Pick-by-pick analysis of the Seahawks 2020 NFL Draft Class

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Joe Fann
·8 min read
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The Seattle Seahawks 2020 draft class is complete. John Schneider and Pete Carroll executed a trio of trades and made eight total selections.

Below is a breakdown of all eight picks in terms of who the players are, their best-case scenarios, who else on the roster is impacted and the biggest question regarding each prospect.

Round 1 (28th overall) – Jordyn Brooks, LB, Texas Tech

The player: Brooks is a run-and-hit linebacker who excels against the run. He's an explosive athlete who his college coach said could be "the next Bobby Wagner." Brooks was an All-Conference player in the Big-12 for all four of his collegiate seasons. In 2019, he posted 108 tackles, 20 tackles for loss and 3.0 sacks.

Best-case scenario: Seattle is hoping that Brooks is the long-term answer at WILL linebacker. K.J. Wright is entering the final year of his contract.

Who it impacts on the roster: This isn't great news for Cody Barton or Ben Burr-Kirven, both of whom were 2019 draft choices. Barton may be able to stick at SAM linebacker and find a home there. Burr-Kirven projects to remain a backup, which was probably expected to begin with.

Biggest question: Can he cover? Brooks is a fantastic athlete, but there are question marks regarding his coverage skills. John Schneider was confident that he's got the foot quickness and ball skills to improve in that area.

Round 2 (48th overall) – Darrell Taylor, EDGE, Tennessee

The player: Taylor is another freak athlete who had impressive production in college with 16.5 combined sacks over the last two seasons. At 6-foot-4, 267 pounds, he'll look good getting off the bus.

Best-case scenario: Seattle was desperate for an edge rusher, and they traded up to get Taylor in the hopes that he can be the stud they're looking for. John Schneider said the Seahawks viewed Taylor as one of the top pass rushers in this year's class and that he was in consideration for Seattle in the first round.

Who it impacts on the roster: Given the lack of top-level pass rushers on the roster, this doesn't really impact anybody. Bruce Irvin, Rasheem Green, Shaquem Griffin and Benson Mayowa should all remain part of the rotation. Instead, this could end any remaining hope that Jadeveon Clowney might return to Seattle in 2020.

Biggest question: Taylor's skills as a pass rusher are largely seen as very raw. Lance Zierlein said that Taylor has "five-star tools but a three-star skill set" at this point. Pete Carroll downplayed that notion and believes Taylor is ready to be an instant contributor.

Round 3 (69th overall) – Damien Lewis, G, LSU

The player: A "grown man" at 6-foot-2 and 327 pounds who is coming off of a title-winning season with LSU. He's seen as a mover in the running game, which obviously helped sell the Seahawks on their new right guard.

Best-case scenario: Carroll said that Lewis will compete with D.J. Fluker to start at right guard immediately. He should be Seattle's long-term answer at that spot.

Who it impacts on the roster: Fluker could be cut if he loses the competition to Lewis. Seattle would save $3.7 million by cutting the veteran guard. Fringe guards like Jamarco Jones, Jordan Simmons, Phil Haynes and others are also going to have a harder time earning a roster spot in 2020. The good news for them is that the Seahawks will likely keep an extra interior offensive lineman this season now that active rosters are expanded to 55 players under the new CBA.

Biggest question: Lewis is a better run blocker than pass blocker, but he's not inept as a pass protector. This appears to be a pretty safe pick.

Round 4 (133rd overall) – Colby Parkinson, TE, Stanford

The player: Parkinson is a pass-catching tight end who, at 6-foot-7, should be a fantastic red zone target for Russell Wilson. He caught 48 passes for 589 yards and one touchdown in 2019.

Best-case scenario: Parkinson and Will Dissly could make for a formidable tight end pairing starting in 2021 as Greg Olsen will likely be in Seattle for just one year.

Who it impacts on the roster: Seattle now has six tight ends on the roster. Justin Johnson figures to be a camp body, but now it's hard to imagine both Luke Willson and Jacob Hollister making the team. It'll likely be one or the other with Parkinson, Dissly and Olsen being locks.

Biggest question: Parkinson will need to add some strength to make sure his blocking is up to par. He said he's currently at 254 pounds and wants to get to a playing weight of 260.

Round 4 (144th overall) – DeeJay Dallas, RB, Miami

The player: Dallas was a high school quarterback-turned-wide receiver-turned running back. His production at Miami was modest with 693 rushing yards and eight touchdowns in 2019. He's shown flashes of NFL traits and could develop into a dependable back at the professional level.

Best-case scenario: Dallas initially projects to be a change-of-pace back who could eventually take on a lead role in a running back by committee.

Who it impacts on the roster: Seattle is so thin at running back that there isn't a huge ripple effect because of this pick. Dallas will compete with college teammate Travis Homer for reps behind Chris Carson until Rashaad Penny (knee) is ready to return.

Biggest question: Dallas doesn't seem to be a three-down back, which isn't a huge deal in today's NFL, but it doesn't seem like he'll ever take on a workhorse-type role.

Round 5 (148th overall) – Alton Robinson, DE, Syracuse

The player: Robinson has rare upside for an edge player drafted in the fifth round. He posted 19 career sacks and 32 tackles for loss in three seasons for the Orange. He's "twitched up" according to Lance Zierlein with "exciting potential."

Best-case scenario: It would be an absolute home run if Seattle came away from this draft with its bookend pass rushers of the future in Robinson and Taylor.

Who it impacts on the roster: Robinson and Green figure to be the young pass rushers with the most upside. Assuming Taylor is the alpha, those two might be the ones fighting for edge rep on the other side. Green's versatility to play on the inside in sub should help keep his role fairly safe. Griffin's role in the rotation could be in danger depending on how quickly Robinson can get up to speed and earn reps on gameday.

Biggest question: Robinson had a pair of felony robbery charges that stemmed from an "immature relationship" with an ex-girlfriend, as the defensive lineman put it. He told reporters that he learned from his mistakes and called it an embarrassing situation. The charges were ultimately dropped but they remained a part of his pre-draft storyline. Seattle is clearly confident that any character red flags are a thing of the past.

Round 6 (214th overall) – Freddie Swain, WR, Florida

The player: Swain has some intriguing traits as a slot receiver and took steps forward as a receiver in 2019 with 38 receptions for 517 yards and seven touchdowns. He also has experience as a punt returner with 308 career punt return yards and one touchdown. Mel Kiper praised his toughness over the middle of the field and his ability to create separation underneath.

Best-case scenario: Swain could potentially evolve into a dependable slot receiver while also serving as Seattle's starting punt returner. The Seahawks would ideally like to get No. 1 wideout Tyler Lockett out of his return duties, but they can't do that until there's a trustworthy option.

Who it impact on the roster: John Ursua and David Moore now have extra competition for roster spots, but that was to be expected given the depth of this year's receiver class. If anything, this is good news for them as Seattle waited until the sixth round to take a wideout.

Biggest question: Lance Zierlein called Swain a "freestyle route runner," which suggests his route tree lacks polish and will need refinement. That is a common theme in Seattle's draft class, but there's no shortage on potential.

Round 7 (251st overall) – Stephen Sullivan, WR, LSU

The player: Sullivan is a wide receiver-turned-tight end-now turned wide receiver once again. Seattle shared that the LSU product will once again be a wideout. He's a 6-foot-5, 250-pound athlete who had limited production in college. He ran a 4.66-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine.

Best-cases scenario: Assuming he stays at wide receiver, Sullivan could end up being as productive as a big-slot guy, capable of stretching defenses up the seams.

Who it impacts on the roster: Seattle traded a 2021 sixth-rounder in order to get Sullivan, indicating they didn't want to risk losing him in undrafted free agency. As a "tweener," he could potentially steal a roster spot from a wide receiver or a tight end.

Biggest question: What is Sullivan's true ceiling? His flashes of production have been limited, and Seattle is again betting on itself to tap into a skill set that no coaching staff has been able to do thus far. That said, the size and athleticism provides intriguing clay to mold.

Pick-by-pick analysis of the Seahawks 2020 NFL Draft Class originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest