Unheralded 2024 Seahawks draft picks who can surge up the depth chart

Late-round picks could be late-round steals.
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The Seattle Seahawks ended up with eight picks in the 2024 NFL draft after pulling off one trade. Most of Seattle's choices came on Day 3 with three picks in the sixth round alone. Since 2010, general manager John Schneider has found some gems in rounds five and seven so hopefully, round six will be magic for Seattle this year.

12s should assume that first-round pick Byron Murphy II is going to start at defensive tackle. Third-round choice Christian Haynes could start right away as well along the offensive line. Seattle's third pick, linebacker Tyrice Knight, does not have as easy of path to start at inside linebacker, at least not this coming season.

A few Day 3 picks might also find themselves racing up the depth chart. They were mostly chosen for need and could be late-round steals. The three players that follow might find themselves close to starting midway through this coming season.

Three late-round picks that could charge up the Seattle Seahawks depth chart

Sataoa Laumea, offensive lineman, Utah - Sixth round

Laumea might be a better pro than he was in college. He lacks elite athleticism but he has good quickness, has a nasty streak, and is strong. Moving to the interior of the offensive line is probably going to be a much better fit for him than tackle was in college. He also got a lot of experience at Utah starting 44 games.

Laumea also seems to have the perfect attitude as a rookie. He said after being chosen by the Seahawks that he has "an opportunity to prove to everybody who didn't draft me wrong, and prove you guys right." That is exactly what a coach wants to hear from a new guy joining the team.

The reason he could leap up the depth chart is that Seattle still has a relatively thin offensive line. Laken Tomlinson will probably start at left guard, but he was only signed to a one-year deal. Second-year pro Anthony Bradford was not very good in 2023 and he could be overtaken by third-round draft pick Christian Haynes as a starter. Should something happen to Tomlinson, Haynes might slide over to the left side and Laumea could take his spot at right guard.

D.J. James, cornerback, Auburn - Sixth round

That Seattle chose not one but two cornerbacks, both from Auburn, in the 2024 draft means the team is not completely sold on any other corner other than Devon Witherspoon. The expectation is that Witherspoon stays in the slot as his versatility is extremely unique and Mike Macdonald could find lots of ways to use him.

The issue is if Riq Woolen does not return to his 2022 form that means Seattle might want to go with Tre Brown and Mike Jackson being their outside corners. Brown is a little short and struggles against big receivers many times. James is a bit taller - he is 6-foot - and if he gains some weight he could be stronger physically to match up against receivers Brown cannot.

In other words, James could conceivably take over an outside spot even though he lacks long speed. He still gets in the right positions for coverage, however. His technique might be good enough to land him a starting gig at some point in 2024.

AJ Barner, tight end, Michigan - Fourth round

Trying to get a read on Barner is a bit difficult simply because Michigan did not throw the ball much. Barner was mostly a blocker, but he was also a very good one. He also has good size at 6'6" and 250 pounds. He could gain another 10 pounds or so and not have any concerns. The expectation should be that he is a player akin to Will Dissly.

Seattle also only has one real passer catcher currently at tight end. Noah Fant is good and should see improved production this coming season. Pharaoh Brown is really only a blocker. Dissly exceeded expectations quite a bit with his ability to catch passes early in his career and Barner could too. In fact, if Seattle uses a lot of two tight end sets, Barner should see a lot of reps.

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