A recap of the Tuesday morning practice at Seahawks training camp:
PLAYER OF THE DAY
John Carlson. Don’t stop me if you’ve heard this before, because the Seahawks’ second-year tight end continues to have one of those camps where he could be the player of the day everyday.
This morning, Carlson turned in his latest can’t-be-overlooked effort. Cornerback Kevin Hobbs and running back Justin Forsett were doing their best to deny Carlson, but he was just too productive – again.
In the 7-on-7 drill, Carlson took a pass over the middle from Seneca Wallace and then took a pop from middle linebacker David Hawthorne – a.k.a. “The Heater,” because of his propensity for making big hits. But this time, Hawthorne bounced off of Carlson, who whirled up field for extra yardage.
During a full-team drill, Carlson made a highlight-film catch of a pass from Wallace along the sideline. The defensive players frantically waved that Carlson came down out of bounds. Carlson opted to wait until he could see the video before calling it a catch. But that didn’t diminish the effort.
“I think it starts with the kind of person he is,” tight ends coach Mike DeBord said. “John is just a great person. He studies the game hard and asks great questions.
“Then, out here on the practice field, it’s full speed every time he’s doing something. No matter if it’s individual drills, group drills, team drills, he’s full speed. And that’s how you get better.”
After Carlson the player was so good in practice, Carlson the person picked up style points by posing for pictures with Doug Bjorkman and Susie Crippe, who were holding a drawing of the tight end done by Seattle artist Michael Reagan.
Joan Bjorkman won the drawing when her ticket was selected in a raffle to benefit the Seahawkers booster club. But Joan, 72, had passed away six days before – on Mother’s Day.
“It was meant to be that mom’s name was drawn,” Crippe said after the emotional moment with Carlson and her father.
PLAYS OF THE DAY
Offense: Carlson’s sideline catch, or non-catch. Regardless of the outcome, the play showcased the talents that allowed him to lead the team in receptions, receiving yards and touchdown passes as a rookie, and will allow him to be even better this season. He found an opening, used his body to shield the defender and went up to get the ball – all in seemingly one graceful, yet powerful, motion.
Defense: Hobbs and rookie wide receiver Deon Butler both went up for a pass along the sideline. Each came down clutching the ball. But when they untangled after falling to the turf, it was Hobbs who had it for the interception.
Members of the media are limited to watching practice from the sideline. Unless that media type happens to be former San Francisco 49ers and Detroit Lions head coach Steve Mariucci.
“Mooch,” as he was called during his coaching career, now works as an analyst for the NFL Network. But when he arrived this morning, Mariucci went right into a quarterback’s huddle during a special teams drill and grabbed Matt Hasselbeck by the shoulders. After shaking hands, Hasselbeck introduced Mariucci to the other QBs.
The list of players not practicing swelled to 14, as several were given the morning off – including Hasselbeck, wide receivers Nate Burleson and Deion Branch, center Chris Spencer, tackle Ray Willis, defensive lineman Cory Redding and linebacker D.D. Lewis.
Offensive lineman Cory Withrow and defensive tackle Kevin Brown returned, but still sidelined were: offensive linemen Walter Jones (back) and Grey Ruegamer (elbow), cornerback Marcus Trufant (back), running backs Julius Jones and T.J. Duckett (bumps and bruises), defensive lineman Lawrence Jackson (leg) and kicker Olindo Mare (knee).
With so many starters out, it made for some lineup juggling – especially on the offensive line. The first unit included – from left tackle to right – Sean Locklear (for Jones), Rob Sims, Steve Vallos (for Spencer), Mansfield Wrotto and Na’Shan Goddard (for Willis).
With Jones and Duckett out, Justin Forsett got the No. 1 reps at running back, while Wallace stepped in for Hasselbeck and Butler worked at split end for Burleson with the No. 1 offense. With Redding and Jackson out, Darryl Tapp worked at left end with the No. 1 defense.
The players will practice under the lights at Husky Stadium this evening (6:45-8:45), and the session is open to the public.
The Seahawks play their preseason home opener Saturday night against the Denver Broncos at Qwest Field.
YOU DON’T SAY
“I’ve heard that it’s deafening. I just can’t wait. That’s a linebacker’s dream. You get on third down and the offense can’t hear their checks, the defense can’t make their checks, so you’ve just got to rely on playmaking ability.” – Linebacker and first-round draft choice Aaron Curry on playing his first game before the Qwest Field crowd.