A recap of the only practice Sunday at Seahawks training camp:
PLAYER OF THE DAY
John Carlson. The team’s second-year tight end – and leading receiver in his rookie season – is so consistent that he turns in “player of the day” efforts almost every practice.
This morning, in a practice filled with big and even odd plays, Carlson again flashed repeatedly. He got behind safety C.J. Wallace in a 9-on-9 drill to take a deep pass from No. 4 QB Jeff Rowe. In the 7-on-7 drill, QB Matt Hasselbeck went to Carlson twice in the first four snaps – once over the middle and also in the flat.
But Carlson’s best play came after Seneca Wallace stepped in for Hasselbeck in the 7-on-7 drill. Running a route across the middle from left to right, Carlson fought off middle linebacker David Hawthorne and then slid back to the left to catch the pass from Wallace.
All in a day’s work for Carlson. Again.
“John is special,” strong safety Deon Grant said. “And the really good thing about it, he’s a humble special person. He likes to work. He runs great routes. He’s got good speed. And he’s got great hands.”
Speaking of those hands, Grant added, “He has some of the best hands for a tight end since like Wesley Walls and Shannon Sharpe. Like I said, John is special.”
PLAY OF THE DAY
It came on the final play, and with the offense in its four-minute mode – which means doing the little things necessary to run out the clock late in the fourth quarter while sitting on a lead.
Instead, T.J. Duckett padded the lead by popping through a seam on the left side of the line and going 83 yards for a touchdown. The 254-pounder even cutback to elude a defender inside the 25-yard line before completing his jaunt to the end zone.
The torture chamber. That’s what coach Jim Mora calls the lakeside corner of the practice field where strength and conditioning coach Mike Clark puts those players not practicing through some serious conditioning drills.
This morning, it was standing room only, as linebackers Lofa Taupu, D.D. Lewis and Will Herring and offensive linemen Chris Spencer and Ray Willis joined Clark.
Aaron Curry, the team’s just-arrived first-round draft choice, went through his first full practice. He got some reps with the No. 1 defense at the strong-side linebacker spot, after working with the No. 2 unit Saturday afternoon.
Curry got to rookie running back Devin Moore behind the line of scrimmage on one play, promoting applause and shouts of “A.C.” from the fans in attendance.
Mora has canceled today’s second practice, giving the players their first “free” evening since camp opened July 31.
The decision also increased the number of fans watching the morning practice, because those fans who had registered to attend the evening practice were given the option to come this morning – or on another day.
Defensive linemen Cory Redding (soreness) and Michael Bennett (shoulder) returned to practice.
In addition to Tatupu (rest), Lewis (knee), Herring (groin), Spencer (ankle) and Willis (knee), also sitting out were tackle Walter Jones (back), cornerback Marcus Trufant (back) and offensive lineman Grey Ruegamer (elbow).
Hawthorne worked at middle linebacker with the No. 1 defense for Tatupu; Steve Vallos was at center with the No. 1 offense for Spencer; Kyle Williams was at right tackle with the No. 1 line for Willis – because Sean Locklear is playing left tackle for Jones; and Josh Wilson continued to work at left cornerback for Trufant.
The players will return from their evening off to practice once on Monday. The 3:30-5:30 p.m. practice is open to the public, but sold out.
After practicing twice Tuesday, there will be single practices Wednesday and Thursday as the team tapers a bit in preparation for Saturday night’s preseason opener against the Chargers in San Diego.
YOU DON’T SAY
“Typically in that first preseason game your first units don’t play a whole lot. If Aaron is doing well physically, then he’ll play more. When we pull Lofa and Leroy (Hill) and Deon and Pat (Kerney) and those guys out of the game, we’ll leave Aaron in there because he needs the work.” – Mora, on Curry’s likely role in Saturday night’s game