A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Club for Aug. 22:
Roy Lewis. The versatile, and valuable, defensive back and special teams standout could be sidelined for a while, coach Pete Carroll said after practice, adding that a surgical procedure will determine just how long.
“Roy has a knee issue and he’s going to get operated on,” Carroll said. “We’re going to have to see how that goes.”
Lewis began last season on the physically unable to perform list after having surgery on his right knee late in the 2010 season. The latest problem is with his left knee.
“We won’t know what that means until they get in there and fix him up,” Carroll said. “He didn’t get injured; it’s just been developing over time. We’ll keep a good thought, and hopefully we can get him cleaned up and he’ll be able to get back.”
Lewis had been working as the third cornerback in the No. 1 nickel defense. The former University of Washington defensive back even got some work at safety during the offseason. In 2010, Lewis was voted special teams captain by his teammates and also won the Steve Largent Award and was named the Seahawks’ Man of the Year.
Edawn Coughman. The 6-foot-4, 305-pound Coughman was still wearing his white No. 70 jersey, it’s just that he was working with the blue-jerseyed defensive linemen.
“We took a little look,” Carroll said. “I saw him in a little drill over here helping the offensive guys and he showed a little quickness. So we thought we’d give him a look. We put him on film rushing the passer a little bit.”
Coughman was signed in June after being released by the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL. He played offensive line at Shaw University, but also has played defense in the past.
“He has very good quickness, and he’s done a really nice job growing on offense,” Carroll said. “I’m not yet ready to tell you he’s a two-way performer yet, but we’re working at it.”
Cordarro Law. The rookie free agent from Southern Mississippi has been working at defensive end, but he also got gotten some snaps at linebacker the past two days.
“He’s a good football player. He’s a really good football player,” Carroll said. “We’re trying to experiment to see what is his range of abilities.”
At 6-1, 254 pounds, Law has the look of a middle linebacker, but he has been working at the Leo end spot.
“He has the body type where he could crossover,” Carroll said. “We’re just trying to learn more about him.”
IN ’N OUT
Matt Flynn did not practice to rest his arm, Carroll said, but he is expected to play against the Chiefs.
The procedure wide receiver Doug Baldwin had on his troublesome hamstring was to extract fluid, Carroll said. “He got immediate release,” Carroll said. Baldwin is scheduled to return to practice next week.
Center Max Unger and cornerback Coye Francies returned to practice after sitting out on Tuesday.
Still sidelined, in addition to Baldwin and Lewis: running back Marshawn Lynch (back) and fullback Michael Robinson (toe); tight end Cameron Morrah (toe); offensive linemen John Moffitt (elbow) and James Carpenter (knee); defensive linemen Jason Jones (knee) and Pep Levingston (knee); linebackers Matt McCoy (knee) and Allen Bradford (hip); and defensive backs Walter Thurmond (leg) and Ron Parker (knee).
The players will have a light practice on Thursday morning before the team flies to Kansas City for Friday night’s third preseason game.
THE NEXT VOICE YOU HEAR
This week’s who’s-that voice belongs to Jackie Montgomery. She’ll be subbing for Jen Mueller as the sideline reporter for the radio broadcast of Friday night’s game on 710 ESPN and 97.3 FM. Steve Raible will handle the play-by-play with former Seahawks linebacker Dave Wyman as the analyst.
YOU DON’T SAY
“It’s as open as it could be. It couldn’t be any more open.” – wide receivers coach Kippy Brown, when asked about the competition between the 13 wide-outs on the roster
Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, June 26:
Mike Sando at ESPN.com breaks down the sacks total for NFC West teams last season – by down: “The Seahawks ranked 18th in sacks on first and second downs, collecting 21 of them. That was only two fewer than the 49ers, a bit of a surprise. … Seattle ranked 25th in first-down sacks (eight) and seventh in second-down sacks (13). The Seahawks might count on free-agent addition Jason Jones to pump up the totals on early downs. But with a No. 21 ranking in third-down sacks (12), the Seahawks need help across the board. The team added Jones and first-round pick Bruce Irvin to remedy the problem.”
Adam Jones spoke to players at the NFL Rookie Symposium and Jeff Darlington at NFL.com has the details, including the impact of Jones’ advice on Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner: “When Jones finished his speech Monday, Seahawks rookie Bobby Wagner waited for the room to empty before jumping onto the stage to speak privately for a few extra minutes with Jones. He’d never met him before, but something during his speech triggered a desire to seek advice. ‘He was going through something that I was going through, so I asked him personally what he did so I can try to apply it to my life,’ said Wagner, who said the matter was too private to discuss during the interview. ‘It helps knowing that somebody went through what you went through. You can take what you need from it and apply it to your life. A lot of players in here are going through some of the same things, whether its baby mamas or trying to pick a financial advisor to an issue with an agent. We can learn from this. We can learn from him.’ “
Speaking of Wagner, the rookie said he has been studying video of former Seahawks middle linebacker Lofa Tatupu during an appearance on the John Clayton show on 710 ESPN on Saturday. Brady Henderson has the details at mynorthwest.com: “ ‘In watching him, I’ve kind of taken some of his style, the way he runs the defense, the way he was able to run around and make plays. He was definitely a heck of a player while he was here,’ Wagner said. ‘He knew the defense inside and out. He ran it for so long. You could just tell, as soon as the tight end motioned or somebody moved he was making the checks.’ “
How good was Brandon Browner’s first season with the Seahawks? Doug Farrar at Shutdown Corner lists it among the best first-season efforts in NFL history in this feature at YahooSports.com – and Warren Moon’s 1984 season with the Oilers also made the list.
Farrar on Browner: “Last time anybody in the NFL saw Browner before 2011, he was a Denver Broncos undrafted guy in 2005. Before he could even get started, a fractured forearm cost Browner the 2005 season and a 2006 roster spot. He spent (four) years in the CFL before Pete Carroll and John Schneider took a shot on him. Browner rewarded the Seahawks with an impressive and altogether unlikely season. Of the ten players on our list, only Browner and Warren Moon started all 16 games in their first seasons. Browner picked off six passes, returned two interceptions for touchdowns, and helped his first official NFL team establish the man coverage concepts it didn’t have the personnel to do before he arrived.”
Farrar on Moon, who later played for the Seahawks and is now the team’s radio analyst: “Moon is a bit of an oddity, of course. He ripped it up at Washington, and would have been selected within the first few picks a generation later, when the NFL wasn’t quite so stupid about black quarterbacks. Moon had to blow up the CFL for a few years before the Oilers brought him on in 1984. He went on to a Hall of Fame career and a well-deserved reputation as an important part of NFL history. After his early success, anyone who claimed that quarterbacks of his ‘type’ couldn’t succeed would look as dumb as they actually were.”
Here at Seahawks.com, we check in with Cordarro Law, the rookie free-agent defensive end who has surprised his teammates: “After a recent workout, wide receiver Sidney Rice and some of the Seahawks’ other “skill-position” players were shooting hoops at the basket along one sideline in the indoor practice facility. Then Cordarro Law approached the group. He was greeted by glances that shouted, ‘And what does this guy think he’s doing?’ Law is, after all, a defensive end – and a rookie free agent defensive end, at that. Then, Law started draining nothing-but-net jumpers. Then, the 6-foot-1, 254-pound Law went up and … dunked the basketball. ‘He actually surprised me,’ Rice said. ‘He can shoot it. (Rookie wide receiver Phil) Bates, terrible jump-shooter. (Cornerback Byron) Maxwell, terrible jump-shooter. (First-round draft choice) Bruce Irvin, terrible jump-shooter. But Law actually impressed me.’ And the dunk? ‘Yeah,’ Rice said, ‘he can dunk.’ But wait, there’s more. Unable to workout at Virginia Mason Athletic Center together because of the new guidelines in the CBA that ended last year’s 136-day lockout, some of the receivers and quarterbacks went to the University of Washington last week to run routes, catch passes and all of that. Law was there, too. ‘Law ran like every route with us,’ Rice said. ‘And he only dropped two passes the whole day. So that’s pretty impressive.’ ”
The Seahawks’ offseason program is down to the last players standing: The rookie free agents.
The team’s 10 draft choices completed their offseason work today. Saturday, they head to Ohio for the four-day NFL Rookie Symposium, which starts on Sunday for the NFC players. Then they’re off until training camp start in late July. The veterans called it a wrap after the final practice in last week’s minicamp.
So Monday, the only group left for the final three days in the offseason program at Virginia Mason Athletic Center will be the rookies who have been added since the draft. Seven were signed just after the draft – wide receivers Phil Bates, Jermaine Kearse and Lavasier Tuinei; guard Rishaw Johnson, tight end Sean McGrath, safety DeShawn Shead and kicker Carson Wiggs. Two others were signed after tryouts in minicamps – cornerback Donny Lisowski and linebacker Kyle Knox. One – defensive end Cordarro Law – was signed between the draft in April and the rookie minicamp in May.
“It’s a learning experience in itself, just learning how to be a pro,” Bates said of watching the numbers diminish. “It’s pretty good, because I’ve learned a lot this week.”
And he has done it from the front of the line – rather than back, as was the case when the veterans were around.
“You take the stuff you learned while the vets were here and now you’re working it on by yourself and trying to master your craft,” Bates said. “I’m enjoying it. I’m enjoying it a lot.”
Even with the vets gone, third-round draft choice Russell Wilson has been around to throw to Bates, Tuinei and McGrath (Kearse is sidelined with a foot injury). But Wilson is off to the symposium, so the rookie QB won’t be around next week.
“I’ve got the Jugs machine,” Bates said with a smile. “So that will help me out. I’m going to miss Russell, of course. But I’ve got the Jugs machine.”
A recap of the activities on the third – and final – day of the Seahawks’ Bing minicamp:
Quarterbacks. After the team’s last practice before training camp opens in late July, reporters had one last chance to ask coach Pete Carroll about the three-armed race for the starting job at the pivotal position.
The best way to continue summing up the situation? To be continued.
“It’s going to take us until we start playing games to see something happen,” Carroll said, referring to the preseason schedule that begins Aug. 11 with a game against the Titans at CenturyLink Field.
“At this point, they’re doing everything they can do with the opportunity. And they look good. So I can’t tell you that there’s anything that’s happened, other than we’ll stay with the same format going into camp.”
That means a rotation involving incumbent starter Tarvaris Jackson, free-agent addition Matt Flynn and rookie Russell Wilson – in that order, just as it has been since Wilson threw himself in the competition during the rookie minicamp last month.
Today, it was Wilson’s turn to run the No. 1 offense, after Jackson did it on Tuesday and Flynn had his turn on Wednesday.
Carroll wouldn’t say that he’ll stick with the daily rotation plan, but he did offer, “It’s worked out OK to give them an even shot. That’s the point, is to really make it as evenly competitive as we possibly can. We’ve done that to this point.”
DONNY ON THE SPOT
In a practice filled with impressive plays, none was better than the interception turned in by Donny Lisowski. The rookie cornerback from Montana and Seattle’s O’Dea High School tipped a Flynn pass that was intended for wide receiver Ricardo Lockette near the goal line and then controlled the carom as he was falling to the turf.
“It was press coverage and our No. 1 rule is to stay on top,” said Lisowski, who was signed after getting a tryout at the rookie minicamp. “I stayed on my man after 15 yards. I knew he wasn’t running a comeback, so I turned my head and just made a play on the ball.
“I was just going for the knockdown and I ended up tipping the ball straight up to myself.”
Lisowski’s heads-up play was greeted by hoots and hollers from the No. 1 defense.
Among the other notable efforts: on back-to-back plays, rookie defensive end Cordarro Law got to running back Vai Taua for a 2-yard loss and then produced a rush on third down that forced the play to be whistled dead as a sack; rookie kicker Carson Wiggs drilling a 47-yard field goal; tight end Kellen Winslow flashing open over the middle and then going up to make nice grab of a pass from Flynn; Wilson threading a pass between a pair of defenders to Winslow; Jackson and Winslow hooking up on a 23-yard completion; defensive lineman Pep Levingston tipping a pass incomplete; and cornerback Richard Sherman intercepting a Wilson pass that was intended for wide receiver Kris Durham.
WOOFIN’ ’N BARKIN’
After Winslow made the first of his trio of catches, the veteran tight end had a few choice words for the rest of the defense that was standing along the sideline as he made his way back to the huddle.
“It’s amazing. He’s definitely brought a different element out there,” Sherman said. “And I think we appreciate it on defense. He makes it real lively out there. When he makes a catch you can hear him. We finally have somebody to go back (and forth) with, because sometimes we’re kind of going back with ourselves – it’s kind of one-sided.
“They’ll make a catch, then there’ll be a little bit of talk. But it won’t be the kind like we’re doing. But Kellen, we’ll bring some of the trash. … He plays with a lot of swagger, and I like that. I like his style of play.”
Carroll said second-year offensive lineman James Carpenter is the only player among the 11 who didn’t practice during this minicamp who is likely to remain sidelined when training camp opens.
“I don’t think he’s going to make it for the start of camp,” Carroll said of Carpenter, who had season-ending knee surgery nine games into his rookie season. “We’re not going to push him for that. That’s not important to us. We want to get him back when he’s right. He’s making good progress at this time. But it will be somewhere down the road from there.”
Third-year cornerback Walter Thurmond “has a chance,” Carroll said, to be ready for the start of camp. Thurmond remains sidelined because of the leg he broke in late October.
THE NORTON AFFECT
Carroll might wield the whistle that controls practice, but the voice that often serves as the metronome for practice belongs to linebackers coach Ken Norton as he praises and also prods “his” players as well as those from other position groups.
Brian Banks, the story-unto-himself linebacker who’s at this camp on a tryout basis, is getting his first taste of the Norton Affect.
“I was waiting for that,” Banks said when asked how it felt to have his position coach, well, yelling at him. “I don’t want anybody to take it easy on me out here. I know I have a lot of work to do and if that’s what’s required, then definitely give it to me. I’m ready for it.”
Banks not only had heard of Norton, he arrived for his workout last week that led to this week’s tryout holding the former Pro Bowl linebacker in the highest regard.
“I’ve heard of his coaching style,” Banks said. “It wasn’t until that day of the tryout that I was on the way up here with one of the (scouts) and he was like, ‘I want to let you know, coach Norton, he’s no joke,’ ” said Banks, smiling. “But you know what? I like that intensity. I like that style of coaching.
“If it’s not right, tell me it’s not right. And if it needs fixing, tell me it needs fixing and let’s fit it together. We’ll get it done. I appreciate that.”
THIS ’N THAT
Former Seahawks and University of Washington safety Lawyer Milloy watched practice from the sideline. … Carroll said no decisions have been made on the six players who attended this camp on a tryout basis, including Banks and veteran wide receiver Antonio Bryant. … Former CFL offensive lineman Edawn Coughman was added to that group today. … Practice ended with two linemen attempting PAT-range field goals. Rookie defensive end Bruce Irvin made his; veteran offensive guard Deuce Lutui did not.
YOU DON’T SAY
“I’m not scared to face anybody.” – Sherman, laughing, when asked which of the three QBs he was most “scared” to face
Kellen Winslow, the tight end who was acquired Monday in a trade with the Buccaneers, will wear No. 82. So tight end John Nalbone, who had been wearing that number, switched to No. 84.
Three other players also are wearing new numbers:
Tackle James Carpenter is now No. 77 (he was No. 75)
Linebacker Korey Toomer is now No. 59 (he was No. 47)
Defensive end Cordarro Law is now No. 47 (he was No. 70)