SEATTLE SEAHAWKS

Seahawks trade for Commanders starting QB Sam Howell

Mar 14, 2024, 1:27 PM | Updated: 4:17 pm

Seattle Seahawks Sam Howell...

Sam Howell of the Washington Commanders throws a pass against San Francisco in 2023. (Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

(Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

The Seattle Seahawks have made a trade with Washington for quarterback Sam Howell, who started all 17 games for the Commanders in 2023.

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The move was confirmed Thursday afternoon by the Seahawks and Commanders.

Here’s the breakdown of the trade:

• Seahawks get QB Sam Howell, fourth-round NFL Draft pick (No. 102) and sixth-round pick (No. 179)

• Commanders get a third-round pick (No. 78) and fifth-round pick (No. 152)

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Seattle Seahawks have “long liked Howell,” who was a fifth-round pick in 2021 out of North Carolina.

Why did Seahawks trade for QB Sam Howell? GM Schneider explains

Howell, 23, completed 64.4% of his passing attempts last season. He had an NFL-most 612 attempts, 21 interceptions and 65 sacks, and threw for 3,946 yards and 21 touchdowns. He was also sacked a league-high 65 times.

The Seahawks have retained Geno Smith, their starting quarterback for the past two seasons, but lost backup Drew Lock in free agency this week to the New York Giants.

Smith, who was a vocal supporter of Lock when they were teammates, reacted positively to the reported addition of Howell on social media.

Former Seattle Sports host Jake Heaps spoke about Howell as a potential Seahawks draft target in 2021.

“This is a guy that is a great, solid leader, is somebody that I think pushes the ball down the field extremely well, may arguably have one of the best deep balls in terms of accuracy in this draft,” said Heaps, a former Seahawks QB. “… He’s not somebody that jumps off the page in terms of his arm strength but he reminds me a lot of Drew Brees. He’s got some Drew Brees traits to him – size, throwing ability, those types of things. One of the things that I’ve been impressed with him that I did not see in my time with him is how much of a gamer he actually is, how much he can get outside the pocket and create.”

For more of Heaps’ assessment of Howell at the time, read the article at this link.

The 6-foot-1, 220-pound Howell stood out as a sophomore with North Carolina in 2020, completing 68.1% of his passing attempts for 3,586 yards and 30 touchdowns to seven interceptions. His numbers weren’t as good in 2021 when he had a 62.5% completion percentage for 3,056 yards and 24 TDs to nine picks.

Seattle is entering a new era with Mike Macdonald taking over as head coach and former UW Huskies offensive coordinator Ryan Grubb assuming the same role with the Seahawks.

As for Washington, it has signed veteran backup Marcus Mariota and could draft its QB of the future with the No. 2 pick, potentially North Carolina’s Drake Maye or LSU’s Heisman Trophy-winning Jayden Daniels.

We expect to hear insight on the move from Seahawks general manager/president of football operations John Schneider when he joins Seattle Sports’ Wyman and Bob at 4 p.m. Thursday for the weekly John Schneider Show.

This post includes contributions from The Associated Press.

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