Good morning, and here’s what’s “out there” for today, Tuesday, July 9, about your Seattle Seahawks:
ESPN Insider Matt Bowen has a detailed feature on how to stop free safety Earl Thomas. Bowen looks at what makes the All-Pro/Pro Bowl fourth-year player so unique, pointing to Thomas’ range, speed, hips, and footwork. It’s an ESPN Insider feature, but here is a small snippet from Bowen’s work:
“There is no question this Seattle secondary of Thomas, Chancellor and cornerbacks Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner will be challenged during the 2013 season, especially with the multitude of upgrades to the receiving units of NFC West teams. But Thomas is still the key. He has an ideal skill set for the Seahawks’ defense. And if you want to make some plays versus the free safety (along with the rest of the Seattle secondary), the combination routes and tight end matchups would be at the top of my call sheet on game days.”
Thomas saw the ESPN piece and welcomes the challenge, clamoring for any opportunity to have the ball thrown his way:
ESPN.com NFC West blogger Mike Sando returns from vacation and gears back up with his morning look around the NFC West.
Bob Condotta on the Seattle Times joined Sports Radio 950 KJR AM’s Jason Puckett to talk about Richard Sherman’s Celebrity Softball Game and Seahawks expectations heading into 2013 in the podcast below:
Rebecca Wright of The Windsor Star has a story on rookie tight end Luke Willson, who recently returned to his local sports roots of Essex, Ontario, Canada to support the Essex Ravens junior and varsity teams.
Braden Gall of AthlonSports.com ranks the League’s 32 quarterbacks. The Seahawks’ Russell Wilson comes in at No. 12 – what is it about that number, anyway? It’s everywhere. Here’s what Gall had to say about the club’s second-year signal caller:
“Wilson has a lot of Drew Brees to his game. Undersized, savvy, hard-working, underrated athletically and a lightning-quick right arm. Cut from the Rodgers-Luck dual-threat cloth, Wilson is constantly looking to extend the play and make a big throw. He can run around and pick up first downs with his legs if need be, but he’s also adept at throwing on the run. This, and his compact frame, gives him a better chance at staying healthy over other true dual-threats. His statistical and win-loss records as a starter both in college and his first year in the pros speak for themselves.”
Today is the final day to vote in round two of NFL.com’s bracket to determine the greatest uniform in League history, where as of this posting the Seahawks’ current uniforms (No. 6 seed) have more than double the votes of the current jerseys of the New York Giants (No. 3). Voting ends at 3 p.m. PT.
Here at Seahawks.com, Clare Farnsworth continues his 2013 positional preview series with a look at the club’s secondary, which includes some compassionate comments from head coach Pete Carroll on Thomas: “…there’s no end to the potential that Earl has, because he’s so fast and he’s so tough. But more than that, he’s just so driven to be great. He’s just driven to be a great player and a great teammate.”
Team photographers Rod Mar and Corky Trewin bring us a combined 159 frames from Sherman’s celebrity softball game at Tacoma’s Cheney Stadium.
In news around the rest of the NFL, New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan reportedly ran with the bulls – twice – at the San Fermin festival in Pamplona, Spain. According to the Jets, Ryan escaped without injury.
And it’s about a week old now, but Richard Owens of NFL Films has a unique behind-the-scenes Q & A session with NFL Films music composer Dave Robidoux, who has won nine Emmy awards for his work with the organization.
Tags: Earl Thomas, Luke Willson, New York Jets, Pete Carroll, Rex Ryan, Richard Sherman, Richard Sherman Softball Game, Russell Wilson, Russell Wilson Passing Academy
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Happy Summer Solstice, Seahawks fans.
But wait, hold on. Did you know that while your calendars mark today – Friday, June 21 – as the first official day of summer, those of us on the West Coast actually made the jump from spring to summer late Thursday night? The change of season occurred at 1:04 a.m. ET – that’s 10:04 p.m. PT. So technically, those of us here on the left side of the states were finally able to experience something before our east coast friends. Take that little tidbit to whatever weekend gathering you’ve got on deck.
Now, let’s get to some football – sort of. As defensive end Red Bryant lets you know in our graphic above, there are just 79 days until the Seahawks kickoff the 2013 regular season against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. And to help us cope with life without football, here’s a detailed look at what’s going on next week, June 23-28, with your Seattle Seahawks:
Sunday, June 23:
- Quarterback Russell Wilson hosts his Passing Academy in Richmond, Va. Spokane and Seattle camp dates with Wilson are coming next month.
- Rookie running back Christine Michael and rookie tight end Luke Willson will be on hand for the Seahawks Family Football Fest at CenturyLink Field.
Monday, June 24:
- The 16th annual Rookie Symposium starts up in Aurora, Ohio, where all 254 members of the 2013 NFL Draft class will report to learn about life in the NFL prior to training camp starting up in late July. AFC rookies are scheduled to report June 23-26 with NFC rookies following suit June 26-29.
- Seahawks rookies are scheduled to workout at Virginia Mason Athletic Center.
- Our resident reporter Clare Farnsworth will start up a well-deserved and hard-earned three-week vacation. But the football-content-starved fear not, as Farnsworth has graciously left us with a slew of stories previewing the upcoming season to run in his absence. First up is part one of his nine-part positional series with a look at the club’s quarterbacks – namely, second-year signal caller Russell Wilson.
Tuesday, June 25:
- Seahawks rookies are scheduled to workout at VMAC.
- Farnsworth’s positional series continues with a look at the running back group.
- Wilson’s Passing Academy changes venues, as he hosts day one of his two-day camp in Raleigh, N.C.
Wednesday, June 26:
- Seahawks rookies are scheduled for their final workout at VMAC before training camp – their pre-training-camp break begins shortly thereafter.
- Farnsworth will highlight the club’s wide receivers in his positional series.
- Wilson’s Passing Academy continues in Raleigh, N.C.
Thursday, June 27:
- Middle linebacker Bobby Wagner celebrates his 23rd birthday. Be sure to wish last year’s AP Defensive Rookie of the Year runner-up a happy birthday on Twitter @Bwagz54.
- The first of nine Gatorade Junior Training Camps takes place at Cedar River Park in Renton, Wash.
- Farnsworth will take a break from the positional series on this “Throwback Thursday” – chronicling cornerback Richard Sherman’s time as a track star at Dominguez High School in Compton, Calif.
Friday, June 28:
- Free safety Earl Thomas kicks off his football camp for kids in Orange, Texas.
- Second-year cornerback DeShawn Shead salutes his 25th birthday – you can wish Shead happy-quarter-of-a-century on Twitter @dshead24.
- Farnsworth’s positional series kicks back up with a look at the team’s tight ends.
Saturday, June 29:
- Thomas’ camp continues in Texas, Wilson’s Passing Academy makes it way to Madison, Wis. and defensive end Cliff Avril hosts his inaugural youth football camp in Green Cove Springs, Fla.
- Kicker Steven Hauschka celebrates his 28th birthday.
Tags: 2013 NFL Draft, Bobby Wagner, CenturyLink Field, Christine Michael, Cliff Avril, DeShawn Shead, Earl Thomas, Family Football Fest, Gatorade Junior Training Camp, Is it football season yet?, Luke Willson, Red Bryant, Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, Steven Hauschka
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Seahawks insider Tony Ventrella talks with two of the newest members of the Seahawks, Luke Willson from Canada and Jesse Williams from Australia.
Good morning, and I hope everyone had a good Father’s Day weekend. Here’s what’s “out there” for today, Monday, June 17, about your Seattle Seahawks:
Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times has a position-by-position breakdown of where the Seahawks stand heading into training camp, offering his own comfort level (on a scale of one to 10) on how comfortable fans should feel with each group.
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune profiles former Seahawks owner John Nordstrom, which provides some very interesting background on the start of the franchise.
Danny O’Neil of 710Sports.com has a look at three things we learned and three things we’re still trying to figure out now that the Seahawks have wrapped up Organized Team Activities (OTAs) and minicamp workouts. O’Neil also says free safety Earl Thomas might be “the best player” on the team.
Brent Stecker of 710Sports.com recaps cornerback Richard Sherman’s weekend appearance on The John Clayton Show. You can listen to the podcast of Sherman with Clayton here:
Curtis Crabtree, writing for the Associated Press, details how third-round draft pick Jordan Hill and fifth-round draft pick Jesse Williams are fitting in along Seattle’s defensive line.
NFC West blogger Mike Sando of ESPN.com has a closer look at what might happen if the Seahawks need to make a switch to their backup quarterback – Tarvaris Jackson or Brady Quinn. Sando also has his NFC West-chat transcript from Friday here.
You, the readers of Seahawks.com, voted former quarterback Matt Hasselbeck as the fourth head on a Seahawks-themed Mount Rushmore, as he joined consensus mountain-locks Steve Largent, Cortez Kennedy and Walter Jones. It was an exercise precluding one over at ProFootballTalk.com, where former running back Shaun Alexander recently beat out Hasselbeck, Mike Holmgren and the 12th Man as the mountain’s fourth face in their “Faces of the Franchise” feature.
Tags: 12th MAN, Brady Quinn, Cortez Kennedy, Jesse Williams, John Nordstrom, Jordan Hill, Luke Willson, Matt Hasselbeck, Richard Sherman, Shaun Alexander, Steve Largent, Tarvaris Jackson, Walter Jones
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Yesterday, the Seahawks announced a schedule of summer activities dedicated to the 12th Man across the Pacific Northwest.
Showcasing that summer schedule is the Seahawks 12 Tour – when wide receiver Doug Baldwin, defensive end Red Bryant, kicker Steven Hauschka, long snapper Clint Gresham and cornerbacks Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman will make stops across the states Washington and Alaska, as well as Vancouver B.C. In conjunction with Washington Tourism Alliance, the Seahawks players will be joined by members of the Sea Gals, team mascot Blitz, and Seahawks fan development staff as they host fan forums, make community appearances and participate in area football camps for youth at each stop.
The tour’s first stop is in Anchorage, Alaska with Hauschka and Gresham (July 9-14) and from there it’s on to Bellingham, Wash. (July 11-12) and Vancouver, B.C. (July 13-15) with Baldwin and Bryant. The tour will wrap-up with the cornerback-half of the “Legion of Boom” – Browner and Sherman – traveling to Kennewick (July 18-19) and Vancouver, Wash. (July 19-21).
“I wanted to be able to do it again because I had so much fun doing it before and meeting all different kinds of people,” said Baldwin, who participated in last year’s 12 Tour. “First and foremost, you get to connect with the fans and get to see that side of the game. It’s always interesting, but it’s also inspiring because you’ve got all of these people that are cheering you on. It kind of builds us up and gives us that extra energy and extra drive.”
Baldwin has never traveled to Bellingham or Vancouver, B.C., so he’s looking forward to connecting with the local community and fans in a setting outside of CenturyLink Field.
“Seeing them outside of the football field will be a great chance to interact with them,” Baldwin said. “It was just fascinating, because as dedicated as we are to our craft, we met tons of people last year who are just as dedicated to cheering us on every Sunday. It’s an awesome experience.”
Minicamp may have wrapped yesterday and training camp is still over a month out, but Baldwin’s football fun at Virginia Mason Athletic Center isn’t over just yet. Tomorrow, he’ll take part in the Seahawks All-Pro Varsity Skills Camp with youth ages 9-14, coaching up kids who eventually hope to play ball at the high school level.
And if you’re a loyal-12 looking for some Seahawks-love outside of the Pacific Northwest, here’s a look at several other Seahawks-player-driven football camps that may be in your area:
- June 22-23: Quarterback Russell Wilson’s Passing Academy in Richmond, Va.
- June 22-23: Seahawks Family Football Fest with linebacker K.J. Wright, wide receiver Charly Martin, running back Christine Michael & tight end Luke Willson in Renton, Wash. at VMAC
- June 25-26: Quarterback Russell Wilson’s Passing Academy in Raleigh, N.C.
- June 27-July 23: Free Seahawks Gatorade Junior Training Camps located throughout the state of Washington
- June 28-29: Free safety Earl Thomas’ Football Camp in Orange, Texas
- June 29: Defensive end Cliff Avril’s Inaugural Youth Football Camp in Green Cove Springs, Fla.
- June 29-30: Quarterback Russell Wilson’s Passing Academy in Madison, Wis.
- July 8-9: Quarterback Russell Wilson’s Passing Academy in Spokane, Wash.
- July 9-12: Defensive end Greg Scruggs’ Pro Football Camp in Colorado Springs, Colo.
- July 10-13: Wide receiver Golden Tate and former Seahawks safety Lawyer Milloy’s Football Camp in Tacoma, Wash.
- July 13: Running back Marshawn Lynch’s 7th annual Fam 1st Family Football Camp in Oakland, Calif.
- July 13-14: Quarterback Russell Wilson’s Passing Academy in Renton, Wash. at VMAC
Tags: 12 Tour, Brandon Browner, Charly Martin, Christine Michael, Cliff Avril, Clint Gresham, Doug Baldwin, Earl Thomas, Golden Tate, Greg Scruggs, K.J. Wright, Luke Willson, Marshawn Lynch, Red Bryant, Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, Steven Hauschka
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A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Club for June 13, when the Seahawks wrapped up their offseason program by concluding their mandatory three-day minicamp:
FOCUS ON: SPRINGING FORWARD
Three minicamp practices. Nine OTA sessions. Almost two dozen non-OTA workouts. And five players who excelled, from almost start to almost finish.
In honor of the offseason program ending today for the veterans, and taking a huge step in that direction for the rookies, we decided to check in with offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and defensive coordinator Dan Quinn to get their informed-plus opinions on which players had outstanding springs.
Bevell opted for two new players, who bring elements an already good offense didn’t have – Percy Harvin, who was acquired in a March trade with the Vikings; and Luke Willson, who was selected in the fifth round of April’s NFL Draft.
Harvin is a receiver, but also a runner, and that versatility – not to mention the productivity he provided the past four seasons in Minnesota – will complement the contributions of All-Pro running back Marshawn Lynch, Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson and wide-outs Sidney Rice, Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin. Willson is a 6-foot-5, 252-pound tight end who has more speed than anyone that size should. That speed allows him to exploit matchups with linebacker and strong safeties, and his arrival also softens the loss of incumbent backup Anthony McCoy, who tore an Achilles tendon in the first OTA session.
“With the other guys, we know what you have,” Bevell said. “And they’ve all done a great job. But Luke and Percy are new and it’s been good to see how their talents are going to blend in.”
Harvin missed some time because of injuries, but as Bevell put it, “You could see what he brings whenever he was on the field.”
Quinn, in his first year as the D-coordinator, went with a proven commodity – All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas; and a couple of young linebackers – Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright.
“With Earl, it’s the focus he has and his mindset,” Quinn said. “He has completely captured what we’re trying to do. It just leaps out at you and I’ve been totally impressed.”
Right on cue, Thomas forced and recovered a fumble during the scrimmage-like session that ended today’s final minicamp practice.
“Bobby has put the work in,” Quinn said of Wagner, the middle linebacker who led the team in tackles as a rookie last season. “He’s doing the things when no one is watching – studying video, putting in the extra work in the weight room and the meeting room.”
Wright finished second to Wagner in tackles last season while playing on the strong side. This spring, he has been working on the weak strong, and continuing to make strong contributions.
“K.J. just continues to jump out,” Quinn said.
Coach Pete Carroll ended practice with a scrimmage-like drill, and the players appreciated the opportunity to show what they’ve accomplished this spring.
“It’s fun,” Wilson said. “It was a nice way to finish it.”
The second-year QB led the only touchdown drive, capping it with a 3-yard scoring pass to second-year tight end Sean McGrath. They also set up the TD, as McGrath made a falling grab of a 24-yard pass from Wilson against tight coverage from linebacker Korey Toomer. Wilson also directed a nine-play, 42-yard drive, but Steven Hauschka’s 51-yard field goal attempt hit the left upright. Backup QB Brady Quinn led a drive that ended with a 44-yard field goal by Carson Wiggs.
But the defense also had its moments, as cornerback Will Blackmon intercepted a Quinn pass that was intended for rookie wide receiver Chris Harper to go with Thomas’ bang-bang play where he forced and then recovered a fumble.
ROOKIE WATCH: JORDAN HILL AND JESSE WILLIAMS
The coaches keep asking more from the defensive linemen that were selected in the third (Hill) and fifth (Williams) rounds of April’s draft, and the rookies just keep on delivering.
“They’re real different,” Carroll said. “Jesse is a 329-pound kid and strong as an ox. We see Jordan as much quicker and shiftier, and a very, very good technique player. He has really good leverage and hand placement. He’s exciting.”
Since joining the team for the rookie minicamp in May, Jordan has worked at both the three-technique and nose tackle spots in the both the base defense and nickel defense; while Williams has played both tackle spots as well as the five-technique end position in the base defense.
Today, Jordan got extensive work with the No. 1 line, while Williams got his turn to work with the starters on Wednesday.
“We have moved them around,” Carroll said. “That versatility helps. Both kids are really smart and they get it, and they have really good work ethic. … It’s very exciting that those guys have come in and we think they can add unique dimensions for each one of them.”
PAUL ALLEN TAKES IN PRACTICE
Owner Paul Allen watched part of today’s practice from the sideline.
“It was good to see the owner out here,” Carroll said. “Mr. Allen came out and saw us work on the last day, and it looked like he was having a good time, too.”
Also on hand were former quarterbacks Jim Zorn, the team’s original QB (1979-84) who also coached the position (2001-07); and Hall of Famer Warren Moon, who played two seasons with the Seahawks (1997-98) and is now the analyst for the team’s radio broadcasts.
MARSHAWN LYNCH HIGHLIGHTED IN TOP 100 OF 2013
NFL Network’s countdown of the Top 100 Players of 2013 continued this evening with the unveiling of players ranked No. 30-21. The Seahawks’ Beast Mode back earned a mention at No. 24 on the list.
YOU DON’T SAY
“I think the biggest thing is just to be consistent. Be clutch. And try to dominate. When the game’s on the line, just help our football team win. I think that’s the biggest thing as a quarterback, be a great leader, have attention to detail and have that relentless competitive nature every day. I think that’s the biggest thing I can bring to the table, in terms of practicing and in games.” – Wilson when asked about his goals for the 2013 season
Tags: Bobby Wagner, Brady Quinn, Carson Wiggs, Dan Quinn, Darrell Bevell, Earl Thomas, Hawkville, Jesse Williams, Jim Zorn, Jordan Hill, K.J. Wright, Luke Willson, Paul Allen, Percy Harvin, Pete Carroll, Russell Wilson, Sean McGrath, Warren Moon, Will Blackmon
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A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for June 11, as the Seahawks kicked off a mandatory three-day minicamp that will conclude their offseason program:
FOCUS ON: MICHAEL BROOKS
After the rookie defensive tackle was claimed off waivers on May 29 and practiced with the Seahawks for the first time a few days later, Brooks admitted, “I’m just trying to learn my way around right now and get with this new system.”
The 6-foot-3, 299-pound Brooks apparently is a fast learner. In today’s practice, he tipped a pass incomplete and then penetrated to get a “sack” – on back-to-back plays. It was that talent and versatility that first attracted the Seahawks, who tried to sign Brooks after the NFL Draft in April. He opted for the Lions, but the Seahawks got another chance to acquire Brooks after he was waived.
“We saw some things we liked about him on tape and Michael certainly has come in here and tried to learn the system quickly,” first-year defensive line coach Travis Jones said after practice – which was held under sunny skies but also in a brisk breeze along the shores of Lake Washington.
And, like most of the linemen, Brooks is learning more than one position. He’s playing the three-technique tackle spot as well as the five-technique end position.
“Everybody’s got different positions to learn,” Jones said. “You’ve got to try to find a way to get on this team, and the best way to do that is to learn a couple of different positions.”
And it doesn’t hurt when you’re making multiple plays from those multiple positions.
PLAYER WATCH: CHRIS CLEMONS
The team’s sack leader the past three seasons was on hand for the start of the mandatory minicamp, but Clemons is continuing his rehab from surgery after tearing a ligament and meniscus in his left knee during the wild-card playoff victory over the Redskins in January.
“It’s good to get Clem back in, even though he can’t work,” Carroll said.
Clemons, who was acquired in a 2010 trade with the Eagles, has posted 11, 11 and 11.5 sacks in his first three seasons with the Seahawks.
“The doctors say he’s in great shape,” Carroll said. “He’s ahead (of schedule). He’s worked diligently to get there. Is he going to make it back by the first game? I don’t know. He has a chance. And if it can happen, he’ll make it happen.
“But like I said the whole time, we will not rush that. We’re going to take our time on that and make sure he’s right. The doctors are greatly confident. He is also.”
Even if he’s not practicing, Clemons provides a plus.
“Clem, he’s a great leader on this team. He’s tough as nails and really stands for something in this locker room,” Carroll said. “So to have him around is important.”
POSITION WATCH: TIGHT END
With starter Zach Miller sitting out to rest a sore left foot, it allowed second-year tight end Sean McGrath and rookie Luke Willson to work with the No. 1 offense – snaps that will prove invaluable as they continue to develop in the offense.
“It does give the other guys a chance to step up and get some good focus work,” Carroll said. “It’s really good for Luke and Sean McGrath is getting extra turns. So it’s a good deal.”
While Willson was selected in the fifth round of April’s NFL Draft, McGrath spent most of his rookie season on the practice squad after being signed as a rookie free agent last year.
“Sean is stronger. He’s quicker,” said Carroll, pointing out that McGrath has added almost 10 pounds. “He just looks great. He always could catch the football really well. Now he knows what he’s doing and he’s become just a regular part of it. He’s in the rotation right now.”
ANOTHER TOP 100 PLAYER
A sixth Seahawk will be included among the players ranked 21-30 in the NFL Network’s continuing countdown of the Top 100 Players for 2013. The latest group will be unveiled starting at 5 p.m. on Thursday.
As usual, we can’t tell you who it is. But All-Pro center Max Unger (No. 95), receiver/returner/running Percy Harvin (No. 90), All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas (No. 66), Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson (No. 51) and All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman (No. 50) are the Seahawks previously included. That leaves a very-prominent name still out there – All-Pro running back Marshawn Lynch.
A WISH COME TRUE, AND THEN SOME
The club hosted Make-A-Wish recipient Kevin Lee today. Needless to say, it was an over-the-top experience for the 12-year old from Farmington Hills, Mich., who has had four open-heart surgeries.
We can’t share more details at this time because the event was videotaped by a crew from ESPN and will be included in the network’s Eighth Annual My Wish series that is scheduled to air the week of Aug. 18.
The players will practice again on Wednesday afternoon and then wrap up the three-day minicamp with a morning practice on Thursday.
YOU DON’T SAY
“You saw him. He was killing it today in practice. He’s just a very, very talented football player – very fast; very, very quick. He’s a very smart football player. He has the mind of quarterback. He thinks all the time. He’s thinking about what’s going on. What the coverage looks like and how he’s matched up with certain guys. So that helps.” – quarterback Russell Wilson on third-year slot receiver Doug Baldwin, who was played through injuries most of last season after leading the team in receptions as a rookie free agent in 2011
Tags: Chris Clemons, Doug Baldwin, Earl Thomas, Hawkville, Luke Willson, Marshawn Lynch, Max Unger, Michael Brooks, Percy Harvin, Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, Sean McGrath, Travis Jones, Zach Miller
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Good morning, and welcome to day one of the Seahawks’ three-day mandatory minicamp at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. Today’s team workout is scheduled to begin at 1:30 p.m., but before we get there, here’s a look at what’s “out there” as the club heads into the final week of their Offseason Program.
Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times identifies four key issues the Seahawks face as they gather for camp this week, including the battle for the backup tight end spot between 2013 fifth-round draft pick Luke Willson and second-year player Sean McGrath.
Danny O’Neil of 710Sports.com details five players to watch during the team’s three-day workout – offensive guard John Moffitt, wide receiver Chris Harper, cornerback Tharold Simon, defensive tackle Jesse Williams, and the competition for the backup offensive tackle spot between 2013 seventh-round draft pick Michael Bowie and third-year pro Michael Person.
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune has his observations from the team’s nine sessions of Organized Team Activities (OTAs) that finished up last week and has a look at what to expect from this week of camp.
Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune previewed this week’s minicamp in his Monday Morning QB chat. You can find the transcript of yesterday’s chat here.
Mike Sando of ESPN.com has a look around the rest of the NFC West, as the Arizona Cardinals and San Francisco 49ers also hold their mandatory minicamps this week, while the St. Louis Rams continue with OTAs.
Our Clare Farnsworth offers a recap of the club’s offseason to this point and highlights questions and concerns heading into the practice week.
Outside of minicamp news, former Seahawks quarterback Tarvaris Jackson was released from the Buffalo Bills yesterday and John Boyle of the Everett Herald makes the case for bringing Jackson back to Seattle to backup entrenched starter Russell Wilson.
Lindsay Jones of USA Today has a feature on wide receiver Percy Harvin.
Former NFL player and scout Bucky Brooks of NFL.com breaks down who is the better cornerback – the Seahawks’ Richard Sherman or the Cardinals’ Patrick Peterson – and Brooks offers the edge to Sherman, calling him “currently far superior.”
Check back later this afternoon for our coverage from day one of Seahawks minicamp.
Tags: Arizona Cardinals, Chris Harper, Jesse Williams, John Moffitt, Luke Willson, Michael Bowie, Michael Person, Minicamp, Percy Harvin, Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, San Francisco 49ers, Sean McGrath, St. Louis Rams, Tarvaris Jackson, Tharold Simon
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A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for June 3, as the Seahawks kicked off the final week of their OTA sessions:
FOCUS ON: ZACH MILLER
The Seahawks’ veteran tight end does so many things well that focusing on just one could be difficult. Except that when it comes to making one-handed catches, Miller is exceptional.
He had another during today’s OTA session, as well as a finger-tip grab of a pass after he got behind Pro Bowl-caliber strong safety Kam Chancellor. Miller also had a one-hander in the end zone last Wednesday that earned five-highs from several players – defensive, as well as offensive – and coach Pete Carroll. All three passes were thrown by quarterback Russell Wilson.
“I’ve always had a knack for just being able to get the big paw on it,” Miller said through a smile after the team’s sun-drenched session along the shores of Lake Washington. “It helps that I’ve got pretty big hands.”
But making the one-handers is mental as well as physical.
“You’ve got to understand what kind of passes you can catch like that,” Miller said. “If the ball is coming to you fast, you have no chance. So you’ve kind of got to pick your times to do that.”
While those catches can be uplifting for Miller, the QB who throws the pass and the other offensive players, they can have the reverse effect on the players who are covering Miller.
“If you make a one-hander, the defenders don’t like that,” he said. “They think they’ve got you. Then you stick a big paw out and you bring it in, they’re like, ‘Really, you caught that?’ ”
With Miller, the answer is a resounding “yes,” and comes with the tagline “again.”
PLAYER WATCH: MICHAEL BROOKS
The rookie defensive tackle has now practiced with the team twice since being claimed off waivers last week. But Brooks admits to feeling like the new kid who has entered a new school at midterm.
“I’m just trying to learn my way around right now and get with this new system,” said Brooks, who was signed by the Lions after April’s NFL Draft.
Brooks did things one way at East Carolina and was learning to do them another with the Lions. Now comes the way defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and line coach Travis Fisher teach their techniques.
“I was just getting used to the way they do things in Detroit, then I get here and I’ve got to switch it all over,” he said.
In his first two practices – Friday and today – Brooks has participated in the individual drills and then been tutored while on the sideline during the team portions.
“It’s been a pretty good transition. Everybody is helping out,” he said. “I’m just watching and trying to learn from the older guys. They’ve been in the system for a while and I’m just kind of feeling my way through.”
POSITION WATCH: RIGHT TACKLE
With incumbent starter Breno Giacomini missing today’s session, rookie tackle Michael Bowie worked on the right side of the offensive line with the No. 1 unit that also included Pro Bowl left tackle Russell Okung, veteran left guard Paul McQuistan, All-Pro center Max Unger and second-year right guard J.R. Sweezy.
Bowie also continued to work with the No. 3 line, along with left tackle Mike Person, rookie left guard Alvin Bailey and fellow seventh-round draft choices Jared Smith at center and Ryan Seymour at right guard.
The extra reps will only help Bowie as he works to earn one of the backup spots on the 53-man roster.
JOSH PORTIS CFL BOUND
Josh Portis, the quarterback released last month by the Seahawks, has signed with the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL, the team has announced.
Portis was the Seahawks’ No. 3 quarterback on 2011, when he was active for one game. He was released last August on the roster cut to 53 players, signed to the practice squad and then released in November. Portis was re-signed in April.
The players will be back on the field Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday as they complete the 10 OTA sessions allowed by the CBA that ended the 136-day lockout in 2011.
The Pro Shop at CenturyLink Field will kick off its grand re-opening weekend on Friday from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. The ceremonial ribbon cutting will take place at 5:30, with Wilson and team president Peter McLoughlin doing the honors.
YOU DON’T SAY
“He’s ready to learn. He’s listening to everything. He’s asking questions. Which is exactly how you want your rookie to be. He’s making plays out. He’s having some good days. It’s what he’s got to do to be our second tight end. … And he has that speed that he can separate from guys pretty easily. He’s going to be a weapon for us on offense.” – Miller on Luke Willson, the tight end the Seahawks selected in the fifth round of April’s NFL Draft
Tags: Alvin Bailey, Breno Giacomini, Dan Quinn, Hawkville, J.R. Sweezy, Jared Smith, Josh Portis, Luke Willson, Max Unger, Michael Bowie, Michael Brooks, Mike Person, Paul McQuistan, Peter McLoughlin, Russell Okung, Russell Wilson, Ryan Seymour, Travis Jones, Zach Miller
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Fourth-year tight end Anthony McCoy underwent surgery yesterday to repair a torn Achilles tendon, an injury he suffered Monday of this week during the team’s first OTA session. The surgery was performed by Dr. Ed Khalfayan at Seattle Surgery Center.
Drafted by the Seahawks in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft out of USC, McCoy saw action in all 18 games last season, often working out of double tight end sets with No. 1 tight end Zach Miller. He caught 18 balls for 291 yards and three touchdowns last year and was the team’s first player to top 100 yards receiving that season, when he made three catches for 105 yards in the club’s 58-0 win over the Arizona Cardinals in Week 14.
The injury to McCoy leaves second-year players Sean McGrath and Cooper Helfet, 2013 fifth-round draft pick Luke Willson, and rookie minicamp signees Victor Marshall and the former professional basketball playing Darren Fells as the five players rounding out the position behind Miller.
Tags: Anthony McCoy, Cooper Helfet, Darren Fells, Luke Willson, Sean McGrath, Victor Marshall, Zach Miller
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Good morning, and welcome to the final day of the Seahawks’ rookie minicamp. Today’s practice gets started at 11:30 a.m., but before we get there, here’s a look at what’s “out there” following Saturday”s session at Virginia Mason Athletic Center:
Jayson Jenks of the Seattle Times has a closer look at fifth-round draft pick Luke Willson, the Rice tight end that made some impressive plays on day one of camp.
Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune has his notes from day two of camp and profiles fourth-round draft pick wide receiver Chris Harper.
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune has his report from the first two days of camp.
Danny O’Neil of 710Sports.com offers a closer look at fifth-round draft pick Tharold Simon, the 6-foot-2, 202-pound cornerback out of LSU.
Lastly, team photographer Rod Mar has several photos from day two of camp here.
We’ll be back with more from Sunday’s practice and media availabilities later this afternoon.
Tags: Chris Harper, Jesse Williams, Jordan Hill, Luke Willson, Tharold Simon
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