Target number 5: Austin Reiter, C
To many fans’ dismay, the Seahawks chose not to upgrade the center position in free agency. Despite a couple of the best centers in the NFL being available, they decided to stay with familiarity in Ethan Pocic.
The team followed this up in the draft by looking past fan favorites Creed Humphrey and Quinn Meinerz for WR D’Wayne Eskridge. One thing is clear, Seattle didn’t view the center position with as high of a priority on upgrading as the fans did.
When asked in interviews, the team has stayed steadfast that Ethan Pocic will have competition for the starting spot and they like who they have. That is coach speak for we like this guy but aren’t in love with him.
In comes Austin Reiter, formerly of the Kansas City Chiefs. Last season Reiter posted a very solid 70.9 PFF grade. He did not allow a single penalty or sack across 867 offensive snaps during the regular season.
Now, those stats likely make Reiter sound like a slam dunk signing. That is simply not the case. While he is very solid in pass blocking, he struggles mightily in the run game. He has a very good base and can keep his ground against the bull rush. However, speed rushers and anything that requires his feet to move quickly has been an issue.
This signing is nothing more than competition. If the team wants more competition, Reiter is the best available center on the market. Bring him in on a veteran minimum contract and let him compete for the job. Add incentives to the contract to make it worth his while if he wins the starting job.
Contract estimate: Vet minimum with incentives to push to $2.5 million.