The eventual best TE in Seahawks history could be on their roster

Jun 11, 2019, 12:56 PM
Will Dissly showed an ability to block and catch passes in four games as a Seahawks rookie. (AP)...
Will Dissly showed an ability to block and catch passes in four games as a Seahawks rookie. (AP)

The Seattle Seahawks have had a pretty good run of tight ends under current head coach Pete Carroll.

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From 2015 through 2017, Jimmy Graham was the most offensively prolific tight end in team history, making 170 receptions for 2,048 yards and 18 touchdowns over 43 games, a stretch that was interrupted by a disastrous patellar tendon injury that cut off the end of his 2015 season and required Seattle to ease him into the 2016 campaign.

Prior to Graham’s arrival, the Seahawks relied on Zach Miller, who came to Seattle from Oakland regarded as mainly a pass-catcher but in his three-plus seasons proved to be a valuable asset as a blocker in the running game, to the point that he could be considered the best all-around tight end in franchise history.

Miller might have a challenger for that title that is currently on the Seahawks roster, however.

“You know who has a chance to be the best tight end (in Seahawks history)?” asked Dave Wyman, former Seahawks linebacker, current Seahawks radio broadcaster and co-host of 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny, Dave and Moore. “(Will) Dissly.”

Dissly is entering his second season with the Seahawks after Seattle drafted the former UW Huskies blocking specialist in the fourth round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He turned heads with his catching ability in four games as a rookie, making eight receptions for 166 yards, including a pair of touchdowns and a spectacular 66-yard catch-and-run in Week 1.

Unfortunately, in Week 4 against Arizona it was Dissly who suffered a torn patellar tendon just like Graham did in his first season with the Seahawks, and he is still working his way back from one of the tougher injuries to recover from in football.

There is good news on the injury front, however. Fellow Seahawks tight end Nick Vannett, who was drafted by Seattle the same offseason that Graham was working back from his patellar injury, told Danny, Dave and Moore last week (listen here) that Dissly is currently ahead of where Graham was in his recovery at this point in the offseason.

If Dissly can get back to the player he was before the injury, Wyman sees a lot of promise.

“In the Arizona game, he was owning (two-time Pro Bowl linebacker/defensive end) Chandler Jones. He was blocking his butt off,” Wyman said of the game in which Dissly suffered his injury. “… (He) scored in his very first game against Denver and then had another touchdown catch against Chicago and was playing really well. He’s probably the most balanced (tight end the Seahawks have had because) he can catch the ball and he’s a great blocker.

“I think his catching ability’s a little bit of a surprise, too. I’m not sure anybody knew that he was that good with his hands, (and) what a great blocker. I think he has a chance, if he’s able to come back from this patellar tendon (injury), to be the best tight end in Seahawk history.”

Co-host Jim Moore, a Seattle-area native who has seen every Seahawks team since their inaugural 1976 season and has been a sportswriter in Seattle for three decades, doesn’t disagree with Wyman, but he’s more cautious because of the injury Dissly is coming back from.

“I just suspect that Dissly, even though we really liked his debut (season) and what he gave the Seahawks, you like his potential and all of that, I think this is gonna be a year where we look back and go, ‘Yeah, OK, Will Dissly was coming off that patellar tendon injury and boy, he sure broke free in 2020,'” Moore said.

You can listen to the full conversation in this podcast of Monday’s edition of Danny, Dave and Moore here.

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The eventual best TE in Seahawks history could be on their roster