Former basketball player George Fant becomes Seahawks starting left tackle

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After three weeks starting as an injury replacement, George Fant has earned the full-time starting job for the Seattle Seahawks at left tackle.

Offensive line coach Tom Cable indicated after practice on Wednesday that Fant would remain at left tackle with Bradley Sowell now competing with Garry Gilliam for the starting job at right tackle.

“George continued to grow,” Cable said. “We’re trying to do – it’s obvious, I think – but get the best five guys on the field. That means mentality, doing it right, the right mentality and going for it every down.”

Sowell injured his right knee in Seattle’s 6-6 tie with the Arizona Cardinals. The injury forced Fant into the lineup earlier than the Seahawks would have liked. An undrafted rookie out of Western Kentucky, Fant wasn’t even a football player for the majority of his college career. He played four years for the men’s basketball team before being convinced to give football a try as a fifth-year senior. He barely even played last year for the Hilltoppers with limited snaps at tight end and on the defensive line.

The Seahawks signed him after watching his pro day workout on tape based primarily on his athleticism and he made solid strides throughout the preseason.

Despite his inexperience, Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said that Fant didn’t have a single assignment error in Sunday night’s win over the New England Patriots. It was his third straight start since Sowell was sidelined.

“We’re really excited that he’s doing as well as we can expect right now for his understanding and his experience,” Carroll said. “We know that he’s really applying himself and achieving at a high level and he can get measures better as we move down the road here.”

15 responses to “Former basketball player George Fant becomes Seahawks starting left tackle

  1. Seattle games that included Fant this year left me with the impression that this guy stinks. Despite the happy talk out of the coaching staff, they have got to know they blew it not keeping Okung around until they could get his replacement ready.
    Fant is terrible and a major liability. Any team with decent Dline play is looking forward to matching up with Seattle’s bargain basement OLine.

  2. Pete and Tom are right. This guy doesn’t even know all of the terminology yet and has been outperforming both Sowell AND Gilliam. Maybe I should try out and give them both a run for their money…

  3. But good lord were those 2 first games hilarious.

    If you ever wondered what it would look like to take a college b-ball player, who hadn’t played O-line since Pop Warner, and just tossed him into an NFL game at LT,… Well it was pretty much what you’d expect.

  4. Seahawks continue to find great players in unlikely places… they think way outside the box… they have only 2 1st round draft picks on their entire team and half the team are undrafted free agents! Beast Mode!!

  5. Gonna see more and more of this. No glamor in becoming o-lineman but if you find a guy with the athletic ability and size who isn’t currently making millions playing a game, it becomes a lot more glamorous. There is just a shameful dearth of o-line talent at the sport’s highest level.

  6. Nowhere to go but up. Seriously though. Russ Wilson is too good to keep putting that terrible line in front of him. Put some serious resources into the OL and protect him. If he had the Dallas OL blocking for him, the team would run the table.

  7. All for a good story. As a Seahawks fan, I *really* hope it works out.

    BUT.

    If you’re starving and your two choices of food are a liverwurst and tuna sandwich or a steaming pile of crap sandwich, let’s just say that liverwurst and tuna sandwich doesn’t look so bad.

  8. I was against Bradley Sowell since Seattle signed him for 2 years. I read how frustrated Arizona fans were with him over the year and watched the game where he turned Khalil Mack into a football legend.

    George Fant is one athletic offensive lineman. From game one he was already pass blocking better than Sowell. He has improved every week, I don’t know about blown assignments but he is terrible at cut blocking in the run game. I think by the time playoffs come he will be on par with what we had with Okung last year. Most fans admit he was regressing since making the pro bowl in 2012.

  9. Fant is a absolutely an improvement over Sowell at LT. The unfortunate thing though is that that says more though about just how BAD Sowell was. And the really bad thing for the Hawks is the fact that Sowell is in any sort of legitimate competition to replace Gilliam at RT, which shows you just how bad that position is.

    Want to go back and look at the Pats game again but I believe on a LOT more plays Wilson was rolling out to his left and finding escape lanes in that direction, while being flushed out from the right.

  10. Everyone criticizes the Okung decision but he would have counted about $6 mil against the cap, has been injured more than average for an o-lineman and this year in Denver wasn’t playing to the salary they gave him and now is just returning from a concussion.

    As to the other o-linemen they’ve let go in free agency the Jets stink with ex Seahawks Carpenter and Giacomini and J.R. Sweezy in Tampa makes 32.5 million on a team that is at .500. Losing Unger was probably the real hit but Britt has been doing well so overall I’ll trust Carroll and Schneider.

  11. You people are right! We should cut earl, Bobby and Sherman next year and spend on the o-line cuz what the Hawks have done these last five years is unacceptable. They would run the table with Dallas’ o-line. As Dallas would run the table with the Hawks defense. The Hawks have the right QB to build a great defense around and save on o-line. As Russell gets older they will adjust or start losing but right now they have a better chance than every NFC team besides the inexperienced Cowboys to go to the super bowl. Not saying they will but if they have to go to Dallas to play the NFC title game I’m happy with their chances.

  12. was pretty crazy when they showed his college b-ball highlights (I think during the hawks-bills game). so obviously a very fluid athlete. and you need that at the tackles, the bulky, stiff guys get speed rushed to death by all the athletes playing DE these days. he’s also really bulked up since his basketball playing days.

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