Mini camp thread

Postby D-Trains on Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:43 am

Here is today's freebie courtesy of the Times;

The Seahawks open minicamp on Tuesday, and Earl Thomas won't be there. But elsewhere on the field, the offensive and defensive lines will be worth keeping an eye on this week.

Bob Condotta By Bob Condotta
Seattle Times staff reporter
The big story as the Seahawks open minicamp Tuesday will be the absence of free safety Earl Thomas.

Thomas revealed via Twitter Sunday that he will not take part in any team activities until he has a new contract. Barring a change of heart no one expects, that means Thomas will begin what will be the team’s first official holdout since Kam Chancellor sat out training camp and ultimately missed the first two games of the 2015 season (and third of the Pete Carroll era, the other being Marshawn Lynch in 2014. Chris Clemons also sat out minicamp in 2012 but agreed to a new deal in time for training camp).

But that won’t be all that’s worth monitoring as the Seahawks hit the field this week for the final time before taking off for the summer.

Here are a few other things to watch.

Will Frank Clark and Byron Maxwell show up?
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Like Thomas, Clark and Maxwell also skipped OTAs for voluntary reasons. But Carroll said Thursday he expects them to attend minicamp. True, Carroll also said that about Thomas. But it’s thought Clark and Maxwell will be in attendance.

Clark was apparently making a statement that he’d like a new contract sooner rather than later — he is entering the final season of his four-year rookie deal. It’s unclear if Maxwell, who signed a one-year, $2.2 million deal in April to stay with the Seahawks, was making a similar statement about his deal (possibly having hoped for more) or simply preferring to work out on his own (it’s thought the Seahawks were okay with giving a lot of reps at cornerback during OTAs to younger players such as rookie Tre Flowers, anyway).

But other than Thomas, the expectation is that the other 89 players will be reporting.

What will the safety position look like?
That Thomas is skipping minicamp — with the potential that he’s played his last game as a Seahawk — puts a little more of a spotlight on what the team’s secondary looks like.

Thomas, as noted, has not been around for anything so far. Without him, the Seahawks have typically gone with Bradley McDougald at free safety and Delano Hill at strong safety during OTAs (with Kam Chancellor also out and his future also unclear).

Tedric Thompson has typically been the backup free safety and the team likely envisions free agent Maurice Alexander (who has been limited during OTAs after having had offseason shoulder surgery) as another possibility at strong safety.

The only other listed safeties on the roster are Alex Carter and T.J. Mutcherson, each listed as free safeties.

The Seahawks, though, could consider also using 2017 sixth-round pick Mike Tyson some in safety roles — he was a safety and nickel in college but has been moved primarily to cornerback by Seattle.

What will the defensive line look like?
Maybe somewhat lost in the talk of Thomas and others who have not been there was the news last week that Dion Jordan had another cleanup knee surgery recently, apparently at least his fourth on a knee on which he suffered an ACL injury that caused him to miss the 2016 season.

The team expects Jordan to be ready for training camp in late July and if so, then maybe this isn’t a big deal.

But anything concerning Jordan’s health is worth watching as the team is counting on him to step in for the departed Michael Bennett at the left defensive end spot.

The absence of Jordan and Clark in OTAs had Seattle going with a defensive line during OTAs that typically had Branden Jackson working at left defensive end and Barkevious Mingo and rookie Jacob Martin at the right defensive end/LEO spot. Clark’s expected return for minicamp will bring a little normalcy to it. But Jordan being sidelined means it’ll take into training camp for what projects as Seattle’s starting defensive line to get a chance to work together.

Will the offensive line continue its continuity?

What remains one of the team’s biggest question mark in terms of its performance — the offensive line — has been a relative rock of stability so far in terms of its alignment.

Seattle entered the offseason with a presumed starting five of left tackle Duane Brown, left guard Ethan Pocic, center Justin Britt, right guard D.J. Fluker and right tackle Germain Ifedi.

All but Fluker — who sat out much of OTAs to rest his knee — have consistently worked as starters. Fluker joined them when he returned to workouts last week.

Minicamp thus looms as the most extended, serious work the offensive line will get working together this offseason and help lay a foundation for training camp.

As is the case with OTAs, players can wear helmets but they are not in full pads and no contact is permitted. So any assessments of the progress of the offensive line have to be somewhat measured. But the Seahawks are banking in part on experience and continuity in helping the offensive line improve from last season making mini-camp valuable.
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Re: Mini camp thread

Postby auroraave on Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:34 pm

this one time, at band camp... :P
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Re: Mini camp thread

Postby D-Trains on Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:51 pm

Mini camp update.

The return of Clark and Maxwell left Earl Thomas the only holdout as the Seahawks began their mandatory minicamp on Tuesday.

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Bob Condotta By Bob Condotta
Seattle Times staff reporter
While Earl Thomas made his holdout official when he skipped the first practice in the team’s mandatory minicamp on Tuesday, cornerback Byron Maxwell and defensive end Frank Clark were indeed back on the field.

Neither was made available to the media to explain why they had skipped OTAs (Organized Team Activities) but contract situations likely played a role, especially in the case of Clark, who is hoping for an extension and a significant raise as he enters the final season of his initial four-year rookie deal, which will pay him $943,938 this season.

Clark, though, didn’t do much between the lines Tuesday dealing with a nagging hamstring injury.

“Frank’s still got little problem – he’s got a little hamstring that’s been bothering him throughout the offseason,’’ Carroll said. “He hasn’t quite got it right so we’re holding him out. He got a little bit of work today.”

Carroll said the injury would have meant Clark “would not have been able to work full-go’’ during any of OTAs. But he said that was not entirely why Clark sat out. “That was part of it,’’ Carroll said, making clear there were other considerations.

Maxwell had no health issues, working fully throughout the practice and with the first team at right cornerback when the first team defense took the field for the first time, with Shaquill Griffin on the left side, a cornernback alignment that will likely be the team’s starting cornerback pairing in 2018.

Maxwell re-signed with Seattle in late April to a one-year, $2 million deal, finally inking a contract that had apparently been on the table for a while.

As Maxwell took the field Tuesday, he did so with a jersey on which was written the word “Boost’’ over his name. Since Maxwell was not made available to the media, though, the meaning was left a mystery.

Dontae Johnson, signed as a free agent to add depth at cornerback, was not present having suffered a broken foot 10 days ago, Carroll said, and having had surgery.

“He’s in a boot and recovering,’’ Carroll said. “Had a little surgery to get that fixed up.’’

Johnson originally a fourth-round pick out of North Carolina State in 2014, started all 16 games right cornerback last season for the 49ers.

Carroll said receiver Doug Baldwin will be rested during minicamp after having taken part in all of OTAs and having what he called “a fantastic offseason.’’

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That means more snaps for some of the team’s younger receivers, particularly those who can play Baldwin’s usual slot position. And on Tuesday taking the most advantage was recent free agent signee Keenan Reynolds, a former quarterback at Navy who was a sixth-round pick by the Ravens in 2016 but has yet to play in an NFL game.

Reynolds made a handful of highlight-reel plays including a one-handed grab down the sidelines.

“Keenan had a really good day,’’ Carroll said, adding he had talked to Reynolds beforehand about understanding he would get more snaps with Baldwin being rested.

“Talked to him that this is a pretty good opportunity for the next couple of days here,’’ Carroll said. “. …. He lit it up today. I was really excited for him. He’s a great kid. You can see why he was a leader and a big-time player (scoring an NCAA record 78 touchdowns at Navy) and all of that. He’s going to make a bid to see where he fits in.’’

Another veteran receiver also out is Brandon Marshall, who was signed in late May. The team appears to be letting Marshall rest through the offseason and get ready for training camp after having had ankle and toe surgeries last fall.

— Kicker Sebastian Janikowski, who did not attempt any field goals during the OTAs that were open to the media while resting a hip issue, was back on the field Tuesday and at one point hit a 53-yarder that easily cleared the crossbar. Intriguingly, Janikowski made his kicks out of the hold of veteran punter Jon Ryan while Jason Myers — who is also battling for the vacant kicking spot — made his attempts out of the hold of rookie punter Michael Dickson. Dickson, a fifth-round pick out of Texas, has been widely expected likely to unseat Ryan for the punting job. But holding is also a prime responsibility for the punter and the team using Ryan to hold for Janikowski — generally considered the leader for the kicking spot due in part to a $600,000 guarantee — gives credence to Carroll’s assertion last week that it will take a while to sort out the punting situation.

— D.J. Fluker, limited for much of OTAs with a knee issue, got some significant work with the first-team line at right guard. The rest of the starting OL was as it has been throughout OTAs — left tackle Duane Brown, left guard Ethan Pocic, center Justin Britt and right tackle Germain Ifedi. Intriguingly, when Fluker did get some rest, his replacement at right guard with the first team was typically Willie Beavers and not Jordan Roos, who had filled that role during most of OTAs. Beavers signed as a free agent last year and spent time on the practice squad but was a fourth-round pick of the Vikings in 2016 and appeared in two games that year for Minnesota.
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Re: Mini camp thread

Postby Michael K 2 on Wed Jun 13, 2018 11:29 am

Weird, a guy that skipped OTAs and everything "voluntary" is now struggling with a hamstring issue. That never happens. :roll:
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Re: Mini camp thread

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Re: Mini camp thread

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