If a few unexpectedly good performances made projecting the Seattle Seahawks’ 53-man roster difficult after Week 1 of the preseason, injuries and a few staggers Sunday at Minnesota only added to the challenge.
But, projecting is what we do here. So, here’s our best guess at putting it all together following Sunday’s 25-19 loss to the Vikings.
Keep: Russell Wilson, Geno Smith.
Cut: Paxton Lynch, J.T. Barrett
Comment: Lynch didn’t have a ton of help against the Vikings, but also missed a few things that were there. I had the team keeping Smith after last week and nothing happened to change my mind. Smith didn’t play against the Vikings, but it sounds like he’ll be back for Saturday’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers. This week could allow Smith to solidify the job — or leave it that much more open for the final week of the preseason, when Lynch and Smith probably will get all the snaps. Barrett isn’t a factor yet.
Keep: Chris Carson, Rashaad Penny, Bo Scarbrough, Nick Bellore, Travis Homer.
Cut: C.J. Prosise, J.D. McKissic, Xavier Turner.
Comment: I’m adding Homer this week after he got healthy and showed a few things late in the game against the Vikings. For now, he may be the leader in the race for the third-down/two-minute back spot with the inability of Prosise and McKissic to get healthy. Scarbrough didn’t play against the Vikings. But he was off to a nice start early in the Denver game and for now, I’m keeping him.
Keep: Tyler Lockett, DK Metcalf, Gary Jennings, David Moore, Jaron Brown.
Cut: Jazz Ferguson, Amara Darboh, John Ursua, Terry Wright, Malik Turner, Keenan Reynolds.
Comment: I’m back to five receivers, cutting Ferguson this week after he struggled against the Vikings — just two receptions on seven targets, including a drop and a fumble after one of his catches. And I’m also going with the idea that Ferguson, Ursua and Wright could all make it through to the practice squad. In fact, the rotation Sunday indicated that if there were to be a sixth receiver kept, it would be Turner. The one big complication here is Metcalf’s health. Head coach Pete Carroll said there’s a chance Metcalf, who is out with a knee injury, could be ready for Week 1. But if not, the Seahawks will have to think about how they put the roster together to make sure they have enough weapons for Wilson.
Keep: Will Dissly, Nick Vannett, Jacob Hollister.
Cut: Ed Dickson, Jackson Harris, Wes Saxton.
Comment: No change here, though much will depend on Dickson’s health. Seattle can save some money by releasing him. But if he’s healthy — and given some of the issues at other spots — they may want to keep a proven playmaker.
Keep: Duane Brown, D.J. Fluker, Justin Britt, Mike Iupati, Germain Ifedi, George Fant, Ethan Pocic, Jamarco Jones, Joey Hunt.
Cut: Marcus Martin, Demetrius Knox, Jordan Roos, Elijah Nkansah, Jordan Simmons.
Physically unable to perform (PUP) list: Phil Haynes.
Comment: Here’s another position where health issues are complicating matters. Jones has had trouble staying healthy and didn’t play against the Vikings, it’s unclear exactly when Fant will return and Iupati remains sidelined with a calf issue after already battling a nagging foot injury. The health issues are one reason I’m again keeping nine — they are going to need to know they have at least seven healthy bodies for the season opener. But it won’t be a surprise if the Seahawks try to add some depth here.
Keep: Ezekiel Ansah, L.J. Collier, Poona Ford, Al Woods, Quinton Jefferson, Rasheem Green, Cassius Marsh, Bryan Mone, Branden Jackson, Jacob Martin, Barkevious Mingo.
Cut: Jamie Meder, Nazair Jones, Jay-Tee Tiuli, Earl Mitchell.
Suspended list: Jarran Reed.
PUP list: Demarcus Christmas.
Comment: The one switch this week is keeping Bryan Mone and cutting veteran Earl Mitchell. Mone weighs roughly 350 pounds and gives the Seahawks a unique size dimension that Carroll spoke enthusiastically about this week. There’s been much discussion about Mingo. But he had one nice rush against the Vikings as well as a solo tackle on special teams, where it looks like he’ll be needed. And Mingo also serves as depth at the strongside linebacker spot (as does Martin, to a lesser degree). Health issues regarding Collier and Ansah and how much depth Seattle needs to keep around for the season opener should become more clear this week.
Keep: Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, Mychal Kendricks, Austin Calitro, Cody Barton
Cut: Shaquem Griffin, Ben Burr-Kirven, Justin Currie, Jawuan Johnson, Juwon Young.
Comment: I’m back to just five true linebackers, with the caveat noted above, that both Mingo and Martin can play linebacker if needed. And for now, that means making what I know is an unpopular choice: waiving both Shaquem Griffin and Burr-Kirven, a former Washington Husky. Griffin suddenly has a knee issue and that might, unfortunately, help solve the roster logjam if it is something that would keep him out for a while.
Keep: Shaquill Griffin, Tre Flowers, Akeem King, Neiko Thorpe, Jamar Taylor.
Cut: Jeremy Boykins, Simeon Thomas, Kalan Reed.
Comment: I’m keeping five cornerbacks this week which allows me to retain both King and Taylor. Taylor was the leader of the week at the nickel spot. He gave up a TD against the Vikings on a play in which he was also called for a penalty. But on further review it also seemed as if the penalty could have gone the other way. King has played both outside and the nickel, and Thorpe continues to make it as a special-teams dynamo and reserve corner.
Keep: Bradley McDougald, Tedric Thompson, Marquise Blair, Ugo Amadi, DeShawn Shead
Cut: Shalom Luani, Jalen Harvey, Lano Hill.
Comment: For now, McDougald and Thompson seem entrenched as the starting duo. Blair is suddenly battling a back issue and if that’s significant, it could change the roster composition here. Amadi has a lot of versatility and a seemingly big future and had another great special-teams play Sunday. The really tough call here is Shead or Hill for the final spot. I’m going with Shead this week with Hill yet to play. Shead had another big play with his 88-yard pick six, a week after scoring on a safety. He also got beat a few times. But his experience and versatility give him the edge this week.
Keep: PK Jason Myers, P Michael Dickson, LS Tyler Ott.
Comment: These are the only kicker, punter and snapper the Seahawks have on the roster, so the special-teams battery is set.