One of the quieter offseason acquisitions the Seattle Seahawks made in 2017 was the addition of former first round pick defensive end Marcus Smith on the eve of training camp, after the Philadelphia Eagles unceremoniously waived him. After clearing waivers, Smith quickly signed with Seattle where he was reunited with his college defensive line coach from the University of Louisville, Clint Hurtt. In addition, the Seahawks may have been quick to point out the success in Pete Carroll’s system of another former Eagles defensive end, Chris Clemons.
Smith is set to be a free agent this offseason, but even as a former first round pick seems unlikely to garner a huge market after accumulating just 6.5 sacks through the first four seasons of his NFL career. Interestingly, video emerged on Twitter Friday of Smith showing off his athleticism in a dunk contest.
As you’re watching the video, remember to keep in mind that according to the author of the Tweet, the video dates from 2010, when Smith was still in high school. Thus, the athleticism that is on display in that video clip is that of a high school senior.
Obviously, as Hawks fans have learned in recent seasons, there is far more to developing as an NFL player than athleticism. However, Smith provided solid depth when called upon during his first year in Seattle and the athletic potential is certainly there for him to continue to improve. In the coming days I’ll be taking a deeper look at some of the similarities between Clemons and Smith and discussing what may still be significant untapped upside potential.
In any case, whether Smith is able to develop into an impact playmaker in the NFL remains to be seen, but between his athleticism and solid performance in a rotational role for the Hawks in 2017, there seems to be at least enough to at least warrant hope from Seattle fans.