If this is Wednesday, and the NFL owners have convened for their annual spring meeting, it’s also the morning when coaches have breakfast with the reporters covering the event.
Not surprisingly, Pete Carroll spent a good portion of his Q&A session talking about quarterbacks – the one the new Seahawks coach inherited, the one he just acquired and one who is available in next month’s draft.
Carroll referred to incumbent starter Matt Hasselbeck as “our guy,” ESPN’s Adam Schefter has reported. Carroll also said the plan is to develop Charlie Whitehurst to be the team’s QB of the future. Whitehurst, a restricted free agent who has yet to throw a pass in a regular-season game, was acquired last week in a trade with the San Diego Chargers and then signed to a two-year contract.
Carroll also was asked about Florida’s Tim Tebow, the former Heisman Trophy winner and most scrutinized player in this year’s draft pool. The big question with Tebow is which round he will be drafted in.
Carroll had this to say when asked about Tebow being a first-round pick, as reported by ESPN.com NFC West blogger Mike Sando.
“I can’t believe a quarterback of his stature won’t be,” Carroll said. “I know there is a lot of talk otherwise, but he has time and he’s showing what he can do. I think his value is going to grow because of who he is. As people get to know him, you’re going to find that he is an incredible guy. He had one of the most amazing interviews, which you guys will all figure out here in time, that you could ever go through. Because he’s just so sharp and so bright, and so together.”
It doesn’t take long to figure that out. Carroll recruited Tebow at USC before the QB opted for Florida. Tebow’s podium session at the scouting combine last month was one most impressive in recent years.
The questions about Tebow’s draft status stem mainly from his throwing motion, which he is working on improving. Count Carroll among those who think he can do it.
“Tim is going to develop,” Carroll said this morning. “He’s a great competitor. He’s maybe the best competitive guy that we’ve seen in years and years and years. He’ll compete at this as well. He’s not going to be status quo. He’s going to do everything he needs to do to get stuff right. It worked beautifully for him at Florida, but the league is calling for him to clean up his motion, his delivery, and he’s doing just that.
“A lot of quarterback gurus will say, ‘You can’t do that immediately, it’s going to take a while.’ It’s going to take him getting into the competitive environment and bring his technique and stuff into play. That is the thing everyone will have to see. But knowing who he is and what he’s all about, he’s going to get that done. I don’t think anything is going to stop him. I think he’s a great prospect, a very, very exciting kid in this draft. … I think by the time the process is over, people are going to want him on the football team across the board. He brings too many qualities that are too rare, and that are too perfectly situated. He brings it all.”