Pete Carroll: Seahawks backup competition at LB is ‘an issue’

Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll is very satisfied with the work his players have put into the first eight OTA sessions.  He has been so pleased with his guys that he canceled the on-field portion of workouts on Thursday.

“We’ve had great work,” Carroll said. “To work four days in a row prior to getting ready for next week’s minicamp, we thought it would be better to adjust the way we’re doing it.

“Everything is working great, and we’re really pleased with it.”

The Seahawks mandatory minicamp will be next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  Then the veterans will be off until July 24 for the start of training camp.

“OTAs have gone great,” Carroll said. “We had tremendous opportunity to see our guys come back and get after it with the right attitude and the right kind of tempo that we’re familiar with. And also see the young guys fit in. They did a great job of fitting in throughout.”

Carroll still has one primary concern heading into minicamp, who will backup starters Malcolm Smith, Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright at linebacker?

“The backup competition at linebacker is really an issue,” Carroll said. “We have to figure out how that’s going to work out. I don’t know that right now.”

The candidates include Mike Morgan, who started a game last season when Wright was injured; Heath Farwell, who has led the Seahawks in special-teams tackles the past two seasons; Bruce Irvin, who topped all NFL rookies with eight sacks while playing as a pass-rushing end last season; Allen Bradford, who was a running back at USC for Carroll; Korey Toomer, a fifth-round draft choice last year who began his rookie season on the practice squad and finished it on the injured reserve list; free agent Kyle Knox; and rookie free agents John Lotulelei and Craig Wilkins.

“Korey Toomer had a very good OTAs,” Carroll said. “He probably has improved more than anybody. … He’s playing fast. He’s playing with the confidence that shows his ability is something to deal with. He’s a very good edge football player, but he’s very inexperienced also. So we need to see how far along he has come. But the signs are great.

“But that’s still I think the biggest question marks: What’s going to happen there? There’s still information to gain there. But we love the group and it’s very, very athletic.”

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