Seattle Seahawks

Look who’s back: Seahawks, needing guys they can trust among DBs, bring back DeShawn Shead

The Seahawks on Saturday re-signed former starting cornerback, dependable safety and special-teams mainstay DeShawn Shead as part of multiple roster moves.
The Seahawks on Saturday re-signed former starting cornerback, dependable safety and special-teams mainstay DeShawn Shead as part of multiple roster moves. dperine@thenewstribune.com

The Seahawks are unsure of their depth in the secondary this preseason.

So they’ve gone back to a guy they trust.

Seattle on Saturday brought back former starting cornerback, dependable safety and special-teams captain DeShawn Shead, signing the Pete Carroll favorite to a free-agent contract among multiple roster moves two practices into training camp.

Shead turned 30 last month. He played 12 games last season for the Detroit Lions. He played for the Seahawks from 2012 through ‘17.

Shead went from an undrafted former decathlete from Portland State just trying to make the Seahawks as a special-teams helper in 2012, doing everything coaches asked of him while on the team’s practice squad, to a free safety and strong safety, to a first-time, full-time starter opposite Richard Sherman in 2016.

He tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee in Seattle’s playoff loss at Atlanta in January 2017. He eventually re-signed with the Seahawks for the 2018 season but played in just two games after the major injury.

He then signed with the Lions as a free agent before last season.

The thoughtful, respected Shead knows the Seahawks’ defensive system, in multiple positions, and the Seahawks coaches know him. Plus, in many other ways he’s coming home. He got married in Seattle in 2016 to Jessica Martinez, whom he met here. They got married at the city’s fancy Four Seasons hotel, where the bride had always dreamed of being wed.

“DeShawn is a great kid. He’s got really strong faith. You’d want him to be your son, you know what I mean?” Seahawks general manager John Schneider said before the 2017 season.

The Seahawks have third-year veteran Shaquill Griffin coming off a disappointing season in 2018 as one starting cornerback and 2018 draft pick Tre Flowers in his second year at cornerback after Seattle converted the college safety at Oklahoma State last year.

The safety situation remains up in the air. Bradley McDougald is going to start at one of the positions. Whether it is free or strong safety depends on whether third-year man Lano Hill or rookie second-round pick Marquise Blair emerge to win the strong-safety job this preseason.

Hill (cracked hip that ended his 2018 season) and Blair (a hamstring injury last month) began training camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list.

The Seahawks also signed linebacker Jawuan Johnson. He is an undrafted rookie out of Texas Christian. Johnson was in the Seahawks’ rookie minicamp in May on a tryout.

To make room on its 90-man preseason roster, Seattle waived Caleb Scott with a non-football injury designation and put linebacker Emmanuel Ellerbee on injured reserve. Scott was a Seahawks undrafted rookie last year. He injured his foot this offseason working out away from the team.

The Seahawks took a day off from practice on Saturday. Their third practice of camp is Sunday.

Gregg Bell is the Seahawks and NFL writer for The News Tribune. In January 2019 he was named the Washington state sportswriter of the year by the National Sports Media Association. He started covering the NFL in 2002 as the Oakland Raiders beat writer for The Sacramento Bee. The Ohio native began covering the Seahawks in their first Super Bowl season of 2005. In a prior life he graduated from West Point and served as a tactical intelligence officer in the U.S. Army, so he may ask you to drop and give him 10.
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