The Seahawks selected LSU guard Damien Lewis with the 69th overall pick in the third round of the NFL Draft.
After moving down five selections in a trade with the Carolina Panthers, the Seahawks made Lewis their third addition of the weekend. Lewis, at 6-foot-2, 327 pounds, joins an already crowded competition at guard for Seattle.
"There's just so many cool things about the guy. He's so stout. He's so heavy with his hands. He's got a a great anchor. He's got really good eyes. You can see him play against top level competition. So it makes the evaluation that much easier. He has taken some snaps at center but obviously it's easier for us to see him competing at right guard."
Lewis said he has experienced with both guard positions and has played center some as well in an effort to expand his versatility. He added that they ran a diverse offense at LSU that has left him with a strong foundation to work with moving to the NFL.
"We did a little bit of everything," Lewis said. "We spread guys out, gap plays, true inside, some wide zone. We did pretty much everything. I’m mean, nasty and tough, that’s what I got. I don’t take it from nobody."
Added head coach Pete Carroll: "They were very much the cutting edge and pass protection-wise and in the concepts that the coach demanded the players learn. His coaches in particular raved about his work ethic, his study ethic. It was just his overall smarts and understanding of the game. All of that's going to come into play."
The Seahawks didn't waste any time in saying that Lewis is coming in to compete for a starting job right away at right guard.
"Yeah, he will," head coach Pete Carroll said. "He won't take a backseat to anybody. He's going to come in here and battle for it. That's really part of the reason we took him. We want him to come in here to battle to play and all of that competition will make us better."
Both D.J. Fluker and Mike Iupati are back after starting at right and left guard, respectively, last season. Phil Haynes, Jamarco Jones, B.J. Finney and Chance Warmack are among a large group of players expected to compete for roster spots and jobs as well with Lewis now being added to the mix too.
Lewis was a two-year starter for the Tigers at right guard after transferring in from Northwest Mississippi Community College. Lewis earned second-team All-SEC honors as part of LSU's national title run in 2019, helping the Tigers' offensive line win the Joe Moore Award as the top front five in the country.
Lewis said he was playing Madden 20 with his best friend as the Seahawks when his friend told him he thought he'd wind up in Seattle.
"We were playing Madden 20 and I had the Seattle Seahawks because they’re my favorite team," Lewis said. "And he was like ‘you’re going to be on the Seahawks, I see them drafting you right now, they like to run the ball.’"
Lewis said he'd already spoken with quarterback Russell Wilson via FaceTime shortly after being drafted by the Seahawks on Friday night.
"I just talked to Russell," Lewis said. "Russell is a great guy, a great leader. He gets guys going and he’s the captain. He can get people fired up and I’m ready to meet him in person. I told him I’m coming in day one to compete. Trying to earn a spot. I’m going to give it my all. ... He was really happy when I FaceTimed and called him, he was like are you ready? He was smiling and was saying we’re winning a Super Bowl over here and when we play, we’re going to make it happen over here. I told him I’m ready to go out there and compete and help win a Super Bowl someday. He was fired up about it and I was fired up. I’m ready to make it happen."
By moving down from the 64th pick to the 69th pick, the Seahawks added a fifth-round selection to their allotment with the 148th overall pick.
Photo Credit: LSU guard Damien Lewis braces before the snap of the football in a game against the University of Georgia. (Photo by Gus Stark / Louisiana State University Athletics)