Will Seahawks target Byron Maxwell's replacement in draft?

The Seattle Seahawks are on an amazing run of success lately under Pete Carroll, and will be aiming for a third consecutive trip to the Super Bowl when the 2015 season kicks off.

It won't be an easy hill to climb, however, as several key pieces of the team are scheduled to become free agents shortly. One big name in particular is cornerback Byron Maxwell, and several analysts on NFL Network's "Path to the Draft" think the franchise will be targeting his replacement in the 2015 NFL Draft.

"They may be looking at a cornerback in the first round and the first one who sticks out to me is Marcus Peters," Curtis Conway said. "This is a young man who played a lot of press coverage with the Huskies against guys like Brandin Cooks, Jaelen Strong, Ty Montgomery. He was isolated against some pretty good wide receivers in the Pac-12 and held his own."

Despite being the second-ranked cornerback in NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock's positional rankings, Peters is no sure thing to be taken early in the first round. He was booted off Washington's football team midseason and there are several other off-the-field concerns that scouts have about him. If he were to fall to the Seahawks at No. 31 overall, it might wind up being a steal for the team based on talent alone. It also would offer Peters the chance to become a teammate with his mentor, Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch.

Former NFL general manager and current NFL Media analyst Charley Casserly agrees that the cornerback position is the one spot which Seattle could target early in the draft, but thinks the Seahawks might have to reach a little further down the rankings to grab one.

"Byron Maxwell is going to make too much money for them to keep him. Jeremy Lane is hurt. They need a corner opposite (Richard) Sherman," Casserly said. "I think Marcus Peters and Trae Waynes are going to be gone. I'm going to go with the third-ranked cornerback in my mind, Kevin Johnson of Wake Forest. Good all-around athlete who has the quickness and change of direction to play press (coverage). Has the hips and speed to play man. Very instinctive in zone."



Other potential fits for the NFC champions, according to the "Path to the Draft" crew, include Ohio State defensive tackle Michael Bennett and Arizona State wide receiver Jaelen Strong.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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