Thursday, August 6, 2009
Observations from Seahawks training camp
By Mike Sando
Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando
RENTON, Wash. -- The Seahawks recently finished an extended practice session before fans at their facility on Lake Washington. A few notes and observations:
Those are a few of the things I noticed out there Thursday. I'll share more from my conversation with Kerney in future entries. Seattle practices at 8:30 a.m. Friday and I plan to be there for that one as well.
- Rookie receiver Deon Butler faked out cornerback Travis Fisher to the outside before making an easy catch on a slant.
- Veteran receiver Nate Burleson appears recovered from the ACL sugery he underwent less than a year ago. He moves well and doesn't appear hesitant when he cuts.
- Fullback Owen Schmitt had problems in pass-protection drills. He did not move quick enough laterally to make the block on the two plays I saw. Safeties Jamar Adams and C.J. Wallace beat him convincingly.
- Wallace picked off a Matt Hasselbeck pass intended for T.J. Houshmandzadeh. What seemed like a horrible lack of rapport between quarterback and receiver was actually a case of Houshmandzadeh being blinded by sun. Houshmandzadeh said he's still earning Hasselbeck's trust.
- I thought rookie tight end Cameron Morrah caught the ball very well, but my assessment was flawed. Morrah is wearing the No. 43 worn previously by fullback Leonard Weaver. I kept thinking Morrah's receiving skills were exceptional for a fullback. Morrah did beat safety Brian Russell in coverage.
- Russell continues to take the first-team reps at safety, ahead of Jordan Babineaux.
- Backup running back Justin Forsett caught a deep pass up the left sideline with Leroy Hill in coverage. Very nice play for a running back that far downfield. Later, Forsett dropped the ball on a screen pass in the backfield.
- Positive reports about new defensive end Cory Redding appear justified. He was a nightmare for offensive linemen in the pass-rush drills. Redding's weight is down, he appears healthy and he plays violently, as teammate Patrick Kerney put it. I gave Redding the edge in all three matchups against Mansfield Wrotto in pass-rush drills. He also pushed back tight end John Owens' head to make a positive play against the run in team drills.
- Overall, the Seahawks have the potential to be much bigger up front with Redding at left defensive end, Colin Cole on the nose, Brandon Mebane at right defensive tackle and Kerney on the right side. Kerney is bigger, too, but he'll cut weight as the season gets going. The Seahawks are limiting him in camp to avoid injuries.
- Left tackle Walter Jones appeared stiff while walking toward the field before practice. He hasn't practiced since suffering back spasms on the first day of camp.
- Second-year defensive end Lawrence Jackson had success rushing the passer against guards in the one-on-one pass-rush drills. He bull-rushed rookie Max Unger successfully on one play, then beat starter Rob Sims. Jackson also beat tackle Kyle Williams with an inside move.
- Darryl Tapp blew past Ray Willis for a would-be sack. Tapp is having a good camp, according to Kerney.
- The Seahawks are working on game situations earlier than in past seasons. That included a hook-and-lateral play featuring Houshmandzadeh tossing to Burleson. It's unlikely Seattle will use that play, Houshmandzadeh said, but if needed, they've practiced it.