JAKE AND STACY
Heaps: Seahawks’ most underrated offseason move? CB Justin Coleman’s return
The Seahawks have a much different roster heading into the 2022 NFL Draft than they did this time a year ago.
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Gone are franchise icons Russell Wilson and Bobby Wagner, who were respectively traded and released as the Seahawks started to begin a new era last month.
On top of the three players (quarterback Drew Lock, defensive tackle Shelby Harris and tight end Noah Fant) and five draft picks the Seahawks got from the Denver Broncos for Wilson and another pick, Seattle has also signed five outside free agents and re-signed eight of their own players.
Of all those offseason moves, which is the most underrated? That’s what Stacy Rost asked former NFL quarterback Jake Heaps during Wednesday’s Jake and Stacy on Seattle Sports 710 AM.
“I think it’s Justin Coleman,” Heaps replied.
Coleman, a 29-year-old nickel cornerback, is back in Seattle for his third stint with the Seahawks after signing a reported one-year deal. One of the Seahawks’ top defenders between the 2017 and 2018 seasons, Coleman appeared in all 32 regular season games during that timeframe and recorded three interceptions, three fumble recoveries and three defensive touchdowns.
Justin Coleman, good at football. #SEAvsDAL #PickSix pic.twitter.com/qZYu4GyOGY
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) December 24, 2017
After a stellar two-year run with the Seahawks, Coleman signed a lucrative four-year deal with the Detroit Lions. He was released after two seasons in Detroit and played in Miami for the Dolphins in 2021 before returning to Seattle.
“The best nickel that they’ve had in a long, long time,” Heaps said. ” … I think that when you when you look at Justin Coleman and what he was here in Seattle, and the absence, the void that has been there since he left, it’s been huge. It’s been huge.”
Since Coleman left, the Seahawks have gone through a few nickel cornerbacks such as Jamar Taylor, Ugo Amadi and Marquise Blair. Due to production and injury, no one has filled that “void” since Coleman signed with the Lions. Heaps thinks Coleman has a chance to return to Seattle as an immediate contributor on defense.
“Justin Coleman is a player who I think will solidify this (team) in the middle of the defense,” Heaps said. “Why? Because you’re gonna play more man to man, you’re gonna play more match principles. And why are you going to do that? Because you trust Justin Coleman to be able to get that done. And whereas before with Ugo Amadi, Marquise Blair being out of the lineup and obviously dealing with injury, they gave up the most slot yards out of any team in the league. So bringing Justin Coleman is going to help eliminate a lot of those yards that were given up over the middle of the field and by slot receivers.
“I still think he’s got good football left in him. I think this is incredibly underrated and it was a very needed addition for this defense that was struggling in pass defense specifically.”
You can hear Heaps’ full thoughts when the podcast of the second hour of Jake and Stacy is published at this link at 3 p.m. Wednesday. The Four-Down Territory segment airs at 11:15 a.m. each weekday during Seattle Sports Station’s Jake and Stacy.
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