Tedric Thompson is able backup and sees time filling in for injured defensive backs
General Manager John Schneider usually only carries four safeties on the roster each year. Heading into 2017, you would assume those four would be Earl Thomas and Bradley McDougald at free safety, with Kam Chancellor and either Delano Hill or Tedric Thompson at strong safety.
2017 feels like a new era in the Seahawks defense, however. Thompson is too valuable to be let go and get picked up by another team. With a new round of four rookie defensive backs coming to Training Camp out of the Draft, it seems Schneider and Carroll have sensed a future beyond the Legion of Boom as it now stands. The bizarre trade rumors swirling around Richard Sherman notwithstanding, Chancellor will need another extension soon, and by the time Sherman’s contract is up at the end of the 2018 season, he’ll be 30 and possibly wanting to move on.
That’s probably why Schneider and Carroll will try all the new safeties at cornerback as well, to see who could fill in where in the Seahawks’ defensive backfield. Players are bound to get hurt in the secondary again this year. While Sherman has been relatively durable, Chancellor dealt with his share of injuries, and Thomas is coming back from a broken leg. When Thompson’s chance to see the field as more than a rotational defensive back comes, he’ll seize it with both hands.
Carroll will find that there’s almost no drop-off from, let’s say Jeremy Lane, and Thompson when the big ball hawk out of Colorado takes the field. You may remember Thompson as the energetic safety flying around for the Buffaloes against the Huskies and Cougars last year. He racked up 155 tackles, 10 interceptions, and 37 pass breakups in his final two seasons with Colorado. Put in a simple zone scheme, he could make up for his perceived lack of NFL athleticism.