Tad Hensinger
Author

Staying In His Lane

Aug 11, 2014 12:53 AM EST

Jeremy Lane is a small college player primed for a big time role. He played collegiate ball for the Northwestern State Demons in Louisiana. It wouldn't be a surprise if you haven't heard of it or Lane before he was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the 6th round with the 172nd pick of the 2012 draft. Before the 2012 draft he was just another small school prospect with the dream of playing in the NFL. Now though, with the 2014-2015 season quickly approaching, he enters his third season with the Seahawks. He looks to showcase his ball hawking abilities to go with his 4.53 second 40 yard dash speed that highlights his athleticism and make his mark this year.

Last season Richard Sherman, Brandon Browner, Walter Thurmond and Byron Maxwell highlighted the corner group with Lane rounding out the top five. Sherman and Maxwell had minimal issues but Browner was suspended for a lengthy term. He eventually left in free agency to join Bill Belichick and his ever tough New England Patriots. Thurmond also dealt with his own suspension issues before signing with the New York Giants. The result? Lane moved into the nickel role behind Sherman and Maxwell. The promotion wasn't one Lane would relinquish without a fight. Throughout the 2013-2014 season Lane played in 15 games while notching 25 tackles and 4 passes defensed. It may not seem like much, but the key is to remember that Lane wasn't even the full time nickel corner for a significant portion of the season. If he were playing the full season, he likely would have corralled a higher number of tackles and also would have likely picked a couple passes off.

With a promising 2013-2014 season in the rear view mirror, it's time to look at Lane's future. This season Lane is the leading candidate to lock up the duties as the nickel corner behind Sherman and Maxwell. Standing in at 6'0 and weighing 190lbs, the 24 year old Lane looks to make his mark in the famed Legion of Boom. Film shows that Lane moves well on the field with high level speed and good burst. He's often in his man's hip pocket shadowing him ready to make a play should the quarterback make the mistake to throw his direction. This bodes well for the upcoming season. Lane will likely use his ball hawking skills to steal a few errant passes from the air and put down a bevy of ball carriers into the Century Link turf. It wouldn't be a surprise to see him grab 3-4 interceptions while racking up 40 or more tackles, giving him very solid production for a nickel corner.

With the season almost on top of us, the Seahawks know what they have in Sherman and know Maxwell is a solid product. Lane may be a little more unpolished at this point, but he's got all the tools to have a breakout season this year.