The Seattle Seahawks have two rookie wide receivers who are worth watching very closely this season, as Colorado product Paul Richardson and Alabama product Kevin Norwood have been standouts throughout offseason workouts. Richardson is the small playmaker who has drawn DeSean Jackson comparisons, and, like D-Jax coming out of Cal, looks to be on the “boom” side of the “boom-or-bust” coin. Meanwhile, Norwood was a staple as a possession receiver at Alabama, and he could provide the Seahawks offense a cool hand in the passing game by consistently getting open to move the chains. Golden Tate is a great receiver who should blossom with added targets in Detroit, but the Seahawks passing attack will be better next season if Percy Harvin can stay healthy.
ESPN NFL Nation’s Terry Blount did a 53-man roster projection this morning for the Seahawks, and he kept all six notable wideouts on the final roster. If the Seahawks were to keep only five wideouts, then Ricardo Lockette would have to be the odd-man out, since I doubt they’d cut a rookie with as much promise as Norwood (Richardson is a lock).
Per Blount, Norwood “has looked sensational” at training camp so far, and that praise shouldn’t be taken lightly, especially on top of Norwood’s impressive work during OTAs and minicamp. For that reason, Blount calls cutting Norwood in an effort to revert him to the practice squad a “big risk”. I’ll go a step further by stating that if the Seahawks were to waive Norwood and try and stash him on the practice squad, he would be snapped up immediately. While he probably won’t end up being a star in this league, he should be a solid, dependable receiver and shouldn’t hit the scrap heap. This guy has to stay on the 53-man roster as the No. 5 receiver, because he’s well-worth the roster spot.
As for Lockette, Blount writes that his roster spot should be safe due to his special teams ability and speed. While he is no guarantee to make the roster, it looks like the Seahawks will go into the season with six wide receivers. Carrying five or six wideouts is about standard, even if the Seahawks are a running offense. They have talent at wide receiver, and building a roster is all about trying to keep as many good players as possible without sacrificing depth at weaker positions.