Here's what we learned from the Seahawks' practice on Friday.
With Bob Condotta in Canton covering Kenny Easley’s induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, here are three observations from Friday’s training camp practice:
1. Earl Thomas still has the most unique celebrations on the team.
Remember last year when Thomas recovered a fumble and got flagged for hugging an official? Well, Thomas had a couple of other interesting celebrations during Friday’s practice.
In a one-on-one drill, receivers against defensive backs, Doug Baldwin made a leaping, sideways catch right in front of Thomas. It was a ridiculous play, and Thomas immediately hugged Baldwin, facemask to facemask, for a few seconds.
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So that was one celebration.
The other was after Thomas intercepted Russell Wilson in the end zone. He ran up the field, let out a yell and then jumped on the back of defensive lineman Michael Bennett, who didn’t see Thomas coming and fell to the ground.
You never know what you’ll see from Thomas on the field.
2. Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril still look really good rushing the passer.
Bennett and Avril have both been pretty dominant in one-on-one pass rushing drills against the offensive line, which either means they’re still really good, the offensive line is struggling or some combination of both.
Either way, Bennett and Avril look pretty much like they’ve looked the last several training camps, each of which led to impressive seasons for both of them. Nothing so far indicates that won’t be the same this season.
3. Jimmy Graham made a very Jimmy Graham catch.
Graham made a leaping jump-ball catch over a defender in the end zone, the exact type of play Graham is known for in the red zone. Granted, that defender was safety Jordan Simone, a long shot to make the team. Still, the catch was another reminder of Graham’s unique ability in those situations.
“It’s great to see Russ give him a couple opportunities to make some catches and learn the body language, the catch radius, all those things,” offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said. “That’s not to say we haven’t had that. But there’s always levels that you can take it to, and I think you saw the two plays that you had where you’re able to see that.”
Graham has been a productive and valuable part of the Seahawks’ offense, particularly in a full season last year. But there have been times when the Seahawks haven’t gone his way in the red zone, and Bevell was asked if he thought Graham was used as effectively in the red zone as he could have been.
“We’re using everybody,” Bevell said. “Can you say effectively? I mean, if you’re a fantasy guy, you’re probably not real excited about what was happening. But he’s in there, and we’re working to get him the ball. Can we be better at it? Yeah, that’s absolutely what we’re trying to do. We want to make him a big part of things, but there’s one ball. Doug wants to be a part of things. I could go on and on down the list.”