time Super Bowl winning QB's pedigree?

Out-of-sight players providing eye-opening reasons to remember them
The Seahawks’ coaching staff refers to them as red-shirts – those players who have been limited by injuries or circumstance the past two seasons but are ready to return and mark their mark on this team.

Kenny Britt excited to start over in St. Louis - ESPN
By the time his five-year tenure with the Tennessee Titans came to an end after the 2013 season, wide receiver Kenny Britt had long-since decided he was in dire need of a change of scenery.

Some revealing comments from Pete Carroll - NFC West Blog - ESPN
On the rivalry between him and San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh: “I think Jim’s a great coach. I watched him in college and I've watched him San Francisco. He’s done a fantastic job and molded a style of play to be a big force in our division. And we love beating him.”

Sam Bradford says Rams are on cusp of playoffs -
The St. Louis Rams reside in perhaps the toughest division in football, but enigmatic quarterback Sam Bradford believes the team is on the precipice of big things.

Eight takeaways from Thursday's OTAs -
Colin Kaepernick's contract sets a market for the next wave of quarterback contracts, including those of Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson. Find out what else we learned from Thursday's OTAs.

Observations from St. Louis Rams' practice - ESPN
The St. Louis Rams were the last team to jump into the fray of organized team activities. They officially began the work on Tuesday, but Thursday offered the first session open to the media.

Inside Colin Kaepernick's new contract | National Football Post
Will the San Francisco quarterback’s recent deal start a new trend around the NFL?

Dominique Easley provides New England Patriots options on defensive front | Audibles -
For a guy who played in just three games and amassed five tackles in 2013, Florida defensive lineman Dominique Easley certainly did a fine job of upsetting the bottom end of the 2014 draft's first round.

Ready to bust loose | National Football Post
Six rookies to keep an eye on during the 2014 NFL season.

Contract talks between Jim Harbaugh and San Francisco 49ers reportedly stalled | Audibles -
The San Francisco 49ers took care of contract matters with their star quarterback this week when they agreed with Colin Kaepernick on a six-year extension worth $110 million — $61 million guaranteed.

Tom Brady still one of NFL's top five quarterbacks, Mike Pettine says | The MMQB with Peter King
BEREA, Ohio — I try not to engage the usual NFL offseason nonsensical story du jour—Top 100 players, who had the best offseason, what’s going on with the Jets’ quarterbacks, who’s the best cornerback and other pointless arguments—because they are what they are: the ever-growing...

Michael Sam, others involved in multiple scuffles at St. Louis Rams OTAs | Audibles -
During minicamps and OTAs, players are fighting for their positions during an intense competition for roster spots and playing time that sometimes ends in a shoving match and even punches being thrown.

NFL tries to work its marketing magic with the draft | ProFootballTalk
Maybe the NFL really is going to turn this car around, Mister. Even if, as it now appears, the NFL has decided to abandon Radio City Music Hall and New York City for the 2015 draft, it's impossible to rule out a change of heart if the powers-that-be at Radio City or another venue in Manhattan dec...

Doug Marrone isn’t sure Marcell Dareus gets it | ProFootballTalk
As the Bills try to process a pair of recent arrests by Pro Bowl defensive lineman Marcell Dareus, coach Doug Marrone tries to resolve a fairly important questions about Dareus.

Bills plan a faster pace on offense | ProFootballTalk
“We look back at last year, and those first four games when EJ had a lot of run going on, it was awesome,” Hackett said, via the Buffalo News. “We were really rolling. It’s funny. You look back on it and as the season went on, with the changes we had at that position, it slowed down. The better we get, the more we have of the understanding of the offense, the faster we can go.”

7 Undrafted Rookies Making Noise in Offseason Workouts | Bleacher Report
Undrafted free agency is a vicious, post-draft free-for-all that sees teams vying for lottery tickets at an incredible rate. The dust settled long ago, and most of those players aren't going to make it at the next level.

NFL 101: Breaking Down the Basics of Packaged Plays | Bleacher Report
In today’s installment of the “NFL 101” series at Bleacher Report, former NFL defensive back Matt Bowen breaks down the basics of packaged plays to give you a better understanding of scheme and execution at the pro level.

Do the Panthers offseason moves make any sense? | : Mike Tanier Article
These "round up the team-by-team offseason news" articles follow a comfortable, predictable rhythm. There's a hot new player to hype, a weakness to fret over, a new coach or rookie with make-or-break potential, and a general sense that terrible teams deserve the "maybe they turned things around" treatment while strong teams earn congratulations for remaining strong. Spring, after all, is the season of optimism.

John Madden, 78, is still the NFL's greatest ambassador. | : Dan Pompei Article
It was January 1968, and the Oakland Raiders had just arrived in South Florida to prepare to play the AFL-NFL World Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers, in what would later be called Super Bowl II. A first-year linebacker coach settled into his Boca Raton hotel room and turned on the television. On the local news was a story about the participants' arrival at the airport. "Here come the Green Bay Packers," the reporter said, and John Madden watched as Vince Lombardi, Bart Starr, Ray Nitschke and the rest filed off their plane into the Florida sunshine. "And now, the Oklahoma Raiders arrive," the reporter said.

Richard Sherman of Seattle Seahawks named 'Madden NFL 15' cover athlete - ESPN
Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, who garnered national attention with his postgame rant after winning the NFC championship in January, will be the cover athlete for the Madden NFL 15 video game that hits shelves Aug. 15.

Da'Quan Bowers on the bubble in Tampa Bay? -
The Buccaneers are running out of patience with Da’Quan Bowers. After he showed up to team workouts in less-than-stellar shape, is the former second-round pick a potential roster cut in Tampa Bay?

Making sense of the Kaepernick “de-escalators” | ProFootballTalk
The initial, embellished report of Colin Kaepernick's new contract indicated that the deal was worth "up to" $126 million.  As we now know, $12 million of the money to be earned by Kaepernick comes from so-called de-escalators -- money in the contract that will go away if he fails to do certain thi...