A week after suffering a left ankle injury against San Diego, offensive tackle Russell Okung had a helmet and cleats on as a limited participant in practice this afternoon.
Okung gingerly made his way through individual drills at the beginning of practice, including pass drops and some zone steps in the run game, but later did not participate in the team portion of practice.
He talked briefly with reporters after practice the injury.
“(I hope to get back) as soon as possible,” Okung said. “It’s coming around a lot faster than I thought it was, so I’m just waiting around.”
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Seattle head coach Pete Carroll said that that Okung is still a couple weeks away from being ready, and will not play on Saturday against Minnesota.
“We know that he’s maybe a week away, or two weeks away at the most,” Carroll said. “He’s able to do walk-through stuff. And he’s staying up with the all installations and the advances. So it feels good.”
However, Carroll would not fully commit to the expectation that Okung would be ready for Seattle’s regular-season opener at San Francisco in three weeks.
“We think he has a real good chance to do that, but I don’t know that,” Carroll said. “I won’t know until he gets back out. But he’s way ahead of the schedules that we have seen him on before. And that’s a great sign, so all the indications are he’ll have a chance to do that.”
Defensive lineman Red Bryant was a full participant in practice, and back to his old antics.
Bryant brought tight end Dominique Byrd to the ground about 10 yards down the field out in the flat in a zone blitz drop. That would have been okay if it was a live tackling drill – but it wasn’t. Players were in shorts and shells today.
About 15 minutes earlier Bryant clubbed third string quarterback Josh Portis in the back while rushing the passer in an attempt to knock the ball out of his hands. Red later patted Portis on the back as a way of saying ‘My bad.’
Carroll said Bryant will play on Saturday.
“I think when he tackled Dominique Byrd about 25 yards down field in a full-speed live tackle, we realized Red was officially back,” Carroll said.
Today also was the end of training camp, and Carroll again banged the drum for his behind the curve in terms of getting ready for the regular season due to the compressed time schedule because of the lockout.
“Everything we do is important,” Carroll said. “We haven’t had many breaks. We hadn’t had opportunities to do anything other than the stuff we’ve done. Our coaching staff feels good about, but we feel rushed. We do feel rushed, but it’s what it is.”
* Receiver Kris Durham (hamstring) made it through practice today and will get his first game action on Saturday.
* Receiver Ben Obomanu (shoulder) fully participated in practice but will not play on Saturday, Carroll said.
* Asked who would lead the team defensively with Lofa Tatupu and Lawyer Milloy gone, Carroll identified David Hawthorne, Earl Thomas, Chris Clemons, Marcus Trufant and Kam Chancellor as possibilities to emerge as leaders this season. Of those names, Chancellor is probably the most surprising because the 23-year-old did not play a prominent role on the team last year. “He is a terrific kid,” Carroll said about Chancellor. “And in time, give him some games in a season, he’s really going to be one of the voices of this group I would imagine.
* And with Matt Hasselbeck gone, on offense Carroll identified Tarvaris Jackson, Robert Gallery, Marshawn Lynch, Zach Miller, John Carlson and Sidney Rice as emerging leaders of that group. “The guy that I’m really anxious to see how he fits in is Sidney,” Carroll said. “Sidney is a great worker, and doesn’t say much. But the guys already are watching – you can just see them. They’re looking at him and watching what he’s doing.”
* Defensive back Walter Thurmond (ankle), defensive tackle Ryan Sims (knee), defensive end Chris Clemons (ankle), cornerback Kelly Jennings (head), defensive end Pierre Allen (unspecified), tight end John Carlson (shoulder) all did not practice today. Receiver Deon Butler (leg), defensive back Roy Lewis (knee), tight end Cameron Morrah (toe) and defensive tackle Colin Cole (ankle) also did not practice and remain on the Player Unable to Peform (PUP) list.
* The Seahawks waived cornerback Marcus Brown and re-signed University of Washington product fullback Dorson Bryce.