A recap of the only practice Monday at Seahawks training camp:
PLAYER OF THE DAY
Leroy Hill. The Seahawks have big plans for their weak-side linebacker this season, and Hill gave an indication why during the rain-soaked, two-hour practice in full pads.
He started early by playing off a block from pulling guard Mansfield Wrotto to get to running back T.J. Duckett before he could get to the line of scrimmage. Later, in a one-on-one drill where running backs attempt to block pass-rushing linebackers and safeties, Hill used his quickness to blow past rookie running back Devon Moore and a nice combination move to get the best of fullback David Kirtman.
Hill capped the display of his impressive skills by getting around left tackle Sean Locklear for what would have been a sack of quarterback Matt Hasselbeck during an 11-on-11 drill.
“Leroy is my type of guy,” said rookie linebacker Aaron Curry, who did his own share of damage in the back vs. ’backer drill. “We both come out here – as well as any linebacker – and just give it our all. No matter how tired you are or how sore you are, we just want to go full speed and we don’t stop going until the whistle blows.”
PLAY OF THE DAY
Hasselbeck’s long pass up the sideline was intended for wide receiver Deion Branch. But it ended up in the hands of cornerback Josh Wilson, who made a better read and got a better jump on the ball than Branch to make the interception.
MATCHUP OF THE DAY
Curry vs. running back Justin Forsett. They were matched up on back-to-back snaps in the aforementioned back-block-’backer drill.
Final score: Curry 2, Forsett better luck next time.
Curry used a club move to maul his way past Forsett on the first snap, but Forsett also slipped on the play. On the re-snap, the team’s first-round draft choice simply beat Forsett to the outside.
“When I’m rusher the passer, it’s no holds barred,” Curry said. “There are no rules. I’m just relentless when I’m going to get the quarterback.”
Asked about Forsett’s request for seconds, Curry offered, “I don’t know (what happened). I was kind of in my zone. Almost blacked out. I think he slipped on the first one and he just wanted to go again. That’s what happens.”
Tight end. There seems to be some confusion in 12th Man Nation over a comment coach Jim Mora made about Joe Newton, John Tereshinski and Cameron Morrah battling for one roster spot.
They are, but that does not mean the Seahawks will carry only two tight ends on the 53-man roster. Offensive coordinator Greg Knapp said it likely will be three, because he uses two-tight end sets so often.
There’s John Carlson, the undisputed starter after leading the team in receptions, receiving yards and touchdown catches as a rookie last season. There’s also John Owens, who was signed in free agency and is the best blocker of the bunch.
As for the third spot, Morrah, the last of this year’s three seventh-round draft choices, is catching the ball well. The rookie from Cal has the speed to loose linebackers and a knack for finding open space when covered by a safety. But Morrah needs to improve his blocking.
The rain that fell throughout the session claimed three players who started but did not finish practice – wide receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh (ankle), safety Deon Grant (groin) and Wilson (groin). None of the injuries is considered serious.
Wide receiver Courtney Taylor (knee) did not practice, joining a list that already included tackle Walter Jones (back), cornerback Marcus Trufant (back), center Chris Spencer (ankle), linebacker Will Herring (groin) and offensive lineman Grey Ruegamer (elbow).
Tackle Ray Willis (knee) and linebackers Lofa Tatupu (rest) and D.D. Lewis (knee) returned to practice. Tatupu participated on a limited basis, with David Hawthorne taking most of the snaps at middle linebacker in full-team drills.
The players will practice twice Tuesday, from 8:30-10:30 a.m. and 6:30-8:30 p.m. Both sessions are open to the public, but sold out.
The Seahawks open their preseason Saturday night, when they play the Chargers in San Diego. The team will travel Friday and the players will have Sunday off – their first full day off since camp opened July 31.
YOU DON’T SAY
“That’s what I’m here for, to play. I want to play. … Definitely (I’m ready), it’s just football.” – Curry, when asked if he was ready to play in Saturday night’s preseason opener despite not reporting to camp until Saturday