With preseason week 3 upon us, NFL fans are now two weeks away from the start of the NFL regular season. Before that, though, each team has one more preseason game to shake out their rosters in preparation. One more game means one more chance for some players to fight for their deserving spots on the depth chart. The Los Angeles Chargers and Seattle Seahawks both have intriguing players to watch. The Chargers, now 1-1 after an embarrassing loss to the San Francisco 49ers, are now looking to bounce back. Meanwhile, the Seahawks, after consecutive thrashings by the Las Vegas Raiders and Denver Broncos, will be looking to end the preseason on a good note.This is the Chargers-Seahawks preseason week 3 preview.
The Chargers have a wide array of draft picks and undrafted rookies to keep an eye on, while the Seahawks are mostly relying on their older talent. However, the Seahawks have a couple of intriguing rookies worth mentioning. Here are the rookies to watch on each team.
- Amen Ogbongbemiga (LB) – It was honestly surprising that Ogbongbemiga went undrafted. A standout at Oklahoma State, Amen racked up 180 tackles (113 solo, 20.5 for loss), in his last two seasons. In his first game in the NFL, Amen racked up four tackles (two solo), against the Rams. Though he did not put up a tackle against the 49ers, there is a high chance that he earns a roster spot and becomes a solid rotational piece with linebackers Kenneth Murray and Drue Tranquill.
- Asante Samuel Jr. (CB) – Samuel had a solid outing against the 49ers, in which he had a solo tackle and an interception. However, what makes him interesting is that there is a chance that Seahawks star quarterback Russell Wilson will play. Since this is the last week of preseason, NFL teams will likely want their starters to get some limited reps. If Seahawks coach Pete Carroll decides to start Wilson, then fans
will get to see Samuel go against elite talent.
- NIck Niemann (LB) – Another linebacker, Niemann is already making a strong case for earning that rotational slot in the linebacker core. Last week against the 49ers, Niemann led the Chargers defense with eight tackles (five solo). He was one of the few bright lights in a daunting defeat. With many of the Seahawks starters likely playing, hopefully fans get to see Niemann get some reps against some of the best.
- D’Wayne Eskridge (WR) – One of only three draftees for the Seahawks this season, Eskridge has yet to play a down this preseason. After injuring his toe in June, Eskridge is expected to make his return against the Chargers. Expectations are fairly high for Eskridge, being their highest pick of the 2021 Draft at pick 56. Will he be able to earn that WR3 spot alongside star recievers DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett? Fans will simply need to wait and see.
- Cade Johnson (WR) – One of the reasons Eskridge may not immediately earn that WR3 spot is due to Johnson. An undrafted free agent out of South Dakota State, Johnson was expected to be an late Day 2, early Day 3 pick (~Rounds 4-5). The fact that he went undrafted means that the Seahawks may have an absolute steal on their hands. Johnson perfectly fits the mold for a slot reciever: solid hands, explosive speed, and running toughness. Since WR3s often tend to line up in a slot reciever role, Johnson may be best suited for the job.
- Aashari Crosswell (FS) – Normally, players like undrafted rookie Crosswell wouldn’t make a list like this. However, star safety Quandre Diggs is currently out of practice due to a contract dispute. With that in mind, the Seahawks are looking for a possible replacement to hold the line until the dispute is settled. Crosswell, a rookie out of Arizona State, was fantastic as a freshman, with 4 interceptions, 9 pass breakups, and 43 tackles. After a solid sophomore season, Crosswell did not carry that over to his junior season. He played in only one game in 2020, losing his starting job and being suspended for violating a team policy. He certainly possesses the talent, as shown by his freshman season, but his character is questionable.
Both teams are in very different positions going into this game. The Chargers will likely be primarily hoping to settle some position competitions, such as at linebacker and at wide reciever. The Seahawks, on the other hand, will likely be hoping to get their first preseason win. Preseason wins and losses mean nothing for the regular season, but losing every preseason game can be devastating for team morale. Winning at least one could help right the ship for the Seahawks going into the regular season. The Chargers may try to win too, but they likely won’t have the same sense of urgency. For them, it’s more about trying to stop making foolish mistakes like last week. This was the Chargers-Seahawks preseason week 3 preview.