A relatively uneventful practice on an otherwise gorgeous day up here in Renton.
Matt Hasselbeck was at practice, but did nothing in team drills except for hold his helmet and observed. Offensive coordinator Greg Knapp didn’t seem too worried about it.
“Last week he didn’t practice on Wednesday and had, in my opinion, a pretty good game considering the pass rush we had coming at us and what he did efficiency-wise. Of course as a coach, we want him to get as many reps as possible,” Knapp said. “Because of his experience, it’s not as big of concern when it’s just Wednesday. As long as he’s back Thursday and Friday I’m ok.”
Offensive tackle Sean Locklear showed up to the first part of practice and did some individual work, but went back inside during team drills. To me, that’s not a good sign. If he can’t make it through a relatively light practice on Wednesday, I don’t see how he’ll be ready for Sunday. Knapp kind of quelled some of the optimism that head coach Jim Mora had about Locklear in the morning press conference.
“He can come back, but realistically to have him start and play would be hard to ask of him and I don’t think would be fair to him,” Knapp said. “He could possibly be the third guy for us. We want to see him the next two days and evaluate his practice and see how does he recover from a full practice.”
I would say it could be even a possibility that Locklear might not be ready to be the third guy on Sunday.
To prepare for that, Rob Sims did some work at left tackle today as well, and he’ll be the emergency third tackle if Locklear can’t go.
Will Herring did some light individual work without pads, but was limited the rest of the practice.
Ken Lucas was dressed out, but did very little. Marcus Trufant worked as the starter.
WR Ben Obamanu and FB Justin Griffith didn’t practice. Obo has an oblique strain and Griffith was excused from practice for no specified reason.
WR Deion Branch made a nice one-handed catch, drawing some hefty praise from teammates. Branch spoke to the media about his in-game comment.
“It’s a big misunderstanding,” he said. “What you are hearing is not coming from me, I just want to win, I want to play. That’s the bottom line. When you are 2-5, a lot of stuff you hear may sound different, but the meaning is not that.”
Branch was asked about his role with the team as the third receiver and if that was an issue, and he said he doesn’t care if he catches one or two balls per game as long as the team wins. And he also said that if it was that big of an issue, he would have made a big deal of it in training camp.
I have no idea what Branch meant with his comments. They are relatively nebulous and open to intepretation. If the Hawks are 5-2 instead of 2-5, few would really care what he said. But this is what we’ve been reduced to talking about because the on-field performance has been so bad at times.
As for Louis Rankin, who apparently has become the next Marcus Allen, in the last week, he looked okay at times. He saw plenty of reps at running back. Knapp said that Forsett will remain the third down back and the Rankin will back up Jones. As for the one series per half, Knapp said that would be determined. It will mainly depend on when Jones need a break.