With training camp approaching and players across the NFL scheduled to report on July 28, it’s time to recap what transpired over the course of the last five months and preview what’s ahead in the 2020 season.
It goes without saying that the NFL, like all sports, will look different this time around due to COVID-19. However, we’ll keep moving forward with the assumption that football will be taking place this year.
Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times joined the latest episode of the Talkin’ Seahawks Podcast to run through a series of five bold predictions that we tackled “buy or sell” style. Before we get to that, though, here’s a look at how each of us graded the Seahawks offseason.
If you need to refresh yourself, here’s a solid one-sheeter to remind you of Seattle’s moves and acquisitions.
“I’d probably give it about a ‘B’ simply because I’m not as down on it as some people who I know look at big names and Jadeveon Clowney – obviously the big name everybody wanted to keep. I never felt it was a ‘you’ve got to keep him or bust’ kind of thing,’ and obviously they didn’t either or they would have figured out a way to get it done. I’ve anticipated they were going to make another move at some point to do something to the pass rush to make that look a little better. I guess that’s sort of what I factor in there.
“I thought much of the rest of it made sense. The Jordyn Brooks pick obviously in the moment seemed a little surprising. … If you think about the long term and maybe how they want to use K.J. Wright this year and some things like that, then it does (make sense). It does give them a big insurance policy, too, for Bobby (Wagner) and K.J., who aren’t getting any younger. I thought a lot of that made some sense.
“One thing you could nitpick at a little bit is that they signed a lot of offensive linemen, but could you have pooled all that money and signed maybe one, more of a sure thing offensive lineman, especially at the right tackle spot. That would be another question I would raise about their offseason.”
Condotta added that the door seems open for signing another receiver even with the addition of Phillip Dorsett. He’s also high on the Carlos Hyde and Greg Olsen signings.
“I think they view (Olsen) as their potential third option in the passing game, even if that’s not the conventional way of thinking about it.”
“None of the deals they made are things that will constrain them salary cap-wise that will prevent them from doing things that maybe could crop up this year, but especially down the road. For better or worse, I know Seahawks fans sometimes want them to go crazy in free agency and look like they’ve built the best team in March, but that’s just not the way they’re wired with John Schneider and Pete Carroll. They’re always looking at the long haul.”
I agree with Bob for the most part, especially in regard to the Seahawks offseason still being incomplete. It feels like Seattle still has one sizeable move left in them before Week 1, whether it’s a trade for Jamal Adams or Chris Jones or signing Clowney, Everson Griffen or Markus Golden. I do think Seattle has to balance their somewhat conservative approach of not mortgaging the future for just one or two years with being all-in while Russell Wilson is firmly in his prime.
I do think the Seahawks have done an admirable job of improving the overall quality and depth throughout the roster. Seattle rebuilt its offensive line that should at least be status quo to the 2019 version without investing much. Wilson will arguably have his best collection of weapons in the passing game with Olsen and Will Dissly at tight end and Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf (among others) at receiver.
All three levels of the defense should be improved as well. The overall rotation along the defensive line is far superior to what the Seahawks put on the field in 2019, even without Clowney. I believe Brooks will have an immediate role at linebacker. As for the secondary, it should be at least a tick better from the lone fact of having Quandre Diggs for a full season. That’s before you consider whatever impact Quinton Dunbar is able to give Seattle.
That being said, I believe superstars win championships and while the Seahawks are a more complete team, I’m still not sure there are enough top-end difference makers to get Seattle over the hump in the Divisional Round of the playoffs. There’s still time for that to change, though.
Listen to the full podcast with Condotta here.