ESPN released a Top-100 ranking that’s a little different than the NFL’s player-voted list, and three members of the Seattle Seahawks graced the lower half. For a little bit of clarity, this is how ESPN determined its list:
To create our list, we asked a panel of dozens of ESPN NFL experts to rate players based on performance expectations for the 2023 season as compared with their peers. Emphasis was placed solely on the upcoming season and predicting potential greatness, rather than past performance, career résumé or positional value. That means long-term injuries and suspensions played a part, which is why Jalen Ramsey, for instance, is missing (out with a left meniscus injury). And from those ratings, we were able to rank the best of the best, 1 to 100.
The compilation aims to project the best players of this coming 2023 season, and all three Seahawks were outside playmakers.
#52: DK Metcalf
#82: Riq Woolen
#90: Tyler Lockett
It’s still a vote of no-confidence in Geno Smith, and I’ll put Jamal Adams and Dre’Mont Jones in that category as well.
There are no rookies, so don’t be upset looking for Jaxon Smith-Njigba.
The fun bit is the stats projection, so here are the estimates from the ESPN team.
For Metcalf, they have 78 receptions for 1017 yards and 8 TD
For Woolen, 63 tackles and a hard step back at only 2 INT
For Lockett, 81 receptions for 876 yards and 5 TD, which would be his worst season since 2017 and would break a four-year stretch of 1,000 yard seasons.
In a follow-up piece, nobody listed any additional members of Seattle as a top snub, as an underrated / overrated player, but said Riq Woolen was one of the most surprising second-year players to be on the list.