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Seahawks training camp observations: Thomas Rawls returns, Christine Michael keeps plugging away, and a host of rookies standout on Tuesday

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NFL: Cleveland Browns at Seattle Seahawks Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Seahawks training camp is always a fun experience; Unlike a regular season game, its a more laid back atmosphere, tickets are cheap, and you may be lucky enough to interact with some of the players after practice. If you have never gone and are ever afforded the opportunity, I highly encourage you to do so. I had the opportunity to attend Tuesday’s practice and here are some notes I scribbled down while I was there.

  • Thomas Rawls participated in some individual drills early in practice. He looked smooth and ready to go. There were no visible signs of a past injury bugging him. The coaching staff has made it clear that they would be slow in easing in him and I think they were wise to do so. He looked really functional in the limited action he received.
  • Doug Baldwin sat out of practice again. I don’t think his injury is anything to worry about. However, it’s worth keeping an eye on. Unless you’re my girlfriend, you had eyes on him long enough today.
  • Jimmy Graham still has yet to come off the PUP list. Pete Carroll said after practice that “he’s right at the edge of coming back”. I would not be surprised if we saw Graham removed from the PUP list in the next couple of days.
  • As far as I saw, Kam Chancellor only participated in individual drills. The team is likely just being extra cautious with the veteran.
  • Kenny Lawler will likely need another year to bulk up. I had heard the reports of his skinny frame but it’s much more apparent in person. I don’t expect him to make the team his first year. Maybe they can sneak him to the practice squad.
  • On the other hand, Tye Smith has bulked up a noticeable amount from last year. Not only do I think he’ll make the roster but I think there’s a very good chance he steals the corner spot opposite of Richard Sherman and runs with it. I believe this will be a big year for the young cornerback.
  • Christine Michael had several explosive runs today. His footwork and cuts were a work of beauty. His overall demeanor, even just in practice, is completely different than his first stint with the team. His renewed focus and attention to detail is clearly apparent.
  • Rookie tight end Nick Vannett was a consistent target for Russell Wilson today. He made one really impressive catch on a seam route. Seattle drafted him with his blocking skills in mind but if he can have an impact as a receiver, this team will benefit significantly from his additional contributions.
  • Brandin Bryant was also incredibly impressive. An undrafted defensive tackle, Bryant has made quite a name for himself in training camp. Today, he continued to shine in several pass protection drills. A little undersized, but Brandin possesses a unique athletic ability and a skillset that Seattle might find useful in their interior pass rush.
  • DeShawn Shead had several nice pass breakups today. He will likely start at the corner position opposite of Sherman for the start of the season.
  • Jahri Evans started at left guard with the third team today. Jahri has played at right guard his entire career, Tom Cable was probably just trying to gain an insight into his versatility.
  • Bradley Sowell has been a bit of a good surprise in camp. Carroll said today that he was “competing for playing time to start”.
  • Wilson ripped off a long rushing touchdown on a read option. (I couldn’t possibly do a complete recap without reminding you that Wilson is amazing.)

Those were the things that most stood out to me on Tuesday. Now it’s just a matter of waiting and seeing how many of these observations become increasingly apparent as August and September roll by.