It wasn’t real football, far from it, but the Seahawks took another step in their preparation for the 2019 season on Monday with the start of phase two of their offseason workout program.
Unlike phase one in which players are working only with the strength and conditioning coaches, phase two allows players to hit the field with coaches and go through more football activity, though offense and defense can’t go against each other just yet.
“It’s exciting,” tight end Nick Vannett said. “When we first reported back here, we just workout for a couple of weeks, started to feel the juices again, but now that we’re on field with coaches and actually doing some football activities, running routes, actually lining up as an offense and running plays—it’s not against anyone—but the fact that we’re together running plays, it just feels good. Not to mention it was a beautiful day outside. It was a great first day, and here we go.”
This time can be particularly valuable to players new to the team in 2019, though one free-agent signing, guard Mike Iupati, has the advantage of having played under offensive line coach Mike Solari for five seasons in San Francisco.
“It’s been awesome,” Iupati said of his first offseason in Seattle. “Starting from phase one to now, these are great teammates, a great staff."
As for reuniting with Solari, Iupati said the experience has been “awesome,” and noted, “He always brings energy, he never changes, he’s the same. When (stuff) goes south, he’s positive. He’s just a great coach.”
This is also the first full slate of offseason workouts for last year’s rookies, who will look to build off of what they did in 2018.
“It’s different for me,” said cornerback Tre Flowers. “This is all new for me. It’s great for team bonding. As a secondary we’re still growing, we’re still young. We’re going to use this time to our benefit… We’re taking tape to the field, really just feeling each other out on what we’re comfortable with, what our strengths are.”
The Seahawks kicked off Phase Two of their voluntary offseason workout program on Monday, April 29 at Renton's Virginia Mason Athletic Center, where Seattle coaches ran players through on-field drills and offered individual player instruction for the first time ahead of the 2019 season.