We’re turning the nook from the NFL season and into draft season. With it there can be all manners of arguments about participant positioning and who deserves to go No. 1 total, however one of the vital intriguing predicaments within the top-5 comes from the Seahawks.
It is a staff who have been predicted to crater this season. In reality, 2022 was alleged to be a tank 12 months earlier than it even started, with the notion being that Seattle would commerce away Russell Wilson, be rubbish in consequence, and intention to pick out their quarterback of the long run with a top-3 decide. Now they’re pushing to discover a spot within the playoffs, and Denver’s misfortunes have put the staff in a generational place to overtake all of the staff’s want positions in a few quick years, and that begins now.
That mentioned, this draft is extra sophisticated now due to Geno Smith. The quarterback’s resurgence has been simply the very best story of 2022, and his play has actually warranted persevering with because the staff’s starter. Is one comeback season sufficient to disregard the QB place and deal with different wants? At this time myself and Mark Schofield make our circumstances for whether or not Seattle ought to take a QB within the first spherical.
The Seahawks HAVE to a take a quarterback — by James Dator
I like Geno Smith. I like his play this season, I like his story, and I like how he’s defied expectations to legitimately turn out to be among the finest quarterbacks in 2022. I nonetheless suppose Seattle can be silly to disregard the chance to take a high passer this 12 months.
The Denver collapse has handed the Seahawks what I name a “Golden Goose Draft.” It’s one thing that solely comes alongside as soon as in an important whereas, in any sport. The prime instance of this was the 1996-97 Spurs, which collapsed from a 59-23 report the 12 months earlier than, to ending up with the No. 1 decide due to a season-ending damage to David Robinson. It allowed San Antonio to take Tim Duncan with the highest decide, and construct a dynasty due to it.
Sure, it is a little completely different, however I believe the impact is identical. Seattle is just too good of a staff to plummet again into having a Prime 3 decide, not less than within the speedy future. This has to be the staff’s alternative to take a passer, even when they sit behind Geno in 2023.
Because it stands the Seahawks with have the No. 2 total decide. Until you actually dislike all the tops passers this 12 months there is no such thing as a cause to not take one. Each potential draft situation I can consider is sweet. Each Bryce Younger and C.J. Stroud have the potential to be high tier NFL starters. Ought to the Texans be silly and roll the cube on Will Levis you possibly can take your decide of the very best NFL-ready QB within the draft.
I do know this staff has big holes on protection that have to be stuffed. I perceive that going all-defense in 2023 may end in getting Seattle again to being an everyday playoff contender shortly. Nonetheless, Geno can be going to be 33 years previous subsequent season, and time is catching up on him earlier than we even speak in regards to the probability he can maintain this run going.
So far as I’m involved you are taking a QB at No. 2. You lock up Smith to a 3-4 12 months performance-heavy extension, and let it rip. The worst case situation is you wind up just like the Chargers after they took Philip Rivers, and you could possibly discover a QB-needy staff to commerce Geno for to recoup extra picks transferring ahead like San Diego did with Drew Brees.
If you wish to get higher proper now, then by all means, draft protection. If you’d like an opportunity to show the Seahawks right into a decade-plus risk within the NFC you are taking a high passer and giggle all the best way to the financial institution figuring out your future is safe.
Seattle ought to comply with the Eagles’ method — by Mark Schofield
Seattle is in place to run the NFL draft subsequent 12 months.
They may prolong that in the event that they comply with what Howie Roseman and the Philadelphia Eagles did this previous offseason.
Let’s set the framework for this dialogue. Proper now, the Seahawks maintain 5 picks within the first three rounds of the NFL draft, in response to Tankathon. They’ve their very own first spherical choice (presently seventeenth), their very own second spherical choice (presently forty eighth total), and their very own third spherical choice, which is presently 82nd total.
Additionally they, due to the Wilson commerce, have extra picks within the first (2nd total) and the second, presently thirty fifth total.
That’s a whole lot of draft capital.
Previous to final 12 months’s draft, the Eagles had a trio of first-round picks at their disposal. That gave Roseman a ton of choices. However the Eagles have been in the same place final spring as Seattle finds themselves this 12 months.
Are they certain about their quarterback?
So what did Roseman do? He constructed round his quarterback, however gave himself a future hedge. In a pre-draft commerce with the New Orleans Saints, Roseman flipped a type of 2022 first-round picks, however added a 2023 first-round decide.
Because it stands proper now, the Eagles are selecting fifth with that Saints choice.
And due to the expansion from Jalen Hurts this season — in addition to how they used the remainder of their draft capital to construct round him, like they did with the A.J. Brown commerce that concerned one other of these first-round picks — they don’t have to draft a quarterback.
Nonetheless, if Hurts didn’t have the MVP-type season this 12 months that he’s having, they’d be in place, with a pair of first-round picks, to maneuver up for a quarterback in the event that they wanted to.
Now let’s discuss Seattle. Due to what Smith has carried out this season — he ranks among the many league leaders in a variety of passing classes, together with ANY/A, QBR, EPA, and CPOE — Seattle is 7-6 and chasing a playoff spot. Past the numbers, and the wins, what Smith has proven on the sphere is known as a continuation of what we noticed from him final 12 months, when he was pressed into motion after Wilson suffered his hand damage. Contact, trajectory, accuracy, and pocket administration, are all traits Smith has displayed at a excessive degree this 12 months, as he did a season in the past.
As I wrote about him this summer time:
Staying and preventing within the pocket is likely one of the hardest issues for a quarterback to do. It flies within the face of all human emotion. Giant males are coming to do you hurt, and whereas instincts may inform you to run for the hills — as they informed me so many instances over time — the flexibility to remain inside the pocket, create house and maintain the offense on construction is an incredible ability for a quarterback to have. That retains as many choices within the idea in play for the quarterback slightly than instantly slicing the sphere in half, forcing defenses to nonetheless defend “each blade of grass.”
If Smith can unleash that trait as a lot as doable, in tandem with the others mentioned, he’ll not solely earn the beginning job in Seattle…however he’ll maintain it.
There isn’t any cause to imagine that may abruptly go away subsequent 12 months.
So what ought to Seattle do? Discover a method so as to add that future hedge, like Roseman did final 12 months. There isn’t any have to power a quarterback decide this 12 months. Smith has proven over the previous two seasons that he will be the starter, and that he can play at a excessive degree.
It would contain sliding again from the primary of the 2 picks, which proper now’s second total. There are a selection of groups that may possible be within the quarterback recreation this cycle, together with Indianapolis (presently selecting seventh), Carolina (presently selecting ninth), and doubtlessly Detroit, though the Lions may roll with Jared Goff and take the same method.
Hypothetically, think about Seattle trades down from two with Indianapolis, selecting up a 2024 first-round decide within the course of. They may add expertise on protection, maybe one other go rusher in Myles Murphy or Tyree Wilson, or think about pairing Kelee Ringo with Tariq Woolen? Jalen Carter may nonetheless be there, relying on how groups view inside defensive linemen. (Bear in mind, Jordan Davis slid final 12 months to … the Philadelphia Eagles).
So what the Seahawks ought to do is construct round Smith for 2023, however give themselves an out for the 2024 draft ought to the necessity come up. Smith has confirmed along with his play over the previous two seasons that this isn’t a flash-in-the-pan scenario. Construct round him, hedge with a future first, and hope that you simply put collectively the same run like Philadelphia subsequent 12 months.
And if all of it goes south, use that hedge as a method to get Caleb Williams. By some means.