3 Takes: Who will be Seahawks’ next player to step up like Bobby Wagner?
The Seahawks’ defense put together its most inspired effort of the season in a 37-27 Week 8 win over the 49ers, holding back San Francisco long enough for the offense to build a 30-7 lead before the Niners mounted a comeback attempt in the fourth quarter.
One of the more notable aspects of that game was the explosive play of All-Pro linebacker Bobby Wagner, who silenced his critics by picking up his first two sacks of the season (which immediately tied him for the Seahawks’ lead in that stat) and clearly being Seattle’s best player on that side of the ball.
While that was a strong step in the right direction, the 20 points the 49ers scored in the fourth quarter are still worrisome, making it clear the Seahawks will require more players to step up on defense as the season continues.
With that in mind, 710 ESPN Seattle’s Bob Stelton go to thinking: Who could be the next Seahawks player to have a breakout game like Wagner had?
Stelton brought that up on Tuesday’s edition of Bob, Dave and Moore, and it led to three different takes from the trio of hosts. Let’s look at what Stelton, Dave Wyman and Jim Moore all had to say, and cast your vote in our Twitter poll.
Who will be the next #Seahawks defensive player to step up and have a huge game like Bobby Wagner?@BobStelton, @cougsgo and Dave Wyman each have a pick for your consideration. Who is right? Vote in the poll!
— 710 ESPN Seattle (@710ESPNSeattle) November 5, 2020
Who’s the next Seahawks player to step up?
• Bob Stelton: DT Jarran Reed
Reed in 2020: 19 combined tackles, 11 solo, one sack, one tackle for loss, two QB hits, one forced fumble
“Jarran Reed would probably be my guy. He’s had moments in games, but just having that game where you announce your presence with authority, you let people know, ‘This is who I am, and I’m going to be a disruptor.’ He immediately came to mind as a guy we would celebrate if he were to have a game like that.”
• Jim Moore: DE Carlos Dunlap
Dunlap in 2020: Acquired last week via trade with Cincinnati, 18 combined tackles, one sack, two TFL, four QB hits, two passes defensed
“I’ll go with a player that I think is going to make a huge difference – I think it’s Carlos Dunlap. I know he hasn’t been here; I’m excited to see what he can bring. I think he’s going to end up leading the team in sacks with five – it’s not a great number but it’s better than the four that you had last year from Rasheem Green. I don’t think we’ve talked enough about Bruce Irvin (who is out for the season with a torn ACL) and how much they’ve missed him, because you expected six or seven sacks from Irvin. Having him out of the lineup, you’re trying to jerry-rig everything else together, and now you have a guy that’s comparable to Irvin – sack-wise, anyway – as a pass-rusher in Dunlap.”
• Dave Wyman: S Quandre Diggs
Diggs in 2020: Two interceptions, three passes defensed, 31 combined tackles, 18 solo
“This is maybe being a little bit hard on him, I don’t think he’s played poorly, but Quandre Diggs I think can come up with more turnovers, more big plays. He had the game against LA (in 2019) where he had two interceptions. He’s been all over the field in the past. He had a missed tackle the other day and maybe you can get a little bit more out of him. I’m not saying he’s been disappointing but maybe he can be a guy that steps up, too.”
You can hear the full conversation at this link or in the player below beginning around the 16:50 mark.