A day after wrapping up rookie minicamp, the Seahawks signed four of their 11 2019 draft picks: safety Marquise Blair, guard Phil Haynes, safety Ugo Amadi and linebacker Ben Burr-Kirven.
Blair, a second-round pick out of Utah, and Amadi, a fourth-rounder from Oregon, spent rookie minicamp playing together at strong and free safety, respectively, though Amadi also showed the versatility that made him a key part of Oregon’s defense, working at nickel corner in addition to playing free safety.
“Those guys are both smart kids and they understood the system and we did a lot of stuff, we change coverages,” Carroll said. “We made them make adjustments. We pressured, we did all kinds of things to see how they would handle it. And there’s going to be no problem at all with those guys. The linebackers too—both the inside guys (Ben Burr-Kirven and Cody Barton) did a fantastic job handling the system and they all, those four guys worked together really well in the communication so that everybody was coordinated and organized and it was impressive how well they communicated. There’s some advantages in that Marquise has played with Cody and you could kind of tell there was a little something there. Ben was terrific at handling his stuff and helping out and Amadi too, he’s a very well-versed football player and had no problem. He played nickel and safety. Played a lot of nickel in the camp, which was good. More than I thought he would. And he was very comfortable there.”
Haynes, a four-year-starter at Wake Forest, was one of Seattle’s three fourth-round picks along with Amadi and receiver Gary Jennings. He worked at guard in rookie minicamp, where he started the process off adjusting from an up-tempo offense that had its linemen play from a two-point stance to a more physical Seahawks offense that calls on linemen to operate out of a three-point stance.
“Well this was interesting for Phil, because this is the first time that Phil’s really worked in his stance,” Carroll said. “I said to him as we were in really the competitive moment that we have when we’re kind of faking it out there, we’re huddling, and I said, ‘What do you think of the difference between the way you’ve playing?’ He says, ‘This is amazing,’ because a big guy like that gets to go back and get in the huddle and catch his breath instead of snapping the ball every 14 seconds, you know? So he noticed it; there’s some new things for him. But he’s going to fit in fine. Again, he’s really strong, physical, got a good attitude. He’s smart, had no problem with any of the scheme. He’ll be competing. He’ll be competing.”
Burr-Kirven, a fifth-round pick who was the Pac 12 Defensive Player of the Year at Washington, spent his minicamp playing weakside linebacker and, along with third-round pick Cody Barton, a linebacker from Utah, helped run the defense at minicamp in a manner that impressed coaches.
“It really stood out,” Carroll said. “It really jumped out. We’ve been in these situations many times and you could tell their expertise and their willingness to really study it up and communicate with the coaches really well. They transferred the stuff in the classroom to the field exceptionally. And it stood out above any group we’ve ever had in here, those were the two best guys we’ve ever brought in.”
Photos from Day 3 of Seattle Seahawks rookie minicamp on Sunday, May 5, 2019 at Renton's Virginia Mason Athletic Center.