On Day Four of the Seahawks’ 2013 Training Camp, it felt a little more like football weather at the VMAC, with cloudy skies and a little wind blowing off the late.
It also appeared to be largely a day for the defense, as has been the norm through the first four days. For a couple of reasons that wouldn’t be unexpected — the defense was the best in the NFL a year ago and returns largely intact while the offense remains a little more of a long-term work in progress and also is still in the early stages of installing the playbook.
In what passes as the best news this time of year, there were no apparent new injuries on a day when the Seahawks again did some hitting, wearing helmets and shoulder pads.
“You’ve got to love having the pads on,” said quarterback Russell Wilson. “We hadn’t had the pads on (before yesterday) since the Atlanta game.”
Wilson said putting even just the shoulder pads on changes the dynamic quite a bit, particularly in the passing game with receivers knowing they can take a legitimate above-the-waist shot from a defender. Timing and catching the ball in traffic become more of a challenge.
Coach Pete Carroll did not meet the media today, so there were no specific personnel updates.
So instead I’ll pass along a few other notes and observations. …
— The players on the PUP list (notably Percy Harvin, Robert Turbin, Chris Clemons) all remain out. Also out today were LB Heath Farwell (back spasms), DT Jesse Williams (knee) and two new players on the list in DE Cliff Avril and OL Michael Bowie. We did not get an official explanation for Avril and Bowie. Avril, though, has been battling a foot issue since arriving in Seattle and likely was taking a rest day.
— The only player who appeared to suffer any injury that knocked them out of practice was cornerback Ron Parker, who left after suffering some sort of leg injury. But he stayed in pads watching from the sidelines.
— With Avril out (and Clemons already out) DEs were scarce, and that helped allow rookie undrafted free agent Benson Mayowa of Idaho to get some significant time working with the starting defense. The 6-3, 252-pound Mayowa was signed out of a rookie tryout camp in May and obviously is proving to be intriguing to Seattle coaches.
— Newly-acquired linebacker O’Brien Schofield has been assigned No. 93 and is on the roster but did not participate in practice, reportedly taking his physical while the practice was ongoing.
— Harvin did not appear to be at practice today.
— Fullback Michael Robinson, out the last two days with a sore ankle, returned.
— The offense seemed a little sloppy at times, including a few dropped passes. One player who caught a few, though, was rookie third-round draftee Chris Harper, who had two catches during a two-minute drill — something the team worked on a lot — as well as a couple others throughout the practice. Depending on how Harvin’s situation plays out, there could be more of an urgency for Harper to come on quickly.
— The team continues to appear to simply rotate at right guard with John Moffitt working with the first team today ahead of J.R. Sweezy. That battle figures to last a while. Paul McQuistan continues to work with the first team at left guard with James Carpenter still working his way into football shape.
— Not that the speed of safety Earl Thomas needs much more documenting at this point, but he put it on display again today in the kind of play that typified the defensive output today, coming from deep in the back end to close fast on a Wilson pass to tight end Luke Willson and bat it away.
— The NFL Network was out at practice today with a few different reporters, so expect to see some Seahawk stuff on there soon.
— The Seahawks will take Monday off before returning on Tuesday.
— Attendance today was listed at 2,825.
Finally, here is some video of Wilson’s post-practice meeting with the media: