Does Damarious Randall Sign Slam Door for Potential Richard Sherman, Seahawks Reunion?

Days after the veteran defense attorney suggested he would sign on the team again, the Seahawks officially returned Damarious Randall to a one-year contract on Wednesday, specifically listing him as a cornerback rather than a security officer.

This development may or may not be significant, as Seattle has lost two 2020 starters Shaquill Griffin and Quinton Dunbar freehand to Jacksonville and Detroit. With both players leaving, the team only has three players in DJ Reed, Tre Flowers and the recently signed Ahkello Witherspoon with 10 or more career NFL starts. None of these players are under contract after 2021.

Behind these three, the Seahawks have a great lack of talent and experience. Jordan Miller, who signed a reserve / future deal, played frugally in eleven games for the Falcons in 2019 and 2020, while Gavin Heslop rose as a practice squad for a single game last season.

Given these deep-seated concerns, it’s no surprise that Seattle has made it clear that the team intends to get Randall back into his natural position for the 2021 season. When he came from the US state of Arizona, he was selected by the Packers in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft and started 30 games at Cornerback in three seasons, which gave him a great experience advantage.

But do the Seahawks really expect Randall to compete for game time outside? And does his return rule out the possibility of Richard Sherman returning to his old turf?

The answer on both fronts is, well, maybe?

From a size standpoint, Randall doesn’t fit what Seattle has usually been looking for from the outside. He’s only 5-foot-11, weighs 196 pounds with 30 1/4-inch arms, well below the team’s 32-inch threshold. This was usually a deal breaker that played outward in the team’s scheme.

In contrast, on the 2015 NFL combine, Randall passed all of Seahawks’ athletic testing criteria with flying colors, including a 38-inch vertical jump and completing the 3-cone drill in 6.83 seconds. He also ran the 40 yard dash in 4.46 seconds and produced 14 bench presses.

Between the lines, Randall intermittently flashed in Green Bay, showing off the ball skills that made him a star for the Sun Devils in Pac 12. He amassed 10 interceptions and 32 passes that were defended in three seasons, and proved to be the secondary playmaker. He also had a pair of picks in five playoff games.

However, due to his aggressive nature, Randall was prone to large plays, as he allowed a minimum of 13 meters per reception in each of those seasons. Per Pro Football Focus, he also allowed 18 touchdown receptions in coverage, including handing over 10 touchdowns in 2016 alone.

While Randall is only 28 years old, such shaky production over an extended period suggests he’s not an NFL starter player. Coach Pete Carroll also loves reclamation projects and is widely regarded as the godfather when it comes to training defenders. So he’s clearly seeing something that he thinks he can work with.

As for Sherman, the four-time first-team all-pro cornerback is still a free agent and is stated on the Chris Collinsworth podcast that he won’t expect to sign with a team until drafting is finalized later this month is.

“Well, apparently we have to wait for the draft to happen before anything else shakes out because everyone has their hopes and dreams in the draft, which is understandable,” noted Sherman. I’ll wait until we have a young pup and when we do can’t have a young puppy we’ll take an old fool So that’s where we sit. “

Sherman, who turned 33 in March, recently signed a three-year, $ 31 million deal with the 49ers. Due to the lowered salary cap, the team with the veteran defender was up front that he probably wouldn’t be back for cost reasons, and instead signed Jason Verrett and Emmanuel Moseley, who are expected to be the starters next year.

After a season of only five games due to a calf injury, like many aging veterans who haven’t signed the dotted line, Sherman may have to settle for far less money on a one-year deal. Waiting for the draft to begin can help generate better deals in your favor from teams that don’t make the cornerback position.

What does that mean for the chances of him playing in Seattle again? While it is a possibility until he signs elsewhere, despite the NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reporting that Sherman is “open” to a return and the organization has a mutual interest, nothing has happened so far.

In the short term, Seattle could certainly use an upgrade to that position, and if Sherman is healthy, he’s still arguably a top 15 cornerback. He is only two years away from an All-Pro selection of the second team in San Francisco and has received the highest rating from Pro Football Focus (88.9) this season. After leading the team to their first Super Bowl title, he’s a real franchise pillar that most fans would love to welcome back with open arms.

But in an off-season already dominated by talk of Russell Wilson’s dissatisfaction with the organization, there is a risk of bringing in a vocal character like Sherman. There’s plenty of evidence the two stars didn’t get along, including Sherman who allegedly “You shit!” at Wilson, after intercepting a passport in June 2014. He remained hostile to the signal caller even after his crucial interception at the end of the game in Super Bowl XLIX.

Although Sherman’s Achilles tear and high-priced contract played a role in the decision to cut him after the 2017 season, reports surfaced indicating that the team was taking the step to clean up the locker room. Defensive End Michael Bennett was sold to the Eagles as part of an extensive squad elimination around the same time after the team missed the playoffs for the first time in six years.

When asked for his thoughts on Sherman’s potential to return to the Seahawks, former NFL head coach Jim Mora Jr. stated that it was hard to tell whether it was plausible or not without all of the facts about Wilson’s relationship and to know Sherman. In his view, this dynamic should be the biggest factor in making such a decision.

“If there is any sense that there is a gap between these two, that they are not in concert, then you don’t want to go that route,” said Mora. “But if it’s something that’s a little better than blow job and makeup and maybe in the background they’re close friends, then you can do that.”

While he admires Sherman and has already cemented his Hall of Famer status in his book, Mora believes the risks outweigh the opportunities in this case. Given that the Wilson drama is “subsiding,” he thinks the Seahawks are wise to steer clear of a four-alarm fire potential reunion.

“I would say that getting married again is sometimes not always the happiest result,” explained Mora. “I think you should keep going and I’m not saying this out of disrespect to Richard Sherman because he’s one of my all time favorite corners. I love watching him play, his mindset, I love everything about him.”

“But for the health of the organization? If there is any chance that there is a problem in the locker room, you really need to avoid it.”

With limited headroom, Seattle appears ready for now to start a new season with Reed, Flowers, Witherspoon and Randall as the team’s top four corners, and leaves many question marks at a critical point in Carroll’s plan. Despite the limited design capital, another player could be added to the mix in the design.

But these situations are always fluid, and without knowing where things are in relation to the relationship between Sherman and the Seahawks, the chances of seeing each other again cannot be completely ruled out. If its price continues to drop and the organization is confident that its locker room will fit, this could be the best move for both parties later in the off-season.

Comments are closed.