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Seahawks 17 Raiders 15: Winners and Losers from Seattle’s preseason finale

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Oakland Raiders v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Congratulations, you survived another NFL preseason!

The Seattle Seahawks ended their four-game exhibition run with a 17-15 win over the Oakland Raiders, and now we await the roster cuts on Saturday afternoon. Don’t be surprised if we also see John Schneider and Pete Carroll get to some wheeling and dealing before Week 1.

Here’s your final Winners and Losers preseason column, and I assure you this will be beefed up when the regular season begins.

Winners

Ben Burr-Kirven

The former Washington Husky was a real standout on defense and exemplifies the depth that the Seahawks have at the linebacker spot. He had 12 tackles, a sack on a 4th and goal at the 1, a pass defensed, and he was largely assignment correct and closed down ball-carriers with quickness. We hadn’t seen much of BBK on defense compared to his appearances on special teams, but even against backups that was an encouraging display. Seattle has a lot of thinking to do when it comes to whether or not BBK and Shaquem Griffin both make the team, or if Quem’s knee injury is grounds for IR and makes Schneider’s job a bit easier.

Geno Smith

Hopefully Geno heals up because after a shaky Week 1, he played well against the Los Angeles Chargers and again on Thursday vs. Oakland. His deep balls to Terry Wright (for a touchdown) and Jazz Ferguson (for 41 yards) were extra impressive given the rainy conditions. If we had to “rate” backup QBs over the years, Smith is really Russ’ best one since Tarvaris Jackson departed.

Jazz Ferguson

Nevin Lawson is a former starter for the Detroit Lions and he was able to haul in a slightly underthrown pass in a jump ball situation against the Raiders CB. At worst, I want to see Jazz on the practice squad. Ideally, he’s on the WR depth chart.

C.J. Prosise and Travis Homer

A combined 84 yards on 13 carries for the two RBs who are really jostling for position to be the third-down back (with a slim chance they actually do keep four on the depth chart(. Homer’s power and drive through would-be tacklers was good to watch, as was Prosise’s nifty spin move to turn a short gain into a 30-yard scamper. Again, Prosise’s talent hasn’t been the issue, it’s his durability... ultimately that could be what leads to Homer making the team over him.

Akeem King

I say this with the uncertainty of King’s spot on the roster, but his strip-sack of Nathan Peterman on the improvised blitz was really cool and helped Seattle get its only points of the 2nd half. I’d rather see him stick around as safety depth though, as he continued to show difficulties as a cover corner.

Jamie Meder

I really love Meder’s run-stuffing abilities on the interior. He gets good push and is a sound tackler when he gets running backs in the backfield. If he doesn’t make the roster, I imagine he’ll be snapped up quickly.

Branden Jackson

He saved us from preseason overtime by sacking Nathan Peterman. For that, Branden Jackson deserves a multi-year contract extension, never mind just a spot on the roster.

Losers

Paxton Lynch

Farewell, Paxton. It was evident that Lynch wasn’t going to make the team even entering the Raiders game, but his 1/7 for 4 yards effort sealed his fate. Even if Geno Smith’s injury causes him to miss Week 1, I think Seattle goes elsewhere. I hear the Indianapolis Colts are looking for a backup quarterback, though!

Gary Jennings Jr

I really think Jennings’ spot on the roster is in jeopardy. He has notably struggled in training camp, has been ineffective in preseason games—Lynch and Jennings were not on the same page on a red zone throw, and it appears to have been Jennings’ error—and his fair catch interference penalty was his second personal foul flag in as many weeks. That felt more like someone trying to make a play out of sheer frustration, because he’s not been making them on offense. Even if he does get on the 53-man roster, we might see a lot of healthy scratches for the fourth-round rookie.

Jordan Roos

He was arguably the worst of Seattle’s offensive line reserves, giving up at least one sack, blowing several blocks, and just looking like a human turnstile. Seattle doesn’t have a lot of guard depth so he has a chance to make the team, but he’s on thin ice.

J.D. McKissic

McKissic failed to make an impact on special teams or offense in limited snaps. I suspect he’s behind both C.J. Prosise and Travis Homer in the running back depth chart, and even if Prosise doesn’t make the team, I see Homer getting in over J.D.

That stupid roughing the passer penalty on Burr-Kirven

The NFL is trying to enforce “driving the QB to the ground” penalties. Someone tell me what the hell Burr-Kirven is supposed to do that doesn’t involve bending physics.