We’ll continue our Seahawks pre-draft position reviews with a look at tight end.
PLAYERS CURRENTLY ON ROSTER
Starters: LT Russell Okung, LG Alvin Bailey, C Patrick Lewis, RG J.R. Sweezy, RT Justin Britt.
Seahawks 2015 Draft
- Seattle Times NFL mock draft
- Seahawks' 10 best draft picks of all time
- Seahawks' 10 worst draft picks of all time
- Position review: Defensive line
- Position review: Offensive line
- Position review: Quarterback
- Position review: Running back
- Position review: Wide receiver
- Position review: Tight end
- Position review: Linebacker
- Position review: Defensive Backs
- Position review: Special Teams
Backups: T Garry Gilliam, G C.J. Davis, G Nate Isles, G Keavon Milton, G Drew Nowak, G Justin Renfrow, C Jared Wheeler, C Lemuel Jeanpierre.
OVERVIEW: The Seahawks suffered two big losses in this area in the off-season with the trade of center Max Unger and the departure of left guard James Carpenter via free agency. Neither has been replaced by a certain starter from the outside. The Seahawks appear confident they can find some answers in what they already have on the roster — specifically, Lewis at center and Bailey at guard. Each started some games down the stretch last season — Bailey five games overall and Lewis four.
Okung, Britt and Sweezy are set at starters, and at the moment there doesn’t appear much competition for those spots as depth is also becoming a little bit of an issue — the only other player on the roster to start a game in the NFL other than the five starters listed above is Jeanpierre.
Seattle will certainly add some linemen in the draft and via free agency/salary cap cuts before the season begins. Recall the revolving door of linemen last year with guys like Wade Smith and Eric Winston getting training camp looks. Anticipate more of that this season as the Seahawks will turn over every rock to find answers (if you’re wondering who is still available, here’s a good list.
I know many are surprised Seattle hasn’t already brought in some free agents, with a guy like Stefen Wisniewski having visited and then signed elsewhere (Jacksonville). But the Seahawks obviously have their seasons — keeping the cap at a level manageable enough to get the Russell Wilson extension done being foremost.
But John Schneider made clear Wednesday the team knows it has to add some linemen, with Schneider saying he would “be lying” to say that the offensive line isn’t an area of emphasis heading into the draft.
DRAFT NEED (on scale of 1-10): 10.
POSSIBLE DRAFT FITS: The only question is how many offensive linemen the Seahawks will take, not if they will. You could make a great case for at least one tackle and two guard/center types.
The bad news is that it’s not regarded as an especially great years for centers — some see only one who could be taken in the top two rounds in Florida State’s Cameron Erving. But he’ll likely be gone by the time the Seahawks pick.
The next two centers are generally considered to be Andy Gallik of Boston College (NFL.com profile here) and Oregon’s Hroniss Grasu (profile here).
The guard class is a little deeper and also features a few guys who could also be centers. Two often mentioned as potentially there when Seattle picks are Duke’s Laken Tomlinson and Ali Marpet of Division-III Hobart who ranks as one of the most intriguing players in the class due to his small-school background.
According to this compilation of pre-draft visits to the VMAC by FieldGulls, Seattle has brought in five offensive linemen, all regarded as mid-round picks or later — Ty Sambrailo of Colorado State, Mark Glowinski of West Virginia, Lawrence Gibson of Virginia Tech, Chaz Green of Florida and Robert Myers of Tennessee State.
Come draft time, offensive line coach Tom Cable will have a heavy say in which direction the Seahawks go.
Schneider, asked this week if Cable makes the final call on offensive linemen, said: “We’re not going to draft a guy he doesn’t like. He doesn’t have the final say. But we would never draft somebody he doesn’t think could play. You are totally spinning your wheels there.’’
Here are the previous position reviews: