The Seattle Seahawks made a pair of roster moves ahead of the start of minicamp. The Seahawks signed former Packers cornerback Will Sunderland after releasing safety LaDarius Wiley to make room for their new addition.
Sunderland represents another tall cornerback at 6 feet, 2 inches tall and 196 pounds, in the mold of what Pete Carroll prefers at the position. The Seahawks moved away from this prototype in the most recent draft by selecting Oklahoma cornerback Tre Brown, who is listed at 5 feet, 10 inches. After the draft, Seahawks general manager John Schneider refuted the notion that the team would only explore adding tall corners.
“I think you said it perfectly. The landscape is what it is,” Schneider explained, per Seahawks.com. “I’m sure Tre Brown would love to be 6 foot 2, and if he was 6 foot 2 he would be picked in the Top 10, right? You can see him every weekend running all over the place in the Big 12 with all these receivers and all the speed that’s out there and competing his tail off. Yes, we would love to have big corners and all that, and we did, remember, when we got here. But, you have to adjust to the times, too, and there is only a certain amount of players that you can pick from.”
Sunderland Spent Time on the Colts Practice Squad After a Brief Stint With the Packers
Sunderland went undrafted last year after spending his first two years at Oklahoma before transferring to Troy for his final two seasons. During a 2020 post-draft interview, Sunderland admitted he had a bit of a chip on his shoulder after going undrafted.
“I can play corner just like those guys that went in the first round,” Sunderland told Montgomery Advertiser at the time. “The only difference is that they didn’t get in trouble or they just stayed at one university for more than two years. That’s the only difference, but other than that I feel like I’m the better corner in the draft. Honestly, it doesn’t matter what round I go in, because at the end of the day, I am going to stay in the league way longer than them.”
The Seahawks Are Expected to Have an Open Competition at Cornerback
The departures of both Shaquill Griffin and Quinton Dunbar in free agency mean the Seahawks have an opening at multiple cornerback positions. Sunderland faces a long road to making the final roster, but it is a good opportunity given the Seahawks’ need at the position.
The top candidates to start at cornerback for the Seahawks include Ahkello Witherspoon, Tre Flowers and D.J. Reed. Troy University cornerbacks coach Ray Brown praised Sunderland’s potential, despite his former player not hearing his name called on draft night.
“When scouts were calling (before the draft) and all the DB coaches are calling, the biggest thing they want to know is: Does he have the upside?” Brown told Montgomery Advertiser in April 2020. “I think he absolutely does. I don’t think he has scratched the surface of his potential. Had he been here another year in this system, I think he’s a high draft pick.”