Seahawks Release McDaniel, Trade for Seisay

After signing Russell Wilson and Bobby Wagner to two of the biggest deals in franchise history, there was no hint of letting up Sunday as the Seahawks released veteran defensive lineman Tony McDaniel, traded a sixth round pick to the Detroit Lions for cornerback Mohammed Seisay and conducted their first practice in shoulder pads of training camp.

Another rousing crowd of fans took in the Seahawks' first practice in pads of training camp (and there were plenty of noteworthy performances to excite them) but the biggest news of the day came off the field as the team elected to release veteran defensive lineman Tony McDaniel in a cost-cutting move.

McDaniel is a solid player who will likely earn interest from other clubs. He was due 2.5 million this season and while a solid player, with the Seahawks up against the cap in part because of the recent re-signings of Russell Wilson and Bobby Wagner and pleased with the overall depth of the defensive line, McDaniel was a luxury Seattle can?t simply could no longer afford.

His spot on the defensive line is expected to be filled by a combination of former Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Ahtyba Rubin, as well as Jordan Hill and Frank Clark. Brandon Mebane - who Pete Carroll said Sunday looked like he was in the best shape of his career - is expected to remain the starter at nose guard with the ultra-versatile Michael Bennett, of course, sliding inside on passing downs.

The addition of Seisay is an interesting one. The 6-1, 202 pound corner cost Seattle a sixth round pick but with Tharold Simon and Jeremy Lane each on the PUP list, the Seahawks lacked numbers at the position.

Seisay was overshadowed throughout much of his career at Nebraska by Stanley Jean-Baptiste but he's a long, lanky athlete with impressive speed. He was clocked at 4.52 seconds at the Cornhuskers' 2014 Pro Day, showing impressive explosiveness with a 39" vertical jump and 11-0' broad jump. Detroit signed him as an undrafted free agent in 2014 and after initially starting the season on the practice squad, he was elevated to the active roster in Week Three. In 13 games a year ago, Seisay recorded five tackles, two of which came on special teams - an area Seattle was looking to beef up given the recoveries of Simon and Lane and free agent departures of other defensive backs in the offseason.

Seisay is expected to arrive in Seattle sometime today or tomorrow for the physical that would make the trade official. The Seahawks made a similar trade a year ago when John Schneider shipped a 6th round pick to Indianapolis for cornerback Marcus Burley. Like last year, the Seahawks felt comfortable trading a future pick for immediate help in part because of the anticipation of receiving compensational picks from the NFL for free agents lost, including, of course, former starting cornerback Byron Maxwell.

As for on the field, here are some quick takeaways:

It was appropriate that the Seahawks' newest multi-millionaire, Wagner, made a big play on the first team defense?s first snap during scrimmage. Showing off the unique blend of instincts and closing speed that earned him his first Pro Bowl selection a year ago, Wagner came out of seemingly nowhere to slap away a short pass over the middle. Later, during his post-practice meeting with the media, Wagner couldn't keep the smile off of his face when talking about how during his senior year at Utah State he planned on one day being considered (and paid like) the top middle linebacker in the NFL.

While Drew Nowak continues to line up with the starters, Carroll told me following practice that veteran Lemuel Jeanpierre would start today if there was a game. Nowak has improved his strength, doing a nice job of anchoring against Seattle's beefy defensive tackles but did misfire on one shotgun snap early on that seemed to draw Carroll?s ire. Nowak saw an awful lot of time today with Jeanpierre subbing occasionally and fellow veteran Patrick Lewis and raw rookie Kristjan Sokoli splitting action with the 3rd unit. Russell Wilson made some of his trademark flashy improvisational plays but backup quarterback Tarvaris Jackson also connected on a few gorgeous throws, hooking up a couple of times with Douglas McNeil III, including early on for a long touchdown over Richard Sherman. Other flashy receptions were turned in by Jermaine Kearse, Chris Matthews and Jimmy Graham.

The Seahawks like to limit the amount of punishment Marshawn Lynch takes in training camp but all indications are that he is ready to go. Lynch and wideout Doug Baldwin went through bag drills with the defensive linemen to start practice, a demonstration of each?s unique competitiveness.

The man drafted to someday replace Lynch - Christine Michael - may be finally feeling some pressure to live up to his second round selection. Michael saw time at kick returner Sunday and zipped through the line on a few runs. Unfortunately, he also dropped an easy pass in the flat that looked like it could have gone for a big play.

Pro Bowl strong safety Kam Chancellor continued his holdout for a third day. Quietly, Seattle's decision-makers are sympathetic to Chancellor's wish for more money as they see him as one of the team?s ultimate leaders. The club is so tight with the cap at this point, however, that it appears unlikely Seattle will be able to re-do Chancellor's deal. For as respected and talented as Chancellor is, the Seahawks appear to be in relatively good hands as DeShawn Shead is performing well.

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