The Seahawks kicked off free agency by extending 2022 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Geno Smith. After spending two seasons away, defensive end Jarran Reed signed to return to Seattle, the team that drafted him in the second-round of the 2016 draft. Bolstering the pass rush, the team brought in defensive end Dre’Mont Jones – who has three-consecutive seasons of five-plus sacks. Podell breaks down why these moves are putting Seattle on the right track to become a playoff contender.
Key additions: DL Dre’Mont Jones (Broncos), DL Jarran Reed (Packers)
Key re-signings: QB Geno Smith
The Broncos are the gift that keeps on giving for the Seahawks. Dumping quarterback Russell Wilson on them in exchange for five draft picks and three players brought the Pete Carroll Era back to life in Seattle as they got unprecedented, immediate impact from their 2022 rookie draft class. Seattle first-year players started 70 games as a group in 2022, tied for the most by any playoff team since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, along with the 2018 Colts.
Seattle also has the fifth overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft thanks to Wilson’s first-year flameout at Mile High Stadium, allowing them to potentially grab a quarterback of the future to learn under Geno Smith, who played like a top-five quarterback in 2022 en route to a three-year](three-year”>https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/nfl-free-agency-2023-geno-smith-re-signs-with-seahawks-on-multiyear-contract-with-40m-guaranteed-per-report/”>three-year)), $75 million extension this offseason. That contract puts the Seahawks in position to have some stability at the position while not sacrificing flexibility either. However, they could also just select one of the draft’s top three draft prospects between Alabama’s Will Anderson Jr, Georgia’s Jalen Carter, or Texas Tech’s Tyree Wilson. If the Arizona Cardinals trade down from their third overall pick spot with a quarterback-hungry team, the Seahawks could have their pick of any of those three.
Not to mention Seattle also took another key asset from the Broncos in defensive end Dre’Mont Jones, whom they signed on a three-year deal for $51.5 million on Monday, according to NFL Media. The 26-year-old has recorded a minimum of 5.5 sacks and seven tackles for loss in every season since 2020 after shifting to the defensive end spot from defensive tackle after his rookie year in 2019. Last season, Jones had a career year with 6.5 sacks and nine tackles for loss. The Seahawks are a good draft away from becoming a long-term contender in the NFC.
Read more on Podell’s thoughts of the league-wide acquisitions through the first official week of free agency here.