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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Tim Weaver

Seahawks go all-defense in this 2024 NFL mock draft

The Seahawks may have lost a huge game on Thursday night, but we saw a whole lot to like on the field. The Cowboys are one of the most well-rounded teams in the NFL this season and a serious Super Bowl contender, and Seattle took them all the way down to the wire. Most encouraging was the performance by veteran quarterback Geno Smith, who had the best game of his career despite facing a near-constant onslaught by the Dallas pass rush. Some people believe Smith’s awesome outing secured himself the QB1 job, at least at the outset of next season.

We’re not quite there yet, but what this game does definitively prove is that these Seahawks can hang with the best teams in the league. However, they’re going to need to make some adjustments before they start actually beating opponents on that level. Most of those changes may need to be schematic in nature, because it’s hard to find places on this roster outside of the trenches that truly need to be upgraded. We can’t mock a new front office or coaching staff, so we have to do the best we can projecting how to get the right kind of help in next year’s draft.

Considering that they just dropped 35 points on a top-five defense that had their pass rush firing on all cylinders, we decided that their offensive personnel is perfectly fine where it is. Instead, we focused this mock draft entirely on defense. Here’s how it went down.

Pick No. 22: Alabama EDGE Dallas Turner

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

One thing these heavyweights all have in common (49ers, Cowboys, Eagles, Ravens) is they all have a better pass rush than Seattle. So, if they can’t stop a group like the one they faced on TNF from getting to their quarterback, they might as well focus on being able to do the same thing to their opponents. That’ll mean upgrading the edge rush rotation more than anything else. To begin the mock we picked Alabama’s star outside linebacker Dallas Turner (6-foot-4, 245 pound), who’s totaled 20.5 sacks and 30.5 tackles for a loss in just 36 games.

Pick No. 76: Michigan S Rod Moore

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Seahawks are spending far more money than any other team at the safety position, but the results have been disappointing this year. Jamal Adams is a great pass rusher, Quandre Diggs is a ball-hawk and Julian Love is an excellent tackler, but none of them are playing particularly great in coverage this season. Moore (6-foot-0, 173 pounds) might be able to help. He has posted six interceptions and five pass breakups in the last 23 games for Michigan.

Pick No. 86: Texas DL Byron Murphy II

Aaron E. Martinez/American-Statesman / USA TODAY NETWORK

The interior rotation for the Seahawks is pretty strong, especially since they added Leonard Williams to the mix. However, it is on the older side, and they’ll want to add some fresh blood to come up with Cameron Young and Mike Morris. The one prospect that could upgrade the interior pass rush the most is Murphy (6-foot-1, 297 pounds), who has the highest pass rush grade in the nation at his position (91.4). This year he’s put up five sacks and eight tackles for a loss in 10 games for Texas.

Pick No. 122: Ohio State LB Tommy Eichenberg

Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

Linebacker isn’t a need right now, especially with both Bobby Wagner and Jordyn Brooks having strong years. However, the Seahawks need to develop the depth behind them. Eichenberg (6-foot-2, 235 pounds) could help round out the bottom end of the rotation which currently features Devin Bush and Nick Bellore.

Pick No. 159: Auburn S Jaylin Simpson


The Seahawks roll the dice on another potential upgrade in coverage at safety, here. Simpson (6-foot-1, 175 pounds) has the fifth-highest coverage grade at the position and has ball skills to spare, posting seven interceptions and 14 pass breakups over the last three seasons.

Pick No. 200: Texas Tech EDGE Steve Linton

Annie Rice/Avalanche-Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

To catch up with the other NFC heavyweights in the trenches, the Seahawks are going to have to hit on some sleeper picks to upgrade their front seven. Linton (6-foot-5, 235 pounds) certainly qualifies. While his traditional numbers don’t exactly pop out – he has eight sacks over the last three seasons – his pass rush grade is just a fraction lower than Washington’s Bralen Trice.

Pick No. 243: Alabama DL Tim Smith

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

We wrapped the mock draft by taking a flyer on another prospect for the interior defensive line – which is where the best NFL organizations are focusing much of their efforts. Smith (6-foot-4, 302 pounds) will come with a wealth of experience for a rookie, having played 49 games at the college level. He’s posted 4.5 sacks and 11 tackles for a loss in that time.

Draft grades

via PFF
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