RENTON – The Seahawks have been penalized by the NFL for violations regarding how they conducted practices during the June minicamp, the league confirmed Tuesday. The penalties include fines of more than $300,000 as well as the loss of two minicamp practices in 2015.
The league did not confirm the fines, but another source did confirm an initial ESPN report that coach Pete Carroll was fined roughly $100,000 and the team another $200,000.
The league said in a statement “the violation was for permitting the club’s players to engage in excessive levels of on-field physical contact during the team’s 2014 mandatory minicamp for veteran players.’’
It’s believed the NFL’s investigation came after a practice June 18 when cornerback Richard Sherman and receiver Phil Bates got in a fight that capped a workout that was intense throughout. Immediately preceding the tussle, receiver Bryan Walters suffered a shoulder injury while diving for a ball as safety Earl Thomas closed in. The NFL is believed to have requested video of that workout and then concluded the Seahawks were allowing too much contact.
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The NFL’s collective bargaining agreement has strict guidelines on what is permissible during minicamp practices, stating: “There will be no contact work (e.g., “live” blocking, tackling, pass rushing, bump-and-run) or use of pads (helmets permitted) at minicamps.’’
It is the second time in three years Seattle has been penalized for violating offseason practice standards, also being cited for breaking rules regarding contact during organized team activities in 2012. They were docked two OTAs but not fined. USA Today reported the NFL regarded the Seahawks as a repeat violator and noted the NFL Players Association adopted a “zero-tolerance policy’’ toward violations of contact rules during its meeting in March.
The Seahawks had no comment on the penalty.
The NFL statement said the Seahawks “will forfeit (their) first two days of on-field double practices during (their) 2015 mandatory minicamp for veteran players and will be permitted a single 2½-hour on-field practice session on the final day of minicamp. Seahawks players will be paid for the canceled practice sessions.’’
Minicamps run for three days in mid-June.
Seahawks pare roster to 75
Seattle met the NFL’s deadline for cutting the active roster to 75.
Seattle placed veteran linebacker Heath Farwell, cornerback A.J. Jefferson and guard C.J. Davis on injured reserve, meaning all are out for the season. Farwell, Seattle’s special-teams captain the past two years, suffered a groin injury against Chicago and is expected to have surgery this week.
Seattle also waived as injured DT Michael Brooks, WR David Gilreath and LB Horace Miller and placed rookie defensive back Eric Pinkins on the reserve/non-football injury list.
Later, Seattle also waived linebacker Marcus Dowtin and claimed center Patrick Lewis off waivers from Jacksonville.
• Safety Kam Chancellor left practice early due to illness. Receivers Doug Baldwin and Percy Harvin did not attend due to excused absences.