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Carroll and Schneider address Bennett, coaching turnover and more: ‘Changes are inevitable’

RENTON, Wash. – A lot’s happened since the last time Pete Carroll and John Schneider took the podium at the VMAC.

The Seattle Seahawks’ head coach and general manager fielded questions from reporters Monday afternoon, addressing not just the upcoming NFL draft, but also the recent controversy over quarterback Colin Kaepernick, the team’s rapidly changing culture, and the status of Malik McDowell’s and Kam Chancellor’s injuries.

Carroll specifically addressed a recent story that Michael Bennett would read books during team meetings last year because he’d already heard everything the coaching staff had to say.”

“Mike never took a book to a meeting, I’ll tell you that,” Carroll said. “Thing thing I’d tell you about that is, we’ve been through a lot around here. We’ve grown tremendously together. Changes are inevitable. Sometimes guys can’t hang with what’s expected for one reason or another – their growth, their development and all that. And the best thing I can tell you is, they’re not here.”

Carroll also talked at some length about the team’s coaching staff turnover, as offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, defensive coordinator Kris Richard and offensive line coach Tom Cable were shown the door after long stints in Seattle. Carroll presented the changes as a decision to take a new angle on the Seahawks’ existing philosophies.

“It felt like a clear opportunity to take a fresh look at what we’re doing and how we’re doing things,” he said. “That doesn’t mean that philosophically it changes us like you might think; it just changes the perspective and some of the opinion.  I thought it was necessary.

“There were difficult decisions, and guys that I loved working with and being around for a long time. But, sometimes you’re faced with those kinds of decisions and we had to make them.”

Schneider and Carroll also addressed the recent uproar over their decision to cancel a workout by quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Reports differed on the precise reasons the visit was cancelled, but the Seahawks said they haven’t closed the door on Kaepernick joining the team.

Carroll said he thinks Kaepernick is “continuing to work at stuff that’s important to his heart” and said “everything’s important” when the Seahawks consider making a signing.

“We’re still battling on all fronts,” Carroll said. “We’re still looking at guys and evaluating – there’s still free agents that we continue to look at. The process just continues. We’ve gone through information gathering and all that, and we kind of have a good feel for where we are, and it’s ongoing. We’re not done with that decision at all.”

The Seahawks are also dealing with big question marks surrounding to of their most high-profile players. Safety Kam Chancellor’s future has been up in the air for months after he suffered neck stingers last fall, and a report last week said Malik McDowell, the team’s top draft pick last year, will soon be released.

Schneider said Chancellor has a scan scheduled for late June or early July that will give the team a better idea about his playing status, and Carroll said there’s no news on McDowell.

“There’s just a lot of stuff we can’t get into, brother,” Schneider said. “A lot of unfortunate things.”

The NFL draft will get underway Thursday. Join Q13 News on Wednesday at 6 p.m. as we kick off our draft week coverage, then on Thursday at 4 p.m. for the first round of the draft and Friday beginning at 3 p.m. for rounds 2 and 3.