The Seahawks have added another option in their ongoing remodeling at tight end.
Seattle signed undrafted rookie Clayton Wilson on Monday. The free agent from Division-II Northwest Missouri State made good on his tryout chance in the Seahawks' rookie minicamp early this month.
Wilson is the fifth tight end on the 90-man offseason roster. The Seahawks didn't have to release anyone to make roster room for Wilson; they had an open spot after waiving backup quarterback Stephen Morris last week. Houston claimed Morris off waivers Monday.
The Seahawks let Jimmy Graham and Luke Willson leave in free agency in March, to Green Bay and Detroit, respectively. They were essentially pass receivers the last few seasons who just happened to sometimes line up on the end of Seattle's offensive line.
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The team has replaced them with noted pass blocker Ed Dickson in free agency from Carolina, former University of Washington Husky Will Dissly, reputed to the best run-blocking tight end in this year's draft class, and now Wilson to join Nick Vannett and Tyrone Swoopes from last season's roster.
The Seahawks are now going for blockers first and catchers second at tight end. It's part of coach Pete Carroll's first priority for 2018: fixing the running game.
Wilson, though, is a curiosity in the run and pass offense.
He is 6 feet 4 and 242 pounds, size that could make him as asset as an NFL blocker at tight end. But his background is wide-open passing. The 23-year-old Wilson grew up in Tabor, Iowa, a town with a population of about 1,000, playing eight-man football at Fremont-Hills High School.
Wilson entered his final season at Northwest Missouri State last year with a goal of improving his blocking, according to the school's athletic department. He did that, to become more of an all-around tight end.
The Seahawks usually keep three tight ends on its 53-man roster during the regular season. Dickson will be the No. 1 at the position. Dissly, the fourth-round pick last month, is likely to be battling Vannett, a third-round choice in 2016, and Swoopes for the second spot. Swoopes, the one-time University of Texas quarterback, is entering his second full year learning the position after signing last spring with Seattle as an undrafted rookie and spending most of 2017 on its practice squad.
Now Wilson enters the competition as the sixth tryout player the Seahawks have signed since giving 46 of them a chance in the rookie minicamp two weeks ago. The others: former UW and Mississippi wide receiver Damore’ea Stringfellow, free safety Tevon Mutcherson, center Marcus Henry from Boise State and Bellevue High School, offensive tackle Nick Callender, and guard Avery Young.