June 18, 2024

The Seattle Seahawks have plenty of offensive playmakers, and wide receiver Dee Eskridge’s roster status is far from guaranteed. Bleacher Report’s David Kenyon identified the top likely cut candidate for each NFL team, with Eskridge receiving the nod for Seattle.

“Honesty is appreciated. General manager John Schneider effectively indicated the organization kept Dee Eskridge solely because of the coaching change,” Kenyon explained in a May 19, 2024 post titled, “The Best Player Who Could Still Be Cut from Every NFL Roster In the 2024 Offseason.” “After 373 career snaps, the 2021 second-round pick has only 17 catches and 122 yards. He’s currently ranked as the sixth receiver.

Consider Eskridge’s numbers: 17 receptions for 122 yards and one touchdown. No, this is for all three of Eskridge’s NFL seasons combined. Eskridge did not register a reception in his four appearances during the 2023 season.

Teams do not expect this level of output from a former second-round choice. The Seahawks selected Eskridge with the 56th overall choice in the second round of the 2021 NFL draft. The coaching move to Mike Macdonald may provide Eskridge with a fresh start, maybe saving his NFL career.

Seahawks Rumors: Seattle Receiver Dee Eskidge Could Be on the Hot Seat Heading Into Final Season of His Deal

Eskridge is entering the final season of a four-year, $5.9 million rookie contract, according to Spotrac. The receiver is expected to have a $1.4 million cap hit in 2024. Seahawks general manager John Schneider cited the coaching change as the reason Eskridge is still on the roster.

“We want to give Dee a fresh start, a second chance,” the Seahawks’ general manager said on “The John Schneider Show” on March 14. “… If our coaching staff had been the same as last year, we would have most likely said, ‘Hey Dee, it’s probably a good time for you to seek a fresh start somewhere else. But everyone in the building loves him, and there’s a new staff here, so we just told him, ‘Let’s try this again.'”

Seahawks Receiver Dee Eskridge Was Expected to Flash as a Returner

Schneider: Eskridge gets 'fresh start' with new Seahawks staff - Seattle Sports

 

However, Eskridge will most likely need to prove himself to the new coaching staff during training camp in order to keep his spot on the roster. Eskridge was projected to contribute significantly to special teams as a returner after graduating from Western Michigan.

Eskridge had 17 returns for 467 yards and one score at Western Michigan in 2020, averaging 27.5 yards per attempt. The receiver has contributed to Seattle’s special teams but has not provided the unit with the desired boost.

During his final collegiate season, the receiver had 34 catches for 784 yards and eight touchdowns. NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein graded Eskridge in the third round of the 2021 NFL draft.

“He’s not a great route-runner, will struggle with contested catches and lacks desired size, but he can really fly and has home run potential from anywhere on the field,” Zierlein stated in his pre-draft profile. “Eskridge is a linear route-runner with a good tempo when working down the field, but he will benefit from a more limited route tree that includes crossing routes, slants, posts, and over routes so he can rely on his speed rather than route-running.”

“He can get up and grab lofty passes, but catching through contact is where he struggles. He has gadget potential in the quick game and might be a dangerous kick returner, but his strongest selling point may be his ability to stretch the field from the slot.”

 

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