Riq Woolen will reclaim his place among the league's elite
It's fair to say that no player on the Seahawks had a more puzzling season than Riq Woolen. So, I'll say it: no one had a - yeah, you know. Woolen dropped 40 percent of the letters in his first name at the season's start and saw a similar drop in his production. In truth, Woolen didn't have as severe a drop as one would think at first glance. Yes, his interceptions dropped a lot, from six in 2022 to just two last year. He dropped three other potential picks, so at least he was in a position to make plays,
Depending on your source material, Riq Woolen improved some aspects of his game last year. Again, this points to the not-so-exact assignment of statistics in the NFL. According to PFF (subscription required, natch), Woolen allowed five TDs in 2022 and 3 last year. Not so fast, says pro-football-reference.
According to their stats, Riq allowed just 3 scores in 2022 and 4 in 2023. The free site saw him with a much better rookie season, and it wasn't close. PFR assigned Woolen a spectacular passer rating allowed of just 48.7 in 2022, then 79.8 last year. PFF gave him a much more pedestrian 72.1 as a rookie and 82.3 in 2023. Both sites agree that his tackling saw a big decline, as any 12 could tell you.
Regardless of how much his play declined, there's no doubt that his game did suffer in 2022. I'm sure that he wishes he could have a re-do of 2023. He played with much less aggression last year. As we've heard from Mike Macdonald, that is not going to be acceptable in 2024. With a full offseason after his 2023 minicamp injury, we can expect number 27 to bounce back with his best year yet.