Seahawks urged to make move for game-changing pass rusher

The Seahawks are relatively thin at edge rusher and no team has too many top-end pass rushers.
Seattle Seahawks Introduce Mike Macdonald
Seattle Seahawks Introduce Mike Macdonald / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

The Seattle Seahawks should have a better defense under new head coach Mike Macdonald. The issues with the team's defense the last few years seemed obvious - poor run defense, bad pass coverage by the linebackers - but it was also clear that former head coach Pete Carroll could not find a way to fix anything. The same concerns rolled over from season to season even though many players changed during that time.

Another problem was Seattle's inconsistent pass rush. The Seahawks were 11th in sacks with 47 last year, but 17 of those came in two different games - Week 4 when Seattle had 11 against the New York Giants and six against the Tennessee Titans in Week 16. 36 percent of the team's sacks came in two games; that's not winning football.

At the top of the depth chart at edge rusher for Seattle are Boye Mafe and Uchenna Nwosu. The backups currently are Darrell Taylor and Derick Hall. Taylor has been as inconsistent with his pass rush over the course of his career as the team has been overall. He is entering the last year of his contract after Seattle placed a tender on him this offseason.

Seahawks likely cannot afford to add edge rusher Matt Judon

Another player entering the final year of his current deal is the New England Patriots' Matt Judon. Recently on social media, Judon seemed to imply he would not be returning to New England after this season. He might not even play with the Patriots this year if he is traded.

CBS Sports thinks there is a good chance that Judon does get moved. They recently posted an article about five potential landing spots for the edge rusher and the Seahawks were at the top of the list, literally. That move would make sense except for one important bit, which, to be fair, CBS Sports does name.

Judon played for the Baltimore Ravens from 2016 through 2020. In the last three years with Baltimore, his position coach was Mike Macdonald. Macdonald, of course, is the Seahawks' new coach. Therefore, a transition for Judon to Seattle's defensive scheme should be relatively smooth.

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The problem is that Seattle has negative cap room in 2025 and Judon is likely going to want an extension with any team he is traded to. The Seahawks might simply not have the money to pay him past 2024, and even this year is iffy. Sure, Seattle could make space somehow - a rework of DK Metcalf or Geno Smith's deal would do the trick - for this year, but beyond that, the edge rusher would seem out of reach.

Even at nearly 32 years old, Judon, when healthy, is extremely productive. He had 15.5 sacks in 2022, and 12.5 in 2021. Last year in only four games, Judon had four sacks and 16 total pressures. Just imagine what Macdonald could do with Judon, Mafe, and Nwosu. Likely, that is just a pipe dream, however, because Seattle cannot afford the edge rusher long-term.

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