SEATTLE – Here we go with the first of our Seahawks projected rosters in which we will get some immediate feedback.
After defeating Dallas 27-17 in their third preseason game Thursday, the Seahawks now have until Tuesday at 1 p.m. to pare their roster from 90 to 75. They will then have to make another cut to 53 by Sept. 3.
So let’s take an updated look at how I think their 53-man roster will turn out.
This is based solely on the 90-man roster as it stands now. There will undoubtedly be other moves that will impact how it looks but for now this is how I see it.
KEEP: Russell Wilson, Trevone Boykin.
CUT: Jake Heaps.
COMMENT: Boykin continues to show signs of progress in acclimating to the NFL while displaying the athleticism that intrigued the team all along. Given that the Seahawks would prefer to save some money on the backup QB spot, the preference all along was for a young player to fill that role if one could be found that was up to the task. Boykin appears to have done that.
KEEP: Thomas Rawls, Christine Michael, C.J. Prosise, Will Tukuafu, Alex Collins.
CUT: Zac Brooks, George Farmer, Troymaine Pope, Kyle Coleman.
COMMENT: Rawls, Michael and Prosise are locks and Tukuafu seems likely to make it, as well, as the team appears to want to keep a fullback presence and he showed enough against Dallas to indicate he can still handle the role. Collins got a little more room to run against the Cowboys and made the most of some limited opportunities and given his college production and promise he showed early in camp still seems like the leader for a fifth running back spot if the team keeps that many, which I have them doing for now.
KEEP: Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, Jermaine Kearse, Paul Richardson, Tanner McEvoy.
CUT: Kenny Lawler, Kasen Williams, Kevin Smith, Douglas McNeil, Deshon Foxx, Antwan Goodley, Uzoma Nwachukwu, Montario Hunter.
COMMENT: In a change from last week, I now have McEvoy making the roster as a fifth receiver while moving Lawler and Williams to the cut list, which allows for keeping one more running back than I had last week. McEvoy is bring tried as a tight end, a spot where the Seahawks may need the added depth the first week or two of the season depending on the progress of Nick Vannett and Jimmy Graham. Lawler, Williams and maybe one more would be obvious practice squad candidates – and given the amount of receivers that usually become available this time of year, likely able to squeeze through – and available for promotion later, if needed.
KEEP: Jimmy Graham, Luke Willson, Nick Vannett, Brandon Williams.
CUT: Joe Sommers, Clayton Echard.
COMMENT: I’ve gone with Seattle keeping four tight ends since the beginning of training camp, with the biggest reason thinking that they could use more multi-tight end sets to make up for not having a fullback. But as I wrote last week, health is suddenly also a factor. Graham appeared to have a good week of work but it’s still unclear if he’ll be ready for the opener. It’s also uncertain how long Vannett will be out. Williams appeared to be earning a spot anyway, but the depth issues seem to ensure he makes it now.
KEEP: Garry Gilliam, Mark Glowinski, Justin Britt, Germain Ifedi, J’Marcus Webb, Rees Odhiambo, Bradley Sowell, Joey Hunt, Jahri Evans.
CUT: Terry Poole, Patrick Lewis, Kristjan Sokoli, Will Pericak, George Fant.
COMMENT: My toughest decision – and possibly that of the team, as well – is Hunt or Lewis as the backup center. The team has said Lewis has been leading that competition. But Hunt got the backup snaps against the Cowboys and according to Pro Football Focus has been one of the highest-graded linemen in the NFL the past two weeks. The team could also save more than $1 million by keeping Hunt instead of Lewis. And that Britt has so ably made the transition would seem to mitigate the necessity of keeping Lewis solely to make sure there was an experienced center around. So for today, I’m going with Hunt. Evans appears to be the next-guard-up at the moment so he makes it, as well.
KEEP: Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril, Frank Clark, Quinton Jefferson, Jarran Reed, Ahtyba Rubin, Jordan Hill, Tony McDaniel.
CUT: Justin Hamilton, DeAngelo Tyson, Sealver Siliga, Tylor Harris, Josh Shirley, Ryan Robinson, Brandin Bryant.
COMMENT: I have no changes here from last week. Bryant remains an intriguing player. But the signing of McDaniel and that he has played well seems to box him out at the moment. He would be an obvious practice-squad candidate. Cassius Marsh again almost seems most-accurately considered as a rush end since that appears to be the spot. But I’m keeping him categorized as a linebacker for now.
KEEP: Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, Mike Morgan, Brock Coyle, Cassius Marsh, Kevin Pierre-Louis.
CUT: Eric Pinkins, Pete Robertson, Kache Palacio, Steve Longa, Quayshawn Nealy.
COMMENT: No changes here, either. Pinkins wasn’t listed as getting a single defensive snap, which would seem ominous for a player who a few weeks ago was still considered as a co-starter at strongside linebacker. And the rotations for the backups against the Cowboys looked the same, indicating Coyle and Pierre-Louis remain ahead at those spots. A few of the young guys would seem likely practice-squad candidates.
KEEP: Richard Sherman, Jeremy Lane, Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, Deshawn Shead, Tharold Simon, Kelcie McCray, Brandon Browner, Marcus Burley, Tyvis Powell.
CUT: DeAndre Elliott, Tye Smith, Trovon Reed, Steven Terrell, Keenan Lambert.
COMMENT: No changes here this week though I heavily debated a few. Browner didn’t play until late, essentially working with third-team defense. The question is whether that’s a sign of where he really is or if the team is just keeping his specialty linebacker/safety role under wraps for now. For the moment, I’m keeping him. It might also have been easy to overlook that Terrell played as the backup nickel with Burley out with a hamstring issue. Terrell can also play safety and has always had a big special teams role. I’m keeping Burley since Burley was the backup nickel before getting hurt. But if his injury is any sort of an issue that could open the door for Terrell. Smith for now appears the odd man out, playing with the third team against the Cowboys Thursday.
KEEP: Steven Hauschka, Jon Ryan, Nolan Frese.
COMMENT: There’s no question about how many roster spots to devote to special teams, or the two kickers. But as I wrote last week, Frese’s roster spot hardly seems secure after he again had an early low snap (though how quickly he got downfield afterward shows the athleticism the team likes). One would think another shaky week might make Seattle even more inclined to bring back veteran Clint Gresham or look elsewhere. For now, as the only snapper on the roster, Frese makes the projection.
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