Seahawks L.J. Collier promises to be better and he must be
By Lee Vowell
The Seahawks need to improve their pass rush in 2020. Seattle’s 2019 first-round draftee L.J. Collier needs to be a big part of the fix.
L.J. Collier. He was a colossal bust in his rookie year of 2019. The first-round pick for the Seahawks in 2019 was a surprise choice and then turned out to be a complete waste last year. I don’t mean that as a judgment. Collier is a bigger man and a better football player than I could ever be. But then Seattle didn’t pay me millions to help them, but they did Collier.
To be fair to Collier, he probably didn’t expect to be chosen in the first round either. The Seahawks have a way of choosing poorly in the first round and better in the seventh round. See, for instance, exhibit A: Chris Carson was a seventh-round pick and Collier and Rashaad Penny were first-round choices.
On Friday, Collier said he has been working hard to be better in 2020. He couldn’t be worse. In 2019, Collier played in 11 games, sort of. He only played in 152 snaps. This was 14 percent of the Seahawks defensive snaps last year. For a first-round pick, this is a complete failure.
I am not making this up, but Collier’s statistics in 2019 were thus: 3 combined tackles and, well, that is it. But don’t fret, he wasn’t better in the playoffs because he didn’t play.
Seattle was among the worst pressure teams in the NFL in 2-19 and that is with Jadeveon Clowney. The Seahawks absolutely have to be counting on Collier more in 2020. If not, Collier should not be on the team in 2021. Malik McDowell turned out to set the Seahawks back for a few years with an off the field issue in 2017. Should Collier not work out well because of on the field issues, the Seahawks will be set back for longer.
There is no doubt that Collier will be expected to have a good year in 2020. If he can’t, he needs to be a roster cut. I think Collier is a decent dude, but unless he can perform on the field for the Seahawks in 2020 and beyond, he was a waste of a first round choice. He needs to get 7 or more sacks this season.