After wrapping up their preseason with a 17-13 win over the Oakland Raiders on Thursday night, the Seattle Seahawks now have until 1 P.M. Pacific time on Saturday afternoon to cut their roster size down from 90 to 53. The team will more than likely be adding players as they’re released from other teams, and possibly making trades, but for now we have just the 90-man roster to work off of.
Here’s how the roster looks at the time of writing:
QB (2): Russell Wilson, Trevone Boykin
When I did my first 53-man roster projection prior to Seattle’s third preseason game, I thought Boykin had looked like the exact same player as last August - no better and no worse - and that Colin Kaepernick would ultimately end up as the Seahawks backup. In the two weeks since then, the opinion on Boykin’s changed. Boykin has played two terrible games in recent weeks, completing 48-percent of his passes for 166 yards with a touchdown and three interceptions.
I don’t think Boykin’s performances will be enough for Austin Davis to steal the backup quarterback job, but I think it is enough for the team to start being proactive in looking elsewhere for a second-string passer.
RB (5): Thomas Rawls, Eddie Lacy, CJ Prosise, Chris Carson, J.D. McKissic
Carson’s breakout preseason and McKissic being a team favorite has the Seahawks carrying one more running back than usual, and no natural fullback. Like the backup quarterback spot, I think there’s still a move to come for a fullback - likely bringing Marcel Reece back after week one.
McKissic hasn’t done enough to make the team on special teams or on offense, but Pete Carroll and the team clearly loves him, and that counts for something.
WR (6): Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, Paul Richardson, Amara Darboh, Kasen Williams, Tanner McEvoy
Trade rumors surrounding Jermaine Kearse seem to be legitimate, with reporters in both New York and Cleveland having reported trade interest in the receiver. If a deal is to be made, it’ll be before the deadline on Saturday afternoon with a team making certain they secure his services before he hits the open market. If not, I think he’ll be released. There’s no way this information makes it to Kearse, and the public, if the team isn’t prepared to move on from such an established player inside the facility.
If Kearse is still on the roster on Saturday afternoon, McEvoy likely is not. But with the extra spot available at wide receiver, McEvoy survives on the back of strong special team play.
TE (3): Jimmy Graham, Luke Willson, Nick Vannett
The most predictable position, there isn’t much movement that can happen here. Marcus Lucas was interesting, but he was waived off of Seattle’s injured reserve earlier this week.
OL (9): Rees Odhiambo, Matt Tobin, Luke Joeckel, Mark Glowinski, Justin Britt, Will Pericak, Oday Aboushi, Ethan Pocic, Germain Ifedi
One change from the previous roster projection, with Pericak making the cut over second-year center Joey Hunt. Pocic getting playing time at center and looking totally comfortable in the last two weeks of preseason, as well as Pericak’s versatility made Hunt expendable. Hunt, a longtime favorite of John Schneider’s, could certainly be a practice squad candidate.
Tobin has looked totally competent in his playing time since coming over in a trade with Philadelphia, and could end up getting starts at left tackle in 2017.
DL (9): Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril, Frank Clark, Cassius Marsh, David Bass, Ahtyba Rubin, Jarran Reed, Nazair Jones, Quinton Jefferson
David Bass won himself a roster spot with strong preseason play, and has looked like the kind of rotational player who could really make an impact over the course of a 16 game season. Jefferson has done enough in his return from a knee injury that he’ll be kept around for another season.
LB (6): K.J. Wright, Bobby Wagner, Terence Garvin, Michael Wilhoite, D.J. Alexander, Dewey McDonald
Not any movement here since the last projection. Garvin has solidified himself as the starting SAM linebacker, and Wilhoite gives them a fourth linebacker capable of playing considerable snaps, something they sorely missed in 2016.
CB (5): Richard Sherman, Jeremy Lane, Shaquill Griffin, Tramaine Brock, Neiko Thorpe
Unlike Kearse, Jeremy Lane will survive the trade rumors and be a member of the Seahawks in 2017. Despite DeShawn Shead’s knee injury, Seattle will carry four starter-caliber cornerbacks into week one.
Prior to DeAndre Elliott’s unfortunate knee injury against the Raiders, I thought it was likely Seattle carried their standard six cornerbacks. But without a clear sixth option, and with Bradley McDougald’s versatility, they’ll carry just five here. Pierre Desir barely misses out after playing some good football over the last two weeks.
S (5): Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, Delano Hill, Bradley McDougald, Tedric Thompson
Hill and McDougald give Seattle the coverage at safety that they didn’t have last season. Thompson’s preseason play has been poor and he should be a practice squad candidate at best, but everything Carroll has said about him makes it seem like he’s a lock for the 53.
Specialists (3): Blair Walsh, Jon Ryan, Tyler Ott
Blair Walsh is really going to be the Seahawks kicker. What a world.
Practice Squad candidates: David Moore, Tylor Harris, Joey Hunt, Jordan Roos