Seahawks Release Emmanuel Ellerbee, Create Roster Spot
Conducting some last-minute housecleaning before strength and conditioning programs start on Monday, per the NFL transaction wire, the Seahawks have waived linebacker Emmanuel Ellerbee with an injury designation.
The decision to cut Ellerbee along with guard Chance Warmack officially being added to the reserve/opt-out list leaves Seattle with 78 players on the roster currently. Though the league and NFL players association agreed to limit roster maximums to 80 players due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that leaves two open spots for the team to fill in coming days.
Originally signed undrafted out of Rice, Ellerbee spent brief spells with the Falcons and Chargers before being claimed off waivers by the Seahawks in October 2018. He had three different stints on the active roster over the final two months of the season, dressing for four games without posting any official statistics.
In April 2019, Seattle opted to re-sign Ellerbee to a one-year deal worth $570,000. But before training camp kicked off, he was placed on injured reserve, ending his season before it began.
As for Warmack, he informed the Seahawks of his plans to sit out this season due to concerns about playing during a pandemic earlier this week. Recently, a family member died from the virus, leading him to make the tough decision not to suit up. His contract will toll and he hopes to play in 2021.
With two roster spots left to fill, plenty of fans will speculate the return of defensive end Jadeveon Clowney or receiver Josh Gordon. Clowney remains unsigned as the calendar turns to August and hasn't shown any urgency finding his next team, while Gordon has applied for reinstatement from the NFL and awaits a decision to see if he will be eligible to play again.
While both moves can't be ruled out at this point, it's also possible Seattle could look to sign a veteran defensive tackle such as Damon Harrison or Timmy Jernigan, two players the team has been linked to this offseason. Secondary depth may also be a concern with Quinton Dunbar being placed on the commissioner's exempt list due to an ongoing armed robbery case in Florida.
Since the Seahawks won't return to on-field practices until August 12 at the earliest, the team has ample time to add two more players. But with several teams looking for talent to replace players who have opted out in recent days, expect them to move quickly if they desire a quality veteran or two.