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John Schneider still excited about future of L.J. Collier

Curtis Crabtree

The Seahawks weren’t able to get much production out first-round pick L.J. Collier in his rookie season with the team last fall.

After injuring his ankle during a training camp practice in late-July, Collier missed all of the preseason and was active for just two of the team’s first five games of the season. Collier would eventually appear in 11 games for the Seahawks last year but was unable to carve out a consistent role in Seattle’s defensive line rotation.

However, Seattle General Manager John Schneider still believes Collier has a lot to bring to the table for the Seahawks.

We were lucky that we had him. We thought we were going to lose him for the season that day (in camp),” Schneider said, via Joe Fann of NBC Sports Northwest. “We were lucky that we didn’t have to place him on IR. Obviously we would have liked to see him make a little bit more of a dent.”

Collier was inactive for both of Seattle’s playoff games against the Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers. He finished the season with just three total tackles in 152 total defensive snaps, per Pro Football Reference. The Seahawks selected Collier with the 29th overall pick in last year’s draft and hoped he would help fill the void filled by the trade of Frank Clark to the Kansas City Chiefs. Instead, the injury helped derail his entire rookie campaign.

“We had traded Frank (Clark), so we were really excited to be able to acquire L.J., and then unfortunately he had that really funky ankle injury,” Schneider said.

But despite the disappointing rookie season, Schneider still believes Collier will have a lot to offer heading into his second season.

“He’s a powerful rusher,” Schneider said. “He’s got great hands. He can rush inside. He can rush outside. He can rush at the five (technique). He can rush at the three (technique). He’s going to be… we’re excited.”