If you were looking for boring offseasons, the Seahawks did not provide it. Instead, they produced a historic trade in which a future Hall of Fame quarterback left in exchange for a bevy of picks meant to revitalize the roster.
Maybe you were disappointed by the deals. Maybe they pumped you up. But until now, all the trades, transactions and selections have essentially been an idea. Monday, they’ll finally all be sharing a field.
Monday marks the first day of voluntary organized team activities for the Seahawks. New signees and seasoned vets will step on the VMAC grass to prepare for what might be the most challenging season since Pete Carroll came on as coach. No players from the Seahawks’ Super Bowl-winning team nine seasons prior will be in uniform at the practice facility.
How much will be revealed during the OTAs remains to be seen. Training camp is typically the most telling stretch in terms of who will make the roster and who will start. But as Carroll regularly says — the competition is on.
What should fans be looking for? The most obvious is the quarterback situation. Russell Wilson is gone. Drew Lock and Geno Smith are here. Over the past two seasons, the pair has won a combined nine games, with Lock at 8-13 and Smith at 1-2. Carroll is incapable of not being “fired up” about any of his players — whether it’s an MVP candidate or an undrafted long snapper. But to the Seahawks faithful, this duo has all the appeal of a couple of ’83 Datsuns.
Hey, I’d be more than willing to eat my words if that sentence is shoved in my face after a Seahawks playoff run. But here’s what we know: Lock is 8-13 for his career, but 4-12 over the past two seasons. He led the league in interceptions with 15 in 2020. Smith went 1-2 in his three starts while Wilson was hurt, and though he scorched the last-place Jaguars in his final game as the starting QB, he was relatively ineffective otherwise.
Former Seahawk Mike Robinson said last year that Smith was the best backup QB in football. I don’t know. Carroll feels Lock can get back to his 2019 self, when he went 4-1 for the Broncos after stepping in for Joe Flacco and Brandon Allen. I don’t know about that, either. But barring a late signing (Baker Mayfield?), one of these two will have to excel if the Seahawks want to contend. Now is when we’ll start to get some information.
Next, there are the rookies. And this might be the most important class of first-year players since the Seahawks landed Wilson and Bobby Wagner in 2012. Lock or Smith may be the most significant component to winning immediately, but the youngsters are who will build the foundation for future success.
The Seahawks basically went “chalk” in the draft last month. They needed a left tackle, so they snagged one with the ninth pick in Charles Cross. They needed an edge rusher, so they brought in Boye Mafe with the 40th pick. Running back Chris Carson may never play again and Rashaad Penny has a long history of injury, so the Seahawks grabbed running back Kenneth Walker III one pick later — then a right tackle (Abraham Lucas) in the third round, then a cornerback (Coby Bryant) in the fourth … needs (seemingly) addressed.
But nobody actually knows how these guys will pan out. The Seahawks became one of the most dominant teams in the league last decade because of what Carroll and general manager John Schneider did in the draft. They’ve hit a few singles and doubles since the glory days, but they need a few homers with this new group to return to the top.
And then, there is Jamal Adams. The safety’s legacy with the Seahawks is complex but has been trending downward as of late. Yes, he set a record for sacks by a defensive back in 2020 (9.5) but was still rated as a middling defensive back by Pro Football Focus — which was equally critical of him last year before he got hurt. Given how the Seahawks gave up two first-round picks for Adams in the ultimate “win now” move, it’s looking more and more like a botched deal. Can Jamal return to All-Pro form?
Look, it’s May. And we’re talking about voluntary workouts that likely won’t match the intensity of training camp in the summer.
But that won’t impact the intrigue among fans. They’ve been waiting months this new-look team to unite on the field. They’re finally getting it.