Seattle Seahawks

Seahawks open practice to public today

KIRKLAND - The Seattle Seahawks are taking training camp westward once again, and this time they're opening it to the public.

For this morning's practice only, fans are invited to attend a camp practice at no charge. The Seahawks will hold a 90-minute session at Husky Stadium, beginning at 9:15 a.m.

"It's always kind of fun," Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren said of getting a chance to perform in front of fans. "More than me, I think the players look forward to it. If they have an audience and people get into it a little bit more, it's good."

The Seahawks opened their training camp practices to the public while at Eastern Washington University, and they plan to do the same when the new practice facility opens in Renton. But the team's current facility is not set up for spectators, and so the current camp has been closed.

"It's different," Holmgren said, "but we're having a good camp. I must admit that I was a little concerned about how this was going to go. After having been through a few days now, it's going fine."

The only other time the 2007 Seahawks have been on display for the public was at Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage, which was held at the Seattle Center.

Today will mark the first time since 2001 that the Seahawks are at Husky Stadium. They spent the 2000 and 2001 seasons playing games there while the downtown stadium that became Qwest Field was under construction.

Selected players will sign autographs after this morning's practice.

Beginning this afternoon, the team will go back to private workouts. The next chance the fans get to see the Seahawks in person will be at the Aug. 25 preseason game at Qwest Field.

n JONES BACK: After missing his fifth consecutive practice with a sore right shoulder Tuesday morning, left tackle Walter Jones was back on the field for the without-pads afternoon practice.

"I just felt better," he said when asked why the time was right to return to the field. "The trainer did a good job of getting me back and calming my shoulder down. I just wante d to come out here today and see how it feels."

Jones said he's been dealing with shoulder problems since first undergoing surgery about seven years ago, and he's not concerned about the injury.

"I've been dealing with this shoulder for awhile," he said, "so I know what I have to do to get ready for the season."

Jones had missed the previous four practice days, as well as Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage, but he said he expected to be available for full-contact practices as soon as this morning.

Before Jones made his Tuesday afternoon return, Holmgren downplayed the significance of the Pro Bowler's inactivity.

"I really just want him ready to play in the first ball game," Holmgren said after Tuesday's morning practice. "… Listen, I have to be smart with this guy. He's going to be one of our guys we need to play all season long and play well."

n AGE NO FACTOR: While Shaun Alexander will celebrate his 30th birthday on Aug. 30, Holmgren said he's not concerned about his star running back's age.

Asked whether the Seahawks plan to give more carries to backup Maurice Morris so that Alexander can cut down on the wear and tear, Holmgren said: "If Shaun is healthy, we'll do it the way we've always done it. There will probably be no change there."

n THREE-POINT BLUES: The Seahawks used linebacker Julian Peterson as a down lineman in nickel situations last season, and with mixed results. Defensive coordinator John Marshall has not given up on the package, but Peterson might see less time as a linemen in 2007.

"How much we do that will be dictated by the preseason," Marshall said. "But you need to have it in your package."

Peterson said there are advantages to leaving him at a linebacker position in obvious passing situations.

"It makes it harder to concentrate on one player when you've got three linebackers moving around," he said. "(Offenses) really don't know who to pick up, and you can get some guys wide open (on the blitz)."

n TUBBS ON SCHEDULE: While the Seahawks practice, defensive tackle Marcus Tubbs has continued to work with a trainer on an adjacent field. He is still trying to come back from offseason knee surgery and is on the physically-unable-perform list.

Holmgren said that Tubbs is on schedule to be activated soon and possibly play in the preseason home opener Aug. 25.

n READY TO PLAY: The Seahawks open their preseason with a game at San Diego this weekend. Seattle faces the Chargers on Sunday at 5:15 p.m.

Several injured players could be held out of the game, including Jones, Tubbs, safety Jordan Babineaux (knee) and linebacker Leroy Hill (hamstring). Holmgren said he would meet with trainers on Thursday to decide who would and would not travel for the game.

n QUICK SLANTS: Tight end Will Heller (ankle) returned to practice Tuesday morning. … Among the invited attendees at Tuesday's morning practice were former University of Washington quarterback Tom Flick and former Seattle Mariners first baseman John Olerud.

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