Five surprising Seahawks that won’t make the 53 man roster

SEATTLE, WA - AUGUST 18: Cornerback Neiko Thorpe #23 of the Seattle Seahawks warms up prior to the game against the Minnesota Vikings at CenturyLink Field on August 18, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - AUGUST 18: Cornerback Neiko Thorpe #23 of the Seattle Seahawks warms up prior to the game against the Minnesota Vikings at CenturyLink Field on August 18, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) /

The Seahawks will have to make some tough choices to get down to their 53 man roster limit. I expect those choice will include some surprising names.

The Seahawks aren’t any different from any other team, of course. Every team has to make some tough cuts to get down to 53 players. That’s why you’re seeing players like Braxton Miller of the Texans and Michael Floyd of the Saints get the axe. Seattle will have some surprises too. Here are five names that would never have been considered as potential cuts back in June.

Amara Darboh, wide receiver. You don’t see many third round picks dumped after just one season. I don’t see how the Seahawks can keep him on the roster, though. He was expected to see his first action of the postseason against the Raiders in the last tuneup for the regular season.

Unfortunately he was a surprise last minute scratch from his last chance to show what he’s got. Darboh is still recovering from an injury to his clavicle. Consider this: Doug Baldwin said he expects his knee is to bother him all year. Can the Seahawks afford to keep a player that still hasn’t seen the field?

I know they don’t want to give up on a third rounder, but they have too many other guys that have produced. Keenan Reynolds and Marcus Johnson both deserve to make the squad, but only one will get through as the sixth wide receiver. I can’t see keeping Darboh over either of them, so he’s out.

Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks /

Seattle Seahawks

Seahawks say goodbye to Maxie again

Byron Maxwell, cornerback. Maxwell is in the same boat as Darboh. He hasn’t been able to get on the field this offseason. Of course Maxwell has a much better resume than Darboh. He doesn’t need to prove what he can do, as he filled in admirably in six starts for the Seahawks last year.

Maxwell’s problem is that Dontae Johnson has really come on in the last two preseason games. As is the case of Darboh, Seattle can’t afford to depend on a player that has an indefinite timetable for his return. Darboh is a bit of a surprise; the release of Maxwell is a shock. I doubt that anyone expected this when training camp opened.

And in a last minute change, Maxwell has been placed on Injured reserve according to Adam Schefter. So ignore everything above this. Maxwell is out for the season. Yikes.

Tre Madden, fullback. Madden missed half the season last year, and has dealt with injuries in the preseason. You may have noticed a theme here. What’s surprising here is that Seattle has made it clear they expect to use the fullback to boost the running game this year.

There are two key players here that make Madden expendable, both tight ends: Nick Vannett and Ed Dickson. After Madden went down last year, Vannett played some H-back. The Seahawks have used him as a fullback several times this the preseason too. Dickson was at risk to get the axe himself.

As recently as three days ago Dickson wasn’t ready to suit up, and missed his fourth and final preseason game. Keeping Dickson gives Seattle even more flexibility to swing Vannett into the backfield occasionally. Add in that cutting Madden allows Seattle to keep the injured J.D. McKissic active, and the writing is on the wall for Madden.

Seahawks special teams specialist won’t make it through

Neiko Thorpe, corner/special teams. Like everyone else listed so far, Thorpe has had injury trouble this preseason. More than that, his problem has been one of numbers and pure competition. Rookie corner Tre Flowers has pushed for a starting role in Seattle. While it looks like Dontae Johnson has passed him on the depth chart, Flowers’ emergence has made Thorpe expendable.

Thorpe never made a start for the Seahawks, despite all the opportunities the injuries of the past two season provided. In five seasons he has just two starts. No matter how good a player is on special teams – and Thorpe has been exceptional – at some point you need a player who can step into a starting role. I have no doubt Thorpe will be snapped up immediately by another team.

Willie Beavers and Isiah Battle, offensive tackles. Yes, you get a two for one here. Just a few weeks ago, Battle was pushing for the stating right tackle job, and Beavers was entrenched as the backup. Germain Ifedi (happily) began playing better, while Battle fell ill and Beavers fell off a bit. Add in that Joey Hunt is more versatile and can play anywhere along the line, and both Beavers and Battle lose out.

As always with the Seahawks, there’s another complication. Rookie Jamarco Jones showed every sign of taking the right tackle job until his high ankle sprain sidelined him for at least several weeks. Keeping Jones on the roster initially will allow Seattle to move him to injured reserve after the rosters are set. Jones could be activated much sooner that way. Just one more factor that points to the release of both players.

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I have little doubt that I’ll be wrong on at least three of these predictions. That’s why they’d be surprises, right? D.J. Alexander has already let the cat out of the bag on his status. Nothing has been officially announced, but when a player tweets “”It’s been fun Seattle on to the next,” you can be pretty sure he’s out. Good luck to Alexander, and all the others that will soon join him.