Seahawks rookies take the microphone after minicamp
First days are filled with first impressions, of course, and it’s no different for the Seattle Seahawks. Seems wise to give Coach Carroll the last word here, just as he has on the field, so we’ll kick off with CB Shaquill Griffin.
On the defensive scheme of the Seahawks:
"“It’s totally different. It’s more of a press, and trying to get into someone’s face than what we did at UCF. UCF we did more of a zone. Everything here is totally different, but I feel I’m catching on just fine.”"
On the other defensive backs that joined him in camp, Tedric Thompson, Delano Hill and Mike Tyson, Shaq -yes, he goes by Shaq – had this to say:
"“I feel like our whole group, everybody that’s here, is a group of great guys. You can see in the locker room everyone is comfortable talking to each other, and just having fun. It makes practice so much easier…It’s not just us, the DBs, but… everybody here is some pretty great guys.”"
Next up, DL Malik McDowell spreads his impressive wings at the presser. Figuratively, at least.
On the difference between his play at Michigan State and what the Seahawks expect:
"“I’m playing a whole different position. I played nose guard at Michigan State, I play D end here. That’s just moving outside and going from taking double teams to taking single blocks here. I like it.”"
When you watch the video, you’ll note McDowell repeatedly states he was used at defensive end, not tackle. The majority of his reps were indeed on the end, and he only moved inside in nickel situations.
On asked about the perception that his level of play fell off from his junior year, and if his troublesome ankle was an issue for the entire year:
"“Lost a lot of older guys ,had a lot of injuries, no excuse. Just didn’t play as well, basically. [On his ankle] Yep. We didn’t really talk about it much, but it is what it is, no excuses for it. I was out there playing, so…”"
Offensive lineman Ethan Pocic took his turn at the podium as well.
On his versatility at playing different spots on the offensive line:
"“That’s definitely an important trait of mine…definitely. Just to know what everyone’s doing. It just started in college, playing at center you had to know the whole offensive line, so it kinda grew on my over the years.”"
On how well he knows rookie wide receiver Cyril Grayson, the speedster from LSU:
"“I’d see him around in the Student Athlete Center where we do academics and stuff. Good dude. Fast, very fast.”"
Pocic had a very large smile on his face when he spoke of Grayson’s speed. Sort of, “You all think you know he’s fast, but he’s fast.”
Coach Carroll has high praise for rookies
Finally, Coach Pete Carroll had a lot to say about his rookies on their first day of minicamp.
On the rookies in general:
"“Boy, there’s a lot of fun bright spots to see on the first day. I don’t think anybody, anybody had a problem today. Everybody did good stuff across the board. Thought it was a good first day of work.”"
On Malik McDowell:
"“Instantly almost you can see how comfortable he is with his movements, his body control and stuff. He’s got an awareness already how to use his hands you’d be surprised to see that much…that kind of background. Technically they did a real nice job with him at Michigan State. He looks great.”"
On offensive lineman Pocic:
"“He’ll work to show his snapping ability too…We want him to play tackle right now to see how that works out, knowing that he can play all three spots. Tackle is the one we’ve seen him the least at, so in the first few days, we want to kind of get a gauge for that. He’s a bright football player, really tuned in.”"
On standouts from the first day:
"“The defensive backs looked the part. They all moved really well, they caught the ball really well. They looked fast. There’s a lot of play time behind these two safeties in particular and you can tell. They’re very savvy, very comfortable, communicated really well right off the bat, made a really good first impression. We saw Shaq take off a couple times, he’s really fast, he can fly.”"
There’s certainly much more, so we encourage you to watch each of the segments. One thing for sure, I don’t ever want to miss Shaq talking to the media after a game. He has the personality that could easily become the face of the Seahawks. Time will tell if he has the game, but I’m betting he does.