Jordan Babineaux read the situation like the free safety he is

Published on May 6, 2010 by     

By the time the Seattle Seahawks selected Earl Thomas with the 14th pick in the NFL draft two weeks ago, Babineaux already realized that the team adding a safety – or two – was more than just a possibility.

“I knew safety was a necessity for us once they parted ways with Deon,” Babineaux said – referring to Deon Grant, who was released in March after starting at strong safety the previous three seasons.

That’s why there was no panic attack when the club’s second pick in the first round was – gulp – a free safety. The position Babineaux filled last season, in his first season as a fulltime starter. The position from which Babineaux registered a career-high 105 tackles to finish second on the team behind fill-in middle linebacker David Hawthorne (116).

“It was just a matter of who was going to be available,” Babineaux said. “So it didn’t bother me at all, because I knew what we needed.”

In announcing that Thomas, the athletic safety from Texas, would step in as the starter at free safety from snap one of the post-draft minicamp, coach Pete Carroll also said that Babineaux would slide to strong safety to replace Grant.

“And that’ll be good for Jordan, as well,” Carroll said.

He’ll get no argument from Babineaux. Since joining the team as an undrafted free agent in 2004, he had been a part-time starter at cornerback (four games in 2005) and strong safety (eight games in 2006) before stepping in at free safety last season. But most of his impact plays – those that earned him the nickname “Big Play Babs” – came while lining up closer to the line of scrimmage as the third corner responsible for covering the slot receiver in the nickel defense.

Now, with the arrival of Thomas and his coverage skills, Babineaux will be back playing closer to the action.

“You name it, I’ve played it,” Babineaux said. “But for me, my reasoning for having the success that I’ve had has been the ability to line up in a position to be a playmaker. This puts me closer to ball, almost at linebacker depth.”

Speaking of linebackers, the Seahawks also drafted a safety with linebacker size – 6-foot-3, 232-pound Kam Chancellor in the fifth round. This guy emphasizes the strong in strong safety.

“When Kam walked in I was like, ‘Wow,’ ” Babineaux said. “He’s the physical specimen that you dream of.”

Babineaux reached out to Thomas and Chancellor during the just-concluded minicamp. Believe it or not, in his seventh season, Babineaux is one of the senior members of the secondary – along with cornerback Marcus Trufant, a first-round draft choice in 2003; and safety Lawyer Milloy, a 15th-year vet who just re-signed with the team for a second season Friday.

“I sat down with Kam and Earl during lunch and we just went through some of the calls and some of the checks,” Babineaux said. “Just to give them some things to start thinking about, because at that first minicamp they get a lot of information thrown at them in a short amount of time.

“When I was a rookie, I had (then-defensive coordinator) Ray Rhodes do that for me. So it doesn’t matter if a guy is competing for my position. We just need to be better. So I feel like it’s my responsibility to help bring the young guys along and make sure they understand the defense. For us to have success, they need to have success.”

There was a connection between Thomas and Babineaux even before they met. Thomas comes from Orange, Texas, which is the proverbial stone’s throw from Port Arthur, where Babineaux grew up.

“To me, Earl is from home,” Babineaux said. “And that’s important where we come from.”

In fact, the first of his new teammates to contact Thomas was Babineaux.

“He texted me last night and welcomed me with open arms,” Thomas said during his introductory news conference. “I’m just glad to be a part of this organization.”

The player whose position he is taking shares that sentiment.

“Earl is the kind of player that you can pretty much plug in wherever,” Babineaux said. “I had a chance to watch some of his highlights coming out of Texas and was able to see what he’s capable of doing.”

Babineaux then got an up-close look at the minicamp. Babineaux’s in-the-flesh assessment?

“I think Earl will fit in well with the group,” Babineaux. “He’s going to be a great addition.”

Thomas has the range needed by a free safety, but also the coverage skills to matchup against a slot receiver. It’s a combination that could allow the Seahawks to be more versatile by remaining in their base defense when the opposition goes to three wide receivers.

Sound familiar?

“Earl reminds me of me when I got here,” Babineaux said, and the added with a laugh, “Except that I wasn’t a first-round draft pick.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fair Use Notice This website may at times present copyrighted material, the use of which might not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available in an effort to advance understandings of democratic, economic, environmental, human rights, political, scientific, and social justice issues, among others. The author believes that this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the U. S. Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the articles published on this website are distributed without profit for research and informational purposes. In most instances a link is placed to originator of Article and it is never expressly mentioned as written by, we use published by certain entities who write or publish for this said Blog..

Tell Us What's On Your Mind (0)




WP-SpamFree by Pole Position Marketing

REMEMBERING A LEGEND!

LATEST SEAHAWKS NEWS

140529baldwin600a

Seahawks sign Doug Baldwin to new contract

After catching just about everything thrown in his direction for three seasons, Doug Baldwin was rewarded by the ...
140528harvin600

A happy pain-free birthday to Percy Harvin

Wednesday is Percy Harvin’s 26th birthday. And after a pain-filled first season with the Seahawks, the receiver/returner/runner already ...
140527thomas600

Tuesday in Hawkville: Earl Thomas as punt returner?

All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas has been lobbying Pete Carroll to get his hands on the ball. It ...
140526-harvin-600

What’s next? OTA sessions begin Tuesday for Seahawks

A Memorial Day edition of Monday metatarsal musings: For the first time since before their Super Bowl victory, ...
052314-nfl-Garrett-Scott-pi-mp.vadapt.955.medium.75

Seahawks waive sixth-round pick Scott after tackle fails physical

The Seahawks waived tackle Garrett Scott today after the sixth-round pick failed his physical because of a rare ...
NFL.com   Official Site of the National Football League

President Obama jokes with, lauds Seahawks

The Seahawks visited the White House today and met with President Barack Obama in the East Room. It ...
bI9wJ.AuSt.5

Rookie receivers shine at Seahawks minicamp

Hoping to come out of the recent NFL draft with a receiver who could provide the offense with ...
140517marsh660

Cassius Marsh has found his football Nirvana

He has gone through life bearing the given first name of Muhammad Ali, but the knockout moment of ...

Shop for Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl XLVIII Champs Merchandise at NFLShop.com

Shop for Conference Champs and Super Bowl XLVIII Match Up Merchandise at NFLShop.com

WELCOME TO THE SEAHAWKS 12TH MAN ARMY.

WE TAKE PRIDE IN GIVING SEAHAWKS FANS AROUND THE CLOCK UPDATES,  ALL SEAHAWKS ALL THE TIME. SO IF YOU WANT THE LATEST SEAHAWKS NEWS DELIVERED FOR FREE RIGHT TO YOUR EMAIL BOX ONCE A WEEK, SIGN UP AND ENJOY!

WE HAVE BEEN PROUDLY SERVING DIEHARD SEAHAWKS FANS SINCE 2004.

Enter your Email

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz