CBS Sports ranks former Seahawks mistake as better player than Devon Witherspoon

Witherspoon appears to be a great cornerback, but he was ranked lower than a former Seattle CB recently.
Devon Witherspoon of the Seattle Seahawks
Devon Witherspoon of the Seattle Seahawks / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

Devon Witherspoon proved what a fantastic draft pick he was in his rookie season for the Seattle Seahawks. Will he get better in the future? Sure. But the number five overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft has three sacks, great coverage, fantastic run support, and a 97-yard pick-six for the Seattle Seahawks last year. What would there be to complain about?

Plus, just imagine how good of a fit he is going to be in new head coach Mike Macdonald's system moving forward. The coach can move the cornerback around and play him close to the line or deep in coverage and know the offense will have to adjust to where they think Witherspoon will be. Under Macdonald, Witherspoon could develop into a potential Hall of Fame player.

But we aren't there yet. Plus, that last bit is a bit too high of an expectation for a player entering only his second season. Witherspoon is great already and should be transformative, but he isn't yet a top-10 cornerback. In fact, in one recent ranking of CBs, Witherspoon ranks a notch lower than a former Seahawks who the team should have held on to.

One former Seahawks cornerback ranks higher than Devon Witherspoon

According to CBS Sports, the Seahawks cornerback is the 16th-best in the NFL. The former Seahawk is number 15, and that player is D.J. Reed. Reed did not get much of a chance to start in his first two seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, but after moving over to Seattle in 2020 he eventually became a full-time starter and a good one.

In his two years with Seattle, Reed never allowed a quarterback rating when targeted higher than 75.8. In 2021, that number was an extremely good 67.8. Plus, Reed was very good against the run, something the team has missed the last couple of years.

Next. One Seahawks coach could be one and done in 2024. One Seahawks coach could be one and done in 2024. dark

After the 2021 season, though, Reed was offered a contract by the New York Jets that was worth an average of $11 million a season. Seattle did not want to match that, and it turned out to be the wrong choice. Reed has continued his excellent play with New York while Seattle drafted the inconsistent Riq Woolen and still has no player who is certain to start opposite Woolen.

Imagine a cornerback group that would include Reed, Witherspoon, and a potentially improved Woolen in 2024. That would be among the best in the league and would definitely help Mike Macdonald retool the defense more quickly. The issue is that sometimes mistakes are made and general manager John Schneider decided Reed was too expensive in 2022 was a bad error.

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