One young Seattle Seahawks player tipped to breakout in 2024

Seattle has one of the younger rosters in the NFL and one of the young players is poised to break out, according to Pro Football Focus.
Seattle Seahawks practice
Seattle Seahawks practice / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

The Seattle Seahawks have the seventh-youngest roster in the NFL. The team has added much of that talent in the last three drafts. Still, Seattle has only gone 9-8 in each of the past two seasons. The talent is there, but the high-end success is not. At least, not yet.

Perhaps the young talent was limited by the direction of the team recently. There will be no excuses for that moving forward. Seattle relieved Pete Carroll of his coaching duties this offseason and replaced him with Mike Macdonald. The offensive and defensive coordinators are different as well. But the coaches are just promotions from the same Seattle system; the design of the entire team will be new.

This should draw out the potential that the young players have. If they are put in better situations to succeed, they should, in fact, be more successful. This is especially true in terms of the defense. Most of the skill position players on offense have already had good years, including DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. Most of the young guys on defense? Not so much.

Boye Mafe predicted by Pro Football Focus to break our for the Seattle Seahawks in 2024

Pro Football Focus believes this is going to change for one young defensive player, though. In their list of which players they expect to "break out" in 2024 is Seattle edge rusher Boye Mafe. Mafe was on the verge of being great last year, but he faded in the second half of the season.

In 2023, Mafe had 9 sacks and 58 total pressures. He also had 29 run stuffs. The problem is that after Week 10, Mafe only had one game with a sack or a tackle for loss. He had two sacks and two tackles for loss in Week 16 against the Tennessee Titans. In other words, Mafe was not at all disruptive in the second half of the season.

Part of the issue was that Mafe was not able to fix going from extremely productive - he had a sack in every game between Weeks 3 and 10 - to know how to adjust once offenses adjusted to him. He obviously had no clear communication with former defensive coordinator Clint Hurtt or former head coach Carroll on how to correct his problems. Still, Mafe showed he is physically capable of greatness.

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The good news for Mafe is that he will have better direction with Mike Macdonald being in charge of the defense. The edge rusher had a pressure rate of 13.1 percent in 2023. Earlier in the season, that number was higher and among the best in the league. Macdonald might use Mafe in the same way he did Jadeveon Clowney last season, in terms of alignments along the defensive front, when Clowney and Macdonald were with the Baltimore Ravens.

Clowney had a pressure rate of 15.4 percent and a pass-rush win rate of 16.8 percent. Should Mafe get close to those numbers, and, again, he is skilled enough to do so, he could match Clowney's 2023 numbers of 11 sacks and 78 total pressures.

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