Pete Carroll, Seahawks Share Initial Impressions Of Tight End Jimmy Graham

Seattle's rookie minicamp wrapped up last weekend, and while the workouts gave the Seahawks coaching staff a good first-look at the team's 2015 draftees, it failed to offer the club an on-field glimpse of its "first-round pick" - Jimmy Graham.

The Seahawks acquired the three-time Pro Bowl tight end in a trade with the New Orleans Saints this past March. Seattle sent this year's first-round pick (No. 31 overall) and center Max Unger to the Saints in exchange for Graham and New Orleans' 2015 fourth-round pick.

At the conclusion of the three-day rookie workouts, head coach Pete Carroll was asked about his initial impressions of the 28-year-old veteran Graham, a 6-foot-7, 265-pound pass catcher who's averaged 89 grabs for 1,099 yards and 11.5 touchdowns the past four seasons.

"Right from the first time I sat down with him in my office I was just blown away by what a great kid he is and how squared away he is," Carroll said. "We know he has great ability and athleticism, so we were really curious to see if he could assimilate, and he did it like instantly."

Graham was one of several Seattle players who joined quarterback Russell Wilson for player-organized workouts in the Hawaiian Islands last month. Graham used it as an opportunity to start building rapport with Wilson, but more importantly, as a chance to get to know his new Seahawks teammates.

"I'm like that cousin they didn't know about," Graham said with a smile at the time. "I've just got to come in and just be me. I work hard and I'm a team guy. I've always been like that. I love to win no matter what.

"I'm going to do whatever it takes to win and really to be a part of this, because they've got something special going on here."

From what Carroll's seen so far, Graham's team-first attitude is paying dividends at team headquarters.

"He got along really well with the players," Carroll said. "The players really took to him and they didn’t know if he was a hotshot, or all full of himself. He was none of that. He was a great kid."

The Saints threw the ball 659 times in 2014, the second-most attempts in the League (Indianapolis Colts, 661). Graham found himself on the receiving end of 85 of those passes - a team-high.

The Seahawks, meanwhile, tossed the ball a League-low 454 times this past year. They opted to run the ball more than any other club instead, riding the legs of 'Beast Mode' back Marshawn Lynch.

While Graham is expected to be one of the team's top receiving targets in Seattle, he will inevitably be asked to block more than he did in New Orleans given the Seahawks' run-first mentality. It's a change assistant head coach/offensive line coach Tom Cable thinks Graham will have no problem adjusting to.

"He is so athletic that once he learns how to, he’s going to be fine," Cable said of Graham in an interview with 710 ESPN Seattle this week. "And he more than wants to. If you want to, and you have the ability athletically to do it, there’s no question you can do it.”

Cable's "want to" assessment of Graham was something Carroll picked up on during his first sit-down with the Seahawks' "first-round pick."

"He was very determined to be great," Carroll said. "Wants to learn everything. Wants to be a complete player."

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