The Seahawks drafted a punter for the first time under Pete Carroll and John Schneider, selecting University of Texas All-American Michael Dickson in the fifth-round of the 2018 draft.
The Seahawks were so eager to land Dickson, the 2017 Ray Guy Award winner, that they gave up a seventh-round pick (No. 226 overall) in order to move up seven spots in the fifth round, taking the Australian with Pick No. 149.
Dickson, who grew up playing Australian Rules Football in Sydney, led the nation in gross punting average (47.4) and net average (44.2) last season, and he pinned opponents inside the 20-yard line on 42 of his 84 punts. Dickson was named MVP of the Longhorns' win in the Texas Bowl, downing 10 of 11 punts inside the 15 yard line and seven inside the 10.
Dickson realizes that it's not usual for a team to take a punter in the fifth round, let alone trade up to do so, but he plans on making that a good decision for the Seahawks.
"It's not a thing that normally happens, but I'm going to do everything I can to make that pick worth it to the Seahawks," he said. "I'm going to show as many people as I can that it was a good decision to pick me and I'm going to work my butt off every day to make the organization proud that they chose me."
Asked about getting into American football, Dickson said, "I played Aussie Rules Football for about 10 years of my junior life back in Australia. I always had a big punt/kick in that sport, always working on how far I could kick that type of ball. Friends used to go joke around that I should learn how to do American punting. I should try to move to America and punt American style. At the end of my Aussie Rules career, and I nearly went professional but didn't quite make the cut, so I decided I was really going to give American football punting a shot. I looked up online, whether there was any kind of choice in Australia, got in contact with Nathan Chapman and then he taught me how to punt an American style football for about four months before I received a scholarship offer from Texas back in 2015. So, I moved there in August and was in fall camp right away and really had to learn everything really quickly my freshman year. Then, after that it kept going from there, and I kept improving and kept improving and ended up declaring a year early."
Check out photos of Texas punter Michael Dickson, who the Seahawks selected with the No. 149 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.