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Seahawks Owner Paul Allen Passes Away at Age 65

Paul Allen, founder of Microsoft and prominent Seattle businessman and philanthropist, has died at age 65, Rachel Lerman of the Seattle Times reports.

Allen died Monday afternoon, according to his multi-faceted holding company Vulcan Inc., just two weeks after announcing he had restarted treatment for non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Allen co-founded Redmond tech giant Microsoft with childhood friend Bill Gates. After leaving the company, he turned his focus to a wide range of other business and scientific pursuits, which including founding the Allen Institute for Brain Science, and the real estate arm of Vulcan, which went on to build much of Amazon’s campus.

Allen also owned the Seattle Seahawks and the Portland Trail Blazers.

“My brother was a remarkable individual on every level,” Allen’s sister, Jody Allen, said in a statement. “While most knew Paul Allen as a technologist and philanthropist, for us he was a much loved brother and uncle, and an exceptional friend…At this time of loss and grief for us – and so many others – we are profoundly grateful for the care and concern he demonstrated every day.”

Pete Carroll Says Seahawks RB Chris Carson Will Play Sunday Despite Missing Wednesday Practice

Chris Carson didn’t practice Wednesday but Seahawks coach Pete Carroll says he expects his lead running back to play Sunday when the Seahawks host the undefeated Los Angeles Rams in a key NFC West game, Gregg Bell of the Tacoma Tribune reports.

“Yeah, he should be fine,” Carroll said before practice of Carson. “We are going to go light on him (Wednesday). He did the morning part of the work. And then (Thursday) he should be full go.”

Carson missed Wednesday’s practice with the same hip issue that had him limited in practices Wednesday, Thursday and Friday last week, then caused the starter to miss last weekend’s win at Arizona. Mike Davis went from third-string back to fill-in starter, and rushed for a career high 101 yards on 21 carries in Seattle’s 20-17 victory.

Carson hasn’t been full go since Sept. 23 when he ran 32 times, by far the most in his two NFL seasons, for 102 yards in the Seahawks’ 24-13 win over Dallas.

Video: Seahawks Down Cowboys 24-13

Seahawks Safety Earl Thomas Ends Holdout; Reports to Team

Seahawks safety Earl Thomas has ended his holdout and will report to the team Wednesday according to Josina Anderson of ESPN.

Arriving today means that Thomas will not miss out on any regular season checks, which in his case means $500,000 dollars per week on his scheduled $8.5 million base salary for 2018. The 29-year-old Pro Bowl safety had previously said he would not report without a new deal but the Seahawks have a history of holding firm with holdout safeties in the past, as Kam Chancellor didn’t get extra money when he tried this in 2015. And the Seahawks did not seem inclined to give in to Thomas’s demands that he be traded even as word surfaced that the Dallas Cowboys had upped their offer from a third-round pick to a second-rounder.

While it appears that Thomas will now play out the final year of his deal in Seattle, he made it clear he still feels bitterness towards the organization. In an Instagram post showing him working out, Thomas wrote the following: “I worked my whole life for this. I’ve never let me teammates, city or fans down as long as I’ve lived and don’t plan on starting this weekend. With that being said, the disrespect has been well noted and will not be forgotten. Father Time may have an undefeated record but best believe I plan on taking him into triple overtime when it comes to my career.”

It seems pretty obvious Thomas will be wearing a different uniform in 2019. And it still seems possible that a trade will be worked out at some point this season so that the Seahawks get some kind of compensation for their star safety.

Seahawks 5th Round Pick Shaquem Griffin Looking Impressive in Camp

Fifth round Seahawks linebacker Shaquem Griffin was the feel-good story of the 2018 NFL draft, inspiring people across the nation as he reached the professional level despite losing his left hand to amputation at age 4 due to a congenital birth defect.

Griffin’s new teammates want to broadcast a different one: This kid can play, Nate Davis of USA Today reports.

“Shaquem is definitely one that stands out to me,” fellow linebacker Bobby Wagner said. “All the people that doubted him because he doesn’t have a hand? He’s a great player. He’s flying around making plays, he picked off Russ, he’s batting down passes, making sacks.”

The interception of star quarterback Russell Wilson in a previous camp practice, as noted by Wagner, is important on several levels. It shows Griffin — undersized for his position at 6 feet and 227 pounds — can play with first stringers. It also provides further evidence that the former American Athletic Conference defensive player of the year can handle a scheme that will demand he play in space and likely put him in pass coverage far more often than at the line of scrimmage, where he frequently lined up for Central Florida while collecting 18½ sacks over his final two college seasons.

“He’s playing surprisingly really good,” Seattle defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. told USA TODAY Sports, clarifying his surprise is a nod to how quickly Griffin has grasped his new assignments.

“I mean, this kid is fast, he’s really smart, he’s really physical, he doesn’t make the same mistake twice, and he shows up every day. He’s for real. We understand that he’s missing a hand — and everybody focuses on that note — but he’s a real football player.

“He’s a joy to coach.”

Griffin has impressed on special teams, too, and already earned first-team reps alongside Wagner when veteran K.J. Wright has rested.

Still, Griffin knows now is no time for complacency.

“I got a lot to prove. I got to prove myself every single day, I’m not going to get comfortable where I’m at. I’m blessed and happy to be here, but the work is not done. Far from done,” he said Friday, while thanking Wagner and Wright for all they’ve done to mentor him on and off the field.

“I’m just here to learn more and be the best player and be the best teammate I can be.”

He became an overnight fan favorite, which has put pep in his step considering twin brother Shaquill, a cornerback, is beginning his second season with the Seahawks and poised to assume departed Richard Sherman’s role as the club’s top corner.

“Well, I don’t walk around too much. But, definitely the fans are just amazing, they show love wherever we go,” said Shaquem Griffin. “If it’s just going to the store, everybody always is just going to show love. They are happy that I’m here, and I’m glad to be here. I’m extremely blessed. The thing is, I just got to get a better reaction for my brother. He’s not too happy that I moved in with him.”

The Seahawks are thrilled he’s moved into their linebacker room and are expecting Griffin to make a difference for a defense that fell out of the league’s top-five overall ranking last year for the first time since 2011.

“He’s a great rookie, man. He listens. He hits people. It’s fun to watch him,” Wright told said. “He sits right between me and Bobby in meetings and asks us a lot of questions.

“He gets the job done, he’ll be fun to watch this year.”

Schefter: Seahawks WR Doug Baldwin to Miss Most of Preseason

Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin may miss most if not all of the preseason with a knee injury according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.

Schefter adds that doctors are “hopeful and confident” Baldwin will be ready by the time Week 1 rolls around. At this stage of his career, Baldwin doesn’t need the preseason, but it sure wouldn’t hurt to have the reps to knock off the rust.

For now, consider Baldwin likely to be ready for the opener.

Seahawks Bring Back Offensive Guard J.R. Sweezy

The Seahawks have brought back offensive guard J.R. Sweezy according to Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times.

Terms of the deal have not yet been released but the reunion makes sense for both sides. Originally a seventh-round draft pick of the Seahawks out of North Carolina State in 2012, Sweezy spent his first four NFL seasons in Seattle and was the team’s starting right guard during their 2013 Super Bowl season.

Unfortunately, injuries have since derailed the 29-year-old’s career. After signing a five-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, he missed the entire 2016 season with a back injury and then suffered through an injury-plagued 2017.

Sweezy had to sit out OTAs while continuing to recover from a broken leg and the Bucs finally threw in the towel on the free agent bust in early July. If Sweezy can get and stay healthy, he could provide interior line depth for a Seahawks O-line that has been the team’s achilles heels in the past few seasons.

Bobby Wagner Seems To Know Earl Thomas’ Pain in Terms of His Holdout

It’s easy to connect the two dots and say, as many do, that Earl Thomas is under contract thus he has an obligation to be at all mandatory Seahawks events.

That includes training camp that begins in 2 1/2 weeks. The three-time All-Pro safety may be for the start of camp what he’s been for every other team event since Seattle last played a game seven months ago: absent. Thomas is protesting not having a new deal beyond his that ends after 2018.

Bobby Wagner
outlined why he and some of Thomas’ teammates don’t blame him for skipping out on the Seahawks so far, Gregg Bell of the Tacoma Tribune reports.

Wagner said he understands if the 29-year-old Thomas continues his principled stance of staying away from training camp that begins with players’ reporting day July 26, staying away until he gets top dollar on a new Seahawks deal.

Such is life for players under the NFL’s non-guaranteed contracts.

“You’ve got to do what’s right for you,” Wagner told KJR. “Because at the end of the day, whenever you are done they don’t care about you. You’ve got to get what you’ve got to get while you can. Because as soon as you can’t play… ”

“As soon as you get hurt,” Avril interjected.

“Yeah,” Wagner responded. “As soon as you can’t play and they don’t want you no more, it’s over. So you’ve got to make the best of your opportunity.”

This could be Thomas’ last one to get top-of-the-league money, a deal with tens of millions in guaranteed cash for many years to come.

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