We're halfway through the pre-season schedule, and are about a week away from finalizing the 53 man roster. Here's who I think should make it:
Matt Hasselbeck, Seneca Wallace, Charlie Frye
Cut: Dalton Bell.
Wide receivers (6)
Bobby Engram, Nate Burleson, Ben Obomanu, Courtney Taylor, Logan Payne, Jordan Kent
PUP: Deion Branch
Practice Squad: Michael Bumpus
Cut: Joel Filani, Trent Shelton, Bryan Gilmore
Comment: Branch coming back early is a pipe dream. We skate by with 5 receivers and lean on Seneca as a 6th if needed.
Running backs (5)
Julius Jones, Maurice Morris, Leonard Weaver, Owen Schmitt, Justin Forsett
Cut: T.J. Duckett, David Kirtman
Comment: This isn't nearly the controversy people want it to be. Forsett is in, Duckett is out.
Tight ends (3)
Keepers: John Carlson, Will Heller, Jeb Putzier.
Practice Squad: Joe Newton
Offensive line (9)
LT Walter Jones, LG Mike Wahle, C Chris Spencer, RG Rob Sims, RT Sean Locklear, OT Ray Willis, C Steve Vallos, OT Pork Chop Womack, OG Pat Murray
Practice Squad: ?
Cut: OG Mansfield Wrotto, OT Kyle Williams, C Ben Claxton, C Nick Jones, , OT Will Robinson
Comment: I think Wrotto has looked like crap in games and Murray has shown some flashes. That's tough to judge without seeing practices, so I wouldn't be crushed if it went the other way. Likely to be some practice squad candidates here, but I haven't seen enough to judge.
Defensive Line (10)
LE Patrick Kerney, DT Rocky Bernard, DT Brandon Mebane, RE Lawrence Jackson, DE Darryl Tapp, DT Craig Terrill, DT Red Bryant, DT Howard Green, DE Jason Babin, DE Baraka Atkins
Cut: DE Chris Cooper, DT Larry Tripplett, DT Kevin Brown, DE Nu'u Tafisi.
Comment: Babin has played his way onto the squad from out of nowhere. I've rarely seen a veteran player be an absolute zero for a full-season and then make a strong impression the next year, but that's what Babin has done. He has been among the most productive lineman against the run and pass so far.
Julian Peterson, Lofa Tatupu, Leroy Hill, D.D. Lewis, Lance Laury, David Hawthorne
PUP: Will Herring
Cut: Dallas Starz
Comment: Hawthorne has to make the team. Herring is a key special teams player that will be a luxury to have stashed away until week 7.
Defensive backs (8)
LCB Marcus Trufant, RCB Kelly Jennings, SS Deon Grant, FS Brian Russell, CB-S Jordan Babineaux, CB Josh Wilson, CB Kevin Hobbs, S C.J. Wallace
Practice Squad: S Jamar Adams
Cut: S Kelin Johnson, CB Omare Lowe, CB Marquis Floyd.
Comment: I think Adams has outplayed Wallace, but Wallace still shows up on special teams, and that's likely the difference.
Special teams (3)
Keepers: P Ryan Plackemeier, K Olindo Mare, S Tyler Schmitt
Cut:S Tim Lindsey, P Reggie Hodges
Comment: I don't know how long Schmitt will be injured, but he makes the team eventually.