Seahawks add much-needed power, versatility in first-round DE L.J. Collier

Apr 26, 2019, 9:59 AM | Updated: 10:41 am
LJ Collier NFL Draft Seahawks...
TCU DE L.J. Collier was chosen 29th overall by the Seahawks in the 2019 NFL Draft. (Getty)

The Seattle Seahawks surprised many when they selected defensive end L.J. Collier in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft (and fewer when they traded back twice).

Seahawks draft tracker: The latest updates, picks, and trades

Collier is a pass-rusher that some have likened to Michael Bennett, and both head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider said he fits the Seahawks’ system well. But what exactly did Seattle see in the TCU standout over other available defensive ends still available late in the first round?

“Power and versatility,” said 710 ESPN Seattle’s Brock Huard Friday morning on Brock and Salk. “Montez Sweat was there at 21, they could have taken him. Ultimately, the Seahawks said, ‘Nope, we’re gonna find the guy that fits a whole lot more of our profile.'”

Noted Mike Salk: “(Collier) is a big dude, 6-2, 283 pounds, plays with power, plays with anger, and that’s what everybody seemed to be excited about last night.”

While the Seahawks traded down from their initial No. 21 pick, they took Collier 29th overall with selection they acquired earlier in the week from the Chiefs in the Frank Clark trade. While picking Collier at that spot was viewed as something of a reach, it was a modest one.

“Was he a bit of a reach? Yeah,” said Salk. “Maybe a small one, but certainly not an embarrassment.”

Collier profiles as a large, strong defensive end that the Seahawks see as a complement for speed they already possess in the trenches.

“They need some size on the edge, and they got a guy who sure seems to profile a lot like Michael Bennett, all the while adding picks as they went,” Salk said.

The Seahawks go into the second day of the draft with the 37th and 92nd overall picks, and then close things out on Saturday with a quartet of fourth-round picks and a pair of fifth-rounders. Barring any more trades, they’ll wrap things up with a haul of nine total picks in the 2019 draft.

Seahawks’ 1st-round pick L.J. Collier talks ‘unreal’ feeling of being drafted

Brock and Salk podcast

Brock and Salk

Seahawks Ken Norton Jr....
Brent Stecker

Huard: What’s next for Seahawks as they move on from DC Ken Norton Jr.

The Seahawks have made a change at defensive coordinator. FOX football analyst Brock Huard broke down the move, potential candidates and more on 710 ESPN Seattle's Mike Salk Show.
3 days ago
Seahawks John Schneider, Pete Carroll...
Brandon Gustafson

Brock and Salk: The change that makes most sense for Seahawks

When it comes to the Seahawks going forward, Brock & Salk want Pete Carroll to focus on coaching and John Schneider to handle personnel.
8 days ago
Seahawks Cody Barton...
Brent Stecker

Did Cody Barton show he can be the Seahawks’ middle LB?

Cody Barton would be a much cheaper option at middle linebacker for the Seahawks next season than perennial All-Pro Bobby Wagner. Three of 710 ESPN Seattle's experts weigh in on his performance.
10 days ago
Seahawks Pete Carroll Sidney Jones...
Brent Stecker

Huard: Seahawks, Pete Carroll found answers ownership needed to see

For much of the season, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll didn't seem to have answers about his struggling team. That changed in the final weeks.
11 days ago
Seahawks Tyler Huntley...
Brandon Gustafson

Would Tyler Huntley be a good fit for Seahawks if Russell Wilson leaves?

Matt Hasselbeck is a big fan of Tyler Huntley. Brock Huard and Jake Heaps explain if Huntley makes sense for the Seahawks post-Russell Wilson.
13 days ago
UW Huskies Rome Odunze...
Brent Stecker

What latest UW Huskies football departure says about state of program

Where do things stand now for new coach Kalen DeBoer's UW Huskies with WR coach Junior Adams off to Oregon? Jake Heaps and Brock Huard share their insight.
15 days ago
Seahawks add much-needed power, versatility in first-round DE L.J. Collier