Ranking Seahawks 2020 Roster: No. 80-76
With the calendar set to flip to July, NFL training camps will begin around the league in a matter of weeks. To celebrate the new incoming season, we will be ranking each player on the Seahawks 90-man roster. These rankings won't simply be based on pure talent. Positional importance, salary, standing on the depth chart, and draft positioning will be among a number of factors considered as we introduce each member of the squad.
80. Jayson Stanley, Cornerback/Safety, #1
Height/Weight: 6-foot-2, 207 pounds
2019 Stats: N/A
A size/traits prospect who mostly starred on special teams at Georgia, Stanley originally signed with the Falcons as a free agent, who transitioned him to cornerback in Dan Quinn's scheme to maximize his athleticism and 33-inch arms. He didn't make the team out of training camp and the preseason, but spent time with the Dolphins and Jaguars practice squads last season. Jacksonville, who listed him as both a receiver and a cornerback, released him after the draft to clear space for several new rookies and Seattle was awarded him off waivers.
Why He Could Make Seahawks: Versatility is coveted in Seattle, particularly for players who check off size and athleticism boxes like Stanley does. The team doesn't have many lengthy outside cornerback prospects behind Shaquill Griffin, Quinton Dunbar, and Tre Flowers, so if he performs well on special teams and shows improvement at cornerback, keeping him on the practice squad to develop would be wise.
79. Sutton Smith, Linebacker, #47
Height/Weight: 6-foot, 235 pounds
2019 Stats: N/A
Formerly a two-time First-Team All American selection at Northern Illinois, the Steelers drafted Smith in the sixth round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Unfortunately, injuries limited him to two preseason games and he was waived in late August, eventually bouncing around with three different practice squads last season, including signing with the Seahawks in December. Hoping to get a more extended look, Seattle re-signed him to future/reserve contract in January.
Why He Could Make Seahawks: Seattle finished second-to-last in the NFL in sacks last season and though undersized, Smith proved to be one of the best edge rushers in college football during his final two seasons with the Huskies. Depth at linebacker likely eliminates any chance of him making the 53-man roster, but showing off pass rushing chops in camp will go a long way towards getting him back to the practice squad.
78. Gavin Heslop, Cornerback, #9
Height/Weight: 6-foot, 197 pounds
2019 Stats: 52 tackles, eight passes defensed, three forced fumbles at Stony Brook
A three-year starter for the Seawolves, Heslop emerged as one of the best defenders in program history, amassing 196 tackles, 21.5 tackles for loss, 30 passes defensed in four years on campus. He also showed a knack for creating turnovers, forcing four fumbles and returning two of them for touchdowns. He was recognized as an All-CAA selection following his last two seasons at Stony Brook and served as a team captain during his senior season.
Why He Could Make Seahawks: Pete Carroll loves cornerbacks with size, length, and a high football IQ and Heslop checks off all three categories. With Dunbar's arrival, it will be extremely difficult for him to make the final roster as an undrafted rookie. But given the veteran's unresolved legal woes, the former Stony Brook standout would be a beneficiary if Dunbar is suspended or worse.
77. Dom Wood-Anderson, Tight End, #46
Height/Weight: 6-foot-4, 247 pounds
2019 Stats: 21 receptions, 268 yards, and one touchdown at Tennessee
After playing quarterback at Steele Canyon High School, Wood-Anderson transitioned to tight end at Arizona Western and emerged as the highest-rated JUCO prospect at the position, receiving 2017 First-Team All-AWSL honors. Signing with Tennessee in 2018, he started 10 games in his first season with the Volunteers, catching 17 passes for 140 yards and two touchdowns. Following a stellar senior season as both a blocker and a receiver, he participated in the 2020 East/West Shrine Game.
Why He Could Make Seahawks: Seattle has a logjam at tight end after signing Greg Olsen in free agency, re-signing Jacob Hollister and Luke Willson, and drafting Colby Parkinson. If Wood-Anderson impresses during the training camp and preseason, the practice squad is a possibility, but it would take a litany of injuries for him to make the active roster.
76. Eli Mencer, Defensive End, #43
Height/Weight: 6-foot-1, 225 pounds
2019 Stats: 14.5 sacks, 24 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles at Albany
Once a dynamic high school running back, Mencer found his way on the field as a freshman at Albany, making 19 tackles in nine games. He broke into the starting lineup in 2017, finishing with 60 tackles while playing linebacker for the Great Danes. Two years later, he shattered his previous career highs with 14.5 sacks and 24 tackles for loss as a senior, earning First-Team All-CAA honors and a Second-Team All-American selection at the FCS level.
Why He Could Make Seahawks: An elite pass rusher at the FCS level, Mencer's lack of size could be problematic making such a big jump to NFL competition. Much like Smith, however, shining in training camp and exhibition games off the edge could catapult him to the practice squad as a player to develop at the LEO defensive end position for the future.