Notebook: Seahawks G D.J. Fluker talks training camp, O-line improvements
It remains to be seen exactly what the Seahawks have on defense — edge rusher Ziggy Ansah is likely weeks away from making a return to practice, defensive tackle Jarran Reed was dealt a lengthy suspension, and defenders can’t be as physical as they would normally be in a regular season contest. But on offense, Seattle has fewer questions.
Among the most consistent groups is the offensive line, which marks an interesting turnaround for a team that once boasted a defense full of of Pro Bowlers. Granted, there’s still improvement to be made up front, but left tackle Duane Brown said earlier this summer the Seahawks could have one of the best offensive lines in the league in 2019 — and during an interview Monday, Brown’s teammate said he agrees.
“If we all stay together and everyone stays healthy and everyone keeps gelling, I think we can be a great offensive line like the old Cowboys back in the day,” Right guard D.J. Fluker said. “We’ve got beef up front, we’ve got depth, guys that work hard… and I think that we’re coming along. We haven’t arrived, he haven’t done nothing yet until we play some games, but we’re becoming who we need to be.”
You can listen to Fluker’s entire post-practice interview with 710 ESPN Seattle’s Bob, Groz and Tom below.
Here are a few more notes from Monday’s training camp:
Play of the day
The biggest play of the day came from wide receiver DK Metcalf, which isn’t a surprise if you’ve been following Seahawks practices this offseason. The 6-foot-3, 227-pound rookie hauled in a deep pass from Russell Wilson in tight coverage. It’s exactly the type of play that Seattle has prided in big targets of the past, like Brandon Marshall and Jimmy Graham — and despite the criticism thrown at both of those players, their size, speed and strength made them nearly impossible to cover at times. It’s a skill that was on display Monday for Metcalf, and while he has yet to show it in a live game, he at the very least provides a younger, healthier version of those predecessors.
Metcalf wasn’t the only rookie to impress: ex-Oregon safety Ugo Amadi intercepted a tipped pass from Paxton Lynch for a pick-six.
Barton gets a shot with the ones
Rookie linebacker Cody Barton, who has spent the majority of camp playing with the twos at middle linebacker, took some first team snaps at strongside linebacker in place of Mychal Kendricks.
“No, it shouldn’t be (serious),” Norton said of Kendricks’ undisclosed injury. “He shouldn’t miss any major time.”
“It was cool, it was a good experience,” Barton said of the reps after practice. Barton played primarily middle linebacker at Utah, though isn’t unfamiliar with playing on the outside.
“They teach us here you’re X’s on the field,” Barton said. “You’re not just a Mike all the time. To be a good linebacker you have to play all the spots, you have to be interchangeable.”