Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Seahawks training camp reactions

By Kshell

That time of year has finally arrived which means football season is finally here. We are getting closer to dropping the Seattle Mariners from our lives until next April(thanks Jack Z!). The feeling when a football season is always great for those in the Northwest as we can shift our anger from the Mariners to hope of another football season. This year the Washington Huskies are hoping to build on their bowl win from last year, the Washington State Cougars are hoping to have their first winning season since 2003 and the Seattle Seahawks are hoping to defend their NFC West division championship. I'll focus on the Seahawks for this post as I went to their training camp practice Monday August 8th. Joining me was Tory Johnson who will be contributing to my blog in the fall on Cougars football. In this post I'll talk about my experience at the practice and share some observations.

At the practice what Tory and myself were watching for was our quarterback play. I felt Charlie Whitehurst and Tarvaris Jackson looked like crap to be totally honest. I felt Whitehurst foot work was horrible and Jackson didn't have much zip on his ball. I remember Pete Carroll having to run across the field just to coach those two up. I think the Seahawks have a good team but the quarterback position obviously is a huge question mark. I did like how after practice Whitehurst showed some leadership. Whitehurst for 30-35 minutes after practice was throwing routes to receivers trying to get better. Then he spent time signing several autographs. Both guys have ability just they don't have consistency at all. I think the Seahawks are drafting a quarterback in the top 10 of the draft next year.

I was impressed with our receivers. Just seeing Mike Williams and Sidney Rice those guys are just so tall. Especially Williams who catches everything. He would stick his hands out at the last minute and snatch the balls so easy. Williams was also jawing his head to the music which is a vast contrast from a year ago. A year ago Williams was a project who was a former NFL bust trying to make the roster. Now Williams is secure with his job and he won the Seahawks some games last year. I also noticed Golden Tate looked pretty good in the scrimmage he busted a fun long runs after catch. If the quarterbacks can get these guys the ball the Seahawks have some good receivers this year. Williams now as the #2 receiver is huge as I felt he was inconsistent last year but in the red zone look for him to be a big threat.

Then when practice ended players signed autographs. At first it was mostly players who weren't going to make the team. Then James Carpenter and Max Unger signed autographs but I just missed getting their autograph. Then Earl Thomas came out to sign which was pretty cool. I stuck my notebook out there three times for him and got passed over. Then finally I said "Hey Earl I'll give you a shoutout on twitter come on man", then he smirked and signed my notebook which was pretty cool. During practice Thomas looked so fast out there. Jackson tried to throw a bomb and Thomas ran it down for the interception. Thomas was a pro bowl alternate last year as a rookie and I expect him to be the first Seahawk to make the pro bowl since Julian Peterson in 2008. I just wished I had worn my Thomas jersey but oh well I got his autograph so did Tory on his hat. It was well worth the sun burn and the drive up there.

In conclusion, if your a big Seahawks fan or even an NFL fan these practices are pretty cool. You have music playing and it feels like an event while the players are so focused they just go on practicing like nothing is happening. I think what Carroll is doing with the team is a good thing create an environment full of distractions helps you prepare for the season. During an NFL game with the crowd, music and everything that goes with it is non stop distractions. This also gives the fans a chance to see the team practice at a cheap price($5 is all, parking is free). I had a fun time at practice and I hope the Seahawks do pretty well this year. The highlight of course was getting Earl Thomas autograph as he's going to be in Seattle for a long time.

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