SEATTLE - DECEMBER 01: Golden Tate #81 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates a touchdown catch against Joselio Hanson #21 of the Philadelphia Eagles on December 1, 2011 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
ESPN's Mike Sando recently put together an interesting table that ranked current NFL teams in age by their projected starters, and the Seahawks were the 7th youngest on offense (with Matt Flynn and Doug Baldwin penciled in as 'starters') and their defense was fourth youngest (I assume Bobby Wagner was penciled in too). Now, while the Seahawks rank 20th in terms of age of overall roster because of the addition of some role-playing older veterans - which I actually don't mind, by the way - the key here is that the core group, i.e., the starters, are still relatively young. That's exciting.
Football Perspective's Chase Stuart added some more perspective to this exercise this week too, by calculating last year's roster's average age with a weighted system that puts more emphasis on the heavy contributors, i.e., it calculates the youngest teams by their best players. As Stuart puts it, "Calculating the average age of a 53-man roster is misleading because the age of a team's starters is much more relevant than the age of a team's reserves. The average age of a team's starting lineup isn't perfect, either. The age of the quarterback and key offensive and defensive players should count for more than the age of a less relevant starter."
"Ideally, you would want to calculate a team's average age by placing greater weight on the team's most relevant players."
Using this system to measure the Seahawks roster as it stood at the end of 2011, the offense was the youngest in the league and the defense was fifth youngest. Again, the offense, weighted towards the most relevant contributors, was the youngest in the league last year, under that system. Going into 2012, that's bound to stay right around the top of the league as well too, depending on who wins the quarterback job (Matt Flynn and Russell Wilson are younger than Tarvaris Jackson) and the starting X-receiver job -- Golden Tate, Kris Durham and Ricardo Lockette are younger than Mike Williams and Braylon Edwards is just a bit older than BMW. Marshawn Lynch is still just 26, as is Zach Miller, and the old man of the group is Kellen Winslow, still under 30 years of age. The defense won't be getting much older either, likely, depending on who ends up starting at middle linebacker and possibly nickelback. In fact, on average, they might get younger.
I just thought these were a couple of interesting looks at 'the core group' of the roster for both sides of the football, and it just illustrates how young the nucleus of this team really remains, even in year three of 'the rebuild'.