The draft, and the subsequent signing of undrafted free agents, puts an end to the major player acquisition phase of the season. Obviously, there can — and will be — changes between now and training camp. But in terms of the significant names, the roster is pretty set.
As I write this, Seattle is at the 90-player off-season limit heading into its rookie mini-camp this weekend.
So it’s a good time to update our earlier look at the roster, with a quick assessment of each position, beginning with the offense (number in parentheses is total players at that position right now):
Russell Wilson, Tarvaris Jackson, B.J. Daniels, Terrelle Pryor, Keith Price.
Comment: The backup battle got pretty darn interesting since we last wrote about the roster a month ago with the team adding Pryor and Price. No way more than three QBs make the final roster, and Seattle has often gone with just two the last few seasons. Price and Daniels have practice squad eligibility, but Pryor wouldn’t appear to. There’s obviously zero question about the starter. But the rest of it is pretty intriguing and will make every snap of Seattle’s pre-season games worth watching.
RUNNING BACK (6)
Marshawn Lynch, Robert Turbin, Christine Michael, Derrick Coleman (FB), Spencer Ware (FB), Kiero Small (FB).
Comment: The only change here all off-season was the drafting of Small, and not re-signing Michael Robinson, who appears set to retire. The Seahawks kept five running backs on the roster throughout last season, and that would seem logical again (seventh-round pick Small would be an obvious practice squad candidate if it worked out that way). Ware will be particularly interesting to watch in camp as he is reportedly healthy now and while the team lists him at fullback, they have always been intrigued by his running ability, as well. And as we’ve noted often, Michael figures to be as intriguing as any player in camp this year as the day to when the team will need a successor to Lynch draws nearer.
TIGHT END (6)
Zach Miller, Luke Willson, Anthony McCoy, Travis Beckum, Cooper Helfet, Chase Dixon.
Comment: Miller and Willson seem locks to make the roster, leaving the rest to likely fight for one spot. Dixon, who signed as an undrafted free agent, was the only addition to the roster during the draft weekend.
Percy Harvin, Doug Baldwin, Jermaine Kearse, Sidney Rice, Ricardo Lockette, Phil Bates, Bryan Walters, Arceto Clark, Taylor Price, Chris Matthews, Paul Richardson, Kevin Norwood.
Comment: Seattle won’t keep more than six, and suddenly that seems like a hard number to get to. One possibility that could add some relief is that Rice — coming off knee surgery — isn’t ready at the start of the season and is on the PUP list, similar to Harvin a year ago. The team, though, has said Rice is expected to be ready for camp. Harvin, Baldwin and Kearse would seem like locks, and the two draft picks, Richardson and Harper, certainly looms as big parts of the future — and recall that to get on the practice squad, a player has to be cut and then is available for any team to sign to its own active roster. Seattle lost Chris Harper last year trying to get him onto the practice squad. So that could mean everybody else fighting for one spot.
OFFENSIVE LINE (15)
Max Unger (c), Russell Okung (T), James Carpenter (G), J.R. Sweezy (G), Alvin Bailey (T), Michael Bowie (T), Lemuel Jeanpierre (C), Caylin Hauptmann (T), Jared Smith (G), Stephen Schilling (G), Greg Van Roten (G), Justin Britt (T), Garrett Scott (T), Bronson Irwin (T), Garrett Gilliam (T).
Comment: The first eight listed are returners from a year ago, and the first six seem like locks for spots this year and second-round pick Britt also seems a sure thing. Seattle kept nine or 10 throughout last season, so that would mean the other eight players fighting for two or three spots. Unger, Okung, Sweezy and Carpenter also seem pretty in their starting jobs (and we’re saying that about Carpenter based on the glowing reviews last week from OL coach Tom Cable). Right tackle, though, will be an especially intriguing battle with Bowie and Britt fighting it out there.