The first thing the Seahawks need to do is re-sign their excellent defensive end Frank Clark. The next thing? Give him a playmate at the other end.
The Seahawks had 43 sacks in 2018, which tied them for 11th best in the league. That’s pretty good, right? Room for improvement, but just outside the top ten is respectable. Well, it would be if more than half the sacks hadn’t come from just two players. Seattle needs to get to the quarterback more often, and defensive end is the best place to start.
As I said, more than half of the Hawks sacks came from two players. Frank Clark posted 13 sacks en route to his criminally overlooked Pro Bowl caliber year. Defensive tackle Jarran Reed added 10.5 sacks, the most Seattle has had at that position since the great Cortez Kennedy had 14 in 1992. The third highest sack count was just three, racked up by both Quinton Jefferson and Jacob Martin.
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That isn’t going to cut it. Sacks are no guarantee of success, to be sure. The Rams ranked just 15th in sacks with 40, and the Patriots were pretty dismal with just 30. Both of those teams have attributes that let them overcome that aspect, though, namely high-powered opportunistic offenses.
The Seahawks need a bookend for Clark, and the 2019 NFL Draft has plenty of potential choices. Lee Vowell ran down some of the names already popping up in mock drafts. We’ll look at a few more players today. But before we get to them, there are two players Seattle needs to avoid.