Dave Wyman’s Observations: Top standouts from Seahawks rookie minicamp
The Seahawks wrapped up their rookie minicamp over the weekend, and the event was a little under the radar this year due to a number of factors.
COVID-19 has obviously played a large part in shaping how teams all across sports have operated their practices over the last year. And in a more Seahawks-specific reason, the team made just three picks in the recent NFL Draft, which is far and away the fewest selections Seattle has made since Pete Carroll and John Schneider came to town back in 2010.
But that doesn’t mean there wasn’t a lot to see and digest.
Former NFL linebacker Dave Wyman, who hosts 710 ESPN Seattle’s Wyman and Bob and is the color commentator for Seahawks Radio Network broadcasts, was able to see some of the rookie minicamp and a few players stood out to him. Let’s take a close look at what he told co-host Bob Stelton on Monday.
The three 2021 draft picks
The two stars from Wyman’s time at the Seahawks’ practices were the team’s first two draft picks in 2021 – second-round receiver D’Wayne Eskridge and fourth-round cornerback Tre Brown.
With both of them, speed was what really was apparent.
“His speed is just phenomenal,” Wyman said of Eskridge. “Watching him on the field running fly sweeps, we saw a little bit of that and saw him get open on the sidelines. And look, he had some rookie mistakes. He had a drop on a throw that was there … he got his hands on it and probably should have caught it. But other than that he looked really good and really fast. His speed stands out.”
Brown is also exceptionally fast, but his physicality was something that really stood out to Wyman.
“The more I look at him and watch film and get to know him … he looks really good,” he said. “He was a little bit too physical on one play, so there was a little bit of a reprimanding that went on at practice, but it was done with a smile on (a coaching staff member’s) face because they’re like, ‘I love this, but we can’t do it’ … He blew up a smoke screen and there was a reverse that he blew up, so he looked really good. He’s just really fast. I would say he’s tenacious. He’s just all over you.”
It’s unclear how much Eskridge and Brown will play on offense and defense in 2021, respectively, but Wyman thinks both can be standouts on special teams right away.
“They both have return ability and they both can play special teams,” Wyman said. “… I think (Eskridge) and Tre Brown are going to get a chance to contribute significantly to special teams.”
The team’s third draft pick was offensive tackle Stone Forsythe, who the Seahawks took in the sixth round. Wyman said it was hard to get a read on Forsythe, who he describes as being a “long-term project.”
“The one thing I know about him is he has good hands,” Wyman said. “… I think he’s a really good football player. It’s really hard during these camps for a D-lineman or an offensive lineman to stand out.”
First look at Darrell Taylor
He’s not a rookie, but 2020 second-round pick Darrell Taylor was at the Seahawks’ rookie minicamp this year after missing all of his rookie campaign with a leg injury.
Taylor was drafted as a defensive end, but the Seahawks are giving him time at strongside (SAM) linebacker in addition to rushing the passer, a role that 2012 first-round pick Bruce Irvin held for many years.
“He looks fast, he looks the part,” Wyman said of Taylor as a SAM linebacker. “… The good news is they probably feel like they have enough pass rushers and edge guys to compete for that job and then they also can get him on the field (at SAM). And if he’s out on the field in regular personnel as a SAM linebacker, he can always stay in and rush as the Leo (defensive end position) … He looks the part, it’s just a matter of getting him up to speed.”
The undrafted crew
A few undrafted rookies from this year as well as last year also caught Wyman’s eye.
The rookie from 2020 is tight end Tyler Mabry, who spent last season on Seattle’s practice squad.
“Big tight end, really physical, a good blocker,” Wyman said of Mabry. “He was out there running around.”
A few other guys who stood out on offense were running back B.J. Emmons, receiver Connor Wedington and receiver Cade Johnson.
Of Emmons, a former Alabama running back who transferred to Florida Atlantic, Wyman said, “He has some burst.” Wyman added that he was told by a reporter that Emmons flashed earlier in the camp when Wyman wasn’t present, as well.
Wedington, a Sumner High School product, is one of the higher-paid undrafted rookies at the camp, and Wyman thinks he has a chance to stick around.
“He’s just a good football player,” he said. “He was a running back coming out of high school and then they made him a receiver at Stanford. The way he moves around, he looks like he understands the game.”
Wyman didn’t offer too much about Johnson and Bryan Mills, a tall and long undrafted cornerback, but he did think both were standouts as well.
You can listen to Wyman’s thoughts on the Seahawks’ rookie minicamp in the second half of the first hour of Monday’s edition of Wyman and Bob. You can find that podcast at this link or in the player below.