The Seattle Seahawks added a big physical wide receiver in the fourth round of the draft by selecting Chris Harper. Shortly after that, the Seahawks orchestrated a trade with the Detroit Lions to move up early into the fifth round to draft nose tackle Jesse Williams.
The Seahawks already have four solid receivers on their roster, but the addition of Harper is one that is met with much enthusiasm from this fan. Sidney Rice and Percy Harvin are the two most well-compensated receivers on the team but the fact of the matter is that Rice has only made it through two of his six years in the NFL by playing in every game while Harvin has had migrane issues each year in the league and has only played in 16 games himself one time in a four year career. Rice also has a contract that will skyrocket, which means he could potentially be expendable if he can’t stay healthy and put up big numbers for the team in the near future.
Golden Tate has been steadily improving throughout his career, but he will become a free agent after the upcoming season. With so much money already tied up into Rice and Harvin, it makes you wonder if Tate will get paid if he keeps improving. If he does warrant that payday he’ll eventually want, then it’s safe to wonder if it will be at the expense of keeping Rice for the very reasons mentioned above.
The final member of the talented top-four receivers for the Seahawks is Doug Baldwin. However, neither Baldwin, Tate, or Harvin are six feet tall and Pete Carroll likes most of his receivers to be big, just as his cornerbacks have made a name for themselves in NFL circles with their physical play. He has the corners to match his philosophy and with the drafting of Harper, he has added a bigger receiver that he covets.
Harper is 6-1 and weighs 229 pounds. He joins Rice as Seahawks receivers who can outmuscle defenders for the ball and has drawn comparisons to Anquan Boldin, from a physical standpoint, and being a former quarterback who transitioned to receiver while in college.
Williams was also not drafted to start immediately, as he will compete to back up nose tackle Brandon Mebane. However, as everyone knows, most defensive linemen do not play every snap of every game and Mebane is certainly no different. This means Williams may see action for the Seahawks sooner rather than later.
Williams anchored the Alabama defense this past season as their stout 323 pound nose tackle and helped lead the team to its second National Championship in as many years. The tattoo loving and face-war-paint wearing lineman is still relatively new to football, but has impressive potential. Many experts had him going much earlier in the draft but, luckily for the Seahawks, the defensive line depth was rather impressive this year.
The Seahawks came into the draft without any glaring weaknesses with respect to needing to select players who would come in and start from day one. However, they certainly needed to add some players to improve the quality of their depth now and who could eventually find themselves as quality starters in the NFL. By selecting Harper and Williams to start off today, they have done just that.