- The biggest need, the hidden need and what else the Seahawks should be looking for in the 2019 draft.
Two weeks ahead of the NFL draft, Andy Benoit and Gary Gramling are breaking down draft needs for all 32 teams. You can also see every team in a single post here.
Biggest Need: Defensive End
If franchise-tagged fifth-year pro Frank Clark plays well, he’ll almost certainly get a long-term deal in 2020. So will defensive tackle Jarran Reed, who has a rare combination of agility and strength. A quality D-line is critical to Seattle’s straightforward 4-3 single-high scheme; assuming Clark and Reed are the line’s cornerstones moving forward, salary cap constrictions will force Seattle to build around them via the draft. Immediate help is required, anyway. This front overachieved in 2018 (a nice reflection on D-line coach Clint Hurtt) but is stocked with mostly mid-round talent. More penetrators are needed, especially at defensive end.
Hidden Need: Wide Receiver
Doug Baldwin has battled copious injuries and, with a lot of interests outside of football, some believe he could leave the sport sooner than later. Even if Baldwin sticks around, the Seahawks need a big-bodied target to challenge David Moore for the third-receiver duties opposite Tyler Lockett.
Also Looking For: Slot Corner
Someone must replace Justin Coleman, who signed with Detroit in free agency. Seattle need not invest super heavily at this position; their scheme’s foundation often calls for landmark zone coverage from slot corners, which takes less athleticism than matchup-zone coverage. A sound-tackling mid-round pick will do.
Who They Can Get
Skinny edge burner Brian Burns of Florida State might make it to Seattle at 21, but if he isn't available the Seahawks are probably looking at well-rounded but less-than-dynamic Clelin Ferrell of Clemson or undersized, high-effort rusher Jaylon Ferguson of Louisiana Tech. There will be some big-bodied receivers available late in the first, most likely A.J. Brown or Ole Miss, Hakeem Butler of Iowa State and Arizona State's N'Keal Harry. They could also stay local for that slot corner with Washington's Byron Murphy.
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