Oluwatimi has the goods on the field as well
As I'm sure you know, the man can deliver on the field as well. He earned a scholarship at Virginia within a year and delivered a semi-finalist Rimington Award as a senior. We already talked about his accomplishments at Michigan, but let me throw a few more numbers at you. While I detailed that Evan Brown has the advantage of NFL experience, Oluwatimi actually has more experience at center in the past three seasons.
Per Pro Football Focus (paywall alert, sorry, 12s), Olu played 2,546 snaps from 2020 - 2022, all at center. In his entire professional career, Brown has played 1,604 snaps, with 768 of those at guard last year. I'm not backtracking about the importance of NFL experience, but Oluwatimi played more than three times as much at center as Brown, all at a very high level. In those 2,546 snaps, he allowed a total of - prepare yourself, 12s - three sacks. Yes, you read that correctly.
Some people will downplay that number, saying silly things like, "Oh, most of that was just in the ACC", or "Yeah, but Michigan only runs the ball." To those naysaying miscreants, I'll remind them that Olu was a Rimington semifinalist as the top center in the NCAA while at Virginia.
As for Michigan running the ball a lot, yes, they do. They literally ran the ball twice as much as the Cavaliers, 507 to 246 in Olu's 2022 and 2021 campaigns. Still, Oluwatimi was in for 411 passing plays as a Wolverine and gave up zero sacks. Five QB hits, four hurries, and zero sacks. Oh, and PFF actually grades him even higher as a run blocker. Oluwatimi was an absolute steal in the fifth round.
Listen, I'm more than happy with Evan Brown. He only allowed one sack in 755 snaps as Detroit's center in 2021 while committing just four penalties. He's a fine player, and not to knock any former Seahawks player, but he's a solid upgrade over the retired Austin Blythe. But Olu Oluwatimi will be even better if he isn't already.
Our own Lee Vowell believes that Brown is a solid candidate to be cut before the season kicks off, and he may well be right. I think Brown's versatility to play at guard and play well keeps him in Seattle. The academic advantage goes to Olu though. At center, what goes on inside the helmet matters even more than what goes on between the pads. Whether it happens in week six or week one, Olu Oluwatimi has what it takes to lead a great Seahawks offensive line for the next decade.