A recap of the afternoon practice at Seahawks’ training camp on Monday:
Malcolm Smith. Some people are just never happy. Like the rookie linebacker from USC. Today, that was a good thing. Because as good as the seventh-round draft choice in getting his hands on three passes, Smith thought he should have been better.
“I didn’t get to take as much advantage of the situation as I could have,” Smith said after the 2 hour, 20 minute practice in full pads. “I should have had a couple of interceptions.”
Exhibit A came during a two-minute drill, when Smith came oh-so-close to picking off a pass from rookie QB Josh Portis. Later, Smith stepped in to break up a Charlie Whitehurst pass that was intended for tight end Zach Miller. Smith then made it a hat-trick by breaking up another Whitehurst pass on third down.
“The defense puts you in position to make plays, so you’ve got to make the most of those opportunities,” Smith said.
The rookies should get even more chances to make plays on Thursday night, when the Seahawks open their preseason in a nationally televised game against the Chargers in San Diego. Smith is from Northridge, Calif., and is expecting to have 20 family members at the game.
“If I get a shot to make something happen, I’ll definitely be upset if I don’t make the most of it,” he said.
Punt returning defensive tackle. That can only be Alan Branch, the new starter at the three-technique spot after signing with the Seahawks in free agency. Really. Branch not only returned punts Cibola High School in Rio Rancho, N.M., he ran three back for touchdowns – at 6 feet 6, 315 pounds.
“I was the only one that could catch the ball,” Branch said. “So we just wanted possession there.”
Instead, they got points.
PLAYS OF THE DAY
Offense: Rookie wide receiver Ricardo Lockette taking a pass from Portis along the left sideline and then making like the sprint champion he used to be to race back to his right and score a TD.
Defense: Veteran linebacker Matt McCoy wrapping up and the dropping rookie running back Chase Reynolds after a short gain.
ON THE MEND
Seven players who are coming off surgeries or have minor injuries sat out: defensive linemen Red Bryant and Kentwan Balmer, linebacker Aaron Curry, cornerback Walter Thurmond, wide receiver Kris Durham, running back Thomas Clayton and offensive lineman Caz Piurowski.
With Curry out, rookie Mike Morgan and McCoy got some work at weak-side linebacker with the No. 1 defense.
Wide receiver Deon Butler, tight end Cameron Morrah, cornerback Roy Lewis and defensive tackle Colin Cole have yet to practice in camp.
The players will have a 3 p.m. practice – their final full session before Thursday night’s preseason opener.
YOU DON’T SAY
“Pete Carroll and my coaches are always crack on me about that when they see when they see me in the facility. They’re like, ‘How many schools (did you go to)?’ It’s been a journey for me. It’s not a regular three-year, four-year college career.” – Portis, who attended Florida and Maryland before settling in at Division II California University in Pennsylvania