The 2021 NFL Draft is in the rearview mirror and although the Seahawks came away with only three draft picks, there are still a number of storylines to discuss. In addition to D’Wayne Eskridge, Tre Brown and Stone Forsythe, Seattle signed a number of intriguing UDFAs.
Let’s dive into a special post-draft edition of Overreaction Monday. Thanks to those who submitted their takes.
Stone Forsythe is an intriguing project of a tackle prospect with an imposing 6-foot-8 frame. He’s sure to benefit from being around Duane Brown, and he could develop into a starter down the road. That would be the best-case scenario for the Seahawks given both of their tackles are scheduled to be free agents next offseason.
That said, I think it’s too ambitious to expect him to start as a rookie. Brandon Shell was solid in 2020, and Pete Carroll has been adamant that Cedric Ogbuehi will get a chance to compete for the starting right tackle job. I expect Forsythe to make the roster, just don’t anticipate seeing him on the field barring a couple of injuries.
I understand the concern over passing on Creed Humphrey in the second round. I didn’t expect the Oklahoma center to still be on the board at No. 56. Picking a receiver instead was a vote of confidence in Ethan Pocic and Kyle Fuller. While I also am of the thought that Seattle can do better at center, I’m willing to give Pete Carroll and John Schneider the benefit of the doubt with their belief in Pocic.
The Seahawks did Pocic a disservice by moving him around the interior of the offensive line before moving him back to center full time in 2020. It’s possible that the best is yet to come with the 2017 second-round pick.
I don’t understand the negativity surrounding the Eskridge pick. Seattle entered the draft miserably thin at receiver. The third wideout in an offense is essentially a starting position in today’s NFL, and the Seahawks are likely to utilize 11 personnel heavily under Shane Waldron. Carroll said that Eskridge is versatile and explosive enough to make opponents think twice about double-teaming DK Metcalf or Tyler Lockett.
Seattle was desperate for a dependable No. 3 option in the passing game last year. While I’m a believer in Gerald Everett and Will Dissly, I think Eskridge will have a bigger role than both as a rookie.
If we were putting odds on the starter opposite D.J. Reed, Ahkello Witherspoon would likely be the favorite followed by Tre Flowers and Tre Brown. Maybe Brown doesn’t beat those two out during training camp, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him starting at some point as a rookie. It might be time to accept that Flowers is who he is, and until Witherspoon shows he can be relied upon consistently, I’d rather put my money on the rookie out of Oklahoma who has a skill set and disposition worth betting on.
I agree that Gerald Everett will have his best year as a pro. The reality is that’s a low bar to clear. Everett has never topped 450 receiving yards in a season and his single-season touchdown high is just three. He is likely to be featured in Seattle more than he ever was in Los Angeles, but there are still lots of mouths to feed on the Seahawks offense.
Lockett and Metcalf will continue to dominate targets with Eskridge and Dissly figuring to have prominent roles as well. The best way I can put it is this: Yes, I expect Everett to have his best season as a pro, I just don’t think he’s going to be a fantasy football darling at the tight end position.
I’d actually go the other way: I think the Seahawks have solid offensive line depth with guys like Ogbuehi, Forsythe, Fuller, Jordan Simmons, Phil Haynes and Jamarco Jones. My bigger question is in regard to the upside and overall ceiling of the starting lineup. That will be determined largely by the progression of Pocic and Damien Lewis.
Most draft analysts are shocked that Cade Johnson didn’t get drafted. To me it’s a safe bet that he makes the roster as Seattle’s WR5 at worst behind Freddie Swain. If the Seahawks keep six receivers, I’d put Tamorrion Terry as the favorite to beat out Penny Hart, John Ursua and everyone else for that roster spot.
My one reservation with Terry is that I was all in on Jazz Ferguson in training camp two years ago, and he isn’t even in the league anymore. That’s admittedly irrational, but Ferguson has made me skeptical of height-weight-speed receivers who go undrafted.
Other intriguing UDFAs with a shot at making the roster might be G Jared Hocker and CB Bryan Mills. It’s an impressive group of post-draft additions, which isn’t a surprise. Schneider said he expected to have an easier time recruiting such players given Seattle only had three draft picks. Thus, the Seahawks will treat these UDFAs as a part of their draft class more than ever before.