With just four selections in the 2019 NFL Draft, can the Seattle Seahawks overcome the odds to make yet another playoff appearance next season?
It may sound counter-intuitive, but a relatively inactive offseason for the Seattle Seahawks has been one of the most important in recent memory.
The Seahawks watched star safety Earl Thomas head to the Ravens in free agency, and along with players like J.R. Sweezy, Justin Coleman, Mike Davis, and Brett Hundley, Seattle is clearly banking on those sweet 2020 compensation picks for the rest of the offseason.
There are still plenty of holes on the Seattle roster left to fill, however, and most recently, will have to decide how to handle Russell Wilson’s Russell-imposed April 15th deadline for a new contract extension. Add to this a still-un-extended Frank Clark and only four picks in the upcoming draft, and it’s all the more reason why this draft is critically important for the franchise moving forward.
For the purposes of all of my mocks at FanSided, we’ll stick exclusively with the picks on hand rather than become a trade-down mad scientist, though I fully expect the Seahawks to explore that possibility. So, without further ado, here’s a look at how the board could play out for John Schneider and company beginning on April 25th…
Last year, the Seahawks seemed dead-set on selecting former Florida State standout Derwin James with their top pick, until he was snatched from them with the pick directly in front of them by the Los Angeles Chargers. Seattle then traded down, but that disappointment coupled with the departure of Earl Thomas could mean they’ll be firmly in the market for a safety on draft day.
Already, the Seahawks have had contact with a number of the draft’s top safeties including Virginia’s Juan Thornhill and Maryland’s Darnell Savage, but one player who they could have their eye on is Mississippi State’s Johnathan Abram.
Abram (5-foot-11, 205 pounds) is a tone-setter on the back half of the defense and is considered by many to be one of the hardest hitters in the draft. He has steadily risen up draft boards throughout the process and even though he may not be considered a rangy “center field” type safety, he has plenty of speed and is an excellent tackler in space. Abram is the type of player who could excel at a specialized hybrid role and on special teams while the organization lets him learn the responsibilities of safeties in their particular scheme.
Ultimately, I think this first selection will come down to exactly where Seattle lands on the board as far as trades are concerned. I get the sense that Abram is their top target as safety, but don’t be surprised if a wide receiver such as Ohio State’s Terry McLaurin or Stanford’s J.J. Arcega-Whiteside is an early target for them as well.