As you can imagine, we have lots of news to report after the Seattle Seahawks first training camp practice this morning.
The players had a lively, enthusiastic crowd to perform in front of here at the VMAC, which fueled a pretty competitive practice.
But first let’s get to the news. Offensive lineman James Carpenter (knee), receiver Jermaine Kearse (foot) and cornerback Walter Thurmond (leg) were placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list to begin training camp.
Initially we were told that receiver Sidney Rice also was on that list, but that was corrected and the South Carolina product did practice today, albeit in a red jersey, which means he cannot be involved in contact.
Seattle head coach Pete Carroll said that he still wants to protect Rice as much as he can coming off the two shoulder surgeries this offseason.
Carroll said Kearse is healthy but needs to improve his conditioning.
And contrary to some reports out there, the Seahawks have not made a decision on whether or not Carpenter will play this season after ACL knee surgery in December.
Carroll said that Carpenter has not suffered a setback, but because of the seriousness of his injury the team is just taking a conservative approach to his rehab, and they will continue to evaluate him through training camp.
Carroll said that it could be another four to six weeks before Thurmond sees the field.
Lynch mum on DUI arrest
Coming off of his recent DUI charge, running back Marshawn Lynch was at practice today, but did not talk to reporters afterward.
Carroll said that he has been in contact with the league, but could not speak specifically about the situation.
“Marshawn and I have been on the topic since the first day of it,” Carroll said. “And we’ve had very good communication about it. There’s a process going on that we really can’t even talk about it. But I’m pleased with the way he’s worked with us, so we understand what’s going on.”
Carroll had this to say about his initial reaction to hearing about Lynch’s situation.
“We’re always concerned and disappointed when anybody gets into any kind of trouble of any kind,” Carroll said. “I didn’t know the facts or anything about it. We talked our way through it and understand it. And I was pleased the way we interacted so that we could be on top of it.
“So we’ll make it through.”
Carroll also said that he believes that rookie running back Robert Turbin can be a 20-carry back if Lynch is not available to begin the year.
For what it’s worth, Lynch appears in shape and looked explosive during team drills.
Carroll sets timetable for QB decision -- but won't say when
Carroll said that he has a rigid schedule to adhere to in making a decision on who will be his starting quarterback this season in the three-way battle between Tarvaris Jackson, Matt Flynn and Russell Wilson – but he’s not telling anybody.
“We’ve got a big-time formula that we’re unveiling as we go, with the reps and how we do it, and the timing and the patience that it’s going to take to make really good decisions here” Carroll said. “And this is just the first step. We’ve got a lot of things in mind that we want to get done.”
As expected, Jackson got the initial reps with the first unit today, with Flynn working with the second group and Wilson working with the third unit.
All three had positive moments and hiccups today, so from this reporter’s perspective no one jumped ahead this morning.
And Carroll agreed.
“There’s no reason to evaluate today,” Carroll said. “We’ll just go through it, add up some days and when we’ll start figure it out when we start to accumulate some reps.”
Flynn said not knowing a pecking order between the three quarterbacks makes it even more important to just focus on the task at hand each day.
Clemons pleased with new deal
Seahawks defensive end Chris Clemons discussed his new contract today, a reported three-year, $21 million deal.
Clemons said he’s happy to have the added security of the contract extension.
“It’s doesn’t secure everything,” Clemons said. “But it makes you feel better about how the team feels about you going into this next season knowing you don’t have to worry about free agency. So I’m pretty happy about that.”
* Ricardo Lockette, also known as Ch. 83 really showed up today. He had two catches on deep balls, although on the first one he was called for pass interference for pushing off. More important, Lockette made some nice grabs on out routes and comebacks, and appeared to be in the right spot most times today.
* As far as the young receivers, undrafted free agents Phil Bates made a couple nice grabs on comebacks.
* Third-year receiver Golden Tate also looked good today, making a nice grab on a deep ball from Tarvaris Jackson against Brandon Browner. Tate played a lot of split end today, and could be vying for the starting job opposite Sidney Rice.
* Seattle starting offensive line was Russell Okung at left tackle, Paul McQuistan at left guard, Max Unger at center, John Moffit at right guard and Breno Giacomini at right tackle. The second unit consisted of Frank Omiyale at right tackle, J.R. Sweezy at left guard, Lemuel Jeanpierre at center, Deuce Lutui at right guard and Paul Fanaika at right tackle.
* Seattle’s first nickel unit consists of Bruce Irvin and Chris Clemons at defensive ends, Jason Jones and Clinton McDonald at defensive tackles. K.J. Wright shifted to middle linebacker, with Leroy Hill at WLB and Roy Lewis at nickel back. And the secondary remained the same, with Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman at the corners, and Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas at the safety spots.
* Carroll said that Barrett Ruud has been cleared to play and is slowly working his way back on the field. The same goes for cornerback Byron Maxwell. Carroll said that trainers thought that Maxwell had a stress fracture on his leg, but he’s apparently been cleared to play and is working to get back into game shape. * Offensive tackle Allen Barbre was an excused absence today in order to tend to a family issue.