Seahawks trade guard John Moffitt to Cleveland
J.R. Sweezy seems to have Seahawks’ right guard spot locked up after team trades John Moffitt to Browns for defensive lineman Brian Sanford.
Seattle Times staff reporter
The Seahawks ended their battle at right guard Monday by trading John Moffitt to the Cleveland Browns.
In return, the Seahawks received defensive end/tackle Brian Sanford, adding depth to a defensive line where several players are dealing with injuries.
Moffitt, a third-year veteran from Wisconsin, had been competing with second-year pro J.R. Sweezy. Sweezy had run with the No. 1 offense throughout camp and started the first two exhibition games. The trade of Moffitt indicates the team’s faith in Sweezy’s play.
Seattle has also been pleased with the progress of rookies Michael Bowie (a seventh-round pick) and Alvin Bailey (an undrafted free agent), and trading Moffitt might make it easier for the team to hold on to each of those players. Each is listed as a tackle but can play guard — Bailey has seen increasing time at guard the past week. Second-year player Rishaw Johnson is also competing at guard.
The 6-foot-2, 280-pound Sanford, who played at Temple, is entering his fourth year. He has played in just six games — one last season — making three tackles. However, he has gotten off to a good start in the exhibition season, making a sack along with three tackles in two games, and he was projected to be part of Cleveland’s defensive-line rotation.
The Seahawks listed Sanford as a left defensive tackle on the depth chart for Friday’s game at Green Bay that was released Monday afternoon.
Listed ahead of Sanford on the depth chart at left defensive tackle are Tony McDaniel, who has been ailing with a groin injury but is expected to return this week, and rookies Jordan Hill and Jesse Williams.
While Seattle listed Sanford at tackle, he was listed at end by the Browns, and he could be tried there as well by the Seahawks. The Seahawks are waiting for Cliff Avril and Chris Clemons to get healthy, and for Bruce Irvin to serve his four-game suspension for PED use.
Moffitt, a third-round pick out of Wisconsin in 2011, showed promise as a rookie, starting nine games before suffering a season-ending knee injury.
He recovered well enough to start six games last season, and play in eight, as well as play in both playoff games.
Moffitt made news in the spring after pleading guilty to disorderly conduct in relation to three incidents in Bellevue Square in 2012 that included urinating in public.
However, he reported to camp having dropped about 10 pounds, and hoped to regain a starting job.
Instead, his trade appears to solidify Seattle’s offensive line, with the four other spots having been constant throughout camp.
In an interview on KJR-AM, Moffitt said he had “no bad feelings’’ over the trade and that it showed that “at the end of the day it’s a business, it’s money, it’s X’s and O’s, it’s who can you get and who is worth what.’’
Cleveland has had injuries at guard, and Moffitt will be thrown into the mix for playing time.
Seattle made another move to bolster its depth on the defensive line Monday, signing undrafted free agent Dewayne Cherrington, a 6-3, 335-pound tackle who played at Mississippi State and had a tryout with the Seahawks last week. He was on the Patriots’ roster for about a month earlier this year before being released in June.
Seattle cleared the space to add Cherrington by waiving kicker Carson Wiggs, a free agent from Purdue who was attempting to make a run at the starting job held by Steven Hauschka.
Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Twitter @bcondotta