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Richardson, Marsh stand out on day one of rookie mini-camp - May 16, 2014

 

Quarterback Taylor Martinez #3 of the Nebraska Cornhuskers tries to find a way around defensive end Cassius Marsh #99 of the UCLA Bruins during their game at Memorial Stadium on September 14, 2013 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Eric Francis/Getty Images)

by Curtis Crabtree
KJR reporter
Twitter: @Curtis_Crabtree

RENTON - The first day of rookie mini-camp is in the books and a pair of draft picks were the standout players of the day.

Second-round pick WR Paul Richardson and fourth-round pick DE Cassius Marsh made some of the more flashy plays of the day.

Richardson blew past sixth-round pick CB Eric Pinkins for a 63-yard touchdown on a pass from QB Keith Price. Richardson made several grabs through the practice.

"That guy is a blazer," Price said. "He told me to throw him the ball deep today. I saw one-on-one with him and kind of let it rip and he made a great play and we scored a touchdown."

Fourth-round pick WR Kevin Norwood also made several catches in the practice, including a deep touchdown grab with a leaping catch over a trailing Pinkins.

"The receivers really show up," head coach Pete Carroll said. "They jump out at us. They've done really well the past couple days and they did it again."

Marsh flashed his quickness from the defensive end spot, quickly shooting into the backfield on a handful of plays. Marsh knifed past blockers and would have left Price and QB Zach Zulli picking themselves up out of crater in a game situation at least twice.

"He’s a real natural pass rusher," Carroll said. "He has great stuff already. You can see he has really good hands and has a good feel for it."

Price actually had a solid day throwing the football as well. The former University of Washington star was clearly the better of the quarterbacks on the field Friday. Zulli, from Division II Shippensburg, hasn't worked in a huddle in five years playing in a spread offense. Meanwhile, Price had worked under a similar system with Steve Sarkisian at Washington and managed to jump right in without a massive learning curve.

"If you would have asked me when I was younger if I thought I'd be even close to coming to the NFL, I would have probably laughed at you," Price said. "Now I'm here. I have a great opportunity ahead of me and I'm just kind of soaking it up and being as sponge."

Price said he elected to sign with Seattle less than three minutes after the draft concluded. He said that he wanted to sign with Seattle and wasn't concerned about the depth ahead of him at the position.

"If I can move up in depth here, I'll be able to move up in depth anywhere," Price said.

Seventh-round pick FB Kiero Small also made some nice plays. He caught the ball well out of the backfield.

A veteran of Seattle's roster that still was eligible to perform in the mini-camp, LB Korey Toomer, also had a solid day. Toomer was a fifth-round pick in 2012 but has been beset by injuries. He had a shoulder injury in 2012 and only spent time on the practice squad and missed all of last season with a knee injury.

Toomer had an impressive, leaping interception of Price that he returned for a likely touchdown if in a live game situation. Toomer is still eligible to participate as he has not accrued a year of service time.

"He’s in great shape and he’s very determined," Carroll said. "That’s one of the guys that’s really exciting to see him have another chance at it."

All that being said, the performances on the practice field over these three days must be kept in perspective. There are 59 players practicing with the team during the mini-camp. Roughly 80 percent of them will not be on an NFL roster for Week 1 of the season in September.

The team also announced the signings of fifth-round pick DT Jimmy Staten, Pinkins and Small to contracts. Per NFL rules, they are four-year deals.

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