Wyman: Brooks should be a higher priority for Seahawks than Williams

Feb 21, 2024, 10:49 AM

Seattle Seahawks Jordyn Brooks free agency...

Jordyn Brooks of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates after a sack on Sept. 24, 2023. (Christopher Mast/Getty Images)

(Christopher Mast/Getty Images)

The Seattle Seahawks have no shortage of big-name players set to hit free agency this offseason.

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On offense, tight ends Noah Fant and Colby Parkinson are pending free agents, as is center Evan Brown and guards Damien Lewis and Phil Haynes.

On the other side of the ball, many notable starters are close to hitting the open market, including linebacker Jordyn Brooks and defensive tackle Leonard Williams.

During Tuesday’s Wyman and Bob on Seattle Sports, former NFL linebacker Dave Wyman, a current Seahawks radio commentator, shared his thoughts on what the Hawks should prioritize this offseason.

“If they don’t do Brooks, we’re talking about a whole new group of linebackers that are gonna come in here whether they’re trying to get it in the draft or through free agency (or both),” Wyman said.

The Seahawks’ two starting inside linebackers in 2023, Brooks and Bobby Wagner, are pending free agents, as is backup Devin Bush.

The Seahawks have a new head coach in Mike Macdonald, and one of his top defenders from Baltimore is a pending free agent in All-Pro linebacker Patrick Queen.

“Maybe they have this whole plan of bringing Patrick Queen in,” Wyman said. ” … If you brought Brooks back, those two guys together really could be the foundation. They had Roquan Smith and Patrick Queen there in Baltimore, and those guys were really important to that defense. I don’t think it’s going to be Bobby Wagner. I really think  Jordyn Brooks is going to be a big part of what they’re doing now.”

Brooks, a 2020 first-round pick, has been a very solid player for the Seahawks in his first four NFL seasons, and Wyman regulary points out that he’s reliable and typically in the right spot. His Wyman and Bob co-host Bob Stelton noted that Brooks isn’t a big “splash guy,” and “just seems to be a solid guy.”

“Is he easily improved upon where if he goes elsewhere that you feel like OK, you can find that in somebody else? Or do you feel like he’s got a somewhat unique set of skills that is going to be hard to duplicate?” Stelton asked.

Replied Wyman, “He’s closer to being like the special guy that you can’t do without.”

Wyman thinks that Brooks has gotten “really good in coverage,” which is both imporant and difficult for linebackers.

“Some of the nuances in the pass game are difficult for linebacker, especially when you’re dropping back in zone,” he said. ” … I think he’s gotten really good that way.”

Wyman also noted that Brooks made far more splash plays in 2023 than years past. He had 4.5 sacks, a pick-six as well as a forced fumble and fumble recovery.

Ultimately, Wyman thinks Brooks needs to be more of a priority for the Seahawks than Williams, who Seattle acquired for second- and fifth-round picks at this year’s trade deadline.

“I think if you get (Brooks back), this year is going to be his big year. And I think if you can get him into that kind of defense and running it, I think he’s really important,” Wyman said. “If I had to pick between him and Leonard Williams, I’m afraid I’d take Brooks.”

“It takes a lot for me to say I would pick him over Leonard Williams because I think Leonard Williams is really important,” Wyman later said. “My only hesitation with him is that I’m not sure if he’s exactly the kind of guy that Mike Macdonald would want in his defense.”

Listen to the full conversation at this link or in the video player near the top of this story.

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