3 Seahawks 2022 draft picks with best chance of being Rookie of the Year
By Lee Vowell
Seahawks edge rusher Boye Mafe
The reason Mafe could be Rookie of the Year is to a great degree the same reason that Bryant could: Both players play positions where it is easy to bring the spotlight upon them. Mafe, at this stage of his early career, is just a pure pass rusher. He isn’t going to help much in pass coverage. But that is OK. He was drafted to chase down opposing quarterbacks and he has all the raw skill to do that.
Last year at the University of Minnesota, Mafe had 7 sacks and 10 tackles for loss. This was in one of the better conferences in college football and on a team where only one other player had more than 3 sacks or 5 tackles for loss. This means could key on Mafe and yet still he produced.
Mafe has a natural bend to his edge rush just like teammate Darrell Taylor has. And Mafe has the same raw skill that Taylor had in Taylor’s first real season of 2021. Taylor had 6.5 sacks while still learning his way and not having much help. But this offseason, the Seahawks have tried to load up with a multitude of young pass rushers that should allow Mafe to get quite a few single-blocker matchups.
Mafe, even though likely playing a very specialized edge rusher role in 2022, could get 6 sacks or more. If he can reach 10, and he is capable of doing so, he might just earn the Defensive Rookie of the Year award.