Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has done nothing to slow down the DK Metcalf Hype Train this offseason, telling anyone who will listen that the second-year receiver is only going to be better than he was during an impressive rookie season.
Carroll raved about Metcalf in February at the NFL Scouting Combine, and was still doing so earlier this week in a video press conference.
And while Metcalf isn't the type to talk himself up the way Carroll has, he is heading into 2020 knowing he can improve upon a rookie campaign in which he caught 58 passes for 900 and seven touchdowns in the regular season, then set a single-game franchise postseason record with a 160-yard game against the Eagles.
The goal for 2020, Metcalf says, is "Basically just building on last year. I know had a few drops last year that I've got to clean up. And just expanding my role in the offense and learning the offense more. I know last year I was just getting my feet wet with everything in the offense and being in the league. It's just taking the next step, taking my game to the next level."
From what he knows about Metcalf and his offseason work habits, Carroll is confident Metcalf will indeed find that next level.
"He's going to be better this year," Carroll said on Monday. "He had an incredible offseason. He spent, I don't know, at least a month with Russell (Wilson) working out, they found a way to do it, and they had a phenomenal summer in that regard. What gives him a chance to be a really exciting player is his mentality. He knows exactly who he is, he knows where he's come from, he knows what it's all about. He's not going to let anybody get in the way of him being all he can be, and that's all we could ever ask for. What that is? I don't know, but now we know we can move him around, we can we can ask him do a lot of different stuff. We were hesitant because he was a young player and all; we weren't sure if he was able to handle stuff, but what we know now—he's really a bright football player, and he's got flexibility, and he blocks any he can rip down the field, so we hope to just use more than ever and fit him together in this team. It's what he wants to do, but he's here to do something special, now. There's nothing about anything that he's done that doesn't make… He's screaming that he wants to do something really special. He's a beautiful part of this team I can't wait to see him go."
Like almost any rookie, Metcalf got more comfortable with life in the NFL as the season went along, and his production showed it, and he credits veterans like Russell Wilson, Bobby Wagner and Duane Brown with helping him find a routine. Metcalf has since spent a good portion of his offseason training with Russell Wilson in Southern California—while maintaining social distancing, he notes—something that should only help strengthen the bond between quarterback and receiver.
"We know how one another is going to react to certain things," Metcalf said on a video press conference. "It's just a bond that goes further than football. Football is only a short period of my life. Just building relationships while I'm here that are going last a lifetime. So any bond that you have, besides just the common 'Hey, go run that go run that route and be done,' is going to be great."
Another veteran with whom Metcalf is forming a bond is tight end Greg Olsen, who is new to the Seahawks, but not to the Metcalf family. Early in Olsen's career with the Chicago Bears, he was teammates with Terrence Metcalf, DK's father, an offensive lineman who had a seven-year career with the Bears. Metcalf has given Olsen a hard time about being old enough to have played with both DK and Terrence, but he also recognizes that he can learn a lot from a three-time Pro-Bowler who is heading into his 14th season
"Like a month ago, me and Greg worked out and I brought my dad up there with me, and how they rekindled an old flame was kind of funny, because they just started smiling," Metcalf said. "And Greg was like, 'I've got to tell you about some stories in the locker room,' and all of that. So, I mean, it looked like they had a pretty good relationship. But me just learning from Greg, it's been great. He's been teaching me a lot this offseason, since he's been in the league, probably, what, 20 years now? He's a great player, great tight end, and just to learn from him, it's going to be special."
Special is a word that has been associated with Metcalf quite a bit this offseason, and he plans on putting in the work to make the Year 2 leap his head coach and a lot of other people are expecting out of him.
"Nothing is going to be handed to you," Metcalf said when asked what kind of advice he's gotten from Wilson. "If you want to be great you've got to go get it."
A look back at some of the best photos of Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf from the 2019 season.