Looking at the Seahawks’ draft needs: safety

With the NFL Scouting Combine underway in Indianapolis, it’s time to take a look at the Seahawks’ roster and see where they might be looking to add talent. Like any good team, the Seahawks will tell you they don’t draft strictly by need, but the current roster does influence how general manager John Schneider and his scouting department put together a draft board. Not every need will be filled in the draft—free agency is coming up in March—but the draft remains the single most important piece of the puzzle when it comes to building a roster, which is why last month’s Senior Bowl, this week’s combine and all the other elements of draft preparation are so important for the Seahawks and every team in the league.

Throughout this week, we’ll look at where the Seahawks stand at each position prior to the draft and free agency.

Safety

Level of need: Fairly low

Why: The Seahawks have two of the best safeties in the NFL in Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor, both of whom are locked up for multiple years, so safety hardly ranks among Seattle’s biggest needs, but that doesn’t mean they couldn’t stand to improve their depth there.

Jeron Johnson, the top backup at both safety positions and a core special teams player, is an unrestricted free agent, and it would be hard to blame him if he decided to move on and look for a chance to start somewhere. Beyond Johnson, the Seahawks have corner/safety hybrid DeShawn Shead, 2014 draft pick Eric Pinkins, who missed all of his rookie year with an injury, Steven Terrell and Dion Bailey. All of those young players have some upside, but none are proven commodities either, and considering that Thomas could miss the start of training camp while recovering from shoulder surgery, and that Chancellor battled multiple injuries last season and has had multiple surgeries in his career, the Seahawks could use more depth behind those two Pro Bowlers.

Top players available*:

1. Landon Collins, Alabama

2. Shaq Thompson, Washington

3. Derron Smith, Fresno State

4. Jaquiski Tartt, Samford

5. Ibraheim Campbell, Northwestern

*—According to the NFL Network’s Mike Mayock, who knows a lot more about this stuff than I do.

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