Friday, October 1, 2010

Seattle signs WR Stokley and hopes he can catch up quick

Brandon Stokley doesn’t know many of the faces in his new digs.

But he does know all of Seattle’s offense.

“I remember a lot of it,” Stokley said Wednesday. “It’s been a year and a half since I’ve been in the system so I have some homework to do but I can catch on to it a lot quicker than if it was a new system.”

The Seahawks’ new wide receiver went through his first practice on Wednesday, finally healthy after a lingering groin injury that led to his release from Denver during training camp. Stokley signed with the Seahawks on Tuesday.

Coach Pete Carroll said Stokley’s knowledge of Seattle’s offense made him a target as soon as he was no longer a member of the Broncos.

“We brought him in here and gave him a workout yesterday and he looked great. He’s a gifted route runner, he’s a third-down specialist, he knows the system; he can go out and play the system right now. He knows the terminology and the concepts and all, so that’s a big asset of it,” Carroll said. “For us to count on a guy to come in and play with any other circumstances I wouldn’t believe it could happen, but he knows exactly what we’re talking about.”

Stokley’s deep understanding of Seattle’s offense comes from his time spent in Denver with Seattle offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates. While Stokley was posting some of the best numbers of his career with the Broncos, Bates was holding various offensive coaching roles on the Denver staff.

Stokley had 49 catches two seasons ago in Denver—the second-highest total of his career. A year earlier, when Bates was the Broncos receivers coach, Stokley had 40 grabs and five touchdowns.

Stokley’s best season came in 2004 with Indianapolis when he had 68 catches for 1,077 yards and 10 scores.

“I love working with Jeremy. We had a couple good years in Denver,” Stokley said. “It’s an exciting passing game and it enables you to be able to go out there and if you can get open, opportunities are there for you.”

While not wanting to rush his new receiver, Stokley’s understanding of the offense makes him a candidate to play on Sunday at St. Louis.

“We’ll see how it works out; it’s going to take some time to figure that out,” Carroll said. “We won’t wait too long though, we’re going to get going with him.”
Author: TIM BOOTH, AP Sports Writer

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