It’s only May, but the Seattle Seahawks can now fill some glaring holes on their roster. Here are 10 unrestricted free agents who could help the team.
The Seattle Seahawks are in the middle of Minicamp. It’s time to start putting the game plans into action. Still, it’s clear to see the team has some holes, more so if they want to make some noise in the playoffs.
General manager John Schneider and head coach Pete Carroll still have to beat around the bush in finding talent to add to an already good team. They could start with some of the veteran unrestricted free agents still available.
Seattle has about $9 million left in cap space, according to Spotrac. If necessary, the Seahawks can create more cap space by restructuring several contracts.
Taking the help of an inside line is an interesting proposition. The Seattle Seahawks drafted guard Anthony Bradford (fourth round) and center Olu Oluwatim (fifth round) this spring. Early reports are good, but neither is penciled in to start in Week 1.
Phil Haynes is at right guard. However, he ranked 56th among guards last year, according to Pro Football Focus. It’s not good enough to rely on as a full-time starter.
They also signed Evan Brown to replace last year’s center bust, Austin Blight. Brown primarily played guard last season, so if Oluwatimi can win the center job during the season, the veteran could slide.
If Seattle is more than a wild-card contender, why not address their biggest offensive weakness?
Dalton Risner – Denver, 28
2022 – 15 games (15 starts). PFF Grades – Overall 61.1 (42nd), pass block 72.6, run block 53.4.
Steady but far from impressive, Dalton Risner will develop into the Seattle Seahawks fifth best offensive lineman. He’s a huge upgrade over Haynes.
AJ Kane – Houston, 31
2022 – 16 games (16 starts). PFF Grades – Overall 66.6 (26th), pass block 64.8, run block 63.9.
Houston was terrible last season. It wasn’t the offensive line’s fault. They played pretty well.
AJ Kane is another big upgrade over Haynes at right guard. He doesn’t excel in any particular way. Instead, Cann is totally fine.
Let’s face it, the Seattle Seahawks depth at inside linebacker is paper thin. Bobby Wagner and Devin Bush are a formidable duo in DC Clint Hurtt’s 3-4 scheme. Unfortunately, there is no help behind them.
After tearing knee ligaments in Game 17, Jordin Brooks is doubtful he’ll be ready to start the season. When he returns, it will take some time for Brooks to climb into the machine he has been for three seasons.
That leaves special teams ace John Rattigan, Vee Jones (3 career NFL games, 0 defensive tackles) and two 2023 undrafted free agents Patrick O’Connell and Cam Bright to be Seattle’s Plan B. Help needed.
Zach Cunningham – Tennessee, 28
2022 – 6 games (6 starts), 24 fights. PFF Grades – Overall 60.3 (n/a), Against the Run 52, Pass Rush 58.9, Coverage 65.9.
Getting a deal with Tennessee at the 2021 trade deadline didn’t work out as well as Zach Cunningham or the Titans had hoped. He was good, but he wasn’t the same guy who led the way in 2020 with 164 goals.
Seattle doesn’t need him to dish out that many hits. Cunningham just needs to write his starting lineup on passes and starts in case of injury.
Joe Thomas – Chicago, 32
2022 – 15 games (9 starts), 61 fights, 4 losses. PFF Grades – Overall 63.0 (T 44th), Against the Run 66.0, Pass Rush 70.1, Coverage 57.1.
Joe Thomas is a reliable sub. Since joining the NFL in 2015, he has played in double-digit games every year.
Defending Wagner and Bush this season is an ideal role for Thomas. Primarily a reserve for several teams during his career; he can start when needed.
Like Alexander, Thomas is best used as a two-down linebacker.
Looking at the Seattle Seahawks defensive line, it is filled with mostly middle linebackers. In the NFL, this is one area where teams rotate multiple players not just for games, but for an entire season. Quantity is almost as important as quality.
Shelby Harris – Seattle, 32
2022 – 15 games (15 starts), 44 tackles, 2 sacks. PFF Grades – Overall 74.48 (17th), Against the Run 78.5, Pass Rush 71.2.
Some might say that Shelby Harris’ 2022 season in the Emerald City did not go as expected. The numbers and PFF grades say otherwise.
Nasty injuries and illnesses prevented him from playing to his full potential. The Seahawks didn’t think he was worth another $9 million investment, so they parted ways with him in March.
Here we are in May and Harris is surprisingly still available. He knows the system and is an effective player, especially against the run. If they can get him to a trade deal, Schneider should do it.
Ndamukong Sukh – Philadelphia, 36
2022 – 11 games, including postseason (0 starts), 10 tackles, 2 losses. PFF Grades – Overall 63.6 (n/a), Against the Run 67.12, Pass Rush 55.5.
Far from the player he once was, Ndamukong Suh has enough left in his tank to plug the middle as part of a rotation. He would be a great pick to give Brian Money some breaks until 2023 fourth-round pick Cameron Young is ready to contribute regularly.
In the past two drafts, the Seattle Seahawks used the second round to go 1-2 with running backs Kenneth Walker and Zach Charbonnet. After the young duo comes DJ Dallas and seventh round rookie Kenny McIntosh.
Both lack experience and a bona fide pass rusher out of the backfield can only help. Dallas had to be that guy. At this point, he’s replaceable.
Kareem Hunt – Cleveland, 28
2022 – 17 games (0 starts), 123 carries, 468 yards, 35 receptions, 210 yards, 4 total TDs. PFF Grade – Total 67.0 (44th), run 67.4, catch 66.4, pass block 54.6.
On a human scale, Kareem Hunt is somewhere between Adrian Peterson and Floyd Mayweather Jr. As a scout, Hunt would be a great fit for the Seattle Seahawks. Also, Pete Carroll has a way with players who have “off-field issues.”
He caught 35 passes last year, which was right up there with his career average of 35.17. Although his yards were one touchdown short, Hunt isn’t done yet at age 28.
Amir Abdullah – Las Vegas, 30:00
2022 – 17 games (0 starts), 4 carries for 20 yards, 25 receptions, 211 yards, 1 TD. PFF Grades – Total 66.4 (n/a), Run 68.8, Catch 81.1, Pass Block 59.9.
Ameer Abdullah is far from a standout back. That’s fine, because the Seattle Seahawks don’t need him to be.
Blessed with great hands (78.1% catch rate in 2022), he’s an ideal third-down candidate. The biggest concern is Abdullah serving in pass protection.
That’s a far cry from last year’s rookies Charles Cross and Abe Lucas, who played admirably. The Seattle Seahawks need to pick up a veteran backup to give the now sophomores some extra guidance.
Depth is also important. Stone Forsyth may be 6-7, 310 pounds, but he’s been nearly invisible since arriving in Seattle. Jake Curran is a bit better and can play inside if needed.
Jason Peters – Dallas, 41
2022 – 10 games (1 start). PFF Grades – Overall 70.2 (n/a), Pass Block 62.5, Run Block 70.3.
Jason Peters didn’t play as much last season as he has in the past, but Peters started 15 games a year ago. Not bad for a 40+ year old. Who better than The Bodyguard to mentor Cross and Lucas?
Taylor Lewan – Tennessee, 32
2022 – 2 games (2 starts). PFF Grades – Overall 67.3 (n/a), Pass Block 79.4, Run Block 64.5.
A series of injuries have limited Taylor Lewan in recent seasons. Since 2019, the former three-time All-Pro has played in 32 of 65 games.
Taylor Lewan definitely has a lot of football left in him and continues to be an excellent pass blocker. Sign him if he wants to take on a lesser role on a team with legitimate postseason aspirations.
Also, the Krakens need Luvan in home games.
Third string quarterback
How much do the Seattle Seahawks trust Holton Ahlers with emergencies? Last XFL season, he was the Sea Dragons’ 3rd string player and did not play. Free-agent Cubs to fill the job include former Seahawks Jacob Eason, Sean Mannion and Jake Luton.
This is not the final list. Several good veterans will be out of a job during and after training camp.