Why so much is riding on Seahawks CB Shaquill Griffin

Jul 9, 2019, 11:09 AM | Updated: 11:10 am
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Seahawks CB Shaquill Griffin joined Danny, Dave and Moore on 710 ESPN Seattle Friday. (AP)

The Seahawks kick off training camp on July 25, and until then, Brock Huard and Mike Salk will count down the top 25 most intriguing Seahawks every weekday at 8:30 a.m. Their list continues with No. 12 CB Shaquill Griffin.

Listen to the segment here, or see highlights below:

Quick look:

• A 2017 third-round draft pick out of UCF.
• Transition from right to left cornerback after rookie season.
• Finished 2018 with 54 tackles, eight passes defended and two interceptions.

What makes him so intriguing?

“Griffin is one of a couple guys that I think have to – have to – be good for this defense to be good this year, or at least to be better than they were a year ago. It’s funny, after year one it just seemed like a foregone conclusion that he was going to be the next Richard Sherman; not that he’d get to the same level as Sherman, because that guy’s probably a Hall of Famer at the position or darn close to it, but that he’d at least be a solid number one corner that would take care of business on his side of the field. And a year later, I don’t think anybody thinks that’s a guarantee, and if anything people are probably betting against it right now. Can Shaquill Griffin grow? Can he grow based not on last year but based on year one, and become the lockdown corner they need on the left side of their defense?”

Where does he need to improve?

“Can he grow? Yeah, he can. Is it likely? I don’t think I’d go that far,” 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny O’Neil said. “And I think that’s because I saw a season last year in which Shaquill Griffin didn’t regress, but he also didn’t take the step forward that he needed. When the ball was in the air, that’s the difference for him. When the ball was in the air, Richard Sherman would go make a play on the ball. Shaquill Griffin did not show any tangible difference of making plays when the ball was in the air. And my question about him is does he have that moment, that decisive instinct, that ability to make a play? I think back to that game against the Rams in his rookie year when he ran everything right. He was right there, he was going to come off his route, he knew where it was coming and it should’ve been a pick-six. And he went just a little bit early and ended up committing pass interference. He saw everything that happened; he made the right decision. He just didn’t execute in that moment. And that’s kind of what I wonder.

“I think it’s more likely that Tre Flowers (No. 15 most intriguing Seahawk) takes that next step forward than it is Shaquill Griffin. I’m still hopeful for Shaquill, but I don’t know if you can develop that.”

What the Seahawks are saying

“If I’m critiquing myself the hardest I can, (2018) was a D, a D-plus for me,” Griffin said during an interview with 710 ESPN Seattle’s Bob, Groz and Tom. “They wanted me to be the next person up… and I feel like it was just average, and I can’t be that average guy on this team. Being at that number one cornerback position, they need me to make those splash plays and count on me when it counts the most, and that’s the part I need to hold myself (accountable) about because that’s the person I have to be. The best thing about that is I can only go up from here. I’m taking it upon myself to make this a great year.”

Brock and Salk’s 25 Most Intriguing Seahawks

No. 25: G Phil Haynes
No. 24: LB Shaquem Griffin
No. 23: T/TE George Fant
No. 22: WR David Moore
No. 21: RB/WR J.D. McKissic
No. 20: RB Travis Homer
No. 19: G Mike Iupati
No. 18: S Marquise Blair
No 17: LB Mychal Kendricks
No. 16: S Bradley McDougald
No. 15: CB Tre Flowers
No. 14: S Lano Hill
No. 13: LB/DE Jacob Martin

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