A preview of what’s to come

The Seahawks’ first offseason program under coach Pete Carroll and his staff got underway Monday.

But rather than having the players huffing and puffing through one grueling drill after another, the first day was reserved for introductory meetings.

“Just so we know what’s coming,” tight end John Carlson said with a smile. “The tough part starts tomorrow – bright and early.”

The players have been divided into two groups for the four-times-a-week workout sessions.

This is an important next phase in Carroll’s continuing introduction to – and evaluation of – the players. He and his staff already have done their video review of the 2009 season. The offseason program will provide a gauge of the players’ overall conditioning and work habits.

But the most pivotal phase will be the practices in the pre-draft minicamp, as well as the OTA sessions.

“We’ve got to see how our mentality is about practicing. We’ve got to determine the level of athleticism we have at certain positions to see if there are things that we like, that we can do,” Carroll said. “We’ve got to find out when we put it all together if we’re going to be able to protect the quarterback the way we want to. We’ve got to determine the level of pass rush, and the level of speed that we have on defense to do the things we like to do.

“There are some clear-cut things that we’re excited about. But we’ll find out when we get on the practice field what we can do. So OTAs and minicamps are going to be important for us. And we’ll have a lot more hands-on information at that time.”

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