As the Seattle Seahawks churn their roster at a rapid rate, the logical assumption is that head coach Pete Carroll is determined to rebuild the team to compete in an NFC West Division that includes young upstarts in the San Francisco 49ers and the defending division champion Los Angeles Rams.
On Friday, Seattle's four-time Pro Bowl cornerback Richard Sherman was released along with fellow veteran cornerback Jeremy Lane. Two days earlier, Seattle agreed to trade defensive end Michael Bennett to the Philadelphia Eagles in a deal that won't be official until the March 14 start of the league year.
The Seahawks have Russell Wilson at quarterback and Bobby Wagner at middle linebacker to anchor the team as Carroll pushes the reset button. Surely Carroll can rebuild the Seahawks again. After all, after arriving in Seattle in 2010, he pushed the team into the Super Bowl following the 2013 and 2014 seasons.
So, going into his ninth season with the Seahawks, he should be able to repeat his initial run at the Super Bowl, right?
Not so fast.
When he arrived in 2010, Carroll had an advantage that gave him a decided edge in acquiring players to build a powerhouse team. He spent the previous decade in the living rooms of many of those players. He gained fame -- and then infamy -- as a great recruiter at USC.
In his first four years with the Seahawks, that background, that insight, served him well as he acquired a dozen Pro Bowl or All-Pro level players.
A quick look at this list is testimony to Carroll's great personnel work in those first years:
Pos., Player, Draft, note
LT Russell Okung, D1 (left after 2015 season; with Chargers)
S Earl Thomas, D1 (on roster)
S Kam Chancellor, D5 (on roster)
RB Marshawn Lynch, trade from Buffalo (left after 2015 season; with Raiders)
G James Carpenter, D1 (left after 2014 season; with Jets)
LB K.J. Wright, D4 (on roster)
CB Richard Sherman, D5 (released Friday)
CB Byron Maxwell, D6 (left after 2014 season; back with Seahawks in 2017)
WR Doug Baldwin, undrafted free agent (on roster)
LB Bruce Irvin, D1 (left after 2015 season; with Raiders)
LB Bobby Wagner, D2 (on roster)
QB Russell Wilson, D3 (on roster)
CB Jeremy Lane, D6 (released Friday)
G J.R. Sweezy, D7 (left after 2015 season; with Bucs)
CB DeShawn Shead, undrafted free agent, scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent March 14
WR Jermaine Kearse, undrafted free agent (left after 2016 season; with Jets)
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