The news release from the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday, announcing the signing of undrafted free agent receiver Justin Veltung, was about as vanilla as you're going to get:
The Seattle Seahawks have signed wide receiver Justin Veltung, the team announced today.
Veltung, from nearby Puyallup, played 43 career games at the University of Idaho and collected 62 receptions for 901 yards with eight touchdowns and returned 80 kickoffs for 1,743 yards with two touchdowns in his career. He left Idaho as its all-time kickoff return leader (78) and kickoff return yardage leader (1,743), and 11th on its all-time all-purpose yardage list with 2,972 yards.
Veltung attended Seattle's rookie minicamp on a tryout basis from May 10-12.
So ... yeah. That's not why Veltung made Shutdown Corner today. He made Shutdown Corner today because he can rock a 56-inch (4-foot-8) standing box jump at 5-foot-11. To put that in perspective, NBA draft prospect DJ Stephens recently got a lot of attention for a 46-inch vertical leap while working out for the Brooklyn Nets. Box jumps and verticals are different, but still ... wow.
You can view Veltung's super-jump below:
That's fairly impressive, and reminds us of the time that former Arizona Cardinals and current New England Patriots safety Adrian Wilson (at 6-foot-3) pulled off a 66-inch jump with a three-step head start.
Yes, these NFL athletes are talented. Of course, Wilson has taken his athleticism to five Pro Bowls since 2001, while Veltung is just getting started. But with him on the roster, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson -- who is generously listed at 5-foot-10 5/8 -- should consider his new receiver for the end zone fade, at the same time he's warning the kid not to try and jump over his head.
With all the talk about the Seattle Seahawks' multiple suspensions for violations of the NFL's substance abuse policy, and the allegedly undisciplined environment those suspensions appear to portray, it could be that backup quarterback Josh Portis did his former team a favor when he was arrested in suspicion of driving under the influence when he was pulled over near Seattle on May 5. The Seahawks released Portis on Tuesday, just one day after Portis was seen alternating reps with fellow backup quarterbacks Brady Quinn and Jerrod Johnson.
Portis was traveling 80 miles per hour in a 60 miles per hour zone, and according to the arresting officer, performed poorly in field sobriety tests. He registered .092 and .078 in two breath tests. The legal limit in Washington State is .08. It was not a good time for Portis to mess up, given his shaky hold on a roster spot and the team's possible need to prove a point publicly. Portis, who transferred from Florida to Maryland to California (Pa.) in his collegiate career, made some strides as a backup with Seattle over the last few years by impressing coaches with his athleticism and deep arm, but he wasn't able to work that into a move up the depth chart, especially when Russell Wilson ascended as a third-round rookie in 2012, and Matt Flynn was relegated to the role of highly-paid benchwarmer.
Seattle waived Portis in November of 2012 off the practice squad, and brought him back in April after trading Flynn to the Oakland Raiders, but there was no good reason to hang onto him in the face of his arrest, and some pretty good reasons to make a statement. In addition, the OTA performance of Johnson, a 6-foot-5, 251-pound undrafted free agent from Texas A&M, may have sealed Portis' fate.
So, in a way, the Seahawks might be thanking Josh Portis for doing what he did -- and not being Marshawn Lynch, Richard Sherman, or Russell Wilson when he did it.
Related coverage on Yahoo! Sports:
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• Modified NFL calendar could push draft into May
Links, you guys.
Kicking off a series of articles focused on measuring the type of athletes the Seahawks are acquiring under Pete Carroll and John Schneider.
The Seahawks have signed the speedy 5'10, 183 pound receiver.
The Seahawks have reportedly offered former University of Minnesota-Duluth and Wisconsin G/T Jake Bscherer a free-agent contract, and he'll be signed pending a physical.
How Seattle can utilize Harvin's versatility in their offense.
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