Can Robinson End Special Teams Problems?


Posted Dec 12, 2007


On Tuesday, the Seattle Seahawks cut their second long snapper of the season, Boone Stutz, and signed their third, veteran Jeff Robinson.

The move had been coming since Stutz's first snap, which went between the legs of punter Ryan Plackemeier on a nationally televised game against the New Orleans Saints. The Saints recovered that errant snap for a touchdown en route to a 28-17 victory at Qwest Field, Seattle's only home loss this season.

Place kicker Josh Brown had made 16 of his first 17 field goals this season, but then when Stutz replaced Derek Rackley, who had poor velocity on his snaps, Brown started missing, yanking three of four before making his only attempt last week.

Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren did not blame Brown for the misses, but rather said that the timing between Stutz, Plackemeier the holder, and Brown was off.

At one point, Holmgren called the team's kicking game "an adventure." Brown held similar sentiments.

Both men were prophetic when Stutz ended Sunday's decisive victory over Arizona -- and his tenure in Seattle -- with a high snap that cost the Seahawks an extra point. After the play, Holmgren could be seen muttering on the sideline: "It was a high snap. Find a new snapper."

The team did on Tuesday, signing the 37-year-old Robinson, who had a pair of seven season-long runs with both St. Louis and Dallas.

Robinson has only three games left to get in sync with Brown and Plackemeier before the playoffs start, the reason the Seahawks made the change now. They didn't want a long snapper whose career with Seattle started with a bad snap to cost them a game in the postseason.

PLAYER NOTES

--QB Matt Hasselbeck needs only three touchdown passes to set a single-season career high of 27.
--RB Shaun Alexander needs one touchdown to reach 100 for his career, and 100 yards to surpass Earl Campbell for 24th on the NFL's all-time rushing yardage list. He's 692 yards away from becoming the next player to hit the 10,000-yard mark for career rushing yardage.
--WR D.J. Hackett is progressing faster than expected from a high ankle sprain but is not expected to play against Carolina on Sunday.
--WR Bobby Engram needs 71 yards to achieve the first 1,000-yard season of his career.
--TE Marcus Pollard has two catches in each of his last eight games.
--DT Rocky Bernard is not likely to practice this week with a sore groin but is expected to play against Carolina on Sunday.
--DE Patrick Kerney needs just 3.5 sacks in the last three games to set a franchise single-season high, previously held by Michael Sinclair, who had 16.5 in 1998.
--When LB Lofa Tatupu gets six more tackles, it will be his third straight 100-tackle season.
--CB Josh Wilson is recovering well from a quad contusion but is not expected to play against the Panthers on Sunday, meaning Kevin Hobbs will remain the dime back.


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