Thoughts from Seahawks training camp

Competition is heating up at the Seahawks training camp in Kirkland. I spoke with starting cornerback Marcus Trufant about camp, the new facility in Renton, and a few other things.

...with cornerback Marcus Trufant

Competition is heating up at the Seahawks training camp in Kirkland. I spoke with starting cornerback Marcus Trufant about camp, the new facility in Renton, and a few other things.

On competition between offense and defense in camp...

“It’s always intense, it’s always a battle out there on the field,” Trufant said. “They’re trying to make us better, we’re trying to make them better, we’re both trying to get better at the same time.”

Though the offensive and defensive players may work toward a common goal, don’t misinterpret that to mean they’re going easy on each other. There were quite a few big hits in the morning practice Tuesday. In one of the more memorable ones, running back Julius Jones took a handoff, turned the corner and lowered his shoulder into defensive back Jordan Babineaux, knocking Babineaux backward.

Safety Kelin Johnson also put a big hit on receiver Joel Filani a step or two out of bounds, drawing the ire of a few offensive players.

On the new Virginia Mason

Athletic Center in Renton...

“From what I’ve been hearing, it’s state of the art,” Trufant said. “And it’s right there on the water, so of course it’s going to be a beautiful look. I’ve been hearing all good things.”

The team will move operations from Kirkland to Renton mid-month.

Fans rejoice: there’s enough space to observe practice at the VMAC.

On having another Washington State University graduate, wide receiver Michael Bumpus, in camp...

“It’s always good. Any time we can get more Cougs out here, it’s a good feeling,” Trufant said. “Every few years it seems like we get a couple through here so I always feel a little better. You know guys I can talk trash with. It’s always nice to have backup.”

Bumpus is one of 11 wide receivers currently fighting for a roster spot at training camp.

The Seahawks likely will keep only five wide receivers, though the status of injured wide receiver Deion Branch could determine if there’s an extra spot on the roster. While Branch was at practice recently, watching without pads, he’s still recovering from a torn ACL in the playoffs last season. If Branch has to start the season on the Physically Unable to Perform list, he would not be eligible to play until the sixth week of the regular season.

The 6-foot, 194-pound Bumpus signed with the Seahawks in April as an undrafted free agent. Bumpus caught 70 passes for 789 yards and four touchdowns for the Cougars in 2007.

On the defense’s home/

road differences in 2007...

“At home you’ve got the crowd and you feed off of that energy,” Trufant said. “On the road you may have a long trip and the crowd’s against you. But you’ve just got to be able to work through that, it’s part of football. You’ve just got to make it happen.”

Seattle’s defense allowed 13.88 points per game at home last season and 22.5 points per game away from home. The unit will need to find a way to bottle some of that energy from the 12th Man at Qwest Field to take on the road.

Adam McFadden can be reached at amcfadden@reporternewspapers.com or 425-255-3484, ext. 5054.