The Seattle Seahawks concluded their seventh day of training camp on Friday, just six days out from their first preseason game and six practices away from breaking camp.
Friday morning began with a reported addition, with the Seahawks signing defensive tackle Lord Hyeamang per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. The Seattle Times’ Bob Condotta later observed another newcomer on the defensive line, believed to be defensive end Ricky Ali’ifua.
If/when these roster moves are made official, Seattle would have to waive two players to make room on the 90-man roster.
There was no movement on the team’s PUP list on Friday, with Dontae Johnson, Dion Jordan, Ed Dickson and Clayton Wilson remaining out, while Frank Clark remains limited. As was the case Thursday, those five were joined by a host of players on the sidelines, and that’s where we’ll start.
- First, two new player sitting out on Friday: veteran defensive tackle Tom Johnson and UDFA Poona Ford. Neither absence has been elaborated on as of publishing, and may not be. For Johnson, it could simply be a veteran’s day off. However, any injury could explain the addition of Hyeamang and potentially Ali’ifua.
- After leaving practice early on Thursday, safety Mike Tyson sat out on Friday. His injury is still unknown. Tyson was joined on the sidelines by linebacker D.J. Alexander, Marcus Smith and Maurice Alexander. For Maurice Alexander, it’s his second consecutive day missed; for Smith, his third.
- Just a day after returning to the Seahawks, J.R. Sweezy was back on the practice field on Thursday. On Friday, Sweezy sat out practice. While the reason for Sweezy’s absence is unknown, he did say yesterday he was “Just looking forward to tomorrow,” so it’s safe to assume he wasn’t expecting to sit out Friday’s session.
- On a more positive note, wide receiver David Moore returned to practice, after sitting out the past two practices with a hip flexor issue. Moore’s camp started brightly, drawing praise from Russell Wilson, Pete Carroll and Brian Schottenheimer in different press conferences.
- With Alexander sitting out for a second consecutive day, the starting safety tandem remained the same: Bradley McDougald at strong safety and Tedric Thompson at free safety.
- Rasheem Green returned to practice following a one day absence, and immediately stepped back into the first team, with Smith, Jordan and Clark still banged up. He was joined on the edge by Barkevious Mingo, who has remained a constant as a pass rusher throughout camp, in a banged up position group.
- Finally, a day after being re-signed by Seattle, linebacker Josh Forrest was given reps with the first team defense. While we don’t know where he was lined up other than ‘outside,’ one would imagine he was filling in at SAM linebacker, with Mingo working heavily at defensive end.
Shaquem Griffin’s Press Conference
- Griffin’s presser opened with a question on how he feels he’s adjusting to the pros: “The only thing I’m doing is listening to my coaches, and they always say ‘Make sure you don’t make the same mistake twice,’ so I’m emphasizing that. Anything I mess up on, I make sure I don’t do the next day. I just pay attention to what my coach is telling me and I just follow the footsteps of the guys in front of me. With me doing that, I’m making more and more plays, and only thing I can do is keep doing what I’m doing.”
- Griffin was then asked how helpful Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright have been? “So helpful. They make so many sacrifices that a lot of vets that you see on other teams wouldn’t do. They come to the rookie meetings, they sit by you, they ask us questions, they tell us to go to the board. They make sure they ask us out on the field ‘Why are we thinking this way, why are we making this decision?’ So they kind of stay on top of everything, they make sure that they (are) pushing us as well as anyone else. When you have guys like that who are willing to make sacrifices and take their time away to help us, the only thing you can do is get better every day.”
- Towards the end of a short media session, Griffin was asked if he felt the past week of training camp has proved he belongs in the NFL: “Definitely not, definitely not. I got a lot to prove and I have to prove myself every single day. I never want to get comfortable with where I’m at. I’m blessed and happy to be here, but the work is not done. Far from done. I’m just here to learn more and be the best player and teammate I can be.”
Pete Carroll’s Press Conference
- Carroll’s presser opened with a question about what Brandon Marshall has shown: “He is a really gifted player. He’s got great experience, he’s a very savvy player. When you’re as big as he is, he’s a factor. That’s the same factor that you get with a big receiver, he’s got all that. He’s physical, he’s long, his instincts are terrific. He’s well traveled, but he’s benefited from those experiences. He’s got a wealth of background. So he’s a guy, when we get him right, and healthy, and out there, he becomes a factor for us because we know he can do some really special stuff. He and Russ have worked quite a bit together already, some in the summer as well, and already developing a mentality, attitude, chemistry that you need. It’s an exciting potential addition.”
- On whether he’s had to worry about all of the hype surrounding Shaquem Griffin: “I wasn’t worried about it, but I was aware of it. Right from the start, just trying to keep him level-headed, make sure he’s in connection with what he needs to focus on. There’s a lot going on. It’s a fantastic story, but right now he needs to play football and be all over it. So we’ve addressed that right from the start. You guys just saw him, I’m sure he did a nice job up here, he’s very poised. He’s a really bright football player, and I think his relationship with his brother — they have a real savvy way about them — that gives them a chance to be really good and competitive.”
- And how the process is going with Tre Flowers learning the kick step technique: “I’m really into it. The day he got here, we were already starting to talk about our stuff and how we’re doing it. He’s been really receptive. He’s been receptive mentally and also physically, his ability to make things look the way they’re supposed to look. He’s really on a good track right now. I love the background that he had. Played three and a half years, starting safety at OK State and they did a lot of stuff. He’s been all over the field, made tackles, he’s blitzed, and he’s covered, and he’s done everything. All of that adds to his makeup and his background. So he’s very comfortable in different situations, whether it’s man-to-man or zone, and as he gets moved around the field some. It’s been really positive.”
- On whether there’s more players looking to Wagner, with Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor and others gone: “I don’t think there’s any doubt. I don’t think there’s any question that he’s a focal point for this football team. He’s just a great leader. He has always been that, now there’s more focus because he’s really the voice. Between he and K.J., we have tremendous leadership. Their guidance and the way they perform, and practice, and prepare, and the mindset and mentality — all of that is so, so on point. I really give credit back to Kenny (Ken Norton Jr.) when he had those guys, he brought ‘em up back in the day — seemed like a long time ago — but back in the day when he was raising those guys, he really raised them to be leaders and be out front and have the perspective, that leadership he calls for. Those guys are all over it.”
- Finally, on how the quarterbacks behind Russell Wilson are performing: “Austin’s been really solid. I think it’s been really hard for Alex (McGough) to get going. He’s been struggling, it’s been hard for him. We’re a very high tech offense, there’s a lot going on, and he hasn’t been able to get back to where he was in the offseason. We’re giving him a lot of work and it’s going to come. We’ve seen a lot of good stuff from him, but right now it’s hard on him.”
The Seahawks return to practice on Saturday afternoon, at 1 PM, ahead of a day off on Sunday.