No hard feelings.
Not toward former wide-receiver mate Percy Harvin. And absolutely not toward rookie protégé Tyler Lockett.
That was what Doug Baldwin wanted all to know following the sixth practice of Seattle Seahawks training camp.
On Thursday, Baldwin was asked about Harvin, the former Seahawks receiver who fought with Baldwin days before the exhibition finale at Oakland 12 months ago. On Wednesday, Harvin spoke on ESPN from Buffalo Bills camp and talked about “not being accepted in our (the Seahawks) receiver group” and “the altercation with Doug” in Seattle.
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This time last year, Harvin was the Seahawks’ highest-paid offensive player, to whom Seattle had given what was then the richest signing bonus in franchise history ($12 million). The Seahawks traded Harvin to the New York Jets last October.
“In the locker room, I feel you always want to handle things man to man,” Harvin told ESPN, “which is kind of what I’d done in the Doug situation. But that ended up turning to backfire.”
The first question Baldwin received Thursday about Harvin didn’t come until well into his interview session.
“Dang, it took you all a while to get to that,” Baldwin said with a smile.
“Honestly, I didn’t know he felt that way. I thought we’d squashed it before he left,” Baldwin said of Harvin. “I’ve got no hard feelings toward him. I wish him the best of luck.”
Baldwin said again, as he did in a Facebook post Tuesday, that this is the best and deepest receiving unit he’s played with at any level. Baldwin continued his praise for the route-running and poise of Lockett, saying “he’s a lot more polished than I was as a rookie.”
That, of course, makes sense. Lockett is a third-round draft choice from Kansas State for whom Seattle traded four picks to move up in the draft to get. Baldwin came out of Stanford undrafted in 2011.
“Phenomenal. He’s my rookie, so he takes good care of me,” joked the Seahawks’ No. 1 wide receiver. “Nah. He’s a phenomenal kid, hard worker.
“The camp knows he can be really special — not only as a punt returner, but as a receiver on this team. He has the explosiveness. He’s got the speed. He’s got the savvy. And he has the work ethic. Naturally, you just want to be close to someone like that because you know they can do anything they put their mind to.
“His coaches at K-State did a really nice job preparing him for the NFL. Obviously, himself, he did a nice job preparing himself for the NFL.”
EARL THOMAS NOT BACK JUST YET
Earl Thomas came off the physically-unable-to-perform list Wednesday. But he didn’t come back to practice Thursday. He spent the morning watching drills in his jersey, without his shoulder pads and helmet.
NFL rules say those players off the PUP list must sit out one practice day, can be in a helmet for days two and three, and can begin full participation on the fourth practice day. That for Thomas would be on Monday, after a scrimmage Saturday and a team day off Sunday.
Thomas had shoulder surgery Feb. 24. The fact he’s off the PUP list with five weeks to go before the opener at St. Louis is a strong indicator that Thomas will extend his streak of consecutive starts to begin his NFL and Seahawks career to 91 regular-season and postseason games.
FILL-IN EXCITED THAT THOMAS IS RETURNING
The man taking Thomas’ free safety spot while the All-Pro has been watching is third-year man Steven Terrell. Terrell said Thursday he is ecstatic, not upset, that his time on the starting defense apparently will be ending soon.
“Oh, absolutely not. I’m not selfish,” Terrell said. “I learn so much from Earl. It’s about being the best me. He helps me so much.
“I’m trying to be the best me.”
FRANK CLARK GOES BACK TO SCHOOL
Top rookie draft choice Frank Clark, the pass rusher from Michigan, got stopped a couple of times by starting right guard J.R. Sweezy on spin moves in a one-on-one, pass-rushing drill.
After practice, Clark said fellow end Michael Bennett is working on expanding Clark’s repertoire.
“He’s told me that a lot of moves I used to use in college I can’t use anymore,” Clark said. “So I have to use new moves, or tweak moves.”
Clark continues to get a lot of snaps as an inside pass rusher over the guards in nickel defense, as Bennett did successfully for the Seahawks last season, including in the Super Bowl.
The rookie said it’s the first time he’s rushed from inside, and that it’s a noticeable difference in how much more quickly guards such as Sweezy are all over him, engaged in pass protection at the snap.
Getting off the ball and starting his pass-rush move immediately after the snap is something Clark will be working on all season, it seems.
Baldwin had one of the best plays of practice. He ran from the middle of the end zone to the right sideline, lunged and caught Russell Wilson’s pass with one arm and hand on a goal-line rollout for a score. That ended a 2-minute drill. … In that drill, Lemuel Jeanpierre was the first-team center and Alvin Bailey was the left guard. It continues to look like that’s how Seattle will open the season. … DT Jordan Hill got a lot of snaps as the first-team nose tackle and sliced into the backfield multiple times. He is all the way back from a calf injury in early January. That cost him all of last postseason. … WR Jermaine Kearse leaped inside rookie CB Tye Smith, the fifth-round pick, and pulled down a pass by Tarvaris Jackson. Kearse completed the catch while falling on his back into the end zone. … The team’s practice Friday will run from 10-11:15 a.m., about 45 minutes shorter than usual. It likely will be lighter, with the fuller scrimmage coming on Saturday.