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Sunday in Hawkville: Bobby Wagner returns with a bang

Posted Aug 11, 2013

A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for July 11, when the Seahawks held the final Sunday practice at their training camp presented by Bing.

PLAYS OF THE DAY

Defense: On a third-and-goal play from the 8-yard line, Russell Wilson’s pass was heading toward the hands of Sidney Rice in the end zone. It never got there, however, because middle linebacker Bobby Wagner – with an assist from All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas – made a lunging deflection and forced the No. 1 offense to settle for a field goal.

YOU DON'T SAY

“It’s a little bit of a love/hate kind of thing. I love them for taking care of me and being patient with me, but I hate them for taking so long.” – RB Robert Turbin, on sitting out the first 12 practices as well as the preseason opener

“Earl kind of called it out. He knew something was going to come behind me,” said Wagner, who was back after missing seven practices because of a sore shoulder. “It’s just that communication and chemistry that we’re trying to build.” 

Offense: Luke Willson once again showed why he was selected in the fifth round of April’s NFL Draft. The 6-foot-5 rookie tight end got a step on linebacker Malcolm Smith and made an over-the-shoulder catch of a Wilson pass. And it came on a free play because the defense had jumped offside.

“I just kind of took it over the top and Russell made an incredible throw,” Wilson said.  “I mean, you can’t ask for a better throw than that and I was able to make a play.”

It was just the latest example of “Get open, and Wilson will get you the ball.”

“It’s pretty incredible,” Willson said. “He just dropped that, literally, right over the linebacker and right onto my back shoulder. It was great.”  

Special teams: Another “fire” play by punter/holder Jon Ryan, and on the final play of practice.

Facing a fourth-and-18, a field-goal attempt was in order. But Ryan took the snap and ran around the right end for a 6-yard gain before being pushed out of bounds by 323-pound Red Bryant.

ROSTER ROULETTE: DONAVON KEMP SIGNED

Wide receiver Donavon Kemp was signed and practiced with the team. In fact, he caught a 32-yard pass from QB Brady Quinn during the 7-on-7 drill.

The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Kemp went to camp with the Cowboys last summer after being signed as a rookie free agent, but he tore the ACL in his left knee in August. He was released by the Cowboys on Thursday.

Kemp fills the spot on the 90-man roster that opened when wide receiver Early Doucet was released on Wednesday.

INJURY REPORT: ROBERT TURBIN PRACTICES FOR FIRST TIME

Robert Turbin practiced for the first time, after beginning camp on the physically unable to perform list because of a foot injury and then sitting out practice even after he passed his physical last week.

“It was great to have him out. We’ve missed him,” coach Pete Carroll said. “He’s been just champing at the bit. He had such a good first year and he’s a real big part of the young group on this team. I’m excited that he’s back out there, and he looked really good today.”

Also back were All-Pro center Max Unger, on a limited basis; Rice and Wagner.

But rookie running back Christine Michael (back spasms), defensive lineman Jaye Howard (shoulder), rookie defensive end Ty Powell (undisclosed) and wide receiver Perez Ashford (undisclosed) joined a lengthy group of sidelined players that also includes wide receiver Bryan Walters (undisclosed), cornerback Ron Parker (hamstring), defensive ends Cliff Avril (hamstring) and Bruce Irvin (groin), guard James Carpenter (foot), tight end Darren Fells (hamstring) and defensive lineman Tony McDaniel (groin).

Carroll said it could be a couple of weeks before Carpenter can return.

STATS ’N STUFF: TARVARIS JACKSON NFL’S TOP-RATED PASSER

UP NEXT: PRACTICE ON MONDAY; HOME OPENER ON SATURDAY

The players will practice on Monday morning, which was originally an off day for them. But they’ll now get Tuesday off and then practice Wednesday – the final session open to the public – before camp breaks after practice on Thursday.

After practicing on Friday, the Seahawks will play their preseason home opener on Saturday night against Peyton Manning and the Broncos at CenturyLink Field.

Today’s practice attracted a crowd of 2,625.

It’s only one game, and a preseason opener at that, but Tarvaris Jackson is the NFL’s top-rated passer (158.3). That will happen when you complete 8 of 9 passes for 128 yards and two touchdowns, as Jackson did in the second half against the Chargers on Thursday night.

Ryan, meanwhile, leads the league in punting average (61.0 yards) and is fourth in net average (44.0). Michael, who ran for 89 yards against the Chargers, leads the NFC and is third in the NFL in rushing.

Stephen Williams had 83 yards on two receptions, which is No. 2 in the NFC and No. 3 in the NFL. And the Seahawks have three players ranked among the Top 12 in punt-return average – Walter Thurmond (No. 3 at 46.0), Will Blackmon (No. 8 at 19.0) and Ashford (No. 12 at 14.5).