Now that the 2021 season has officially come to an end with Super Bowl LVI in the books, it's time to look ahead to an offseason that will help shape the Seahawks' future in 2022. With free agency kicking off next month and the draft following in April, Seahawks.com is taking a position-by-position look at where the team stands. So far we've covered the offensive line and the defensive line, and today we turn our attention to tight end. Check back Friday for a look at where things stand at linebacker.
The Seahawks made Gerald Everett one of their first additions in free agency, bringing from L.A. a player familiar with offensive coordinator Shane Waldron's offense, and the former Rams tight end proved to be a solid addition, finishing as the team's third leading receiver behind Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf despite missing two games on the COVID-19 list, finishing the year with 48 catches for 478 yards and four touchdowns. Even more encouraging, Everett put up his best numbers late in the season and the offense played at its best down the stretch in its first season under Waldron.
From a pass-catching standpoint, Will Dissly had a relatively quiet season with 21 catches for 231 yards and one touchdown, but Dissly has a much bigger impact on the offense that doesn't show up on the stat sheet. Most notably, Dissly is very good run blocker and had a big role in the Seahawks finishing the season.
Unfortunately for Colby Parkinson and the Seahawks, the second-year tight end saw a very strong training camp cut short by a foot injury that caused him to miss the start of the season. Parkinson was able to make a quick return and appeared in 14 games, but in a limited role. Even so, the Seahawks remain high on Parkinson and, depending on what happens in free agency, he could be in line to step into a much bigger role in 2022.
Question to answer this offseason: Will Gerald Everett and Will Dissly be back?
When it comes to this position, the offseason question is an obvious one—what happens with Dissly and Everett in free agency. If the Seahawks can re-sign both, they'll feel very good about the position group heading into the draft, returning the trio of Dissly, Everett and Parkinson, as well as Tyler Mabry who split time between the practice squad and 53-man roster last year. Even if only one of those two re-signs, the Seahawks will likely feel like, while more depth is needed, they have a good foundation to build upon. If, however, both Everett and Dissly were to leave in free agency, the position then become one of need in free agency and/or the draft. Yes, the Seahawks are high on Parkinson and Mabry has made a strong impression on coaches in practice, but Seattle would need to add to that group regardless of how much faith they have in those two young tight ends should their top two from last season end up leaving.
A look back at some of the best photos of Seahawks tight end Gerald Everett from the 2021 season.
Biggest reason for optimism in 2022: The improved late-season production.
No, we don't yet know if Everett will re-sign with the Seahawks, but if Seattle can bring him back, the hope will be that he can produce at a level similar to how he did late in the 2021 season. Other than an eight-catch, 63-yard performance in a midseason loss at Green Bay, Everett's production dipped as the entire offense struggled midseason, but he came on strong along with the rest of the offense late in the year, scoring three of his four touchdowns in the final seven games, and gaining 184 of his 478 total yards in the final four games.
And even if Everett isn't back, it's still encouraging that as the entire offense got going late in the season in its first year under Shane Waldron, that position group did as well. Dissly didn't experience a similar late-season surge in part thanks to a stint on the COVID-19 list as well as a heel injury, but even Parkinson got in on the action a bit late in the year, recording three of his five receptions and 26 of his 33 yards in the final two games of the season.