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Seahawks Have Just Three Picks In The 2021 Draft, But Already Added Three Impact Players 

How the Seahawks ended up with just three picks in the 2021 NFL Draft.

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Unless a trade happens between now and Thursday evening, the 2021 NFL draft will begin with the Seahawks holding only three picks.

  • Round 2, No. 56 overall
  • Round 4, No. 129 overall
  • Round 7, Pick No. 250 overall

Yes, general manager John Schneider very likely will try to make some moves to add to that total before the weekend is over, but as things stand now, there's a real chance the Seahawks will have their smallest draft class in franchise history, with the previous low being five players selected, which happened in both 1994 and 1997.

But while Seahawks fans may not like seeing their team add so few players in this year's draft, it is worth remembering how Seattle got to this point, and in particular the players who have already been added with those missing picks.

Last summer, the Seahawks traded away this year's first- and third-round picks as part of the package to acquire All-Pro safety Jamal Adams, and in his first year with the Seahawks, Adams recorded 9.5 sacks, a record for defensive backs, and earned Pro-Bowl and second-team All-Pro honors.

During the season, Seattle sent its seventh-rounder, as well as reserve lineman B.J. Finney, to Cincinnati for Pro-Bowl defensive end Carlos Dunlap II, a player who recorded 5.0 sacks in eight games and helped turn Seattle's pass rush into one of the league's best in the second half of the season. And yes, Dunlap was briefly a free agent this offseason, but he credited last season's experience in Seattle with wanting to re-sign with the Seahawks, so that trade is still largely responsible for him being in Seattle in 2021 even if he was released and re-signed.

Most recently, Seattle sent a fifth-round pick to Las Vegas to acquire veteran guard Gabe Jackson, then later signed him to a contract extension. While it's not yet clear which spot Jackson will play—he has experience at left and right guard—he figures to upgrade Seattle's interior line play in 2021 and beyond.

And yes, this year's sixth-rounder was swapped for a seventh last year, a pick used on tight end Stephen Sullivan, who is no longer with the team, but other than that the Seahawks have already used 2021 draft picks to significantly upgrade their roster. After all, that above list of picks looks a lot better if you add how all those picks were used:

  • Round 1: S Jamal Adams
  • Round 2, No. 56 overall
  • Round 3: S Jamal Adams
  • Round 4, No. 129 overall
  • Round 5: G Gabe Jackson
  • Round 6: TE Stephen Sullivan (now with Carolina)
  • Round 7: DE Carlos Dunlap II
  • Round 7, Pick No. 250 overall

And it's not entirely a coincidence that the Seahawks were willing to head into this particular draft so light on draft capital. There's more uncertainty around this year's draft class due to the COVID-19 pandemic that limited college football seasons, cut back on the contact teams could have with draft prospects and eliminated the NFL scouting combine, making it harder for teams to evaluate. Additionally, this year's draft isn't as deep as most in terms of total numbers due to college players having the option of an extra year of eligibility, again due to COVID-19, meaning some players who would normally be in this year's class will instead be part of the 2022 draft. So if ever there were a time to trade away picks for proven veterans, the Seahawks recognized this was potentially the year to do that.

So remember, when you watch the 2021 draft, if you're lamenting the picks the Seahawks don't have, don't forget to also recognize the talent they've already added to the roster.

A look back at some of the best photos of Seahawks safety Jamal Adams from the 2020 season.

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