Without a first-round pick, the Seahawks will not be front and center at the 2021 NFL draft when commissioner Roger Goodell kicks things off on Thursday night.
But that doesn’t mean Seattle lacks intrigue.
With only three picks — their fewest in franchise history — it may be harder to know how the Seahawks will look to attack their needs than ever before. And they may be looking to add to their pick total at any given time throughout the draft.
With all that in mind, we’ve got you covered. Follow along throughout the weekend as our staff of reporters offers the latest on the Seahawks and the rest of the league throughout the 2021 draft.
1st round: Thursday, 5 p.m. PT
2nd-3rd rounds: Friday, 4 p.m. PT
4th-7th rounds: Saturday, 9 a.m. PT
ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio
Seahawks draft picks:
2nd round, pick No. 56
4th round, pick No. 129
7th round, pick No. 250
After watching from the sidelines during the first round, the Seahawks could take one of these players in the second
For once this offseason, the NFL had a soap opera of a day that for once didn’t feature the Seahawks, not even in a cameo appearance, let alone a starring role.
Instead, while the NFL draft kicked off amid the stunning rumors of Aaron Rodgers wanting out of Green Bay, the Seahawks, as expected, did nothing other than signing veteran defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche, a move already in the works, and watched as the first round went on without them.
That’s because Seattle entered the draft with just three picks, and none until 56 in the second round, due to four trades the team made over the last 12 months. That included trading first- and third-round picks in the 2021 draft to the Jets in exchange for safety Jamal Adams last July.
The Jets on Thursday traded both of those picks to the Vikings in a deal to move up from 23 to 14 in order to take USC guard Alijah Vera-Tucker. The Vikings used the 23rd pick to take left tackle Christian Darrisaw of Virginia Tech.
The Seahawks, meanwhile, will for now be more than content with Adams and hoping to get some good players on the final two days, having apparently never been tempted to try to land a first-rounder somehow this year.
Seahawks have to be pleased with QB situation compared to NFC West after first round
On Wednesday, the Seahawks’ top brass, Pete Carroll and John Schneider, made the case that their relationship with Russell Wilson is all patched up. The Seahawks are ready to thrive with him, they said.
The NFL draft kicked off Thursday following a tweetstorm of massive proportions regarding the volatile status of reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers, and fevered analysis of how it affected the plight of the quarterback-seeking San Francisco 49ers.
That helped a surprising phenomenon came into focus, even if a Rodgers trade to San Francisco (or anywhere else, so far) never did.
The Seahawks, who spent much of their offseason listening to rampant speculation about a rift with Wilson — much of generated by the words and actions of Wilson himself and his camp — nevertheless have the most stable quarterback situation in the division.
And the best.
Former Husky Joe Tryon is headed to Tampa Bay
On Friday, Joe Tryon will turn 22 years old.
And when it comes to birthday presents, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the rush.
A 6-foot-5, 259-pound pass-rusher from Renton, Tryon was selected by the Bucs on Thursday with the 32nd overall pick in the first round of the NFL Draft.
In his lone season as a starter at UW, Tryon earned second-team All-Pac-12 honors in 2019 — compiling a team-high 12.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks. He finished with 61 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss and nine sacks in 25 career games.
Don't tell Russ: Vikings use Seahawks' former first-round pick on O-lineman
As Pete Carroll said Thursday, Jamal Adams is Seattle’s first-round pick in 2021.
Of course, he is also their third pick this year and their first pick in 2022, as well.
Which means it will take a few years to really judge the trade, as the perception of it will be colored not only by what Adams does but what happens with the picks Seattle gives up.
And we know now one of the players picked in one of those spots as the Vikings chose offensive tackle Christian Darrisaw of Virginia Tech with the 23rd pick — which the Jets traded to Minnesota to move up to 14 to take guard Alijah Vera-Tucker of USC.
The Jets dealt the third-round pick they got from the Seahawks — No. 86 overall — in that trade, as well.
Darrisaw was a three-year starter at left tackle for Tech, allowing eight sacks in 35 games.
And yes, he’s the kind of lineman that Russell Wilson might have been hoping could help protect him. But Seattle has Adams, who had 9.5 sacks last season to not only lead the Seahawks but set an NFL single-season record for defensive backs. And Seattle is expected to sign Adams to an extension to keep him around for the long term sooner rather than later.
What Arizona Cardinals' pick of Zaven Collins means for their defense
The Arizona Cardinals showed last season they are on the verge of fielding one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL, ranking sixth in the league last year in total yards in QB Kyler Murray's second year.
They also showed an improving defense last year, ranking 13th in the NFL in going from 5-10-1 to 8-8 in the second season under coach Kliff Kingsbury.
And Thursday with their first pick in the draft, the Cardinals added to that defense by taking linebacker Zaven Collins of Tulsa, who was the Bednarik Award winner in 2020 as the best linebacker in college football.
The 6-3, 260-pounder may help replace Haason Reddick, who departed via free agency after making 12 1/2 sacks.
He also is the second linebacker Arizona has taken in the first round in the past two years, joining Isaiah Simmons of Clemson.
Some have questioned exactly what Collins’ best fit will be in the NFL, and also if his stats might have been inflated some by the level of competition at Tulsa.
But Arizona defensive coordinator Vance Joseph has shown an ability to find the best fits so Seattle QB Russell Wilson and the other QBs in the NFC West are likely going to have to make sure they know where Collins is on the field next season.
Collins had four sacks and 11 1/2 tackles for a loss in eight games last year for Tulsa.
After reportedly pursuing Russell Wilson, Bears get QB of the future
So how serious were trade talks between the Seahawks and Bears concerning Russell Wilson?
Seattle general manager John Schneider on Wednesday characterized them as just normal NFL offseason discussions, saying there were never any active negotiations. Other reports, though, stated the talks with the Bears — one of the four teams Wilson had reportedly told Seattle he would waive his no-trade clause for — were serious enough that a proposal was presented to Pete Carroll, who, after taking a night to think, turned it down. The Bears were apparently willing to include at least two first-round picks in the deal for Wilson.
And once the Bears moved on and signed Andy Dalton, that basically ended any talk of Wilson being traded in 2021, even if many around the league say they won’t be surprised if such talks happen again in 2022.
But they almost certainly won’t happen again with the Bears, who on Thursday traded with the Giants to move up from No. 20 in the draft to No. 11 to get Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields.
Some analysts thought Fields could go as high as third overall, and when he was still available after the top 10, the Bears got aggressive, giving up next year’s first-round pick and two other picks to move up for Fields.
This season, Fields will join Dalton in competing for the Bears’ starting job.
But Chicago — which earlier in the offseason let former first-round pick Mitchell Trubisky leave in free agency — undoubtedly now feels Fields is its quarterback of the future.
Which means they wouldn’t need Wilson anymore.
What the 49ers' surprise pick of Trey Lance means going forward
The 49ers finally settled the mystery of who they would take with the third pick of the NFL draft. And when they did it was at least a little bit of a surprise — Trey Lance of North Dakota State.
Many assumed when the 49ers traded with the Dolphins to move up to No. 3 that they had their eyes set on Mac Jones of Alabama. And some then wondered if the 49ers wanted Justin Fields of Ohio State.
Instead, they are taking a gamble on Lance, who not only comes out of an FCS school but has just 17 career starts and played only one game in 2020.
But the 6-3, 224 pounder is the prototypical, dual-threat QB that is becoming more and more common in the NFL these days.
Lance told the NFL Network he found out just “two minutes ago’’ and had no idea he was going to be the choice of the 49ers, who had also been linked earlier in the day to rumors concerning Aaron Rodgers of Green Bay, with one report stating they called the Packers Wednesday to see if Rodgers was available.
Now comes the question of what the 49ers do with Jimmy Garoppolo.
Garoppolo has a $26.38 million cap hit for the 2021 season but with only $2.8 million in dead money, meaning the 49ers could save more than $24 million if he were released or traded on a contract that goes through the 2022 season.
That could be an awful lot to pay for someone who might end up as a backup quarterback and will continue to lead to rumors about his future, with many continuing to circulate that he could be headed back to New England.
Lance’s arrival could also mean that there will be two new starting quarterbacks in the NFC West next year with the Rams having acquired veteran Matthew Stafford in a blockbuster trade earlier this offseason.
That leaves two returning sure thing starters in the West — Seattle’s Russell Wilson and Arizona’s Kyler Murray.
Report: Aaron Rodgers 'disgruntled' in Green Bay, 49ers reach out to Packers about a trade
The Seahawks may not have a first-round pick in Thursday’s draft.
But one of their main rivals — the San Francisco 49ers — stand at the focal point of the draft.
The 49ers have the third pick after Jacksonville is expected to take Trevor Lawrence and the Jets selected to take Zach Wilson.
The 49ers’ pick, meanwhile, is shrouded in mystery and what they end up doing will shape the rest of the top of the draft.
What San Francisco may do got only a little more muddled Thursday morning when a report surfaced from Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network that “The #49ers reached out to the #Packers on Wednesday about trading for Aaron Rodgers, but no formal offer was made and a source said there is a “zero percent chance” that Green Bay deals the reigning NFL MVP.’’
That caused some to question what the 49ers have in mind for the third pick after having made a big trade with Miami to move up. The thought then was that the 49ers had their eyes set on a specific QB — Mac Jones or Trey Lance.
Would an attempt to get the 37-year-old Rodgers mean the 49ers are unsure of what they want at QB and unclear if either Lance or Jones — or maybe Justin Fields — isn’t really the long-term answer at QB?
Or, maybe, the 49ers were just trying to take advantage of what may be a somewhat combustible situation in Green Bay.
Shortly after Pelissero’s report came another from Adam Schefter of ESPN that Rodgers may want out of Green Bay.
Tweeted Schefter at 12:19 p.m.: “Reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers is so disgruntled with the Green Bay Packers that he has told some within the organization that he does not want to return to the team, league and team sources told ESPN on Thursday.’’
Green Bay ruffled Rodgers’ feathers a bit last year by taking quarterback Jordan Love out of Utah State in the first round instead of adding a receiver or some other player who could help the team immediately.
Rodgers, of course, is from the northern California area, growing up in Chico and attending Cal before being picked by the Packers in the first round in 2005 --- famously, after the 49ers selected Alex Smith with the second overall pick, which some thought the team would instead use on Rodgers.
Now, all these years later, Rodgers remains at the top of his game while the 49ers are searching for another QB — and not to mention that San Francisco still has Jimmy Garoppolo on its roster, though maybe not for long as rumors of a possible trade to New England also continue to circulate.
Add it up and there is no shortage of intrigue with the first round of the draft set to begin at 5 p.m.
Seahawks add a former first-rounder on draft day
The Seahawks do not have a first-round Thursday night in the NFL draft.
But they acquired a first-round pick Thursday, anyway — a former one, at least — in defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche.
Nkemdiche was the 29th overall pick in 2016 by the Arizona Cardinals out of Ole Miss. In fact, many analysts that year predicted Nkemdiche would be picked by Seattle, including ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr., as the Seahawks had the 26th pick entering the draft. Seattle instead pulled off a trade to move down in the draft and took offensive lineman Germain Ifedi with the 31st pick and defensive tackle Jarran Reed in the second round.
Analysis: Experts have panned the Seahawks’ last five drafts. Are they right?
If this were a normal draft for the Seahawks, it would also be portrayed as a pretty critical one from a perception standpoint.
But, because the Seahawks have just three picks, not only are expectations tempered for who Seattle will get, but also the pressure might be off to make sure it’s a good one — grades likely won’t be too harsh for a draft class that starts at No. 56 overall.
And in the run-up to the draft this year, analysts have not been kind to Seattle’s recent draft efforts.
Of all the questions surrounding UW’s Joe Tryon, perhaps the biggest is how high he could go in the NFL draft
Joe Tryon, the 6-foot-5, 259-pound former UW edge rusher, is one of the more intriguing prospects entering the NFL draft. Joe will turn 22 on Friday, and by then there’s a chance he could already be flying out to his new home. Perhaps it will be Tampa Bay? Or Buffalo? Maybe Green Bay?
Just how high could he go in the NFL draft?
Mock draft roundup: Taking one last look at who the Seahawks might take
Seattle is hardly at the forefront of draft thoughts, with no pick until 56 and only three overall, though the assumption is the Seahawks will do their best to add to that total.
But there are still plenty of guesses out there about what the Seahawks may do. Let’s take a look at some, and as always, including their comments when available, and adding a few of my comments. We’ll also include all the picks for those who did seven-round drafts.
Analyzing the Seahawks’ top three needs in the draft and the best players to fill them
Holding just one pick before the late fourth round means the Seahawks aren’t going to be able to address a ton of needs easily. That’s assuming that’s their goal, and not just trying to take the best player available. With so few picks, they more than ever might go BPA.
But like all teams, the Seahawks enter the draft with some positions that appear to be more logical needs than others. Here are what I think are three positions of need and three players who might be good fits for the Seahawks with the 56th pick.
Analysis: Reviewing the history of the three draft picks the Seahawks hold in 2021
One way to inform opinion about what Seattle might get where it picks is to review the players who have been selected in previous years at the spots where Seattle has selections entering the 2021 draft.
Seattle’s three picks are Nos. 56 in the second round, 129 in the fourth and 250 in the seventh.
Interestingly, Seattle has never made a pick at any of those three spots.
But there is plenty of history at each to learn from.
2021 Seattle Times mock NFL draft: What the 49ers do at No. 3 sets the tone for the rest of the NFC West
The greatest intrigue — both near and far — entering the first round centers largely on one of the Seahawks’ chief NFC West rivals.
After mortgaging much of their future to move up nine spots in a trade with Miami, what will the San Francisco 49ers do with the No. 3 pick?
The Niners are going to take a quarterback. That much we know. But which one?
In our annual Seattle Times mock draft, the task of trying to figure out which QB the 49ers will take fell to Times columnist Larry Stone. In a random draw, Seahawks reporter Adam Jude received the first pick, followed by columnist Matt Calkins, Stone and then Seahawks reporter Bob Condotta.
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