RENTON — In the sixth practice of training camp and the second in pads, the Seahawks saw their first-round pick return to at least limited duty and also picked up a defensive tackle and a quarterback.
Here are notes, thoughts and impressions from the day:
Jordyn Brooks returns to the field
First-round pick Jordyn Brooks was a notable absence Monday, especially because no one knew for sure what his injury was.
Before practice Tuesday, coach Pete Carroll clarified the situation to say Brooks had “a little groin thing” that he described as “really slight.”
Still, Carroll said not to expect Brooks to practice in the afternoon and instead wait until after Wednesday’s day off for him to return.
But when practice began, Brooks was in pads and going through individual drills, appearing to indeed show the injury is slight.
Brooks, though, was held out of team drills — maybe that’s what Carroll meant about holding him out of practice.
Carroll said Monday that Brooks would have to have “a great camp” to have a chance to play early in the season — especially competing against veteran K.J. Wright for the weakside linebacker spot — and missing any significant time in early practices would obviously make that tough.
Assuming Brooks indeed comes back to full duty Thursday, a “great camp” appears still in reach.
Seahawks claim QB Danny Etling off waivers
Seattle made two roster moves Tuesday, including claiming quarterback Danny Etling off waivers from Atlanta.
The Falcons are Seattle’s first opponent Sept. 13, so maybe the Seahawks want to find out a little more about the Falcons, though there aren’t necessarily a lot of secrets between those two teams. Former Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn is Atlanta’s head coach and the two teams have played three of the past four years.
Seattle may instead be intrigued by Etling’s potential. He’s a 6-foot-3, 220-pounder who was a Patriots seventh-round pick in 2018 out of LSU (and yes, the Seahawks play the Pats in week two this year, so Etling could give a scouting report on them, too) and spent all of last season on Atlanta’s practice squad and active roster before he was waived (Etling was also on the league’s COVID-19/Reserve list for five days earlier in camp).
The 26-year-old has not appeared in a regular-season game but completed 17 of 31 passes for 193 yards in the preseason a year ago. He also ran 17 times for 115 times and is a versatile enough of an athlete the Patriots briefly tried him at receiver (he had an 86-yard TD run in the preseason for the Patriots in 2018).
His arrival gives Seattle four quarterbacks on its roster — Russell Wilson, Geno Smith and former Washington State standout Anthony Gordon.
Smith is the clear backup to Wilson at the moment, and Gordon has gotten few snaps in team periods in camp.
The question now is whether the Seahawks want to keep four quarterbacks in camp — it’s not easy to get enough reps for all four, and the focus is obviously on getting the top two guys as ready as possible — or if they will make another move soon.
Etling’s arrival puts Seattle at the roster limit of 80.
Seattle adds a defensive lineman
The Seahawks’ second move Tuesday was signing free-agent defensive tackle P.J. Johnson, a Lions seventh-round pick in 2019 who was waived and spent last year on the Chargers practice squad. The Chargers waived him this month.
The 6-3, 335-pounder played at Arizona and was an All-Pac-12 honorable-mention pick as a senior.
His addition gives Seattle depth at a spot that has been hit with injuries.
Seattle had just four tackles available for practice Tuesday with Poona Ford and Demarcus Christmas sitting out. Ford has been out the last two days with an apparent calf issue, and Christmas’ situation is unclear. He’s a second-year player who missed last season due to a back injury.
WR Cody Thompson is ‘part of the competition’
Early training camp practices, when there’s a heavy emphasis on keeping players as healthy as possible and defensive backs are limited in their ability to make plays on the ball, tend to favor receivers, who know they have a little more freedom than they would normally have to go up and get the ball.
That’s worth remembering when assessing receivers early on.
But one off-the-radar receiver who has made a good impression is Cody Thompson, who played at Toledo and spent much of last season on the Seahawks’ practice squad.
The 6-2, 205-pounder has flashed impressive athleticism (he had a 38.5-inch vertical leap at the 2019 NFL combine, sixth-best of all receivers) and dependable hands.
“He’s a really good route runner,” Carroll said Tuesday. “He gets out of his breaks really well, he’s made some big catches already in some clutch situations in practice. He’s off to a very good start. And so he’s just part of the competition right now.”
Seattle has nine healthy receivers with sixth-round pick Freddie Swain remaining out with a groin injury.
- Quinton Dunbar did not take part in team drills as Seattle continues to ease him in after his late arrival. But Carroll said he hopes Dunbar will begin doing more Thursday. Tre Flowers and Linden Stephens have gotten most of the reps at right cornerback with Dunbar out.
- Tight end Will Dissly did some long snaps during the early portion of practice, and he appears to be the emergency snapper if something were to happen to Tyler Ott.
- Also remaining sidelined is guard Phil Haynes with an undisclosed injury. He’s been expected to compete with Mike Iupati for the starting-left-guard spot.
- Carroll said running back Rashaad Penny continues to recover well after knee surgery last December but also said there remains on specific timeline for his return. Penny is on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list and indications remain he’ll be on that list when the regular season begins and have to miss the first six games.
- In another COVID-19-related concession, the Seahawks have yet to have outside officials at practice. Tuesday, some of the team’s staffers put on officiating shirts and threw a few flags, including general manager John Schneider, who manned the back-judge role and tossed his flag at least once.