A recap of the activities at the Seahawks’ Bing training camp for Aug. 8:
Duh. Terrell Owens. The future Hall of Fame receiver practiced with the Seahawks for the first time and it seemed like the whole world was watching his every move.
Cameras crowed around the exit to the practice fields at Virginia Mason Athletic Center to capture his emergence from the locker room, wearing a No. 10 blue jersey and a where-do-I-go expression. Those same cameras – including those from ESPN and the NFL Network – were in the media crowd that gathered after practice to capture his every utterance.
It was in between those flirtations with the media mob that Terrell showed glimpses of why the Seahawks signed the 16-year veteran on Monday, as he took more snaps and did more with them than you would expect for a player who last played in the NFL during the 2010 season because he had major knee surgery.
Owens, who checked in 1,078 receptions, 15,934 receiving yards and 153 touchdowns on his resume, got a dozen snaps, caught a couple of passes and was even jammed to the turf by Brandon Browner, the 6-foot-4, 221-pound Pro Bowl cornerback.
His best effort came when Owens got behind the rookie tandem of cornerback Jeremy Lane and safety Winston Guy to make a falling grab along the sideline of a 35-yard pass from Matt Flynn.
Flashing that trademark smile during his post-practice Q&A session, Owens admitted to having some rust in his ample game and assured everyone that they ain’t seen nothing yet.
“Today didn’t go as particularly well as I would like, but it definitely was a step in the right direction,” he said.
“I’ve been rehabbing and working out for the past year since the injury. That’s all I’ve really wanted since I started my trek on this rehab and my journey to get back on the football field, is just an opportunity. That was provided by the Seattle Seahawks and, again, I’m very grateful for that.”
Flynn was among those who came away impressed by his newest teammate.
“Everyone on the team has watched him. Obviously, everyone knows his talent level and what he’s done,” said the QB who will start in Saturday night’s preseason opener against the Titans at CenturyLink Field. “He’s here to make the team better and we’re excited.”
The nickel defensive line. Improving the pass rush was a priority for coach Pete Carroll this offseason after the Seahawks registered 33 sacks last season. So rush-tackle Jason Jones was signed in free agency and rush-end Bruce Irvin was selected in the first round of the NFL Draft to join – and help – Chris Clemons, who had 11 of those sacks.
But who fills the fourth spot? Brandon Mebane, the nose tackle in the base defense? Red Bryant, the tackle-sized end who plays opposite Clemons in the base defense? Alan Branch, the three-technique tackle in the base defense? Clinton McDonald, who works in the tackle rotation in the base defense?
“Right now, we’re running Mac in there,” line coach Todd Wash said of McDonald, who was acquired last August in a trade with the Bengals. “He’s really doing what we’re asking him to do and at the same time we’ve also got Brandon, Red and Branch.
“We’re looking for someone to help push that pocket.”
When push comes to shove, the 6-foot-2, 297-pound McDonald knows how to throw his weight around.
“He’s just so strong,” Wash said. “He’s got a little bit more center of gravity; he’s a little bit closer to the ground. He does a good job of getting under (blockers’) pads and getting push in the pocket. He does a tremendous job with that.”
PLAYS DU JOUR
Defense: It had to be Browner’s welcome-to-camp jam that sent Owens to the turf.
“He tried to shock release me. He tried to run through me,” Browner said of his run-in with the 6-3, 224-pound Owens in the one-on-one drill. “I’m a big guy. That’s something that will work on somebody a little smaller.”
So Browner treated Owens as just another receiver? “Not just another receiver, that’s T.O.” Browner said. “You know what I mean? He’s one of the legends.”
Offense: Flynn and third-year receiver Golden Tate hooked up on a couple of impressive plays. On the first, Tate went up along the sideline between the Pro Bowl duo of free safety Earl Thomas and Browner, took a shot and still held on to the ball as he was falling out of bounds. On the second, Flynn was flushed from the pocket, rolled to his left and let go with a not-quite-textbook pass that Tate was able to catch behind cornerback Coy Francies and DeShawn Shead.
In between plays: Rushing into the lineup, Irvin was about to collide with running back Tyrell Sutton. Irvin, this year’s first-round draft choice, avoided the collision as he parking-metered the 5-8 Sutton. Parking metered? You remember, hopping over parking meters in a single bound.
IN ’N OUT
Defensive end Dexter Davis returned to practice after missing time with a sore hip and tight end Anthony McCoy also was back. But defensive tackle Alan Branch and tight end Kellen Winslow sat out to rest their knees.
Also sidelined: wide receivers Doug Baldwin and Ricardo Lockette; linebackers Matt McCoy, Allen Bradford and Jameson Knoz; and offensive linemen James Carpenter and cornerback Walter Thurmond, who remain on the physically unable to perform list.
Another morning practice on Thursday, as the players continue to prepare for Saturday night’s preseason opener.
JOIN THE CROWD
A boisterous crowd of 1,480 fans watched practice. While many chanted, “T.O. T.O,” two came with large T’s and O’s made out of cardboard that they lifted to match the chants.
Only three more practices are open to the public – Thursday, as well as next Tuesday and Wednesday. You can register here to attend.
Most of the fans came to today’s practice on the shores of Lake Washington sporting their Seahawks best, including jerseys of players past and present – Matt Hasselbeck (8), Lofa Tatupu (51), Shaun Alexander (37), Julian Peterson (98), Steve Largent (80), Mack Strong (38), Curt Warner (28) and Warren Moon (1); Earl Thomas (29), Marcus Trufant (23), Marshawn Lynch (24), Brandon Mebane (92), Sidney Rice (18), Kam Chancellor (31), Tarvaris Jackson (7), Richard Sherman (25) and Flynn (15) and Tate (81).
But only one was wearing a Chad Brown No. 94 jersey. Brown was a Pro Bowl linebacker from 1997-2004 and also was voted the Seahawks’ 35th Anniversary team.
“I’m just an all-time Seahawk fan,” said Cheyenne Smith, who’s 27 and lives in Darrington. “I like Chad Brown and the way he played. I really do.”
THE ROAD TO …
The club is advising fans attending Saturday night’s game to plan accordingly because state routes 520 (the Evergreen Point floating bridge) and 167 (the Valley Freeway) will be closed.
YOU DON’T SAY
“(Number) 81 wasn’t available. There were a couple of options, so I took 10. I look good in 10. So that’s going to be my number.” Owens, who wore No. 81 throughout his career, on switching to No. 10, which was worn most memorably for the Seahawks by former QB Jim Zorn
A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Nov. 25:
Tarvaris Jackson. The Seahawks’ sore-shouldered quarterback not only practiced today, he threw the ball – a lot, and well.
That is significant, of course, because this was only the second time this month that Jackson has participated fully in a Friday practice because of the pectoral he strained in the Week 5 game against the Giants.
“That was a surprise,” coach Pete Carroll said after the one hour, 40 minute practice that was held outdoors for the first time this week. “Tarvaris felt a little bit better, so he got full-go today. That’s good news.”
It’s a definite plus heading into Sunday’s game against the Washington Redskins at CenturyLink Field, because Jackson’s has been so limited in practice in recent weeks.
“He needs the work,” Carroll said. “He was a little bit rusty this week sometimes. It only stands to reason. He’s had so few days on the practice field. So the fact that he got out there today and got a whole boatload of plays and looks at stuff in the red zone that he didn’t get last week, it should help him.”
Clinton McDonald. With Alan Branch listed as questionable after not practicing all week because of a sprained ankle, McDonald could start at defensive tackle against the Redskins – or at least get additional snaps even if Branch is able to go.
The 6-foot-2, 297-pound McDonald replaced Branch in practice all week.
“Mac’s done a really good job,” Carroll said. “He’s been able to jump in here and play a couple of positions and help in the nickel. He’s a very tough guy. A really good effort guy. Always where he’s supposed to be. If feel like we can really count on him. He’ll do things right.”
McDonald’s teammates agree.
“Clinton reminds me of ‘Bang’ a little bit,” defensive end Chris Clemons said, comparing McDonald to nose tackle Brandon Mebane – and using Mebane’s nickname.
“He’s real strong, real explosive. You can just see him getting better each and every week. He’s making plays in the backfield. He’s great with his hands. And he’s a smart player. He’s developing that same intelligence that ‘Bang’ has.”
Carroll said Branch’s status will be a game-day decision after he injured his ankle in last week’s victory over the Rams in St. Louis.
“We still don’t know on him,” Carroll said. “The ankle didn’t respond well enough for him to practice today. We thought he would, but he couldn’t make it.”
Wide receiver Sidney Rice returned to practice after sitting out Wednesday and Thursday to rest a sore knee.
“Sidney did very well today,” Carroll said. “He’s ready to go.”
Cornerback Byron Maxwell missed practice for the third consecutive day and is listed as questionable.
The official end-of-the-week status report:
DT Alan Branch (ankle)
CB Byron Maxwell (ankle)
S Atari Bigby (hamstring)
DE Anthony Hargrove (hamstring)
QB Tarvaris Jackson (pectoral)
WR Ben Obomanu (knee/ankle)
WR Sidney Rice (knee)
For the Redskins
WR Niles Paul (toe)
WR Donte Stallworth (foot)
LB London Fletcher (ankle)
OT Jammal Brown (groin)
S DeJon Gomes (knee)
OG Maurice Hurt (knee)
OT Sean Locklear (ankle)
OT Trent Williams (knee)
CB Josh Wilson (hamstring)
LB Keyaron Fox (infection)
S LaRon Landry (Achilles)
WR Santana Moss (hand)
Former Seahawks coach Jim Mora watched practice from the sideline with general manager John Schneider. Mora is the analyst for the telecast of Sunday’s game on FOX.
It is, however, not the same team he left after the 2009 season. Only 11 players remain from that club: defensive end Red Bryant, wide receiver Deon Butler, running back Justin Forsett, linebackers David Hawthorne and Leroy Hill, cornerback Roy Lewis, tight end Cameron Morrah, wide receiver Ben Obomanu, punter Jon Ryan, center Max Unger and Mebane.
STAT DU JOUR
The 49ers lost to the Ravens on Thursday night, but they still have yet to allow a rushing touchdown. The Seahawks have not allowed a rushing TD in their past six games and have given up five in 10 games, which ties them for third in the league – one in Week 1 by the 49ers (QB Alex Smith); two in Week 2 against the Steelers (Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman); and two in Week 4 against the Falcons (both by Michael Turner). Here’s how they stack up in the league:
The players will have a walk-through on Saturday morning, their final on-field session before Sunday’s game.
The team then faces a very short week because of the Thursday night game against the Philadelphia Eagles at CenturyLink Field.
Tickets are available for both games and can be purchased here.
Fans attending Sunday’s game are reminded that the express lanes on I-90 will be closed from 7:15-11 a.m. because of the Seattle Marathon.
YOU DON’T SAY
“They have really really good stuff that they do on both sides of the ball and in (special) teams. That means that they have designs that can beat you if you’re not on the mark on your stuff. So we have tremendous respect for what they’re doing. … So we’re taking this like it’s a huge matchup for us and it’s a very difficult game.” – Carroll, looking at the Redskins’ potential rather than their 3-7 record
The Seahawks returned home to play their first regular season game at the renamed CenturyLink Field, hoping to turn around an 0-2 start to the season.
Cornerback Kelly Jennings has been traded to the Cincinnati Bengals, the Seahawks announced this morning.
In exchange for the former first-round draft choice, the Seahawks will receive defensive tackle Clinton McDonald, a 6-foot-2, 297-pound defensive tackle who was a seventh-round draft choice in 2009.
Jennings started 43 games since being the 31st pick overall in the 2006 NFL Draft, including 14 last season. He leaves the Seahawks after making 200 tackles, with a career-high 55 in 2007, and two interceptions.
McDonald played in eight games for the Bengals last season and had four tackles.