WR Jordan Kent – His athleticism has many around Seahawks head quarters drooling. He’s 6-4, 210 and he can really run and leap. He’s an even more athletic version of Nate Burleson and, should he ever make his way onto the field, he’d be the biggest target they’ve had out wide in about five years. He’s very raw though, having played only two years of college football, so he’s got a lot to learn about being a pro receiver, but you just can’t deny the fact that, athletically, he’s on par with players like Randy Moss and Torry Holt and if he can ever can figure out the intricacies of the position he could be a very, very good receiver down the road.
WR Logan Payne – He reminds me a lot of Darrell Jackson in size and speed. He’s a very precise route-runner and is a perfect fit in the west coast system. Payne’s biggest problem was he got caught in the numbers game at wideout this year. Seattle had a ton of prospects and only six spots open, so he had an uphill battle, but he made plays every chance he got during the preseason and the coaches really seemed to like what he did throughout camp. Payne’s physicality is what really sets him apart from some other receivers Seattle has on their roster. He’s a very good blocker, coming from a system in Minnesota that demanded that their receivers be excellent blockers. I don’t think you’ve heard the last from Mr. Payne with the Seahawks.
TE Joe Newton – Because of Seattle’s lack of depth at the position, Newton was a no-brainer to end up on the practice squad. Honestly, it’s a surprise someone else out there didn’t claim him off waivers. Newton has a big body and very soft hands, but he’s not very athletic and he definitely won’t make Seattle fans forget the athleticism of Jerramy Stevens. What Newton has that Stevens didn’t is a good attitude and a solid work-ethic and the NFL is full of guys with Newton’s athletic limitations that can have long careers. Benny Joppru is a better blocker at this point, that’s why Newton didn’t make the final roster. I expect him to make his presence felt at some point in the very near future with the Seahawks.
OG Steve Vallos – He’s not the most athletic player, but he just gets the job done when he gets after a guy. He relies on sound technique and a good motor to work on defensive tackles, but he can get overpowered at times. Seattle liked Vallos enough to draft him in April (seventh round) and he comes with an excellent resume – All ACC three years in a row and a four-year starter. Because of the sketchy injury history of one of the Seahawks’ guards (Floyd Womack) the relative inexperience of another (Mansfield Wrotto) and the age of a third player (Chris Gray) it isn’t surprising that Vallos ended up on Seattle’s practice squad and it wouldn’t be a big shock to see him get some playing time this year either.
FB David Kirtman – It’s very surprising to see Kirtman struggle so much this early in his pro career. He’s got all the skills to be a solid receiver and blocker, but he just hasn’t been that impressive during camp and the Seahawks have liked another player (Leonard Weaver) to put him in the backup role to Mack Strong. The fact that Kirtman is from the area, it’s not a surprise he’s back and he could eventually become a solid special teams player if the need arises to sign him to the regular roster.
LB Cameron Jensen – With the performance of Will Herring during the preseason, Jensen just ran into a buzz saw he couldn’t overcome. However, the coaching staff loves his motor and his smarts. He runs well and is very physical when he arrives at the ball. Jensen has a very good chance of becoming a contributor on special teams this year with a chance he could impress enough in his second-year with the Seahawks to warrant keeping him on the final roster next year.
DE Nu’u Tafisi – He’s got a non-stop motor and the ability to make plays off the edge on occasion. He isn’t a dynamic pass-rusher, but the coaching staff loved his ability to hold strong at the point of attack and the fact that he played against some of the top skill-position talent in the country at the University of California, made him a very intriguing prospect to keep on the practice squad should one of Seattle’s top five ends go down. Tafisi is limited athletically, but he makes up for his limitations with non-stop motor and outstanding strength.
CB Kevin Hobbs – Hobbs really stuck out during the preseason as a playmaker on the outside. He doesn’t have elite speed, but he’s very quick, reads the ball well in the air and he has enough speed to run with most of the receivers in the league. He’s got good size and is very physical with receivers as well and it seems every year that Seattle needs to sign a corner late in the season and for their playoff run. I expect Hobbs to play at some point this year and by keeping him on their practice squad, the Seahawks have allowed themselves to continue to work with him in their system and scheme.