The Seahawks began their official voluntary, nine-week off-season workout program Monday at the VMAC. Among those in attendance, based on pictures provided by the team, were safety Kam Chancellor and tight end Jimmy Graham.
The Seahawks on Monday were one of 25 NFL teams that begin their offseason workout program. The nine-week session begins with two weeks of strength, conditioning and physical rehabilitation (teams with first-year coaches can begin their programs up to two weeks earlier).
The program is voluntary. But typically most players attend, and among those in photos circulated by the team Monday were safety Kam Chancellor — who was a holdout for training camp and the first two regular-season games in 2015 — and tight end Jimmy Graham, who is rehabilitating a patellar-tendon injury suffered against Pittsburgh. In one of the photos Graham’s knee is in a sleeve.
Seattle’s program runs through June 9, and consists of three phases as described by the NFL.
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As written in the NFL rules:
Phase One consists of the first two weeks of the program with activities limited to strength and conditioning and physical rehabilitation only. Phase Two consists of the next three weeks of the program. On-field workouts may include individual player instruction and drills as well as team practice conducted on a “separates” basis. No live contact or team offense vs. team defense drills are permitted. Phase Three consists of the next four weeks of the program. Teams may conduct a total of 10 days of organized team practice activity, or “OTAs”. No live contact is permitted, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.
The Seahawks also will host a mandatory minicamp from June 14-16 and a rookie minicamp on one of the first two weekends following the NFL draft, which is April 28-30.
The Seahawks later released more photos that include cornerback Richard Sherman. Not shown in any of the pictures is defensive lineman Michael Bennett, who wants a new contract. Bennett also sat out some of the voluntary program last year but did not sit out any mandatory activities. It’s unclear if Bennett will skip any of the voluntary drills this year. Bennett recently changed agents from Drew Rosenhaus to Doug Hendrickson in an attempt to spur negotiations for a new deal.
Bennett has two years remaining on a four-year contract signed before the 2014 season, and the Seahawks typically have resisted redoing contracts that have more than a year remaining.
Chancellor recently indicated that he would not hold out this season, and Seahawks general manager John Schneider has said that he does not anticipate Chancellor holding out.
Schneider and coach Pete Carroll have said Graham’s rehab is going well but have not said when he will return. The offseason workout program will give the team a better idea of where injured players such as Graham and running back Thomas Rawls, who suffered a season-ending ankle injury in December, are in their rehabs.