Seattle Seahawks take J.J. McCarthy as QB of the future, get big up front in 7-round NFL Mock Draft

Seattle prepares for life after Geno Smith, and gets big up front.

J.J. McCarthy
J.J. McCarthy / Aaron J. Thornton/GettyImages
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After transitioning Pete Carroll into an advisory role, the Seattle Seahawks enter 2024 with a new head coach in Mike Macdonald. Geno Smith will return for at least a year to prove his comeback two seasons ago wasn't a fluke. Seattle struggled in the trenches on both sides of the ball, hamstringing their offense and linebackers. There's talent in Seattle as they toe the edge between playoff competition and competitive rebuild.

Seahawks think life after Geno Smith with first round selection in 2024 NFL Draft

No. 16: J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan

The Seahawks exercised 2024's contract option with quarterback Geno Smith, but the Seahawks might pay the piper now, so their future transition plan is in place for 2025. J.J. McCarthy's style of ball fits new head coach Mike Macdonald's vision, exercising conservative habits and executing the play design. Macdonald has experience working with McCarthy going back to their days together at Michigan.

Fox college football analyst Joel Klatt spoke about McCarthy and Seattle on Seattle Sports' Brock and Salk,

"“I’m not saying in any way, shape, or form that J.J. is comparable to Lamar. But I will say that (Macdonald) understands the importance of the quarterback’s ability to create between two and five first downs with his legs a game.

“Those are monumental because the defense can do everything right, which he’s uniquely aware, and then all of a sudden the quarterback makes you wrong. J.J. has that ability.”"

Fox college football analyst Joel Klatt

No. 78: Leonard Taylor III, DI, Miami (FL)

After being named the No. 8 overall prospect and a five-star prospect in his 2021 class, Leonard Taylor III delivered on his potential breaking out as a true freshman for the Miami Hurricanes. He enters the draft as a true junior.

2024 NFL Draft Prospect Leonard Taylor III
Clemson v Miami / Megan Briggs/GettyImages

Taylor's college resume warrants a top-50 selection or even a first-round bid, so their Seahawks are happy to nab him here. Mike Macdonald hails from Michigan and the Baltimore Ravens, where both teams emphasize strength and depth in the trenches.

Look for the Seahawks to emphasize this as well, plugging in Leonard Taylor III as a stout run-stopper with the ability to line up on the edge in big sets. Taylor's versatility would be a nice fit even if they keep Leonard Williams, whom the Seahawks traded for last season.