Seahawks trade up in 6th round, draft big Florida OT Stone Forsythe
The Seahawks already traded down on the third day of the draft, and with that giving them two picks left to work with they decided to trade up, jumping from up nine spots in the sixth round in order to select Florida offensive tackle Stone Forsythe.
To make the leap to 208, Seattle had to send its sixth- and seventh-round picks (217 and 250 overall) to the Chicago Bears in order to secure the team’s newest offensive lineman. He joins his former college teammate Freddie Swain, a receiver who the Seahawks took in the 2020 draft. Funny enough, both of the former Florida Gators were sixth-round picks by Seattle.
The first thing that stands out with Forsythe is that he’s a big guy at 6 foot 8 and 307 pounds. He also is long with 34 3/8-inch arms.
Forsythe was at Florida for five years, including a redshirt season, and he was a reserve tackle and guard for his first two seasons before assuming the starting left tackle spot in 2018. That was a job he held for 25 games between his final two college seasons, protecting the blindside of 2020 Heisman Trophy finalist quarterback Kyle Trask, who was a second-round pick of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Friday.
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) May 1, 2021
According to NFL.com draft analyst Lance Zierlein, the Seahawks may be getting a steal, as he rated Forsythe as a third- or fourth-round prospect.
Zierlein describes Forsythe as a “skyscraper” who excels in pass protection but needs to improve in the run game. Zierlein wrote that Forsythe “times his punch” in pass protection in order to make rushers “feel his length” and that he has very powerful hips and great natural strength. Among the negatives that Zierlein lists is that because Forsythe is so tall, he has trouble getting low with his pads at the point of attack and that his instincts in pass protection are just “average.”
According to Pro Football Focus’ draft tracker, the site also loves the pick, saying that Forsythe “dominated elite-level competition in the SEC and probably shouldn’t have fallen this far.”
Forsythe likely will not have a clear path to starting as a rookie barring injury as Seattle has one of the best left tackles in the NFL in Duane Brown and right tackle Brandon Shell had a nice season for the Seahawks in 2020. But both Brown and Shell are entering the last year of their current contracts and Brown will play the 2021 season at 36 years old. Forsythe could be the successor to either one of those two starting in 2022 or further down the line.