Seattle Seahawks defensive end L.J. Collier runs a drill during NFL football rookie minicamp, Friday, May 3, 2019, in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Seattle Seahawks defensive end L.J. Collier runs a drill during NFL football rookie minicamp, Friday, May 3, 2019, in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

POLL RESULTS: Pass rush is the Seahawks’ top concern

More than half the voters labeled the pass rush as Seattle’s biggest issue heading into training camp.

It seems Seattle Seahawks fans are concerned about the pass rush.

The Seahawks open training camp Thursday when they conduct their first practice at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center in Renton, and they do so with a number of questions surrounding the team. Therefore, this week’s Seattle Sidelines poll asked readers which issue they thought was the biggest facing Seattle entering training camp. Here’s how you voted:


Add it all up and the pass rush is by far the biggest concern according to the voters, receiving 54 percent of the vote. Star linebacker Bobby Wagner’s contract situation came in a distant second at 23 percent, and receiver production received 14 percent. Nine percent of the voters said it was something else.

It’s understandable why Seahawks fans would be concerned about the pass rush. Seattle had 43 sacks last season, which tied for 11th in the NFL, so a solid total. However, a team-high 13 of those came from defensive end Frank Clark, who was traded to Kansas City during the offseason in a cost-saving move. So there are questions about what kind of pass rush Seattle will be able to generate off the edge this season without Clark leading the way.

Then on Tuesday the Seahawks’ pass rush took another hit when defensive tackle Jarran Reed was suspended six games by the NFL for violating the league’s personal conduct policy, stemming from an assault investigation in Bellevue in April of 2017. Reed had a tremendous season as an interior pass rusher in 2018, recording 10.5 sacks to finish second on the team. His absence for the start of the season is a big blow, and it’s unlikely the addition of veteran Earl Mitchell on Wednesday as a stopgap measure will fill the void.

On a positive note, reports Wednesday suggest defensive end Ezekiel Ansah, signed as a free agent during the offseason, is healthy enough to participate in training camp. Ansah was recovering from shoulder surgery to repair an injury that limited him to seven games last season. The former Detroit Lion had 14.5 sacks as he made the Pro Bowl in 2015, then recorded 12 sacks in 2017, so he has a track record of being able to get to the passer.

And the Seahawks are going to need Ansah to contribute. With Clark gone and Reed out, Seattle’s leading returning sack men from last season are Quinton Jefferson and Jacob Martin with three apiece. It’s hoped the team’s first-round draft pick, defensive end L.J. Collier, will help the pass rush, but he was more of an all-down defensive end rather than a pass-rush specialist at TCU.

All of which explains why the pass rush is at the forefront of Seahawks fans’ concerns.

Talk to us

More in Sports

Lambright left lasting legacy in Snohomish County and beyond

The Everett High School graduate and UW football coaching legend passed away recently at age 77.

On this day in 1989: Griffey Jr. doubles in 1st MLB at-bat

Read an original game story from April 4, 1989, when the Mariners Hall-of-Famer made his debut.

Storm basketball put on hold as WNBA delays start of season

Seattle had been slated to play eight games in Everett beginning in August.

Ifedi’s deal with Bears validates Seahawks fans’ concerns

The former Seattle starter’s veteran-minimum deal shows others were worried about his inconsistent play.

WIAA sets new deadline for spring sports championships

The organization says if school returns by May 4 it will still hold “some sort of culminating event.”

The Seattle Mariners’ Ken Griffey Jr. smiles from beneath a pile of teammates who mobbed him after he scored the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning of Game 5 of the American League Division Series against the New York Yankees on Oct. 8, 1995, at the Kingdome. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)
POLL RESULTS: 1995 is the season for positive M’s memories

More than two-thirds of voters said their best Mariners memories come from Seattle’s first playoff run.

Mariners’ Gonzales on no opening day: ‘It’s definitely weird’

The Seattle starter says he’s encouraged by MLB’s coronavirus deal, but hopes pitchers are protected.

Kobe headlines star-studded Basketball Hall of Fame Class

Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and WNBA great Tamika Catchings joined Bryant as first-ballot selections.

UW coach Lake still hopeful for football in fall

‘I think we are going to have a season and I think it’s going to be a memorable one,’ the new coach says.

UW’s Stewart declares for NBA draft

The freshman sensation led the Huskies in scoring, rebounding and blocks in his only season at UW.

Wimbledon canceled for 1st time since WWII

The virus forces the cancellation of the tennis event for the first time for any reason other than war.

Seahawks bring back Mayowa to help pass rush

A member of Seattle’s 2013 Super Bowl team, the 28-year-old had seven sacks last season for the Raiders.