Seattle Seahawks Sign Fourth-Round Pick TE A.J. Barner

The Seattle Seahawks locked up one of their draft picks by signing tight end A.J. Barner to a four-year rookie contract.
Jan 8, 2024; Houston, TX, USA; Michigan Wolverines tight end AJ Barner (89) against the Washington
Jan 8, 2024; Houston, TX, USA; Michigan Wolverines tight end AJ Barner (89) against the Washington / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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The Seattle Seahawks announced they have signed fourth-round pick A.J. Barner to a four-year rookie contract. He became the fifth player in the Seahawks draft class to sign his rookie contract, with Nehemiah Pritchett, Sataoa Laumea and D.J. James having signed earlier on Monday.

John Schneider hasn't wasted time in trying to get his draft class signed. The only players that haven't signed contracts yet are guard Christian Haynes, linebacker Tyrice Knight and tackle Michael Jerrell.

Michigan tight end AJ Barner (89) celebrates a first down against UNLV during the first half at
Michigan tight end AJ Barner (89) celebrates a first down against UNLV during the first half at / Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK

Barner comes from Michigan where he was their TE2 behind Colston Loveland, who is already getting projected to be a first-round pick in the 2025 NFL Draft. Barner has the frame to be successful at the next level while also having the ability to develop into a secondary receiving option.

Head coach Mike Macdonald had some good things to say about Barner.

"His run after the catch is good. "I think he's an underrated athlete. I think he's got a little bit more weight to put on, but the blocking tight end is a really important position. It starts in the C-gap in the run game and who's going to defend it and who's going to block it, so you have to be able to answer those questions. Those skill sets don't just grow on trees. It's tough to do. So we expect him to be able to do that. It's a coveted skill set."

Seahawks head coach Mike Macdonald

Barner won't be asked to do much right away, but he will be a blocking tight end opposite of Noah Fant, which will help him thrive right away. Long-term, Barner could be a valuable weapon in both the running and passing games.


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Tyler Forness

TYLER FORNESS