“We have an amazing number of draft choices: Three.” – John Schneider
“Our No. 1 pick is Jamal Adams, and that’s a heck of a pick.” – Pete Carroll
“We’re not going into the draft with great needs. … We’re in a really good place.” — Carroll
Those three quotes say everything you need to know about this draft for the Seahawks, who made a purposeful choice to bail on 2021 by using their picks on veteran players Jamal Adams, Carlos Dunlap and Gabe Jackson.
Trent Kirchner has admitted what we already knew: The Seahawks basically bailed on this draft due to the pandemic.
They’re not totally out of it, obviously, and his scouts actually have been working on this draft since last May. But Kirchner and Matt Berry, John Schneider’s top personnel lieutenants, confirmed to Seahawks.com that the Jamal Adams trade was made with this unpredictable draft in mind, and they said it has been hard to get the information they need and that next year’s draft will be much deeper.
But, as Schneider surely will remind everyone when he speaks later this month, he already has used five of his picks to draft four guys – and three of them are expected to be major contributing starters for at least the next couple of years.
That has been the question ever since Pete Carroll and John Schneider dismantled the battered Legion of Boom in 2018. The unsatisfying answer for the last three years, especially at pass rusher, has been: Make it up as we go.
Some think the excellent extensions of Tyler Lockett and Gabe Jackson mean the Seahawks have found their way again, creating a new long-term window of contention. But the fact is nothing has changed: Carroll and Schneider are still going just one or two years at a time.
They can’t help it now, because Russell Wilson’s future in Seattle is in question. Until that situation is resolved, they will remain year to year – even if they manage to get long-term deals with Jamal Adams, Quandre Diggs, Brandon Shell and Michael Dickson.
The official NFL draft order was released Friday, leading many fans to worry anew about the Seahawks’ lack of draft picks: They have a league-worst 0.9% of the total draft capital.
Some think John Schneider has basically punted on this draft after a pandemic-ruined college season and pre-draft period.
As Brady Henderson confirmed in December, Schneider did indeed make the big trade for Jamal Adams last summer because he knew this draft would be a bigger guessing game than usual. And he obviously was desperate to add a good guard (Gabe Jackson) to appease Russell Wilson. Those two deals cost a 1, 3 and 5. The 6 was traded in last year’s draft to move up for Stephen Sullivan, who is now in Carolina. So, Seattle has just a 2, 4 and 7 left at this point.
But, if you know Schneider, you know he will find a way to get back in the draft. After all, he has never had fewer than eight picks and is famously adept at moving down to add more selections.
Based on recent reports, the NFL salary cap is expected to be between $180 million and $185 million in 2021. The actual number is not expected to be set until just before the league year begins March 17, but the ceiling apparently will be at least $5 million more than the floor the NFL and NFLPA had set last year.
Assuming the number is Schefter’s reported $180 million, the Seahawks still would need to create room just to tender Poona Ford (about $3.4 million on the second-round offer) and a few ERFAs, let alone sign needed starters at center, running back, linebacker and cornerback.
We recently broke down the exact offer the Seahawks are likely to give Jamal Adams this offseason, but we also warned that he might well want more.
Well, he hinted at that in a recent interview on The Schultz Report, pointing out that he is more than just a safety and contract talks will be “interesting to see.”
“There’s not too many football players” who “can play anything on the field” and “can do it all,” said the guy who set an NFL record for sacks (9.5) by a safety in 2020 despite missing four games.
“I believe I’ve put out enough film over the years to show you what type of guy, what type of person, what type of player I am,” the 25-year-old All-Pro added. “To me, you ain’t going to find no better.”
He reminded everyone of that Thursday with his Instagram post detailing all of the injuries he endured in 2020 – broken fingers, a torn labrum, a groin strain, a hyperextended elbow – and reminded people that he did not complain as he played at far less than 100% all season. He also said he is ready to bring the same type of all-out “energy” again in 2021.
In one missive, Adams managed to outline what a football warrior he is while pointing out the risk the Seahawks will be taking when they re-sign him and making everyone wonder what that will cost.
We certainly understand (and share) the frustration of fans over the Seahawks’ latest premature playoff ouster, and we are as eager as anyone to see the franchise fix its flaws and finally get back to the NFC title game and Super Bowl. But fans need to stop overreacting and get a grip on reality.
Pete Carroll is not going to be fired, and the Hawks are not going to trade Russell Wilson or Jamal Adams or Bobby Wagner. None of those guys are going anywhere.