The wait is over and the 2023 NFL draft has arrived. Few fanbases have more to be excited about than the Seattle Seahawks, who hold 10 total picks and more draft capital than any other team that made the playoffs last season. With the right moves, this draft class could send them back into serious Super Bowl contender territory.
The team holds 10 picks going into Day 1, so here are 10 questions for Seattle’s decision-makers heading into the draft.
To QB or not to QB?
The most-important question facing this franchise is what to do with their No. 5 overall pick. Throughout draft season the debate has been between the top-two defensive linemen in the class and one of the best quarterback prospects. Heading in to draft day, all signs point to Georgia DT Jalen Carter being the pick. However, if Florida QB Anthony Richardson is still on the board then all bets are off.
Is Bijan Robinson worth getting stupid over?
Of course the Seahawks seem to delight in upending our expectations and few teams are harder to predict during the draft. If they throw a curveball with that first pick fans shouldn’t be shocked if it comes in the form of a running back. The analytics say it’s nuts to pick one this early, but Bijan Robinson from Texas is a unicorn of a running back prospect – one that’s actually worth a top-10 overall pick. If coach Pete Carroll agrees, Robinson alone could turn a good offense into a great one.
Who is the right WR3 prospect for Seattle?
Wide receiver is one of several important positions that should be on the menu. Specifically, they need a No. 3 option to take some of the load off DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. While they’re great at what they do, Seattle needs to find something different for their WR3 guy – specifically, they need better production from the slot and more yards after the catch. Whoever can fits that missing puzzle piece best should be the pick.
Is there room for an upgrade at TE?
On paper Seattle looks like it does not need more help at tight end with three solid options on the roster. However, this is a deep tight end class and two of them are going to become free agents next year. There’s a lot of items to check off their list, but they have to seriously consider taking advantage of the depth at this spot and trying to find an upgrade over Will Dissly – especially as a pass-catching option.
Which C prospect is the best in pass protection?
Center is another major point of business that will have to be addressed. Evan Brown is only on a one-year deal and the Seahawks have had a hell of a time trying to find a quality long-term starter ever since they foolishly traded Max Unger to the Saints as part of the Jimmy Graham deal. Most of all they have to stop the trend of adding poor pass protectors at this spot. Interior pass blocking was a critical weakness late in the season, so they should be looking for the best pass protector they can find to lead their new-look offensive line into the future.
How long can they wait for an EDGE?
Edge is the one position we’re 100% sure Seattle will be drafting at some point. They held more official meetings with edge prospects than any other position and it’s the second-deepest spot in this class behind cornerback. It’s also one of their biggest roster needs. The question is how long can they wait to find a sure thing to pair with Uchenna Nwosu. It’s tough to see them holding off past Round 4, but if they can it’ll give them a great chance to hit their other areas of need first.
Which NT defends the run best?
Perhaps the most-critical positional need heading into this class is nose tackle, where there’s a massive Al Woods-shaped hole in the middle of their defensive line. Here Seattle has to be extra careful – because there’s a massive gap between the top three nose tackle prospects in this class – namely Michigan’s Mazi Smith, Wisconsin’s Keeanu Benton and Baylor’s Siaki Ika and the rest of the field. Which of those three can help their issues against the run the most should be very high on their board.
Is there a future Bobby Wagner in this LB class?
Linebacker is another weak position group, even after Bobby Wagner’s return. He and Devin Bush and Jordyn Brooks are all scheduled to become free agents in 2024, making drafting one now a necessity. The Seahawks have to pick very carefully here, as well. If their preferred linebacker prospect is ready to start away that’s great, but they should be focused on somebody who has the potential to lead this defense some day down the line.
When's the right time to target a CB?
Pete Carroll has had tremendous success finding quality cornerbacks late in the draft, netting two superstars in the fifth round with Richard Sherman and Tariq Woolen. The incredible depth of this cornerback group gives Seattle another chance to try to find another Day 3 gem. If they can hold off and target somebody like Northwestern’s Cameron Mitchell, they’ll still get an excellent potential long-term starter while freeing themselves up to hit other spots first.
Is S still a priority?
It may not seem like a need, but you can never rule out these Seahawks from investing more resrouces at the safety position. The arrival of Julian Love gives them a superb 1-2-3 along with Jamal Adams and Quandre Diggs. However, the exit of Ryan Neal has sapped their depth. Likely they will have to trade down a couple times to find room, but if they do there should be room for another young safety in this group.