While the Minnesota Vikings may have signed ex-Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, the Seahawks have responded by signing not one, but TWO of Minnesota’s former DTs.
Friday saw the confirmation of a one-year, $2.7 million deal for Tom Johnson, now it’s been reported that Seattle will bring Shamar Stephen to the fold, also on a one-year contract.
The #Seahawks are signing another former #Vikings DT Shamar Stephen, source said. It’s a one-year deal.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 24, 2018
The Seahawks later confirmed the signing on the team website.
Stephen is a seventh-round draft pick out of Connecticut who had been with the Vikings since 2014. The 27-year-old appeared in all sixteen games in his rookie season, notching 23 tackles. His 2015 season ended prematurely after a toe injury suffered in October. Stephen would then find himself in the starting lineup for the whole of 2016, before dropping down to a reduced role in Minnesota’s defensive line rotation in 2017, starting just once but playing in 15 games. Stephen played 384 defensive snaps from opening week through the postseason, whereas Tom Johnson played 675.
It looks as if Stephen’s primary asset is stopping the run, something the Vikings excelled at in 2017. At a minimum, he’s good interior depth at a time when Seattle clearly needs it.