Seattle Seahawks Offseason State of the Union
The Seattle Seahawks are primed for another great season. They added some talent all throughout their roster, but they did especially well with using the draft to add depth.
Receiver is one position that got a big boost because of the draft, with Paul Richardson and Kevin Norwood providing a promising future at wideout. They should contribute right away even if it isn't in a big role, and they could find some openings with Percy Harvin, Sidney Rice and Doug Baldwin receiving the majority of the opposition's coverage.
Wide receiver is just one position that got helped in the offseason, but this team has gotten better as a whole since they won the championship at the conclusion of last season. This is a young team in a very advantageous position going forward, and the Seahawks should be contenders once again in 2014.
Seattle Is Deep at Wide Receiver
Seattle's receiving corps was clearly weakened after losing Golden Tate in free agency, but it bounced back hard with a strong draft.
They found themselves a couple of solid receivers in Paul Richardson and Kevin Norwood, who both bring something different to the table. Richardson is a speedster receiver who's good at getting separation from defenders, whereas Norwood is a taller receiver who can stretch the field and win jump balls.
These two guys are plenty talented, but they are joining a group of pass-catchers that is definitely rich in talent.
Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice are two of the most respected receivers in the league, and Doug Baldwin has emerged as a reliable No. 1 receiver who can be Russell Wilson's security blanket.
Overall, it's a deep group that is constructed of several receivers who could perform well if called upon.
The Legion of Boom Has Found Brandon Browner's Worthy Replacement
There's no doubt that Brandon Browner is one of the most impressive cornerbacks in the league, but Byron Maxwell has made his departure hurt a lot less. Maxwell was stellar in place of Browner in 2013 when he was suspended, and he showed much talent as a coverage guy—though he's pretty good at bringing down guys in space to prevent many yards after the catch.
He will be surrounded with elite talent in the secondary, and that will also help him perform well right away. He has two of the best safeties behind him in Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor, and those two are pretty good at bailing out the defense if a receiver sneaks past the first two levels.
Maxwell was simply great for Seattle during their championship run last season and will certainly be an integral part of their defense this year.
Late-Round Picks Will Contribute in 2014
Seattle has had a knack for bringing in quality talent in the later rounds of the draft, and it continued that trend this year. One of the names catching headlines throughout minicamp is Cassius Marsh, a former UCLA defender who is looking like a nice fit with the 'Hawks.
Marsh is a talented and versatile pass-rusher who may not be in a starting role when opening day rolls around but will surely have some quality playing time.
At the very least, he's a dependable player to rotate in and out of the lineup and could provide some relief for the veterans ahead of him on the depth chart, giving everyone a chance to stay more fresh throughout a game.
Kevin Pierre-Louis is another late-round defender who should contribute some in 2014. He joins an already-stacked group of linebackers, but his athleticism and knack for getting to the ball-carrier will earn him some time on the field.
The Issue at Right Tackle Has Been Resolved
It's not like the Seahawks had a bad right tackle last year, but Breno Giacomini is about as average as you can get. Now that he's gone, there's room for a new right tackle, and that man's name is Justin Britt.
While he hasn't officially won the job yet, he's been impressing thus far in minicamp and has the nasty flair to his game that fits right into Tom Cable's physical blocking scheme.
Seattle's running game was already rather efficient, but with Britt manning the right side and providing a more even front for Marshawn Lynch to run behind, his production could take off even more.
There's no telling right now, but we can at least infer that Britt will make a smooth adjustment to the NFL and become a reliable piece of their offensive line. There's always a chance he doesn't land the starting job and it ends up being Michael Bowie, who wouldn't be a bad choice either.
Bowie played pretty great for Seattle toward the end of last season, and he would definitely make for a nice right tackle, though I maintain that Britt will come out on top in the race for Seattle's right tackle spot.
Will the Absence of a Dominant Tight End Hinder This Offense?
The Seahawks offense is very strong at receiver and running back but does lack a bit at tight end. Zach Miller, their incumbent starter, was definitely serviceable in 2013, but he could've helped the team out much more had be performed a bit better.
Granted their offense is largely based around the run, but they have the pieces for an explosive offense. All that's missing is a seam-dominating tight end who could also contribute as a blocker.
They lightly pursued Jermichael Finley before finally giving up after he failed a team physical, and now they look like they'll settle with Miller for another year. As I said earlier, he's definitely serviceable, but he isn't the best option. Even so, not having a great tight end shouldn't hurt their offense.
They did just fine with Miller last year, and they'll be even better off now that they've strengthened their receiving corps. Miller may not be a game-changing player, but he does his job.