Hilliker’s Highlights… A very important off-season

Austin Hilliker, Sports Editor

Russell_Wilson_vs_Vikings,_November_4,_2012
Russell Wilson, quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks, has brought the team to two straight Super Bowl appearances.

Losing a game is never easy, but losing a game that more than 114 million people watched can be life-altering.

For some Seattle Seahawks players, the next step in their career won’t be in a blue and white jersey in front of the 12th man. For others, it won’t even be in the National Football League. It’s the sad truth, but the NFL is a business, and athletes are constantly being cycled through it.

At the end of April, a class of fresh and eager talent will enter the NFL and their lives will be altered, but for the better.

April 30 through May 2, 256 young men will join the NFL and compete to play on the biggest stage that football has to offer. Some of these players will be future “Hall of Famers” and some won’t make it past training camp.

If the Seahawks play their cards right, they might be able to pick up a few players that could bring them back to a third straight Super Bowl. In other words, this is a very important offseason.

For our hometown Hawks, there aren’t too many glaring pieces that need to be added to the puzzle, but at the end of the day, every team is trying to get better.

For starters, a point of emphasis will be on offensive and defensive lineman this year. The Seahawks have had issues in the trenches in the past, especially in terms of injuries, and if this problem can be fixed, our favorite running back might be able to experience “beast-mode” more than just a few times throughout the season.

Looking at the draft board, a few players could help Seattle out.

Jordan Phillips, a 6-foot-6-inch, 334-pound nose tackle out of Oklahoma State could be a player still waiting to hear his name called by the time the Seahawks get their turn to pick somebody. This monster of a man could cause quite the disruption in the 2015-16 season. A disruption that could make the Seahawks defense even more frightening.

On the offensive side of the ball, a name to look out for is T.J. Clemmings, a 6-foot-6-inch, 315-pound offensive tackle from the University of Pittsburgh. With his long athletic frame, he could be an addition to the line where he could compete for a starting position. At worst, he would sit behind offensive tackle, James Carpenter, a veteran of four years to the NFL.

Next on the list would be to select a lengthy and physical wide receiver.

All draft boards point to Amari Cooper, the standout Alabama record setter. But in all reality, he won’t be there when it’s time for Seattle to pick.

More realistic options include wide receivers Dorial Green-Beckham from the University of Missouri, Devin Smith from Ohio State University or Jaelen Strong from Arizona State University. Picking up one of these game-changers could amount to something special in the long run.

When draft day arrives, it will be important for the Seattle Seahawks to fill at least the lineman and wide receiver positions, alongside picking up other utility players.

It’s a very important offseason for the Hawks, an offseason that could continue a run for yet another Super Bowl.

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