Predicting Seahawks' 2015 breakout candidates

Who will be Seattle's Training Camp superstars this year and will they show enough to carry over their preseason success into the regular (and potentially post) season? breaks down five favorites and a diamond in the rough who could enjoy breakout campaigns in 2015.

You have to give John Schneider and his scouting staff a lot of credit.

Since he took over as the top talent evaluator in Seattle, the Seahawks have consistently unearthed hidden gems who went on to emerge as future starters. Everyone recognizes former fifth round pick turned All-Pro Richard Sherman but if the club is to win the NFC title for an unprecedented third consecutive year, others must contribute in smaller (but also significant) roles, just like how Jermaine Kearse, Jeremy Lane and Alvin Bailey have the past few seasons.

Needless to say, Jimmy Graham should be Seattle's most impactful offseason acquisition. Who, though, are other new Seahawks to be talking about now - before training camping starts - when everyone else starts buzzing about them? lists five favorites and a deep sleeper.

The Favorites

CB Cary Williams, 6-1, 190, 30 years old

It will be interesting to see if Byron Maxwell is able to provide the Philadelphia Eagles with better value than the Seahawks receive from Williams, who was unceremoniously dumped in the City of Brotherly Love after failing to live up to the massive contract he signed two years ago. Like Maxwell, Williams is long, feisty and athletic. In fact, he's more fluid than Maxwell. I spent a lot of the OTAs watching Williams acclimate with the Legion of Boom (see photo above of Sherman, Kam Chancellor and Williams) and am very confident that Seattle's secondary will prove just as formidable this season as we've grown accustomed.

DT Ahtyba Rubin, 6-2, 325, 28 years old

Though Brandon Mebane's recovery from the torn hamstring that ended last season in Week 10 is going well, don't be surprised if the similarly-built Rubin carves out a significant role along Seattle's defensive front. Rubin emerged as a quality run-stuffing presence for the Cleveland Browns and comes with plenty of motivation as he signed with the Seahawks on essentially a one-year "show me" deal. Rotating Mebane (who also will be a free agent following this year) and Rubin on the nose could keep both fresh for the entire season.

DE/OLB Cassius Marsh, 6-4, 254, 23 years old

I toyed with the idea of listing Bruce Irvin in this space because I wouldn't be surprised at all if he is allowed to rush more frequently this season. Irvin is noticeably bigger and thicker and looks poised to have a splashy final year as his rookie contract expires. The Seahawks seem content with keeping Irvin at outside linebacker for now and recently auditioned former defensive lineman Marsh in this role as Irvin's backup. Marsh is not as athletic as Irvin (few are) and his inexperience dropping into coverage was noticeable during OTAs but he's long, passionate, physical and (the Seahawks hope) versatile. Marsh could log time at both positions, especially with flashy LEO candidate Ryan Robinson being placed on IR in June. (Hat tip to Twitter helpers @AndrewFerleman and @BobdolepintoBob)

OG Mark Glowinski, 6-4, 310, 24 years old

Of the three rookie offensive linemen Schneider drafted for Pete Carroll and Tom Cable, Glowinski is the most pro-ready. I fully expect Bailey to win the starting left guard position and J.R. Sweezy Is entrenched on the right side. The bigger question could be what happens if Seattle's starting tackles, Russell Okung and Justin Britt, get nicked up. Bailey has served as the club's valuable "swing tackle" in the past and he seems the likeliest candidate to return to this role if necessary. If so, Glowinski could wind up the first offensive lineman off the bench. I like his combination of quickness, power and grit.

RB Thomas Rawls, 5-9, 215, 21 years old

If you haven't bought a ticket aboard the Rawls hype train, you'd better reserve your seating soon. Rawls has seized the attention of scouts throughout the spring, demonstrating surprising burst and lateral cutting ability for his power-packed frame. What's exciting about that is his tape at Central Michigan shows Rawls to be a powerful, aggressive runner who fights through would-be tacklers. Rawls runs angry, which could steal him plenty of opportunities as a running back and perhaps even a kick returner.

Deep Sleeper

WR Douglas McNeil III, 6-3, 200, 26 years old

One can't write an article on Breakout players for the Seattle Seahawks and fail to mention the spectacular Super Bowl performance from Chris Matthews. That said, for as good as Matthews was against the Patriots, his spot is far from guaranteed. Tyler Lockett is the new wideout everyone is watching, of course, but don't sleep on McNeil, who dominated the Arena League to the tune of 18 touchdowns in 11 games a year ago after playing his collegiate ball at Towson. McNeil certainly passes the eye test with excellent size, a chiseled frame and good hand-eye coordination to win contested passes. He and fellow "big" receivers Matthews (6-5, 218), Kevin Norwood (6-2, 199) and Kasen Williams (6-1, 219) could be fighting for one roster spot. Top Stories