The Seahawks need to find a long-term answer at cornerback starting no later than 2022. Taking Benjamin St-Juste would be a step in the right direction. Pete Carroll likes big cornerbacks and Seattle has been successful with them. Richard Sherman, to name one, but Brandon Browner to name another. And St-Juste is a big corner.
In fact, St-Juste likely has the perfect size for a Carroll cornerback. He is 6’3″ and 210 pounds. Sherman, in comparison, is 6’3″ and 200 pounds. Plus, Sherman going to the Seahawks was likely the best place Sherman could have gone out of Stanford. Sherman learned to play corner the Seattle way and clearly blossomed.
St-Juste is going to be a little raw, even though he played three seasons in the Big 10. He is originally from Canada, and no offense to Canadians everywhere, but the high school football they play in Canada is not equal to high-level high school football in the United States.
Benjamin St-Juste could learn the Seahawks way
This could be one reason – and this is a concern – why St-Juste did not have an interception in college. While he blanketed receivers very well, he didn’t create turnovers. A player who is still learning the position for the most part is going to take fewer chances than an experienced one. With time and the proper coaching, St-Juste should develop into the type of corner who can pick off passes.
Another concern with St-Juste is that he ran a 4.51 40 at his pro day. But this concern should also be overcome in the Seahawks system. Seattle teaches big corners to be physical and use their size to shield receivers. St-Juste has no problem with contact and should adapt well to going body-on-body with an NFL receiver.
In fact, St-Juste is a very good tackler, again a lot like Sherman. He already has NFL form and strength when playing the run and this is something Pete Carroll will love.
Benjamin St-Juste isn’t going to start in 2021. But the way the Seahawks have built the roster so far he doesn’t need to. St-Juste can get some reps in and learn in his first season. By 2022 he should have learned better technique and how to be a Seahawks cornerback and be good. By 2023 he will be even better. There’s no reason St-Juste can’t develop into a shutdown corner in the NFL.