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Seahawks training camp takeaways: Shaquem Griffin picks off Wilson, plus roster moves

Rookie linebacker Shaquem Griffin intercepted a pass during a goal-line drill. (AP)

The Seahawks kicked off their fourth day of training camp Monday. Highlights included a pair of deep touchdowns from Russell Wilson and an interception from rookie linebacker Shaquem Griffin. After practice, special teams coach Brian Schneider spoke about the league’s new kickoff rule.

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Here are a few takeaways:

Notable plays

Practice Monday included a pair of picks – one by cornerback Byron Maxwell and another from rookie linebacker Shaquem Griffin. Griffin picked off a pass from quarterback Russell Wilson during a 7-on-7 goal line-drill toward the close of practice and was immediately flocked by the rest of the linebacker group in celebration. The team posted a video of the play.

Wilson threw a pair of deep touchdown passes, the first to wide receiver Jaron Brown and the second to receiver Keenan Reynolds. The completions were a promising development as the offense looks to address a two-fold problem: first, the loss of wide receiver Paul Richardson, who was Wilson’s top deep target in 2017. And secondly, it’s a quick payoff from increased reps and growing chemistry between Wilson and a bevy of new or young receivers. Reynolds and second-year pro David Moore were both mentioned by offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer Sunday as young players who have been making a strong case for themselves in camp.

Mastering the kickoff

Special teams coach Brian Schneider fielded questions about the league’s new kickoff rule after practice, telling reporters that the team will glean more insight from their preseason contests (the first of which will be Thursday, Aug. 9).

“With three guys back you don’t know exactly how guys are going to do it, so it’s really going to be interesting,” Schneider said. “The preseason is going to tell you a lot not only about the kickoff stuff, but more where people are aligned and what schemes they’re running. So we have our own ideas and we try to study it a lot, but preseason is going to be big. Not only for what we’re doing, but for studying other people and seeing kind of what everyone’s doing.”

Roster moves

Linebacker Joshua Perry announced his retirement from football Monday afternoon. Noting that he had recently been diagnosed with his sixth concussion, Perry expressed concerns over the long-term effects of brain injuries.

“Football has been one of the biggest blessings of my life,” Perry wrote in a statement posted to Twitter. “But recent concerns about concussions and health of my brain have led me to step away from the game.”

To fill the roster spot vacated by Perry, the Seahawks signed free agent safety Lorenzo Jerome. Jerome, 23, spent time with the San Francisco 49ers last season as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Saint Francis, but was waived by the team in October.

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