Why the Seahawks’ Drew Lock, not Geno Smith, will be Seattle’s QB

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The Seahawks are addressing quarterback position issues for the first time in a decade. They traded longtime starter Russell Wilson to the Broncos in the 2022 NFL offseason, and that left them without a proven starter on the list.

As such, Seattle was expected to target a quarterback during the 2022 NFL draft. Instead, the Seahawks didn’t pick a single passer and notably passed Malik Willis four times.

When that happened, it was suggested they would be in the running for Baker Mayfield should the Browns trade him. However, ESPN’s Dianna Russini reported May 3 that the Seahawks have “no interest” in Mayfield and are comfortably “riding” a quarterback already on their roster.

That would be Drew Lock. The Seahawks acquired Lock as part of the Wilson trade after he spent the first three seasons of his career with the Broncos. The 2019 second-round pick is currently behind Geno Smith on the depth chart but is expected to overtake the veteran as he gets more comfortable with Seattle’s offense.

Lock has a career record of only 8-13 as a starter and has completed just 59.4 percent of his passes for 4,740 yards, 25 touchdowns and 20 interceptions. So why is Seattle willing to trust him? It’s about trust in your abilities and the fit to the team.

2022 NFL DRAFT: Why the Seahawks passed over Malik Willis, didn’t pick a QB

Why Drew Lock is expected to start for the Seahawks

There are two reasons Lock prefers to start for the Seahawks. The first is that Seahawks GM John Schneider seems very confident in his quarterback abilities.

Albert Breer from Sports Illustrated reports that Schneider “really liked” Lock ahead of the 2019 NFL Draft. In fact, he compared his acquisition in the Wilson trade to that of Jared Goff in the Matthew Stafford trade.

Lock, at least from a Seattle perspective, was not an objection to the Russell Wilson trade (much like the Lions really liked and wanted to add to Jared Goff in the Matthew Stafford trade a year ago).

It doesn’t appear that Schneider’s faith in Lock has waned — at least not yet. Shortly after Lock’s acquisition, Schneider was asked if the team would add another player at the quarterback position. He said the team will “continue to explore options” but acknowledged the team has Lock’s potential.

“We have a lot of faith in Drew,” Schneider said via Adam Jude of the Seattle Times.

We look forward to a change of scenery for him. … He’s a guy that I think gets beaten down a bit by the media. So we’re excited to bring him into our culture with our coaching staff and we’ll continue to look for guys who can compete with him.

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While Schneider promised to give Lock more competition, the Seahawks have only made one move at quarterback since that trade in early March. That was the signing of Smith, who has been a backup since his third season with the Jets in 2015.

The other part of the equation, as Breer notes, is Lock’s fit on Seattle’s offense. Shane Waldron is entering his second season as the team’s offensive coordinator, operating a system very similar to Rich Scangarello’s.

Lock’s splits with Scangarello, who coached him in just five games as a rookie, and without him are stark.

location recording Comp % meters per attempt TD’s INT’s valuation
With Scangarello 4-1 64.1 6.5 7 3 89.7
Without Scangarello 4-12 57.9 6.7 18 17 76.4

Suffice it to say that Lock could benefit from being in a Scangarello-type system. Maybe Waldron could offer him that and help him stabilize his game and avoid bad passes and ball losses.

MORE: Pete Carroll says Seahawks unlikely to trade for QB, praises Drew Lock

Seahawks QB depth chart

Below is a look at how the Seahawks quarterback depth chart is currently shaping up.

rank player
1 Geno Smith
2 Drew Lock
3 Jacob Eson

It’s no surprise that Smith is currently serving as the Seahawks’ No. 1 quarterback. He has the current advantage over Lock due to “familiarity” since Waldron explained in a recent radio interview.

That makes sense. After all, Smith is entering his fourth season with the team, while Lock is only entering his fourth year in the league. And Lock has only been with the Seahawks for about two and a half months at the time of this writing, so it will take him time to get used to his new team’s offense.

However, once Seattle has its offense installed at OTAs and in training camp, Lock will get plenty of opportunities to compete with Smith for the starting job. And it seems the Seahawks would prefer Lock to win.

Of course it’s still early. Maybe Smith stays at the top of the depth chart, or maybe the Seahawks are chasing someone like Mayfield or Jimmy Garoppolo to shore up their quarterback space.

But no matter what, Seattle seems to have high hopes for Lock. it’s just a question of whether they’ll catch on.

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