Watching the Super Bowl last Sunday, the Seahawks need to see the game is won and lost in the trenches of the offensive and defensive lines. For several years, the Seahawks’ main problem has been their inability to solidify the offensive and defensive line. Here is a strategy for the Seahawks to solve these problems in the draft.
While the Seahawks’ 2022 NFL Draft selections of tackles Charles Cross and Abe Lucas were a good start on the O-line, they still need to do more in the 2023 NFL Draft. The main issue for the Seahawks in addressing the offensive line is this draft class is not deep for interior offensive linemen (IOL) such as guards (G) or centers (C). Currently, the highest-rated IOL is G O’Cyrus Torrence from Florida. He is ranked 34th on Pro Football Focus’ (subscription required) big board.
This means the Seahawks might want to supplement their draft selections with a proven veteran at IOL in free agency and take one or two IOLs in the second and third rounds of the draft. Other options besides Torrence at IOL for Seattle in those rounds include G/C Steve Avila from TCU (number 41 per PFF), C Luke Wypler of OSU (number 47 per PFF), C John Michael Schmitz of Minnesota (number 52 per PFF), and C Joe Tippman from Wisconsin (number 62 per PFF). These guards and centers would be a fine selection to help supplement aging veterans such as C Austin Blythe and G Gabe Jackson if those two remain with the team.
Rebuilding the trenches should be a priority for the Seahawks in the 2023 draft
Contrary to the lack of IOL, the 2023 NFL draft is deep in defensive linemen (DL) such as edge rushers (ED) and defensive tackles (DT). The Seahawks should consider taking one or two DL with their first-round draft picks. The DL who could be available to Seattle with the 5th and 20th selections in the first round include ED Tyree Wilson of TTU (number 7 according to PFF), ED Lukas Van Ness of Iowa (number 12 per PFF), DT Calijah Kancey of Pittsburgh (number 14 per PFF), DT Bryan Breese of Clemson (number 16 per PFF), ED Myles Murphy of Clemson (number 19 per PFF), ED Andre Carter of Army (number 24 per PFF), and ED Nolan Smith of Georgia Number 26 per PFF).
There are plenty of options for the Seahawks to select from to solidify the trenches on the defensive side of the ball. Each of these players could have an immediate impact in helping improve a team that finished 30th in rushing defense in 2022.
Clearly, the first round of the 2023 NFL draft will be an opportunity for the Seahawks to find run-stoppers on the defensive line. While the second and third rounds can be used to polish off the rebuild of the offensive line, which already includes young Charles Cross and Abe Lucas tackles. The next challenge for Seattle will be figuring out the additions they need to make at TE, WR, DB, QB, RB, and LB with the rest of their selections.