Minicamp guest blog: Matt Hasselbeck

Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck will be giving you his perspective throughout this weekend’s minicamp in a daily guest blog. Here’s his first entry as the team begins the minicamp today:

We finished the first minicamp with a lot of positive feelings about the team and the direction we’re headed, knowing there were going to be a lot of changes with the draft. And that’s where we are now — we’ve got a bunch of new faces, so these three days will allow us to build on the success of the last minicamp and meet all the new players and incorporate them into our team. It’s a really exciting time.

That excitement has been a theme all spring. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a draft where all the talking heads on TV unanimously picked one team as the winners of the draft, like they did last week naming us as the team with the best draft. That’s the first time I could ever remember unanimous opinions across the networks and on the internet picking one team with the best draft — and it was us, so that was a great feeling. It instills confidence and excitement, that’s for sure.

Another great part of the draft was the trades to get the two tailbacks, LenDale White and Leon Washington. I don’t know either of them personally yet but I’ve obviously watched both of them play over the course of their careers. They’re both very talented guys, and that’s the common theme with all the guys we got last week. We’ve added a lot of talent to what we already had.

This minicamp is going to be a whirlwind for these rookies, if it’s anything like my first one several years ago. For each guy, the No. 1 thing is to make the most of their three days and do the best they can do. It’s hard because you’re trying to learn a playbook and, at the same time, the coaches are trying to evaluate you. But you’ve got to understand that they’re evaluating you on how you learn the playbook, not just on how you play on the practice field.

Lastly, just wanted to say thanks to Walter Jones for all he meant to our team and to me personally. Words cannot express how much he means to us, especially me, as the guy next to me in the huddle and the guy blocking my blindside. He’s one of the best teammates I’ve ever had and one of the best, if not the best, left tackle to ever play the game. We knew this day was coming, but it’s tough. All those years without him, it was ugly, and with him, we were a great team. He was an important piece of the puzzle, and he will always be a special part of the Seahawks family.

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