The Seahawks have finalized a trade of 2014 fourth-round draft choice Kevin Norwood to the Carolina Panthers, singaling ex-Washington Huskies Kevin Smith and Kasen Williams still have chances to make Seattle’s roster entering Thursday’s final preseason game.
It also signals any future wide receiver the current Seahawks regime drafts in the fourth round should beware of danger ahead.
Norwood was their fourth-round draft choice from Alabama in 2014. He missed seven games last season with a foot injury and hasn’t been able to produce muchin practices or exhibition games this summer.
The Seahawks had will receive an undisclosed pick in 2017, dependent on how much production Carolina gets from Norwood this season. Or even if he makes the team or not in the next week.
The Seahawks made 14 other roster moves today, as I detail in a subsequent post. Summer surprise Drew Nowak has apparently won the starting center job.
These 15 moves get the Seahawks’ roster down to 75 by the league’s deadline of 1 p.m. Tuesday.
Norwood had bone spurs removed in his foot at the start of last year’s training camp, a condition the team found to be leftover from Alabama. He started months behind because of that, and has yet to catch up to others in Seattle’s crowded field of receivers. He had nine catches in nine games last season, then two more through three preseason games this month.
Norwood is the third fourth-round draft choice in the last five years of the Pete Carroll/John Schneider era to not make it to a second Seahawks season. Kris Durham (2011) and Chris Harper (’13) are the others.
Seattle will have eight wide receivers for what I expect to be seven spots on the 53-man roster to begin the regular season. The deadline to set that is Sept. 5. The Seahawks kept seven wide receivers to begin last season, six to start the seasons before that.
B.J. Daniels’ versatility on special teams and as an emergency reserve quarterback give him an inside track to a spot. Smith was Wilson’s target in the third quarter Saturday in San Diego on a deep post route to the goal line the Chargers broke up with double-team coverage.
When I asked him Thursday what impression he thinks he’s made so far, Smith said: “Just being consistent knowing what to do, and being trustworthy with the quarterback first and then with the offensive coordinator.”
Williams, an undrafted rookie coming back from a broken leg and foot injury that sidetracked his UW career, had a big catch on fourth down with 55 seconds left to get the Seahawks to the San Diego 36. His catch on his only target Saturday set up Steve Hauschka’s 60-yard field goal with 16 seconds left that won the game 16-15.
A sketch of where I see the wide receivers entering the final preseason game Thursday against Oakland:
Doug Baldwin:a lock as the No. 1 WR
Jermaine Kearse: locked at No. 2
Tyler Lockett: a lock -- and a blur -- as the third receiver
Chris Matthews: not a sure thing. But Carroll sure is intrigued by his Super Bowl, and him being 6-5
(Paul Richardson: will begin season on PUP list following January knee surgery, exempt from the roster for at least six weeks)
Ricardo Lockette: Could keep a spot solely because of special teams--or lose it if Smith can prove adept at those
B.J. Daniels: Ex-QB has versatility, tenacity coaches love
Kevin Smith: Getting reps with first offense lately, on all four special teams. He needs huge, effort plays on those Thursday. “That’s a big part of this,” he says. “And I want to do it, so I’m looking forward to it.”
Kasen Williams: May not be showing enough on special teams to make roster, but practice squad a real possibility