Number two: Cliff Avril, 2013
Now we get to the big two signings of the Pete Carroll and Johns Schneider era. Both players helped transform the Seattle defense from an emerging one to one that would be one of the NFL’s best ever. Cliff Avril and the guy who will be number one on this list came to Seattle in the same season which was 2013 and that just happened to be a championship season for Seattle.
And of a huge note is that while the Seahawks were playing, and leading, in the 2014 Super Bowl against the New England Patriots, Avril got hurt and missed the rest of the game. One could argue that had Avril stayed healthy and in the game, Seattle would have won by two touchdowns because Avril was unblockable up until the point he got injured.
After Avril left the game, New England could turn its focus towards blocking other important members of the Seattle defensive line and had Avril not been injured then maybe the last awful play of Seattle’s offense never happens and maybe Seattle wins another Super Bowl after 2014 as the team stays happy and together.
Am I putting too much emphasis on Avril’s injury? No. He was one of two gifted defensive ends that made it easier for the backend of the Seattle defense to be the Legion of Boom.
The shocking thing is that Cliff Avril only made one Pro Bowl in his career that ended with him having 74 sacks in 10 seasons and 146 quarterback hit. He was underrated. In other words, he was K.J. Wright to the Bobby Wagner-type player that is number one on this list.