The Seattle Seahawks franchise has become a very, very popular destination for players not selected in the NFL Draft. But that’s just what happens when a team wins the Super Bowl and have numerous starters who were either late-round picks or who went undrafted.
Head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider have demonstrated that they are going to put their best players on the field, no matter if they were a first-round pick or an undrafted free agent. Just look at last year’s Super Bowl team. Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse, two undrafted free agents, caught huge touchdown passes during the blowout win over the Denver Broncos.
Alvin Bailey, another undrafted free agent, saw a lot of playing time on the offensive line during the team’s run through the playoffs. Carroll and Schneider even put together a pamphlet before the 2014 NFL Draft that was filled with statistics stating that the Seahawks lead the league in giving undrafted free agents a shot at making the roster.
“Since we got here in 2010, we lead the league in rookie free agents in playing time,” Schneider told the Seattle Times. “That’s a tribute to bringing guys in and having open competition where they are not looking at names on the back.”
The Seahawks currently have eight players who came to the team as undrafted free agents on their roster and they’ve kept at least two in each of the past three years.
The Seattle Seahawks completed the team’s three-day rookie minicamp on Sunday, which also included several undrafted free agents. Following the mini-camp, Carroll singled out several of the team’s draft picks, along with a couple free-agent signees.
Here is a list of the players that Carroll talked about during the coach’s press conference Sunday following the three-day camp:
Cassius Marsh, defensive end, fourth-round pick from UCLA: “He was by far the most active guy out there. He came in here in great shape and was really flying the whole time. He never showed any signs at all of wearing down. He’s very active and a very instinctive football player. It’s pretty exciting. The role that we’ve talked about for him to be kind of like Michael Bennett, it looks like that might have a chance.”
Keith Price, quarterback, free-agent signee from Washington: “He looks like he could help us. He did really well. It was like he’s been around longer than he has. He’s very comfortable in the pocket and very natural quarterback. He moved very well. He made a lot of big throws and threw the ball downfield really well.”
Garry Gilliam, offensive lineman, free-agent signee from Penn State: “He’s an extraordinary athlete. He was a tight end [earlier in his career] and has really good mobility and quickness. He’s well balanced. He did very well [at left tackle Sunday] and that’s a real plus for us. We need more competition there.”
Justin Britt, offensive lineman, second-round pick from Missouri: “I think he will jump right into the competition [at right tackle] just like we have planned and be right there with Michael [Bowie] battling it out. He picked everything up and is very well prepared technique-wise. He moves well off the line. It’s going to take some time, but he won’t have any trouble learning. He’s a real serious, mature kid.”
Kiero Small, fullback, seventh-round pick from Arkansas: “He’s a legit fullback and loves the position. He’s a tough guy and he can catch the ball really well. Hopefully, he will be a real factor on special teams, as well.”
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