Quintin ain't quittin'

Quintin ain't quittin'

Making an NFL roster as an undrafted rookie free agent isn't easy, especially given the obstacles one former Tennessee player faces with the Seattle Seahawks.

Quintin Hancock, a 6-3, 207-pounder who caught just 45 passes in four years as a Vol receiver, is battling some long odds. For instance:

Seattle boasts one of the NFL's premier pass catchers in T.J. Houshmandzadeh. The 32-year-old wideout caught 79 balls for 911 yards last fall and has posted at least 900 receiving yards in each of the past six seasons.

The Seahawks' No. 2 receiver, Nate Burleson, signed a free-agent deal with the Detroit Lions after catching 63 balls for 812 yards last season, but No. 3 receiver, Deion Branch, returns after reeling in 45 passes in 2009. Also returning from the '09 Seahawk receiving corps are Deon Butler (15 catches for 175 yards last season), Benjamin Obomanu (4 for 41) and Mike Hass (0 catches).

Seattle head man Pete Carroll upgraded his team's wideout depth by selecting two receivers in the recent NFL Draft - Notre Dame's super-productive Golden Tate in Round 2 and Kent State's Jameson Konz in Round 7. Tate posted back-to-back 1,000-yard receiving seasons for the Fighting Irish in 2008 and 2009, and has the added advantage of being versatile enough to return kicks. Konz is a 6-3, 234-pounder who reportedly turned heads with a spectacular showing at his pro-day workout.

Moreover, Carroll recently signed two former first-round draft picks to free-agent contracts. One of them, 6-5, 230-pound Mike Williams, played for him at Southern Cal. The other, 6-4, 212-pound Reggie Williams, played against him at the University of Washington. Carroll also signed free agent receiver Sean Morey, who made the Pro Bowl last season for his special-teams play as an Arizona Cardinal.

Also battling for roster spots with the Seahawks are free agents Ruvell Martin, Michael   Jones and Patrick Carter. Martin caught a combined 31 passes for the Green Bay Packers in 2007 and '08 and provides the kind of big target (6-4, 220) Carroll relishes at wide receiver.

Quintin Hancock was a perennial enigma at UT, routinely starring in spring and preseason scrimmages, then disappearing once the regular season began. Perhaps a couple of strong showings in preseason scrimmages/exhibitions will earn him a roster spot with the Seahawks.

You never know.

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