Grading the Seahawks biggest trade this year: Jadeveon Clowney
The NFL trade deadline is just hours away. Time will tell if they make another splash, but it will be hard to top the Seahawks deal for Jadevous Clowney.
We’ll know soon enough if the Seahawks make another big splash in the trade market. They could pull off another surprise, but it will be hard to top their move to get Jadeveon Clowney. He may not have piled up the statistics we’d hoped for, but I think we can agree he’s had a much bigger impact than Jacob Martin and Barkevious Mingo.
As I said, Clowney hasn’t had the stats many fans expected. To be fair, those expectations may have been a bit skewed by his reputation. He’s never been a sack artist like his former teammate J.J. Watt. His career best is 9.5 sacks, and he’s only topped six sacks in one other season. Instead, Clowney’s special skill is that he’s a beast against the run and still contributes a solid pass rush. And as we’ve seen, he’s pretty nifty on his feet when he does get the ball in his hands.
So far this season, Clowney has two sacks and seven quarterback hits. Chip in four tackles for a loss and the pick-six, and you have a solid performance. Is he performing at a Pro Bowl level? I can’t say he is, no. I’m also comfortable saying he’s already one of the league’s top ten edge players and can improve his game as the season goes on. He’s disruptive and has to be accounted for by the opposing offense. That’s exactly what you want for a top defender.
Let’s put Clowney’s performance into the context of who the Seahawks gave up to get him. Linebacker Jacob Martin was a player who’d shown some promise but needed more opportunity than the Seahawks could give him. So far, he hasn’t exactly gotten that chance with the Texans. While he’s appeared in all eight games so far, he has just three tackles and two quarterback hits.
Barkevious Mingo was the bigger piece of the ridiculously good package that brought Clowney to the Hawks. Through the first half of the season, Mingo has done less than Martin. He’s played almost exclusively on special teams and has just one snap on defense. He’s certainly a solid player on special teams, but one snap on defense? All I can say is, wow.
If it wasn’t clear to anyone when John Schneider pulled off this deal, it’s obvious now that the Seahawks pulled off one of the biggest heists in NFL history with this deal. The third-round pick Seattle included is likely to be the best part of this package for Houston. Clowney may not be playing at a Pro Bowl level, but he’s close. Best of all, the Hawks gave up very little to get him.