Greetings from Seattle. Let's quickly catch up with yesterday's news.
Chris Spencer was carted off the field. That hurts. That hurts until fate screams "Psyche!" and we learn Spencer's ankle is probably not seriously damaged and that Spencer suffered a common ankle sprain and not a high ankle sprain. A common ankle sprain occurs when one or more ligaments of the ankle is hyperextended inward. Try turning your ankle inward and you'll notice you have some small range of motion. A high ankle sprain involves a hyperextension outward. It involves the syndesmotic ligament and is typically more severe. This should not be a major injury.
Clare Farnsworth covered Seattle's scrimmage at Husky Stadium. He reports Nate Burleson was the star, but Jordan Kent had the shining moment.
In a practice laced with big catches, Jordan Kent saved the best for last. On the final play of the evening, Kent used his body to shield cornerback Marquis Floyd and then made a one-handed grab in the left side of the end zone of a pass that No. 3 QB Mike Teel put where only Kent had a chance at it.
"I knew he was going to throw a jump ball to the outside," Kent said. "Mike put a great ball up there and I was able to get good position and jump up and make a good play."
I can group both players into the same analysis, with a little extra on Kent. Receivers making great catches in practice, scrimmage, and for some, the preseason, is the equivalent of a great batting practice bat. Receivers are supposed to catch passes when they are uncovered or laxly covered, or for a player like Kent, unlikely to be run over by a screaming Donte Whitner with bad intentions. So, grain of salt, Merkers mine of salt, Pacific Ocean of salt.
Thinking of Kent sparked a brief internal debate. Seattle drafted Jordan Kent in the sixth round of the 2007 NFL Draft. Tim Ruskell knew Kent was not likely to contribute that season. Given his inexperience, succeeding as a role player in his second season would have been encouraging progress. Kent didn't do that, but he has shown flashes and he has shown steady progress. The talent is and always will be amazing. Kent is 6'4" and change, claims a 4.4 forty and long jumped 25' 1 ¼" as a high school junior. That bested Mel Renfro's 41-year old record by a full foot. You know, Mel Renfro, 10 time Pro Bowl pick, five time All-Pro and Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrined cornerback Mel Renfro. That one. By a foot. As a junior. Standing 6'4".
So if Kent is on his way, and he's only a shade over two years into his pro football career and has shown incremental if not sufficient progress, can you seriously cut him? Maybe. But, if Seattle keeps him and he does nothing more than fill a spot and suck on special teams, as Chris Rock once said: I understand.