Hawks on the Clock


Nine new players will call Seattle their first NFL home this season

Trevor Butler, Sports Editor

After trading their 2021 first round pick away to the New York Jets in exchange for safety Jamal Adams, the Seahawks were back on the clock with the ninth pick in round one. Seattle had a tough 2021-2022 season, and the team had many needs. Though they needed gaps to be filled on both sides of the ball, they had plenty of draft capital after trading superstar QB Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos in exchange for QB Drew Lock, TE Noah Fant, DE Shelby Harris and a plethora of picks across 2022 and 2023.  

The Seahawks first pick was Charles Cross, an offensive tackle from Mississippi State. Coming in at 6 foot 5, 310 pounds, Cross was redshirted in his first year as a Bulldog before starting on the offensive line and being named first-team All-SEC in his redshirt freshman year. 

The ‘Hawks were next on the board at pick number 40 where they selected Boye Mafe, a linebacker out of the University of Minnesota. Mafe, like Cross, opted to redshirt his true freshman season. His redshirt season saw Mafe post 12 total tackles in six games played as Minnesota beat Georgia Tech to win the Quick Lane Bowl in 2018. Production numbers were much of the same in the 2019 season, as Mafe had 14 total tackles in seven games played, including three and a half tackles for loss as the Golden Gophers finished the year at 10-2 with a win over Auburn in the Outback Bowl. The shortened 2020 season saw Mafe really break out as a player, as he went for 27 total tackles, five and a half for loss, four and a half sacks, and two forced fumbles in only six games. Mafe’s senior season saw him named second team all-Big Ten after grabbing 34 total tackles, 10 for loss, seven sacks, and one forced fumble as the Gophers were victorious over West Virginia in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl to close out the year and his college career. 

Seattle was back on the clock one pick later, and they made the most of it taking 2021 Doak Walker award winner Kenneth Walker III. After two average years at Wake Forest, Walker decided to take his talents to East Lansing and join the Michigan State Spartans where he had a breakout 2021 season. Walker nearly TRIPLED his yards per season from his first two years, jumping from 579 in 2019 and 2020 to a whopping 1,636 yards in 2021. That all went along with Walker’s 19 total touchdowns which beat out his career total to that point.

Round three saw the Seahawks keep it local, taking Offensive Tackle Abraham Lucas from Washington State. Lucas grew up in Everett and played his high school ball for Archbishop Murphy. Lucas was named second team all PAC-12 three years in a row from 2018-2020 before finally breaking through to first team all PAC-12 in 2021. 

With their fourth-round pick, the Seahawks took Cincinnati cornerback Coby Bryant (no relation to Kobe.) Bryant had long been a cornerstone of Cincy’s lockdown core of defensive backs, partnering with superstar Ahmad “Sauce” Gardener. Bryant had a pedestrian freshman season but broke out in his sophomore year totaling 33 tackles and two interceptions. Bryant’s junior 2019 season saw his number climb to 54 tackles along with two and a half sacks and one interception. 2020 saw Bryant’s numbers decrease slightly in the short year, but they bounced right back in 2021 as Cincinnati became the first Group of Five team to make the College football playoff. Bryant was named first team all AAC in 2020 and 2021, as well as being named Jim Thorpe Award winner in ‘21 

In round five, the Seahawks took Tariq Woolen, a Wide Reciever turned Cornerback from UT-San Antonio. Woolen’s redshirt freshman and sophomore years were spent on the offensive side of the football before he converted to being a CB for his junior year. His final two seasons were spent tallying 60 tackles and two interceptions. 

With their final three picks, the Seahawks took Tyreke Smith, a linebacker from Ohio State, Bo Melton, a WR from Rutgers, and Dareke Young, a WR from Lenoir-Rhyne University.