The quarterback picture for the Seattle Seahawks is a lot clearer with Geno Smith officially being named the team’s starter. ESPN’s Brady Henderson projected the Seahawks to carry only two quarterbacks on the active roster. With Drew Lock now becoming the backup, the Seahawks could release Jacob Eason as the team solidifies its final 53-man roster.
“By picking Smith to start the opener, the Seahawks are going with experience over upside,” Henderson wrote on August 27, 2022. “It’s not that Smith ran away with the competition by lighting it up. It’s more so that he began in the lead thanks to his understanding of offensive coordinator Shane Waldron’s offense, and Lock never did enough to catch up — at least in Carroll’s eyes. It certainly didn’t help that Lock missed the second preseason game — which he was set to start — with COVID-19.”
The Seahawks claimed Eason off waivers last October after he was released by the Indianapolis Colts. Seattle could cut Eason and look to re-sign the quarterback to the team’s practice squad if he is able to clear waivers unclaimed. The Seahawks could also keep all three quarterbacks but would have to make a cut at another crucial position group.
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Eason was once a highly touted NFL prospect as a former five-star quarterback. He was 247Sports’ No. 4 ranked overall prospect in 2016, when he initially enrolled at Georgia. In 2019, he transferred to Washington but was unable to establish himself as one of the top quarterbacks in the 2020 pre-draft process.
The Colts selected Eason in the fourth round with the No. 122 overall pick. Heading into the draft, NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein gave Eason a second-round projection, comparing him to longtime NFL quarterback Carson Palmer.
“His elite size and arm talent are reminiscent of Carson Palmer, but issues with pocket poise and getting through progressions cleanly are more reminiscent of Brock Osweiler,” Zierlein detailed in his pre-draft evaluation. “Eason is fun to watch when he’s ripping throws around the field and taking deep play-action shots, but a lack of mobility inside and outside the pocket is troubling, considering his ineffectiveness when pressured.
“He’s relatively inexperienced and should continue to develop from the pocket, but poise is hard to fix, and handling exotic blitz packages is not a given. He’s a pro-style, play-action-based quarterback with average starter potential and an average backup floor.”
Highest-graded QB this preseason?
Jacob Eason – 94.5 👀pic.twitter.com/G0lvyY0L7N
— PFF (@PFF) August 16, 2021
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll named Smith the starter for Week 1, but all indications are that the veteran has a firm grip on the QB1 spot. Lock’s three interceptions during the preseason finale help solidified Smith’s ability to win the starting quarterback job.
“Geno was solid in his outing, and Geno is going to start,” Carroll explained during his August 26 press conference. “He’s going to start the opener, and he’s earned it. He’s won the job with the time and the time frames that got messed up for us for Drew. Drew just ran out of time, didn’t make it [in] his bid for it, and so I’m clear about that. I just want to let you know so everybody knows. So you don’t have to ask about it anymore.
“In the meantime, Drew’s got to keep on battling because he can play — and he’s got all kinds of stuff in him. And I want him to be ready at [a] moment’s call, and he’s going to keep growing and pushing and developing as a fantastic player, I think, and I have no problem playing with him, too. So, we’re fortunate to have two guys that can go.”