The Seattle Seahawks entered the 2021 season with only two significant questions on the roster: cornerback and center.
After two weeks, they both remain concerns. Perhaps corner is a little worse, but the run game was absolutely nullified against the Tennessee Titans in week two. Furthermore, tackles Duane Brown and Brandon Shell continue to play extremely well, while the only pressure Russell Wilson has faced has come up the middle.
Where the center plays.
In April, 6’4” Oklahoma center Creed Humphrey was linked to the Seahawks in multiple mocks and wish lists. Seattle did not take him in the second round, but chose receiver Dee Eskridge instead.
The Seahawks are betting on Kyle Fuller and Dee Eskridge being a better winning combination than Creed Humphrey (or insert fav center prospect) and Freddie Swain.— Brian Nemhauser (@hawkblogger) August 27, 2021
They may prove to be absolutely right. I hope they are.
In May, YOU the people said that Seattle should have drafted a center instead of a speedy wide receiver. After last year there was no faith in the position.
Your takes:— Joe Fann (@Joe_Fann) May 4, 2021
-- The #Seahawks made a mistake picking D'Wayne Eskridge over Creed Humphrey
-- Tre Brown and Stone Forsythe will be Day 1 starters
-- Cade Johnson and Tamorrion Terry will make the roster
Overreactions or nah?
I discussed here: https://t.co/tnoaJucu53
So, how’s it shaped up thus far?
If you asked after Week 1, it looked like an absolute disaster for the Seahawks. Dee Eskridge appears to be legit, but got hit with a concussion early in the game. Ethan Pocic went down to (another) injury, and looked worse than Kyle Fuller anyway. However, Pocic has consistently beaten Fuller for the starting job, so immediate concern was warranted.
For his part, Fuller actually held up reasonably well against the Indianapolis Colts.
However, Humphrey came out on fire against the Cleveland Browns.
Creed Humphrey's #NFL debut vs the Browns— PFF College (@PFF_College) September 13, 2021
41 pass-block snaps
0 QB pressures allowed
0 sacks@OU_Football pic.twitter.com/TN1C2OmhmV
Humphrey had a 100% pass block win rate in Week 1.
And yet, life goes on. If we ask the question again after Week 2, perhaps a different story. Humphrey took a huge step backwards against the Baltimore Ravens, and landed himself as one of the “losers” in the Arrowhead Pride recap.
BUT (this piece is just one big but) Kyle Fuller did the same. I thought he was far less effective in both pass and run game, forcing the guards to help him out on too many occasions. Eye test across the board held up as well, and the nerds did not like Fuller’s performance.
Kyle Fuller had a 29.2 pass block grade and a 36.7 run block grade. He was the worst player on offense, per PFF.— Brian Nemhauser (@hawkblogger) September 20, 2021
I still maintain that the process is sound; having above-average tackles and guards, the line and Wilson should be able to account for a weakness up the middle. If Wilson wants to win MVP, he’s got to be able to occasionally get around DeForest Buckner or Aaron Donald. Having Eskridge seems to be a very important piece of a Shane Waldron offense, and it’s kind of amazing how clear that was after only two games.
But still, it can be tough to swallow having a offensive line problem still, when some legitimate options were draftable that might have shored the whole thing up.