Sure, the game did not really count in the standings for the Seahawks. But for some Seattle players this game meant a lot. Here’s what we learned.
Preseason games are meaningless affairs as far as games really counting, of course. But they also shape a roster for any NFL team. The Seahawks have more question marks in 2018 than in previous years, maybe. But we learned some things about the team on Thursday versus the Colts.
Shaquem Griffin is active but has a learning curve
Griffin‘s statistics were good. Griffin had nine tackles on Thursday. He made four tackles on his first four snaps. But he still has a lot to learn to be a productive and every-down player. Especially when it comes to coverage. This may be one reason Seattle hasn’t really given him a shot at safety so far.
Griffin is big enough to play linebacker, of course, but he is also fast enough to play strong safety. But if he cannot cover receivers, then there’s an issue. In one-on-one coverage against Colts tight end Jack Doyle, Doyle simply created space by being physical with Griffin. Griffin will need to find a way to keep position in tight coverage.
But to be clear, Griffin will learn to cover. And he will be hard to keep off the field with his speed and instincts to get to the ball.
J.D. McKissic may be too valuable on special teams to cut
The Seahawks most likely will keep four tailbacks and a fullback. Four of the tailbacks – McKissic, Chris Carson, Rashaad Penny and Mike Davis – played. C.J. Prosise did not play. Penny and Carson will make the roster. The final two spots are a battle between the remaining three.
McKissic may have proven his value to the team by returning kicks and punts. Seattle, of course, knew he could already do this. But McKissic does it well. And while Tyler Lockett will probably return punts during the year, McKissic is good enough to be back deep with Lockett or Rashaad Penny on kickoffs.
McKissic versatility and ability to add depth on special teams may be enough for him to make the team over Prosise.
Will Dissly can block and catch
The Seahawks drafted Dissly out of the University of Washington for his ability to block. But on Thursday he showed he can catch too. Dissly didn’t really have a chance to do a whole lot with his first two catches but both were for first downs.
Dissly isn’t going to start in 2018. Nick Vannett (who had himself a nice night as well, including a touchdown catch) or Ed Dickson will. But the tight end position in Seattle appears solid with Dissly, Vannett and Dickson.