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Bruce Irvin: Return to Seahawks?
Richard Sherman may have let this one slip: Seaside Joe 1516
The Seattle Seahawks have gone through a makeover in the front-seven, bringing back Bobby Wagner and Jarran Reed, while adding Dre’Mont Jones and Devin Bush, but in actuality their edge players so far remain the same and maybe John Schneider will soon take that “repeat” of 2022 a step further.
The top-three outside linebackers in snaps from last season are Uchenna Nwosu (904), Darrell Taylor (485), and Boye Mafe (424), and there’s no reason to expect any of them to not make the team, even if the Seahawks lean back into the 4-3 base defense again. Two players who didn’t play last season, Alton Robinson and Tyreke Smith, also remain on the roster and are expected to compete for a spot on the final-53.
But it may not end there. Bruce Irvin, who played in 400 snaps for Seattle in 2022 as a surprise midseason signing and was probably more productive than even Pete Carroll expected, remains unsigned. John Schneider and Pete have made it known that the Seahawks continue to have feelers out for some former players and sort of handshake agreements that they want to get something done after the draft and though we’ve assumed that just means Al Woods and Poona Ford, it could be for Irvin.
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Interestingly, on his The Volume podcast this week, Richard Sherman casually mentioned Irvin—not Woods or Ford—as someone who the Seahawks intend to re-sign.
“I think they’re still going to bring back Bruce Irvin.”
Of course, this is made more notable by the fact that Sherman is presumably friends with Irvin given that they played together in Seattle for four years, so it’s not like he would need to have inside sources in the Seahawks to have this information; he would only need to hear it from Bruce. “Hey Bruce, you gonna play this year?” “Yeah, Pete told me they want to get something done.”
That’s not a conversation — or a player-team agreement — that is hard for me to imagine. Pete and John have said that they are not done bringing back veteran players. Bruce isn’t signed and he said he doesn’t intend to retire. He has signed with Seattle not once, but twice in the last three years. Therefore, the Seahawks may enter training camp with Nwosu, Taylor, Mafe, and Irvin leading a group that includes Robinson, Smith, Chris Garrett, Joshua Onugiogu, and presumably a couple of rookies.
The Seahawks may only need five edge rushers for Week 1. I don’t think this has to have a dramatic effect on their draft plans, but having Irvin ready to go would imply that Seattle may not feel desperate.
Read Wednesday’s Bonus Article: 10 Thinks I Thing about the Seahawks 2023 draft!
And Bruce Irvin is probably as good of a mentor and teammate—not necessarily just to the draft prospect who we all know needs a mentor, but really to any defensive pick—as Pete Carroll has ever known.
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