Projecting the roster

Logo -- PreseasonWith the preseason halfway over and the one big cut down to 53 a week from Saturday, we’re starting to see the 2017 Seahawks come together. Here’s how we see it:


Keep: 2
Lock: Russell Wilson
In the hunt: Trevone Boykin, Austin Davis
How we see it: Despite his seeming lack of progress, Boykin appears set to reclaim the No. 2 spot. He is still slow to diagnose, leading to pressures, and often inaccurate. But Davis is no better, and Boykin — a poor man’s Wilson — has the athleticism to make up for what he lacks in mental acuity.

Keep: 5
Locks: Thomas Rawls, Eddie Lacy, Chris Carson, C.J. Prosise, Marcel Reece
Long shots: Mike Davis, Alex Collins, Tre Madden
How we see it: It wouldn’t be a surprise if Carson ended up as the starter at some point, especially if Rawls cannot stay healthy. Prosise keeps coming up with one ailment after another (a groin this time). The team definitely will not — and should not — give up on a third-round pick after one year. But Prosise needs to figure out how to avoid nagging injuries that keep him off the field. Davis seemingly has passed Collins, who fumbled vs. the Vikings, but that would matter only if the Hawks kept five tailbacks. Reece is a great veteran to have at fullback.

Keep: 6
Locks: Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, Paul Richardson, Kasen Williams, Amara Darboh
In the hunt: Jermaine Kearse, Tanner McEvoy, J.D. McKissic
Long shots: Kenny Lawler, David Moore, Cyril Grayson, Darreus Rogers, Rodney Smith
How we see it: Williams has had a spectacular preseason and looks good enough to be the No. 4 guy. It’s hard to see the Hawks cutting Kearse, but he’s the borderline sixth guy at this point and Williams is the better former Husky. Darboh hasn’t seen much game action due to injuries, but Carroll said he has looked great in practice. He’s a third-round pick, so he’s a lock. McEvoy would be a tough cut, because he is a triple threat — a proven factor on special teams and a good trick QB (as he showed in 2016). Lawler, Moore and Grayson have had their chances and have come up short too often so far. McKissic has been the preseason return man, but it’s hard to see the coaches finding a spot for him unless they don’t want Lockett returning kicks.

Keep: 3
Locks: Jimmy Graham, Luke Willson, Nick Vannett
Long shots: Marcus Lucas, Tyrone Swoopes, Steve Donatell
How we see it: With Willson (groin) and Graham (back spasms) out vs. Minnesota, Vannett played a lot and showed how well-rounded he is, with a 32-yard catch. It would be a big surprise if the Hawks kept more than three — assuming Graham and Willson are healthy Sept. 2.

Keep: 9
Locks: Luke Joeckel, Justin Britt, Germain Ifedi, Mark Glowinski, Oday Aboushi, Ethan Pocic, Rees Odhiambo
In the hunt: Matt Tobin, Jordan Roos, Joey Hunt
Long shots: Will Pericak, Darrell Brown, Tyrus Thompson
Injured: George Fant
How we see it: The ACL injury to Fant will force this unit to shuffle a bit more. The coaches really are hoping Odhiambo can take the starting left tackle spot, because they don’t want to move Joeckel from left guard. Aboushi seems to have played better than Glowinski at right guard, but it will come down to which guy the coaches think plays better alongside Ifedi. Even though he has been inconsistent, Ifedi seems to have right tackle secured. Pocic, the second-round pick, seems likely to keep working as the backup on the right side. The versatile Tobin, acquired from Philadelphia, figures to push for a roster spot; but he doesn’t look like anything more than a backup. If the Hawks do keep nine again, Roos seems likely to be No. 9 — even though the Hawks “had to have” Hunt in last year’s draft.

Keep: 9
Locks: Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril, Jarran Reed, Ahtyba Rubin, Frank Clark, Cassius Marsh, Nazair Jones
In the hunt: David Bass, Marcus Smith, Quinton Jefferson, Garrison Smith, Rodney Coe
Long shots: Christian French, Tylor Harris, Jeremy Liggins, Greg Milhouse
Injured: Malik McDowell, Dion Jordan
How we see it: Jones has had a great preseason, proving he was worth the third-round pick. The final two spots should be hotly contested. Bass has played well enough to merit one of them, and it will be interesting to see whether he gets some time with the first team against Kansas City. Against Minnesota, Marcus Smith showed a little of what made him a first-round pick by the Eagles in 2014, but he will need to show a lot more. Jefferson, Garrison Smith and Coe are all vying for the final inside backup spot.

Keep: 6
Locks: Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, Michael Wilhoite, Terence Garvin, Dewey McDonald
In the hunt: D.J. Alexander, Mike Morgan
Long shots: Kache Palacio, Rodney Butler, Otha Peters
How we see it: McDonald and Alexander — both special-teams stalwarts — seem like the favorites to join Wright, Wagner, Wilhoite and Garvin as Seattle’s 2017 linebackers. Of course, longtime vet Morgan might have something to say about it, too. Alexander has missed a lot of time, and Carroll said he is looking forward to seeing him this week (Alexander would play his former team, the Chiefs, if healthy). “He is an extraordinary special teams player,” Carroll said, “and to add him into the group we already have could make it a very, very good group.”

Keep: 10
Locks: Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, Richard Sherman, Bradley McDougald, Jeremy Lane, Shaquill Griffin, Neiko Thorpe, Delano Hill
In the hunt: Tramaine Brock, Tedric Thompson, DeAndre Elliott, Pierre Desir
Long shots: Demetrius McCray, Mike Tyson, Marcus Cromartie
Injured: DeShawn Shead
How we see it: Griffin has shown some great flashes of ability this preseason. The Vikings threw at him a ton, and he held up very well. It looks like he has the lead for the starting job at right corner, although Lane still has a shot as he comes back from a groin injury. Hill has shown some Bam Bam-style hitting and figures to learn behind Chancellor this year. Brock has two weeks to show whether he can be a factor. Assuming fourth-rounder Thompson (who had a pick vs. Minnesota) is close to a lock, as a future investment, Brock is probably going against 2016 surprise keeper Elliott and Desir for the final spot.

Keep: 3
Locks: Jon Ryan, Blair Walsh, Tyler Ott
How we see it: There are no competitions at kicker, punter and snapper. Walsh enjoyed a great “Take that!” game vs. his old team, drilling a pair of 52-yard field goals (and bouncing a 53-yarder off the crossbar). He is now 4 for 5 this preseason (he also hit from 42 and 28 yards against the Chargers). Ott has been solid as the snapper, although his low hike contributed to the miss on the 53-yarder.


2 thoughts on “Projecting the roster”

  1. The one I wonder about is Lane. They won’t cut him — his 2017 salary is already guaranteed and his dead cap is too high — but I can see them taking just about any offer from a CB-starved team.

    FWIW, Danny O’Neill thinks that Odhiambo is on a short leash (agree) and that Pocic will wind up starting at LT (not so sure about that — if Ifedi beats EP out at RT, why would he be the first backup at LT?)


  2. I also agree that Odhiambo is on a short leash, but highly doubt Pocic would end up there. Sounds like they would try Tobin first and go with Joeckel if both the first two choices failed …


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