‘It’s fun to see the newness’: Seahawks open rookie minicamp, sign 3 draft picks and 15 UFAs

RENTON, Wash. — The Seattle Seahawks opened their three-day rookie minicamp Friday with all nine 2018 NFL Draft picks and a slew of undrafted free agents in attendance.

And while it’s just a rookie minicamp, Q13 Sports Director Aaron Levine said it had the definite feel of a new era in Seahawks football.

“It’s just fun to be back out,” coach Pete Carroll said the first day. “It’s fun to see the newness, the opportunities these guys have. You can sense that they get that … there’s an excitement about it and energy about that we like.”

Drawing much of the attention were first-round draft pick Rashaad Penny, a top college running back who attended San Diego State, and fifth-round pick Shaquem Griffin, a one-handed linebacker who went to the University of Central Florida and is the twin of Seahawks cornerback Shaquille Griffin.

“It’s such a tremendous honor to be here,” Shaquem Griffin said at the end of the first day. “It’s been a great experience so far, being able to meet new guys, being able to interact with the coaches. It’s everything that I thought about. Having the coach, having that family vibe — they’re not here to get mad at you, they’re here to coach you, make you a better player.”

The one-handed linebacker demonstrated in the tweet below that he has no trouble hauling in a ball on a pass-interception drill.

Carroll said of Shaquem, “In the walk-throughs, he was going a little too hard.”

Penny — the 27th overall pick in this year’s draft who rushed for more than 2,200 yard and 23 touchdowns at San Diego State last season — said being at the minicamp was “like a dream come true,” but he had a get-down-to-business attitude when he addressed reporters after the first day.

“I mean, just (here to) give my best, be the person who I am — definitely compete,” Penny said. “I can’t wait to get started with all the other guys, though. I mean, it’s the main reason I’m here, just compete to get a spot — that’s the most important thing.”

Carroll said 7th-round draft pick QB Alex McGough was the surprise of the first day. Carroll said McGough showed good arm strength and good accuracy.

QB Alex McGough

McGough, out of Florida International, is just the second quarterback drafted by Carroll and GM John Schneider after Russell Wilson in 2012. McGough ended his senior season with a completion percentage of 65.3% and a passer rating of 142.8, both school records.

The first Seahawks OTA with both rookies and veterans is set to begin May 21.

Meanwhile, the Seahawks on Friday signed three of their nine 2018 draft picks — former UW tight end Will Dissly, a fourth-round pick; punter Michael Dickson, a fifth-rounder out of Texas; and defensive end Jacob Martin, a sixth-rounder who went to Temple — and 15 undrafted free agents.

Here’s the full list of undrafted free agent signings:

Ka’Raun White WR 6-1 206, West Virginia
Caleb Scott WR 6-2 203 Vanderbilt
Taj Williams WR 6-3 199 TCU
Marcus Martin FB 6-1 250 Slippery Rock
Khalid Hill FB 6-2 263 Michigan
Emmanuel Beal LB 6-0 223 Oklahoma
Jason Hall LB 6-2 219 Texas
Tanner Carew LS 6-1 245 Oregon
Warren Long LB 5-11 212 Northwestern
Jake Pugh LB 6-4 246 Florida State
Marcell Frazier DE 6-4 261 Missouri
Eddy Wilson DT 6-3 301 Purdue
Brad Lundblade C 6-3 295 Oklahoma State
Skyler Phillips G 6-3 318 Idaho State
Poona Ford DT 5-11 312 Texas