With the fifth overall pick in this year’s NFL draft, the Seattle Seahawks surprised many by trading Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter for Illinois cornerback devon witherspoon.
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Witherspoon, the Fighting Illini’s All-American, is now competing for minutes in the Seahawks’ backfield at cornerback.
Seattle has had one of the best secondaries on paper in years, and naturally, the unit will draw comparisons to the Legion of Boom defense that helped the Seahawks to their first Super Bowl title a decade ago.
former nfl quarterback Brockward As Witherspoon explained on Thursday’s Brock and Salk at Sports Seattle, he sees some top Boom Legion defenders in Witherspoon.
“earl thomas,” He said.
Thomas, the 14th overall pick in 2010, was a star player at Seattle’s free safety, becoming one of the NFL’s top on-ball defenders while serving as a linebacker for the Seahawks’ defense.
Huard said he “thinks of Thomas every time I hear someone, especially a national voice, talk about Witherspoon.
That includes Bruce Feldman, a college football reporter for The Athletic and FOX Sports, who joined Brock and Salk on Wednesday and shared some insight on Witherspoon and his views on the college football world.
“He said the same thing we’ve heard 100 times, which is that this guy is absolutely violent. He’s going to knock your block down,” Ward recounted.
Here’s what Feldman had to say:
When I wrote an article for The Athletic, I spoke to many of the coaches who had faced top 50 (draft prospects) and the coaches praised Devon Witherspoon more than they did (No. 17 pick) Christian Gonzalez, more than any other larger corner they’ve ever made. Funny, one of the guys I was talking to was a Big Ten assistant, and he talked about (Witherspoon) being as big as Patrick Peterson. About a week after I got back from the combine, I said, ‘You know, he’s only 5-11, change and 180 or so. He said, ‘Really? That’s it? That guy is an animal. The respect people have for him and the way he plays (really brilliant).
Ward said the Detroit Lions were supposed to get the No. 6 pick behind the Seahawks and were “checked” when Seattle selected Witherspoon because they liked his on-court violence and physicality. .
“He was a real violent guy,” Huard said. “Then the question is, ‘Yeah, uh, he’s 5’11” and 183 (lbs). Can he sustain it? When Earl Thomas gets out of prison, what did he say?” Violent guy. I mean, Won’t stop, run through the crowd. And then what’s the next follow-up?” “Yeah, but he’s 5’11” and 190 pounds. Can he hold on? Will this stick? My body couldn’t hold on anymore. What did he do? He basically stuck it out until he tore his lip in the (2014) NFC championship game, then went down from there years later.
“So that’s the name, whenever I hear Devin Witherspoon, I keep thinking about their size and how ferociously they’re playing, and whether it’s sustainable. Let’s hope they work with Devon.”
Hear Huard’s full take on Witherspoon in Blue 88, the final installment of the podcast below. Blue 88, where Huard answers three football questions, airs daily at 7:45 a.m. on Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk.
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