In January, the Seattle Seahawks signed former Florida State tight end Caz Piurowski to a "Reserve/Futures" contract, one month after the 6-foot-7, 285-pound blocking tight end nearly joined the team's practice squad a month earlier, writes Jim Lamar of the Tallahassee Democrat.
"They wanted to sign me that day to the practice squad, but I pulled a hamstring at the workout," Piurowski said of a December tryout for the Seahawks.
"If I would have signed with the Seahawks then, I'm pretty sure I would have been on their roster for the playoffs," Piurowski said. "They lost their first- and second-team tight ends because of injuries."
Seattle actually placed rookie tight end Anthony McCoy on injured reserve a week before Piurowski's workout, and No. 2 tight end Chris Baker landed on injured reserve before the Seahawks' playoff win over the New Orleans Saints. Starting tight end John Carlson suffered a concussion early in the Divisional Playoffs loss to the Chicago Bears, leaving them with just one player (Cameron Morrah) at the position.
Going forward, Piurowski will not be playing tight end for the Seahawks, however, who are moving him to offensive tackle. Informed of the position change, Piurowski quickly beefed up to 305 pounds, which led to some confusion when Seahawks tight ends coach Pat McPherson asked him how much he weighed during a phone call when the lockout was temporarily lifted.
"He came back and told me that he didn't realize they signed me as a tackle," said Piurowski, who Lamar reports is now up to 320 pounds.
"I'm fighting to be a starter, of course, but I don't know if that's realistic," Piurowski said. "I'm just trying to get whatever I can. Practice squad, anything."
The practice squad is probably the most realistic option in Seattle for Piurowski.
The Seahawks used a 2010 first-round pick on Russell Okung, who will start at left tackle, and a 2011 first-round pick on Alabama's James Carpenter, who is expected to start on the right side. Restricted free agent Tyler Polumbus started seven games at three different positions, including both tackle spots, last season and his versatility gives him an inside track on a roster spot in 2011. Seattle will also have tackles Will Robinson, Breno Giacomini, and Paul McQuistan, who had played for Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable with the Oakland Raiders, fighting for a spot in training camp.