Though an extended morning practice, the three Big Blogs are scarce on details. I'm just happy that starting Saturday I can begin again with first hand scouting, because this game of telephone has left me with its share of purple monkey dishwashers.
Roster-wise, the Seahawks placed Wesly Mallard on injured reserve with a knee injury and signed former UW cornerback Derrick Johnson -- who promptly injured himself and was getting his ankle iced on a cart.
Somewhere within this is a Zen kōan. Like, if two players are injured, but both suck, is it news?
There was a lot more team stuff today and less individual drills. On one passing drills, Ben Obomanu completely shook Kevin Hobbs and made a nice catch given that he was wide open. Hobbs redeemed himself later when he nearly picked off a pass intended for Courtney Taylor. He dropped it, but if he got it he would have gone the distance, to quote Field of Dreams.
It would be nice to know who threw those passes, minimum, to make any sense of this. Other important factors: The type of route, the type of coverage, the time in the pocket and whether he was under pressure. Anyway, I'm not sure if Obo has turned a corner or if his play is just being watched for after a strong showing on Saturday. Friday anyone?
Fullback Owen Schmitt laid a pretty stiff block on D.D. Lewis, blocking to open a hole for Justin Forsett.
Insider has Schmitt whiffing on a pass block. Seahawks Blog mentions a good run block. I would guess that's a decent summary of where Schmitt stands. A better run blocker than pass blocker that's still in the pacifier stage when it comes to rushing and receiving. I think the guy has a safe spot on special teams, so here's hoping he figures it out. I want to think Schmitt has more to show than he has, mostly because I think the guy loves football and is really suffering his sucky play.
Defensive end Baraka Atkins appeared to hurt himself during a goal-line drill. He was slow getting up and tended to by trainers.
If serious, this would be a blow. Atkins and his anticipated development is one reason I don't foresee a regression from Seattle's pass rush. To achieve that, he must, obviously, play, but also, he must grow a bit in the preseason. Anticipating snap counts against your own team is one thing, but achieving a quicker first step against foreign competition is the litmus test. As with all preliminary injury news, this is to be continued.
A little more from training camp MVP, Talkin' Hawks
PLAYER OF THE DAY
David Hawthorne. The rookie middle linebacker from TCU is battling for a spot on the practice squad, if not the 53-man roster, and this morning he came out swinging.
First, he beat rookie fullback Owen Schmitt on a blitz to force an incomplete pass. Later, he hit and drove 254-pound running back T.J. Duckett backward in a short-yardage drill.
The former horned frog is tough to get any info about. I look forward to watching him myself, because he's one member of the Hawks' roster I really know nothing about.
PLAYS OF THE DAY
Offense: Center Steve Vallos locked up 314-pound defensive tackle Brandon Mebane, providing Duckett the lane he needed to pickup the first down in a third-and-1 drill.
Obviously, I don't have to say that's all kinds of good. Especially for a player whose greatest limitation is his strength. Mebane is a powerhouse who demands double blocks, and if Vallos can do that once...well, it's a step. You can count on Vallos getting special attention throughout the preseason. Quietly, he might be making a run for the starting center job.