NFL insider issues warning for a Seahawks position of need

The 2024 NFL draft begins on April 25.
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks will (one assumes) make their first choice in the 2024 NFL draft on Thursday, April 25. That is a safe assumption, of course, as Seattle currently has the number 16 pick in the draft, but there is also a good chance that Seattle trades back later in the first round or maybe completely out of it. The team needs to try to get at least one second-round pick back.

Among the needs that Seattle has early in the draft are along the interior of the offensive line and the interior of the defensive line. Seattle definitely does not need a running back or wide receiver early. Off-ball linebacker, though, is also a position of need but maybe not an immediate one.

This offseason, among the many changes the Seahawks made, Seattle let free agent linebackers Bobby Wagner and Jordyn Brooks walk. Wagner is likely a first-ballot Hall of Famer but he has now left Seattle twice and is very unlikely to ever return. Brooks wasn't good in coverage and would not have been a great fit in new head coach Mike Macdonald's scheme.

2024 might not be a great draft for the Seattle Seahawks to take an off-ball linebacker

Seattle signed Jerome Baker and Tyrel Dodson to one-year deals to replace Wagner and Brooks, but that only means Seattle could be looking for one or two more inside linebackers in 2025 to start immediately. One of those players could come in the 2024 NFL draft. But NFL insider Daniel Jeremiah has a warning for NFL teams that need off-ball linebackers in the draft, "Not a good year to need off the ball linebackers."

Jeremiah shared his thoughts in a tweet but did not go deeper with his opinion on social media. Instead, he released his top 150 prospects on and the first off-ball linebacker does not appear until 29. That player is Texas A&M's Edgerrin Cooper. The next inside linebacker shows up at 41 in the person of North Carolina State's Payton Wilson while Michigan's Junior Colson is ranked 43. The next linebacker is ranked 75.

Jeremiah clearly feels that a team that is very needy for inside linebackers is not going to get a very good one in 2024. Cooper might be good, and Jeremiah thinks his best football could still be to come, but if Jeremiah truly believed in Cooper, then why not rank him higher?

Here is the positive part, though. In Jeremiah's write-up of Cooper, the traits he says the Texas A&M prospect has are exactly what the Seahawks need. Jeremiah writes, "...rangy linebacker with excellent speed and coverage ability. Against the pass, he is very smooth in his drops, playing with vision and awareness. He is very comfortable in man coverage and has plenty of speed to carry tight ends up the seam."

That is exactly what Seattle did not have in an inside linebacker in 2023 and the kind of off-ball linebacker who fits perfectly in Macdonald's scheme. Should the Seahawks trade back into the 20s of the draft and decide to choose Edgerrin Cooper, that pick might work out extremely well. Or Seattle could simply draft a quarterback and surprise everyone (or no one).

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