Yesterday, we wrote about five players (which turned out to be six) whose stock has risen during OTAs.
Here are thoughts on five more players who appear to have helped themselves during OTAs (in no particular order other than that, well, there has to be an order):
1, CB Tharold Simon: Simon, a fifth-round pick last year out of LSU, is another for whom the biggest thing right now is simply being on the field. He missed last season dealing with a pre-existing foot injury, that also caused him to miss all but just a handful of practices and other workouts. So as defensive coordinator Dan Quinn said on Monday, Simon now is “almost like getting another draft pick for us this year.” The caveat in any discussion right now for any of the young players is that it’s still really early. But the good news is that the Seahawks can finally start getting, what coach Pete Carroll always likes to say, “information” on Simon. Quinn said Monday the early returns have been encouraging. “When you stand next to him you see how tall Tharold is (he’s listed at 6-2). I wasn’t quite sure what his speed was until we got the chance to see him out here and run with some of the guys on offense who can really go. To see him staying on top and playing you can feel his speed. For him to be out here playing pain-free and playing fast, we’re really encouraged.”
2, QB Terrelle Pryor: Pryor remains one of the real curiosities on Seattle’s roster considering that they traded a seventh-round pick despite appearing to have a set starter and backup at quarterback. Early rumors were that maybe he would try receiver or another position. But there is zero evidence that has ever happened, or is in the works. Instead, he’s been merely a quarterback. Monday, he shared snaps with Russell Wilson with Tarvaris Jackson absent, and while still not as consistent as ideal, appeared to have his best day of OTAs.
And afterward, offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell had this to say about Pryor: “I think the thing that’s impressed me the most is just how he’s worked. You hear things and don’t know quite know anything about him but kind of the reputation he has before. Coming in, he’s done a really nice job of spending time here in the building. Spent time with Russell. Spent time with his coach. He’s working really, really hard to get it. There are a lot of good things that are happening out here. Sometimes just being able to spit the play out in the huddle can be a challenge and that hasn’t been a problem for him. He’s been able to rip right through it. He’s picking up the offense really well. Out here, he’s executing pretty well for us. We kind of like what we see. He’s a big tall guy, rangy. He runs really well. Can throw the ball. We’re still just kind of feeling out what’s gonna be his best stuff so if something happens where he’s on the team, or something happens where he’s playing, then we want to make sure we have an idea of what we need to do with him.”
Could Pryor really beat out Jackson and be the backup? If there’s any organization in the NFL that you’d “never say never” about anything it might do, it’s the Seahawks. Next week’s mini-camp figures to tell a lot more.
3, DB Terrance Parks: Parks, signed as a free agent in the off-season after spending last season in the CFL and the year before that with the Chiefs, though never appearing in any games, is listed as a cornerback on the roster, but of late has been spending a lot of time at free safety, a spot where the team needs a backup to Earl Thomas with the departure of Chris Maragos. Parks and undrafted free agent Dion Bailey have each been playing a lot there with the backup units, and each have caught the eye of the team’s coaching staff. The 6-2, 218-pound Parks has size that makes him especially intriguing.
“He is someone who is really playing fast and with speed,” Quinn said after Monday’s practice.
Asked if the team signed Parks with an eye toward corner or safety, Quinn said: “We thought corner and safety. He’s played corner some in the CFL and then played safety in college (at Florida State) and coming up. So he’s another one of those guys that we tried to say ‘well, does he have more than one position he can play’ and we’ve tried him at both. And what a bright football guy to be able to play two positions and learn the defense in that way. Sometimes you can just tell when a guy, how hard they are trying to work and the hunger they have. He’s one of those guys that have jumped out to me.”
4, DL Greg Scruggs: Scruggs was on the fast track to playing time as a rookie in 2012 before a knee injury cost him all of last season. Now healthy, he’s one of several players the team really needs to break through this year and help replace the depth lost with the departures of Red Bryant, Chris Clemons and Clinton McDonald. Seattle’s not really alone in valuing versatility up front. But much of the success of the line last year was based on the ability of most of the players to play more than one spot. And so far, Scruggs has shown that during OTAs, lining up at the five-technique end spot in the base defense, and at the three-technique tackle spot in passing situations. “The thing I noticed most about him is that he has the ability to play more than one spot,” Quinn said Monday. “In base, we can put him at defensive end and in nickel we can put him at defensive tackle. It’s good to see him back out here.”
5, WR Arceto Clark: Clark, a second-year receiver who spent last season as one of the guys shuttling back and forth on the practice squad all season, has consistently made plays throughout OTAs when given the chance. He caught a practice-ending TD from B.J. Daniels on Monday, and Seahawks. com named him the offensive player of the day for Tuesday’s OTAs. With 12 receivers on the roster competing for what is almost certainly no more than six spots — and most of this six seeming locked up with vets or draft picks — Clark is a long shot to make it. But he appears to be doing what he can to hang around a while.