The Seattle Seahawks need more speed and more players who play with aggression. Physical freak Troy Andersen can do both those things. The Montana State product isn’t without some fixable flaws but Andersen’s upside and potentially massive impact might be too much to pass up. especially if Andersen is still around in the second round.
Seattle, of course, released Bobby Wagner this offseason. The assumption this happened was because Wagner was really expensive ($20 million in 2022) but also that Wagner is getting old for someone who plays linebacker (32). Seattle wants to get younger and more aggressive, it seems.
And if this is the case, Andersen is the perfect fit. He is 6’3 1/2″ and weighs 245 pounds but is exceedingly fast. At the NFL combine, Andersen ran a 4.42 40-yard dash which is the fifth-fastest time by a player who weighs 240 pounds or more. In comparison, when Bobby Wagner had his pro day in 2012, Wagner ran a 4.45.
Troy Andersen would be a wise choice for the Seahawks in the 2022 NFL draft
I am not saying Andersen is going to immediately take Wagner’s spot because he isn’t. Andersen has a lot of things he needs to work on. A big reason for that is he played at Montana State. No offense to the Fighting Bobcats, but MSU is not a school that plays against a lot of schools that have top-end talent. MSU also doesn’t have an overall coaching staff that is going to have players ready to start in the NFL on day one.
That said, there is no reason Andersen can’t make an impact as the season goes on defensively and be a force on special teams. A person who can run with that size and speed is going to cause some harm to players returning kicks or punts. Andersen would also be hard to block.
One of Andersen’s strengths is that he has the presumed versatility to play any spot at linebacker. He was decent in coverage in college, though he could have been better, but he should be better coached if he ends up with the Seahawks and the new defensive coaching staff.
Seahawks coaches will also teach Andersen more fundamentally sound tackling technique and how to attack opposing blockers. Andersen is still fairly new to playing linebacker as he also played quarterback (seriously) and running back in college.
But that rawness to the position might only help him better adjust with the Seahawks as he would be still learning the position the right way by being coached the right way. Is Andersen going to make mistakes? Yes. But he is worth taking a chance on because of his elite athletic skills.
It should be noted that when Andersen was faced with playing with and against better competition than he faced in college, like at the Senior Bowl this year, Andersen stood out as one of the better players.
This is one reason, along with his speed, that Andersen was at one time presumed to be a fifth-round choice and now could be taken in the second round. For a team like the Seahawks that is rebuilding, taking a chance on a player like Andersen with one of their two picks in this year’s second-round and expecting him to be full-go in 2023 would be a wise choice.