Seahawks Projected to Land ‘Ludicrously Physical’ Linebacker

Getty Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll could get another star linebacker in 2023.

The Seattle Seahawks have had some all-time great linebackers on their defense over the past decade. While those legends are no longer with the team, general manager John Schneider and his front office are already hard at work looking at some potential star linebackers in the 2023 draft class.

Oliver Hodgkinson with Pro Football Network shared his latest 2023 NFL mock draft, with the Houston Texans taking Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud with the first overall pick. The top quarterbacks went before the Seahawks had a pick at No. 9 overall, but they still found an exciting player in Oregon linebacker Noah Sewell.

“When you think of the best Seahawks teams of the Pete Carroll era, you think of suffocating and ferocious defenses,” Hodgkinson said. “That is exactly what they’ll have if they strike for Oregon linebacker Noah Sewell. Although there are some improvements to be made in the coverage element of Sewell’s game, there are few scarier sights than the 6’3″, 250-pound linebacker flying into the backfield. He’s explosive, fast, and ludicrously physical.”

Hodgkinson also had the Seahawks taking Florida Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson with their other first-round pick, which they acquired in the trade that sent Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos.

Noah Sewell’s Football Career

As the younger brother of Detroit Lions offensive tackle, Penei Sewell, football runs in Noah’s family. While he has yet to play at the NFL level, the younger Sewell is already having quite an impact on the college football world.

Coming out of Orem High School in Utah in the class of 2020, Sewell was a 5-star recruit, the second-ranked linebacker in the country, and the No. 1 player in the state. He had offers from the biggest programs in the country, including Alabama and Georgia, but decided to play at the same school as his older brother.

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It didn’t take long for Sewell to have an impact for the Ducks. In his first college season, he was named a freshman All-American and the Pac-12 Freshman Defensive Player of the Year, leading the Ducks with 45 tackles. He took another step forward in 2021, making the Pac-12 All-Conference first team while being named a semifinalist for the Butkus Award recognizing the nation’s top linebacker.

Expectations are sky high for Sewell in 2022. He’s on the preseason watch list for the Butkus Award, as well as the Bronko Nagurski Award given to the best defensive player in the country. Multiple outlets including Walter Camp and Sporting News have Sewell as a preseason All-American as well.

If Sewell can live up to those expectations, then he has a great chance at being a top-10 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Who Will Start at LB in 2022 for the Seahawks?

If the Seahawks end up getting a star linebacker like Sewell, it won’t be until 2023. While the Seahawks no longer have legends like Bobby Wagner or K.J. Wright, they still have at least one formidable presence at inside linebacker for this upcoming season.

Third-year linebacker Jordyn Brooks is expected to be a leader for Seattle’s defense this year. The former first-round pick has been given the team’s green dot to be the play caller for the defense. After leading the NFL with 109 solo tackles in 2021, Brooks will be expected to take another big step towards becoming a star for the Seahawks.

While Brooks will be holding down one of the starting inside linebacker spots, it’s expected that Cody Barton will be handling the other. Barton hasn’t done much to prove himself as a former third-round pick, but with Wagner no longer in Seattle, Barton will have an opportunity to play in a more full-time capacity.

If he can’t play at a high level in 2022, however, then the Seahawks will likely look at replacing him with a starting-caliber linebacker in 2023, whether that’s through the draft or free agency.

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