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Tuesday Round-Up: Mario Edwards Jr. Helping to Transform Seahawks Defense  

Mario Edwards Jr. is settling in with the Seahawks, helping to turn around the perception of Seattle’s defense. 


Good afternoon, 12s. Here's a look at what's out there today — Tuesday, September 26 — about your Seattle Seahawks.

Ninth-year defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. continues to help the Seahawks defense improve.

This offseason, Seattle signed defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. to add to a rebuilt defensive front. Just four weeks into the 2023 season, the Florida State alum, who won a starting job in camp, has made a difference, especially when it comes to a much-improved run defense.

After struggling to stop the run last season, the franchise made changes up front in free agency, signing Edwards, former Denver Broncos defensive end Dre’Mont Jones and bringing back defensive tackle Jarran Reed after two seasons away. Last month, Edwards made his debut on The Sound, sharing his prediction for the change to come in 2023 when opposing offenses face Seattle's front-seven.

"We are going to bring a lot to the table," said Edwards "From (Boye) Mafe, to (Derick) D-Hall, to DT (Darrell Taylor). Those guys are athletic and strong and can bend on the edge. On the inside you have Dre, me, and J-Reed. I just look at it like a three-headed monster. You get a little bit of everything with us three. I think we are going to play some hard-mouthed football this year."

Over the last two weeks, Edwards' prediction has been exactly right, as the Seahawks have won two straight. After falling 30-13 to open the season at home against the Los Angeles Rams, Seattle beat the Detroit Lions in a 37-31 overtime road thriller. While Seattle's offense has put up 74 points in two weeks, it's the run defense and pass rush that's seen the greatest shift since last season. Seattle is allowing just 79.3 yards on the ground per contest, ranking No. 6 league-wide, and opponents are averaging just 2.8 yards per carry against Seattle.

Heading into a Week 4 matchup against the New York Giants, Seattle has five sacks, all of which have come in the last six quarters of action. Edwards contributed two solo tackles and a tackle for loss against Detroit. But against the Panthers, the Florida State alum took his game to another level, leading the team in quarterback pressures (5) on 42 snaps. For his efforts, Pro Football Focus awarded Edwards a 90.8 pass rush grade to lead the defense. On the season, Edwards Jr.'s 84.9 pass rush grade ranks No. 6 of all interior defensive linemen league-wide.

As the 2-1 Seahawks prepare to face the Giants on Monday Night Football, Edwards has begun to make his impact felt for his sixth franchise. It's still a very long season to go, but Edwards looks early to be a fitting puzzle piece in the new-look Seahawks defense of the future.  

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