Rookie linebacker Shaquem Griffin continues to make an impression on Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll.
Griffin, who had a standout career as Central Florida despite having his left hand amputated as a child, is adapting well to the move to inside linebacker.
“I just talked to him coming off the field,” Carroll said Thursday during minicamp, per the team’s official website. “What was really positive was how he finished the offseason. Moving back to an inside (linebacker) spot for him was new and he had a lot to learn and a lot to pick up.”
A fifth-round pick in this year’s NFL Draft, it was expected that Griffin’s speed would be an asset in Seattle’s defensive scheme. The 6-foot, 227-pound Griffin recorded a 4.38 time in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine.
That speed helped Griffin overcome playing with one hand in college. He was named the American Athletic Conference’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2017 and registered 18.5 sacks in his final two seasons at UCF.
Reunited with twin brother Shaquill, a third-round selection of the Seahawks in 2017, it was uncertain how Shaquem would adjust to moving inside.
Carroll said the rookie did not look out of place during last month’s organized team activities but noted the progression on the final day of minicamp.
“Just in the process of it, as a guy who wants to do right and do things just as the coaches are coaching him up, we didn’t see him really cut loose until the last (day), really in this camp,” said Carroll. “He really felt comfortable and started flying around and you could see how fast he is and the acceleration that he has. It’s really unique, it just jumped off the film.”