Clayton: An emerging No. 2 WR, a TE to watch and more Seahawks takeaways
As the final offseason practices of the Seahawks conclude, the heat is increasing.
They are talking about a 90-degree day Wednesday in the next-to-last practice of minicamp. But along with the heat, the competition for roster spots and playing time increases.
Let’s review what we learned at the Seahawks’ first minicamp practice Tuesday.
• Tight end Jacob Hollister is making a strong bid for a roster spot and possible playing time. Hollister came to the Seahawks in a draft day trade for a 2020 sixth-round pick. Looking at how thin the New England Patriots are at tight end after the retirement of Rob Gronkowski, Hollister should have been retained by Bill Belichick.
At New England, Hollister was a flex tight end, used more as a pass-catcher than a blocker. What he has shown for the Seahawks is that he has great speed. In college he ran a 40-yard dash in 4.55 seconds. Over the past couple of years, he’s actually gotten faster. Not only that, but he runs excellent routes and catches about everything thrown to him.
• Tight end Will Dissly is right on schedule to come back from his patellar tendon injury. Pete Carroll said the Seahawks will have to decide at the start of training camp whether to put him on the physically unable to perform list. That’s almost a lock, but Carroll added that they might get Dissly off the list a couple of weeks into training camp and get him ready for the regular season.
• One injury of concern is a sports hernia surgery for rookie linebacker Ben Burr-Kirven. There is a decent chance Burr-Kirven might be healthy for the start of training camp, as those operations take about four to six weeks to make a recovery.
• Perhaps the best sight at Tuesday’s practice was defensive tackle Jarran Reed. For the first time this offseason he wore a helmet and took part in most of the early drills. Reed moved well and is in excellent shape. He had his own sports hernia surgery around the same time the Seahawks traded Frank Clark the week of the draft. It appears Reed will be ready for full service at the start of training camp.
• Carroll said he is confident linebacker Mychal Kendricks will be with the team this year. There is no word when his sentencing hearing is going to be scheduled, but there is a growing chance that nothing might be scheduled until after the season. Kendricks missed a couple of practices because of a pectoral injury suffered while weight lifting but he’s in good shape and has practiced well, according to Carroll.
• Fourth-round choice Phil Haynes continues to make a strong push at guard. He filled in for Mike Iupati, who missed a couple of practices because of minor foot injury. Haynes has moved ahead of Ethan Pocic and Jordan Simmons for playing time in practice.
• Russell Wilson is having his best camp. You can see he has spent a bunch of time with quarterback coaches working on how he sets up before he passes. A couple years ago when the offensive line broke down and forced him to scramble, Wilson had to open up the way he threw and wasn’t as accurate. Now, he’s doing the things great pocket passers do.
His stance is more compact, and he’s able to set his feet and throw with more accuracy and speed. The two biggest improvements he has made are long passes to his left and hard, short throws in the middle of the field.
• Jaron Brown is starting to look like the second best wide receiver on the team. He’s making more plays than ever. The order for the receivers from first to fourth is shaping up to be Tyler Lockett, Brown, David Moore and D.K. Metcalf.