A recap of the Seahawks’ Tuesday night practice that was held at Husky Stadium:
PLAYER OF THE DAY
Kelly Jennings. The fourth-year cornerback would just as soon forget last season, when he lost his confidence and then his starting job. His play this evening was definitely a giant step in that direction.
“Last year went a way I didn’t like, and it really tested my character,” Jennings said. “This year, I want to come back and try to make a strong showing.”
He did just that before an estimated crowd of 2,000, breaking up two passes – one a deep ball to wide receiver Jordan Kent, the other a throw to rookie wide receiver Deon Butler in the end zone.
Coach Jim Mora calls those situations “the moment of truth” – when the ball is in the air and the defensive back needs to make a play on it before the receiver can.
“Coach started preaching that two years ago when he got here – winning at the moment of truth,” Jennings said of Mora, who was his position coach in 2007 and 2008 before becoming the head coach this year.
“That’s something I didn’t think I did last year. This year, I’ve got to continue to work on that to get better.”
PLAYS OF THE DAY
Offense: Deion Branch fired a nice pass to fellow wide receiver Ben Obomanu on an end around, but the nod has to go to John Carlson. Again.
The second-year tight end went up against tight coverage in the end zone from cornerback Josh Wilson to pull down a pass from Matt Hasselbeck. It was very similar to the sideline catch Carlson made in the morning practice – complete with the defensive players signaling that he had not come down inbounds, in what proved to be wishful gestures.
Defense: Let’s make it a two-fer for linebacker Lance Laury. First, he fought through a block by lineman Cory Withrow in getting to Michael Bumpus before the wide receiver could get to the line of scrimmage on an end around. Then, he blitzed and rocked rookie running back Devin Moore to blow up another play.
Butler. With Nate Burleson sitting out both practices, the third-round draft choice was working at split end with the No. 1 offense – and making the most of the opportunity.
Butler started the evening practice with a nice run on an end around. Then he made nice catches over the middle, along the sideline and in the end zone.
“That’s always good experience to get in there with Matt and just learn a lot more,” he said. “You get a lot more reps and the speed of the game is different when you’re working with the No. 1 offense against the No. 1 defense.
“Hopefully, Nate gets back in there soon. But until he does, I’ve just got to be able to take advantage of the opportunity.”
Six players who were rested during the morning practice returned for the evening session – Hasselbeck, Branch, center Chris Spencer, tackle Ray Willis, defensive lineman Cory Redding and linebacker D.D. Lewis.
Wide receiver Courtney Taylor did not practice, joining a list that also included tackle Walter Jones (back), cornerback Marcus Trufant (back), running backs Julius Jones and T.J. Duckett (bumps and bruises), kicker Olindo Mare (knee), defensive lineman Lawrence Jackson (leg), offensive lineman Grey Ruegamer (elbow) and Burleson (knee).
Linebacker Aaron Curry sat out the end of practice after the first-round draft choice tweaked his groin in a drill where he was impressive while pass rushing against a running back or tight end.
The players will practice once Wednesday (3:30-5:30) at VMAC. The final session of two-a-days will be held Thursday (8:30-10:30 and 6:30-8:30) before the team breaks camp Friday.
YOU DON’T SAY
“I’m not a little brittle baby, man.” – Butler, on bouncing back immediately from the big hit he took early in Saturday night’s preseason opener against the Chargers