Justin Forsett Talks to OLBG
Justin Forsett is a former American football running back. Justin played college football at California before being drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the seventh round of the 2008 NFL Draft. Forsett went on to play in the NFL for the Indianapolis Colts, Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, Baltimore Ravens, Detroit Lions, and Denver Broncos. Forsett's was the Pro Bowl alternate as a result of his 2014 season with Ravens, producing stats of carries (235), rushing yards (1,266) and touchdowns (8).
What did you think of the decision to trade Russell Wilson to Denver?
I thought Russ would be there for the rest of his career, but it seemed like they got to a point where it was mutually beneficial to move on. Seattle's going to a rebuilding phase now and they allowed Russ to join a team that could be a Championship contender. I think it worked out best for both parties. He's going into a great situation- there's still question marks with the Seattle organization, but they're rebuilding and trying to find the right pieces for the puzzle. It was certainly a shock when I first saw the news, though.
Looking at replacements- do you think Baker Mayfield would fit the bill?
I think Baker could be a good fit at Seattle. Having played with Pete Carroll for two years myself, I know that he embraces strong personalities and wants you to show up as yourself. I think that's something he can help shape and mould to allow Baker to be a better player and leader in the locker room. If it does happen it will be a QB competition, I don't know what the potential deal would look like. There's a strong culture in the Seattle locker room, so I think he'd do well.
Do any College QBs stand out and could Seattle look at that as an option?
To be honest, I don't think so. Where they're picking, I don't know if there's a good spot. The best option is probably a veteran guy this season for the rebuild, help set a standard and maybe groom someone else down the road. I think they need an older head in free agency to come in and help out instead.
You spent some time in the Seattle locker room with some big characters, what was it like playing with those guys? Do you have any good stories to share?
Marshawn Lynch- we came into college together as roommates at Berkeley, young kids just 19 years old. I learnt a lot from him, he would say the same thing about me. I just saw a great, raw human being. He works hard, he has a big heart and loves to serve others. Community is a big thing for him, back from where he came from in Oakland, California.
On the field and in the locker room, he was an amazing character. As for good stories, Marshawn used to eat skittles, gummy bears, all the unhealthy things an athlete isn't supposed to have. I saw an interview with DK Metcalf recently where he said he ate a lot of candy and drank a lot of coffee- that was essentially Marshawn, even as a teenager. When we played in Seattle together he was the same, unhealthy diet, eating all the bad stuff. He was just a freak of nature and could pull it off- I certainly couldn't pull it off if I did that!
You spent a few happy years in Baltimore- what do you think to the Lamar Jackson situation? Should Ravens fans be concerned?
I think yes, a little bit. As someone who has been in that locker room and cheers for the Ravens, you want to see a deal done with your Quarterback. You see all these other deals done and it looks like something isn't right. I know the Deshaun Watson deal really reset the market, but it's still a bit of a concern a deal hasn't been done. He deserves to be paid and taken care of because he's such a talent.
Who do you make the early favourites in that division?
It's hard to go against the current division champs. Joe Burrow looks great, Deshaun Watson has had a year off so it might depend how quickly he blows the cobwebs off after that time. He needs to get comfortable in the organization and with the personnel around him. It will be interesting to see what happens.
You spent a bit of time with the Texans, is Davis Mills the solution going forward?
It's up in the air right now. We saw some bright spots from him last season, the team overall was not good, so what he did was up there among the rookie QBs. It's hard for me being a Cowbear, him being a Stanford Cardinal. There's a bit of rivalry there so I can't say too many good things! If he can build off the promise he showed towards the end of last season then, who knows, he could be the signature piece over there.
Looking at the NFL in general, as a former RB, who is the best in that position in the league currently?
That's a tough question. Derrick Henry comes to mind for his consistency, year after year he always puts in big numbers. He is a true lead back. Even during my time and back in the 90s, early 2000s, you had that one guy who could do it all. He is that guy and the number one. You can't sleep on Jonathan Taylor either. He can run, catch, block, has tremendous breakaway speed. There's a lot of serious talent out there but I'd make those two the top.
What do you think to the RB position overall in the NFL? Is it as strong as ever?
You've got the two guys we just mentioned and then the Dalvin Cook's of the world. I think after that there's a bit of a drop-off in overall numbers in our position. There was a lot of injuries last season which you could use as a bit of a caveat, but I don't think last season overall was a great indicator for RB careers in the NFL, there were some bright spots with those upper echelon running backs, but outside of the top 5 or 6, I don't think the depth was quite there. Whether it's how they're being used or something else, I'd be looking for better next season.
Who do you like in the draft this year at RB?
I really like Isaiah Spiller and Breece Hall, they're probably in my top two. I like versatility. Breece Hall breaks tackles well, you have to do a lot of that in the NFL and block what's assigned or drawn up in the playbook. The defense is smart too, they get paid too. You need the ability to make people miss and break tackles; I think Breece Hall really has that and I like him as an NFL prospect for this draft. Whoever chooses him is getting a very good football player.
Who do you think will be number 1 in the draft?
There's been some rotations here with who people think might be first pick. I think the Jaguars will play it safe and go with Aidan Hutchinson from Michigan. I really like Travon Walker at Georgia, I believe he's a really talented position player and prospect at the D line. If it was the Oakland Raiders, the Al Davis era, and they had the number one pick, I'm sure Walker would be that guy given his speed and combine numbers. The Jags need someone to be a franchise player, someone safe, dependable, so I think Hutchinson will be their pick.
What will these young college kids be feeling just days before the NFL draft?
A lot of these young guys have been told a lot of things about where they're going to be. A lot of the first round guys will already know, they'll be told a few days in advance. It's all about finding the right opportunity, it's not where you go, it's what you do when arriving there. Of course they will be nervous and uncertainty, but this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and it should be embraced. They need to enjoy the moment and pray for the best.
Who do you think the winners and losers are in the off season so far?
As for winners, you have to respect the LA Rams after picking up Bobby Wagner. I like what the Texans have done getting those draft picks, they could pick up a lot of talent after that deal with Cleveland. Multiple first round picks coming up so it will be interesting to see how they rebuild. The Dolphins have plenty of weapons and speed around them. You'd have to put the Bucs in this category too, with Tom Brady coming back.
As for the losers, Green Bay losing Davante Adams is huge. Even though they have picks in return, they're losing that chemistry between Adams and Aaron Rodgers. The Cowboys too, they haven't really done anything special. I'm here in Dallas and get a lot of information on their players, they just don't seem to have made an impact so far but they have time to make up for it in the draft.
Who do you expect to do well this season?
I expect the Rams to be back up there as a contender. Baltimore should be back, they have everyone healthy and coming back, Lamar back at the helm too. The Colts could be in a better position with Matt Ryan, they have the talent and a strong defense. The OL is strong too and they have an elite Running Back. Maybe the experience of Matt Ryan could give them a boost.
Any surprises likely next season? Who might shoot up the ranks?
Potentially the Broncos. Russell Wilson is an elite Quarterback, and they look to have a stronger roster compared to when I was there in 2016. They could be one of those teams that start rising because they have great leadership now and a strong offense.
It's a bit early to be asking, but who will be in next year's Super Bowl?
Oh wow, a Super Bowl pick already in April! I will say as things stand right now, the Rams will be up there again. Solid on offense with Stafford coming back, lots for him to aim at. They have hall of fame players everywhere on defense with Wagner, Donald, Ramsey, they just have so many great pieces to their roster. I'll cheer for the Ravens too and say with Lamar leading them, they can reach that level. If they don't pay Lamar, then he's going to take them to the bank!
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