Seahawks to Sign Former First-Round Pick: Report

Artie Burns

Getty The Seahawks are signing former Bears corner Artie Burns.

The Seattle Seahawks finally made their first move to sign a new player after a quiet start to free agency. Former Chicago Bears cornerback Artie Burns is signing a one-year, $2 million deal with Seattle, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Burns was selected by the Steelers with the No. 25 pick in the 2016 NFL draft. The corner spent his first four seasons in Pittsburgh before signing with Chicago in 2020.

Burns missed the entire 2020 season with an ACL injury but played in 11 games for Chicago in 2021. The corner had 23 tackles, six pass deflections and started in six games for the Bears last season. Burns brings with him some familiarity with the  defensive schemes of Sean Desai, who was hired February 11 as the Seahawks’ associate head coach for defense after working as the Bears’ defensive coordinator in 2021.

Burns earned a solid 79.5 grade from Pro Football Focus for his play last season. As The Athletic’s Michael-Shawn Dugar pointed out, the Seahawks have been reluctant to pay top dollars to corners.

“So, basically, Pete Carroll is really really against spending on free agent cornerbacks in a post-Cary Williams world,” Dugar tweeted on March 16.

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The Seahawks Have $39.6 Million in Cap Space

The Seahawks had been quiet to start free agency despite having $39.6 million in cap space, per Over the Cap. Seattle was able to re-sign several key players, including safety Quandre Diggs and cornerback Sidney Jones. However, the Seahawks lost starting corner D.J. Reed to the Jets.

With the Seahawks not appearing to be in the Deshaun Watson sweepstakes, Seattle still has a massive void to fill at quarterback after trading Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos on March 8. The Seahawks may address the position with the ninth pick in the NFL draft or with one of their two second-round picks. Seattle also could roll with Drew Lock (whom they received from the Broncos in the Wilson trade) as their starting quarterback in 2022 and then turn to the 2023 draft, which is believed to have a deeper quarterback class.


Carroll on Defensive Scheme: ‘We’ve Been a Little Bit Arrogant Over the Years’

After parting ways with Ken Norton Jr. as defensive coordinator, the Seahawks promoted Clint Hurtt to take over the unit and mostly overhauled the rest of the staff. Adding Desai indicates the Seahawks’ defense will look more like former Broncos head coach Vic Fangio’s scheme.

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll is promising changes to a unit that has been somewhat similar from year to year since his arrival in Seattle in 2010. Carroll acknowledged that the coaching staff may have been “a little bit arrogant” with their defensive scheme in recent years.

“We’ve been a little bit arrogant over the years [with] the way we play defense because we’ve been able to do it and go ahead and play what we want to play,” Carroll noted during his NFL Combine press conference on March 2. “It’s not that time right now. It’s time to keep moving and keep growing, and we’ve played the running game so well. I mean, like 3.8 [yards] a carry for the season. That’s pretty darn good in this league, and maybe that’s not the only thing we need to do well.”

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