Preliminary Seahawks Depth Chart and Projecting the Final 53 Man Roster: Skill Position Players

It's been a few months since I updated the Seahawks depth chart or attempted to project the Seahawks final 53 man roster. This projection is informed by my observations at camp.

Quarterback

Starter: Matt Hasselbeck

Backup: Charlie Whitehurst

Backup: J.P. Losman

Last season: 3

Whitehurst has plenty to prove this preseason. He has begun to separate himself from Losman, but until he can succeed at game speed, he is not a meaningful challenger to Hasselbeck.

Running Back

Starter: Justin Forsett

Backup: Julius Jones

Third-down back: Leon Washington

Short yardage: Quinton Ganther

Unlikely to make the team: Louis Rankin

Last season: 3

It's a specialized backfield, but a potentially good one. Forsett is the best combination of rusher, receiver and blocker. Jones is better as a blocker and equal as a receiver, but a significant step down as a rusher. The two could trade off series with Forsett the nominal starter. Washington is not limited to third downs, but the Seahawks might ease him in by playing him as a third-down and passing downs specialist. He has the appropriate mix of speed, shiftiness and receiving ability. Ganther is the short yardage specialist. Rankin has not impressed and is unlikely to make the team.

Fullback

Starter: Owen Schmitt

In the mix: Ryan Powdrell

Last season: 2

Seattle waived Powdrell, but he is on the shortlist of recalls in case of injury or ineffectiveness. Despite Jeremy Bates' indication that Seattle will start a fullback in its base offense, Seattle still may not retain multiple designated fullbacks. In any given snap, the fullback could be Schmitt, Ganther or even Carlson.

Wide Receiver

Split End: Mike Williams

Flanker: Golden Tate, Deion Branch

Slot: T.J. Houshmandzadeh

In the mix: Deon Butler, Ben Obomanu, Ruvell Martin, Kole Heckendorf

Unlikely to make the team: Marcus Maxwell, Mike Hass

Last season: 5

I project that Seattle will retain Williams, Tate, Branch, Houshmandzadeh, Butler and Obomanu. Obomanu is the main beneficiary of the Isaiah Stanback injury. Butler and Branch have flashed too much ability in camp to cut either. Seattle retained five wide receivers last season, including specialist Obomanu. It could retain six this season.

Tight End

Receiving tight end: John Carlson

Backup: Cameron Morrah

Blocking tight end: Chris Baker

In the mix: Anthony McCoy

Last season: 3

Carlson is a lock. Morrah is either on the squad or lost. Baker is probably a lock. McCoy is the most volatile of the bunch. He hasn't shown much in training camp, but if waived would likely be claimed by another team and lost. McCoy is also the only tight end that can sufficiently back up Baker. It is possible the Seattle retains four tight ends.

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