The Seahawks were back on the field Thursday for their second practice of 2021 training camp, and the 12s once again packed the berm just east of the practice field to create a raucous practice environment.
Here are six observations from Day 2 of camp:
1. Rashaad Penny is all the way back from his ACL injury.
Talking to reporters after practice, running back Rashaad Penny said he is playing at his lightest weight, 223 pounds, since high school, having played in the 230s in college and his first three NFL seasons.
"I feel fast, I feel amazing," Penny said.
And that's not just talk from Penny, he looks faster and more explosive than he did when he came back late last season from the ACL injury that ended his 2019 season. Penny has been showing that burst throughout the first two days of camp, and early in team drills Thursday he took a handoff, made a nice cut at the line of scrimmage then took off down the sideline for a long run that drew big cheers from the fans in attendance.
"He looks great," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Wednesday. "He worked out here all throughout the offseason, and it really paid off. The best he's looked since we've seen him."
2. Darrell Taylor definitely looks the part.
After missing his rookie season with a leg injury, 2020 second-round pick Darrell Taylor had an impressive offseason, impressing coaches and teammates both with his athletic ability and the way he has picked up a new position, adding strongside linebacker to his repertoire along with defensive end. Taylor is competing with Cody Barton for the strongside spot, and has a long ways to go to win that job against the more experienced Barton, but Taylor definitely passes the eye test and has made a good first impression on his teammates.
"He's very explosive," linebacker Bobby Wagner said. "Very explosive. He's very smart, and when you watch him on the field, you can definitely tell when he's out there, whether it's pass rush, sometimes when he's dropping (in coverage), it's definitely noticeable when he's out there."
A day earlier, defensive end Carlos Dunlap II said, "Wow, that guy is very explosive. He came in in really good shape, he looks like he's excited to explode off the tape. I just want to polish the things he doesn't know, because he clearly has the tangibles and attributes to play in this league, but football is 90 percent mental, so I'm trying to give him all the mental information I can to help him speed up that curve from missing last year."
3. Gerald Everett gets low for a great catch
Tight end Gerald Everett was one of Seattle's big additions in free agency, and the former Rams pass-catcher has shown up early in camp. It doesn't hurt that Everett spent four years in L.A. working with current Seahawks offensive coordinator Shane Waldron, but Waldron is also making a good early impression with his athleticism. That was on display Thursday when Everett turned in one of the day's best plays, going low in the back corner of the end zone to catch a pass from Russell Wilson despite good coverage from linebacker Ben Burr-Kirven.
4. Ahkello Witherspoon gets up for a great pass breakup.
Witherspoon, another free-agent addition, also showed off his athletic ability—and the length that makes him such an intriguing option at cornerback—while turning in one of the day's defensive highlights. Witherspoon, who at this point in camp would be considered the favorite to with the job at left corner—though there will be competition for both starting jobs—was deep down the field in coverage when a slightly underthrown deep pass intended for Tyler Lockett came his way. Witherspoon judged the ball well, timed his leap perfectly and batted the ball away before it could come down to the awaiting Lockett. Again, Witherspoon will have to earn a starting job, but plays like that showed off some of the rare traits that make him an intriguing option at that spot.
5. Penny Hart continues to impress.
One of the surprise bright spots of minicamp and OTAs was receiver Penny Hart, a former undrafted receiver who made his way on to the 53-man roster last year and appeared in 13 games primarily for his play on special teams. If Hart is able to again win a roster spot, he will no doubt have to be a big contributor on special teams again, but he's also showing that he has some big-play ability in him as a pass catcher.
On Thursday Hart had one of the day's best catches, hauling in a deep ball from Russell Wilson just short of the goal line by leaping over cornerback Jordan Miller to pluck the ball out of the air.
6. Personnel updates.
Safety Jamal Adams and left tackle Duane Brown sat out for the second day in a row. Center Ethan Pocic, who is dealing with a minor hamstring injury, didn't practice, nor did tight end Tyler Mabry, who was on the field Wednesday.
Photos from Seahawks Training Camp practice, held on Thursday, July 29 at Renton's Virginia Mason Athletic Center. Seahawks Training Camp is presented by Safeway.