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53 players who could make the Seahawks next season

NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks drafted nine players and brought in “a bunch of” undrafted free agents last week (we won’t know the official number until they officially announce the UDFAs, but it won’t be the 18 presumed signings because that’d bring them over 90), giving them basically a full roster to start trimming down to the required 53. The Seahawks aren’t done adding players to the mix — and they won’t be until days before opening night, I’m sure — but we’ve gotten the basic idea.

Pete Carroll needs to present his ninth edition of the Seattle Seahawks come September, and these are 53 players that he could choose. That’s it.

*UDFAs not official

Two quarterbacks who could make the Seahawks:

Russell Wilson, Austin Davis

Davis has to be the favorite based on experience, not only in the league but specifically on the Seahawks. It doesn’t mean much though if McGough manages to prove himself as a seventh round steal and there’s absolutely no way to know if that’s true as of May.

Could also make it: Alex McGough, Stephen Morris, UDFA Troy Williams

The ideal scenario includes McGough just winning the shit out of this job, but that is a complete unknown at this point and we won’t have an idea of it until August at the soonest.

QBs (2)

Five running backs who could make the Seahawks:

Rashaad Penny, Chris Carson, C.J. Prosise, J.D. McKissic, FB Jalston Fowler

Penny and Carson are the only two I’d consider “locks” — and actually of course I have some reservations about Carson after his ankle injury and knowing that running backs sadly do disappear that quickly sometimes. He’s still one of my favorite young players on the roster, but so was Thomas Rawls not long ago. Prosise needs to stay on the field and then he’d be a lock too, he’s just too dynamic not to be. I think McKissic’s versatility puts him over Mike Davis for me, and Fowler is just a fullback I chose and that’s it.

Could also make it: Mike Davis, FB Tre Madden, UDFA FB Marcus Martin

Martin is an interesting name to watch because he was the NCAA’s all-time leader in career sacks and then chose fullback for Seattle over playing defense for some other teams. A good camp could put him on the roster based on age and potential for growth as he learns a new position. Special teams likely plays a factor in that too.

RBs (5)

Five receivers who could make the Seahawks:

Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, Amara Darboh, Jaron Brown, David Moore

Baldwin and Lockett and then honestly, who knows. Darboh seems a near-lock thanks to his third round status a year ago and I certainly have no reason to give up on him so soon. But what if they feel more comfortable with some vets on the roster (Brown, Marcus Johnson) and then really prefer Moore and Tanner McEvoy? It’s a debate they might have, no doubt. That being said, these are the five I went with, but receiver is also a position where an undrafted free agent (say, John Franklin III) can pull himself up to rise to the 53-man roster immediately.

Could also make it: Marcus Johnson, Tanner McEvoy, Cyril Grayson, UDFA John Franklin III, UDFA Ka’Raun White, UDFA Caleb Scott, UDFA Taj Williams

I’m sure this fake list of 53 players that I think could make the Seahawks will create no controversy in the comments section based on which receivers I left off.

WRs (5)

Three tight ends who could make the Seahawks:

Ed Dickson, Will Dissly, Nick Vannett

It ruffled some feathers on Twitter when I said that Vannett likely needs to “earn his job” this year after the team drafted Dissly. And while they are very different tight ends, I stand by that. Dickson is making the roster. Dissly is probably making the roster. The Seahawks kept four tight ends two years ago but did it prove to be a move that paid off in a significant way? It’s not the preference, it’s only something you do when you have to. What if Tyrone Swoopes is just a better receiver than Vannett? Because we know that Dickson and Dissly are likely much better blockers. I also don’t think the Seahawks could be done with adding tight ends to the roster.

Could also make it: Tyrone Swoopes

TEs (3)

Five players who could start on the Seahawks offensive line:

Duane Brown, Ethan Pocic, Justin Britt, D.J. Fluker, Germain Ifedi

To clear things up, I split this up by starters and backups. I think that this is the starting five and it’s been awhile since we had this clear of a picture of the starting offensive line by May. First job to lose will be on the right side — guard or tackle — but I’m not confident that any of the other options will do enough to make it interesting. Speaking of which —

Four players who could back them up:

George Fant, Joey Hunt, Rees Odhiambo, Jamarco Jones

We need to see how Fant responds to his recovery and if he’s actually better than he was two years ago; he’s lost a lot of much-needed development time. I mean, have you ever heard the story about how he was a basketball player???

Odhiambo was not a good left tackle but perhaps he could still be a good right tackle or right guard. We’ll wait and see. And that’s only if these guys actually make the roster, which is a big “If” still.

Could also make it: Jordan Roos, Isaiah Battle, Willie Beavers, UDFA Viane Talamaivao, UDFA Brad Lundblade, UDFA Skyler Phillips

Let’s be honest, we just don’t know much yet. Roos over Odhiambo? Sure, why not! Lundblade over Hunt? Who’s bold enough to say that’s crazy?

OLs (9)

Total offense: 24

Spots left: 29

Four defensive linemen who could start for the Seahawks:

Frank Clark, Jarran Reed, Tom Johnson, Dion Jordan

I don’t even really feel that confident yet in naming Jordan a starter, but that certainly seems to be the way things are going if he’s healthy and not in trouble with the league. Johnson is really just a rep for a three-man rotation/competition at defensive tackle, whereas Reed feels like a premium player to me who will soon be recognized as such.

Five other defensive linemen who could make the Seahawks:

Rasheem Green, Nazair Jones, Shamar Stephen, Branden Jackson, Marcus Smith

This could be the largest position group and therefore the most difficult one to pare down to 8-9 players. I managed to name nine who could make the Seahawks, and that is indisputable. They could. Green is a lock, Jones would seem a lock if healthy, and they signed Stephen and Smith with contracts that presumably signaled they assume them to be 53-man roster worthy. Could Stephen make it and Johnson not make it? Yes. Could 2-3 of these guys not make it? Yes. This is just nine guys. Jackson was a personal preference to me, I think he’s a good player. But could also be any number of these other guys.

Could also make it: Cliff Avril, Quinton Jefferson, Malik McDowell, Noble Nwachukwu, Jacob Martin, UDFA DE Marcell Frazier, UDFA DT Poona Ford, UDFA DT Eddy Wilson, UDFA Albert Havili

What if Avril is actually healthy enough to play? Then I would assume he’d make it and basically be a starter. If he’s not healthy enough to start, then is he really healthy enough to play? Jefferson is also someone I like, he just wasn’t lucky enough when I flipped a proverbial coin, I suppose. As for McDowell, what else am I left to do?

DLs (9)

Three linebackers who could start for the Seahawks:

Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, Barkevious Mingo

Very straightforward. They signed Mingo to a two-year deal, which is very rare for this front office with outside free agents, so I expect him to be heavily used on special teams with a good number of reps on defense. Carroll has shown a willingness to adapt to the best personnel he has, not to just make the personnel fit into whatever scheme he thinks he needs.

Three linebackers who could back them up:

Shaquem Griffin, Paul Dawson, D.J. Alexander

They drafted Griffin in the fifth round which is not a guarantee, but I think it’s notable that they selected him over Tre Flowers and Michael Dickson, two players they presumably really felt they needed to have. Why do that if you are only drafting Griffin to “please the fans”? I think he’ll turn into the star of special teams — maybe Pro Bowl status.

Two UDFA linebackers: UDFA Emmanual Beal, UDFA Jacob Pugh

This group seems thin, as these could be the only other linebackers on the roster right now depending on how you feel about Marcus Smith.

LBs (6)

Six cornerbacks who could make the Seahawks:

Shaquill Griffin, Byron Maxwell, Justin Coleman, Tre Flowers, Dontae Johnson, Neiko Thorpe

Griffin, Maxwell, and Coleman are the starters. Flowers is someone who I think could have a long future in Seattle, but we’ve said that about a lot of 5th-7th round defensive backs who didn’t have long careers here. He just seems to be one of the most notable conversion (S-to-CB in this case) projects they’ve ever had. Johnson brings the experience that nobody else at cornerback on the roster has. Thorpe can play some defense but is a key player on special teams. If other special teamers step up and he becomes a little more expendable, the Seahawks would save a-little-more-than-nothing but parting ways, if they had to.

Could also make it: DeAndre Elliott, Mike Tyson

CBs (6)

Five safeties who could make the Seahawks:

Earl Thomas, Bradley McDougald, Mo Alexander, Delano Hill, Kam Chancellor (PUP? And/Or Tedric Thompson?)

Out of Avril, McDowell, and Chancellor, I ended up putting Kam in the “maybe” pile. He seems the most likely to return — for no good reason other than Seattle saves nothing by letting him go. And he seems to be adamant that he’ll return, even if he honestly has no idea. Best case scenario could be a trip to PUP and a midseason return. Maybe Avril too, but the Seahawks save a lot by releasing him and then he may not want to go anywhere else anyway if he does end up being able to play again. If Kam can be stashed, then let’s put Tedric Thompson back into the top five here.

Could also make it: Tedric Thompson, Akeem King, Alex Carter, UDFA Chris Hawkins, UDFA Jason Hall

Ss (5)

Total defense: 26

Total: 50

One kicker who could make the Seahawks: Sebastian Janikowski

One punter who could make the Seahawks: Michael Dickson

One longsnapper who could make the Seahawks: Tyler Ott

Assume Janikowski beats out Jason Myers, Dickson wins out over Jon Ryan. Seattle reportedly signed longsnapper Tanner Carew as an undrafted free agent, and he could definitely win a job. But I don’t know, and neither do you, and neither does anyone.

Total: 53

Now ... which of the above makes you the most angry?