Whitehurst: ‘I’m confident I can make it happen’

Published on July 28, 2011 by     Tacoma News Tribune (Feed)

The Seattle Seahawks had 73 players out on the field today, including six of Seattle’s nine draft picks.

Players the team has reached agreement with include fourth-round pick Kris Durham, fifth-round picks Richard Sherman and Mark Legree, sixth-round pick Byron Maxwell, and seventh-round picks Pep Levingston and Malcolm Smith.

First round pick James Carpenter, third rounder John Moffitt and fourth rounder K.J. Wright have yet to reach an agreement.

The Seahawks practiced for about a 1 hour, 45 minutes in jerseys and shorts, including a team period at the end of practice.

Defensive end Red Bryant worked with the first unit at defensive end and appears ready to go after finishing last season on the injured reserve with a knee issue.

Another player who impressed on Thursday was receiver Isaiah Stanback, who appears to have fully recovered from a torn Achilles tendon suffered during training camp that cut short his 2010 campaign.

But all eyes were on Charlie Whitehurst and how he would handle filling the immense shoes of Matt Hasselbeck. Whitehurst looked comfortable with the unit and threw the ball in his opening reps of training camp.

And Whitehurst said he’s ready for the chance to earn a starting job.

“It’s an opportunity obviously,” Whitehurst said. “It’s one that I’m going to attack and give it everything I’ve got. I want to be the starting quarterback here. I know there’s going to be competition, but I’m confident I can make it happen, and lead this team to a heck of a season.”

Whitehurst said today was his first opportunity to take live reps with offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell’s new playbook. He said there’s some crossover from Jeremy Bate’s version of the West Coast offense and Bevell’s version, but there will be some new learning.

“It’s definitely new,” he said. “We’re just diving into the playbook now. But I like some of the things we do. We’re going to try and run the football here. There’s no doubt about it. We will be able to do that, some play action and some drop back – all that stuff. I think we’re going to throw it short, throw it long and do a bunch of stuff.”

Whitehurst said he has been in communication with Hasselbeck, and that he left him a voice mail and Hasselbeck texted him back.

“I just thanked him for being a good leader and a good guy to definitely be under there for a year,” Whitehurst said. “He’s a good guy, and people are going to miss him around here for sure.”

With Carpenter and Moffitt unsigned, Paul Fanaika worked at right guard and Breno Giacomini at right tackle with the first unit, while Mike Gibson filled in at left guard with Robert Gallery still not signed.

Defensively, Jay Alford worked at nose tackle with Colin Cole out and the team still negotiating to try and bring Brandon Mebane back.

And new offensive line coach Tom Cable was very animated working with the offensive line today.

I also had a chance to talk to LeGree, who’s excited about the opportunity to compete for a starting job with Kam Chancellor.

“It’s a dream come true,” LeGree said. “It’s finally hit me now that I’m here in the facility with all these coaches and all of these pros. I feel like a pro now, and I’m not going to let this chance slip by. I’m going to make the most of it.”

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