The Seahawks recently traded Russel Wilson. They now have a top 10 draft pick and the question on fans’ minds is who could be the person to fill that No. 9 position. As we head for the April 28 draft, there are several prospects the Seahawks might consider in the first round but the person to watch out for is cornerback Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner.
So who exactly is Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner and why is he a perfect pick for the Seahawks? Well, Gardner is a Detroit native and a 3-star recruit in high school. Notably, Gardner never got scholarship offers from Michigan’s Big Ten schools and never played defensive back in high school. As a senior in high school, he weighed 160 pounds only.
After helping Cincinnati make its first berth in the College Football Playoffs as a junior, Gardner allowed only three receptions (on four targets) for 17 yards versus Alabama. According to Pro Football Focus, he was a first-team All-American in 2021 and never allowed more than 18 passing yards in any game. In 33 career games, he has nine interceptions and 17 pass breakups, with no touchdowns allowed in coverage.
He might be an excellent match for the Seattle Seahawks because a lot of people have compared Gardner to the Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman because of his size, quickness, and confidence. If the Seahawks’ scouts feel the same, Gardner should be the easy choice at No. 9 for the team. Actually, it’s a great matchup.
Gardner embodies everything Pete Carroll looks for in a cornerback—size, length, speed, and, of course, confidence. In a recent tweet, Gardner stated “I’m the greatest draft pick in the league. God knows how modest and confident I am and how much effort I put in to even be able to make that remark, and that’s all that counts. Confidence and cockiness are required for the position I’m in,”
When Russell Wilson retires, Carroll has said that he intends to rebuild the defense to be even more dominating, and acquiring a cornerback with Sherman’s press coverage skillsets would be a wonderful place to start. Additionally, the Seahawks are in need of a new cornerback with the departure of D.J. Reed to the New York Jets in free agency.
No one disputes that Gardner can play as a starter right away as a rookie cornerback. If Gardner is still available at No. 9, the Seahawks should choose him. According to several draft experts, Houston too might choose Gardner in the top three.
However, there are a few reasons why the Seahawks would not want to sign him. When was a Seahawks obvious selection made under John Schneider-Pete Carroll? You could trade down and take a cornerback like Trent McDuffie or Andrew Booth with the first selection if the Seahawks are looking to acquire additional draft capital, which they are known to do. Even though Schneider and Carroll have participated in 12 drafts together, they have never selected a cornerback in the first round of the selection process. They picked Shaquill Griffin, a cornerback, in the third round in 2017. (90th overall). For now, we can only wait to see if the draft will happen.
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